February 4 2006
One thing I was really struck by was how passionate so many people are about Lotus Notes. The Notes community is a community that I was once a very active member of and I really miss. Is it any coincidence that the most advanced "social software" platform also has the most tightly knit, passionate technology community?This energy and enthusiasm is one of the main principles of why I've been proud to work for and with Lotus and Notes for almost 14 years. Emotional response in business can be good, useful, and lead to business benefits (creativity, better working relationships, etc.).
But I was also struck by how many people were otherwise alone in their passion. Getting excited about this thing, a software tool, is something they feel like they aren't allowed to do. Colleagues, friends, relatives making them feel like their interests are silly. Stories of coworkers being derisive or outright hostile, the typical Notes sucks stories, nitpicking every flaw while conceding none of its strengths.That's exactly what it feels like to me when I view the competitive landscape for Notes. It's almost like we joined a club many years ago, and now there are all these people who want to join but can't figure out the secret handshake -- which is hardly secret.
This is not unique to Notes, of even software, people everywhere with intense interests are brought down by others. These people who like to squash enthusiasm I like to call "cynical @ssholes". These are people with no real passion of their own, and it annoys them to no end to see others who do.
I believe as Damien concludes:
It's okay to have passion. It's better than okay, it's great. Go with it.Passion is why we are a community... a "family". And it's what I look forward to about every single business day, is knowing that I'll spend my day with other people who care, who enjoy, who relish, who grok, and who want to shout from the rooftops. Let's keep it going.