A few weeks ago, the Twitterati noticed that a netcast called "This Week in Technology" was taunting Howard Stern over his use of Lotus Notes. Stern has been a long-time Lotus technology customer, but TWiT-casters Leo Laporte, Jeff Jarvis, and Gina Trapani had a nice laugh over it. Well, Howard responded on-air and took Jeff Jarvis to task. Howard invited IBM Lotus Vice President Jeff Schick onto his show to discuss why Howard has made the right choice, and Jeff offered to Jeff Jarvis to check out how Howard uses Lotus technologies.
Jeff Jarvis today blogs what he learned:
Now as for Lotus: In their office, Jeff Schick and a colleague generously spent a few hours giving me a tour of what they can do. I'll concede: It's impressive. What impressed me is that IBM integrated the functions of the collaborative, social internet -- email, Twitter, wikis, LinkedIn, Facebook, Facebook Connect, directories, blogs, calendars, Skype, bookmarks, tagging -- in a way that I wish they would all interroperate: click on a name and get everything about them (contact, place, tags, bookmarks); pull together people in calls or calendars just by dragging them; see how people are sharing your documents; see how people are connected....Score one for the good guys. If you've ever wondered the power of a good demo, there's the answer. I wonder if the TWiT team will start another sub netcast to discuss "This Week in Lotus"?
Only thing is, IBM had to essentially recreate the internet and all these functions to do that, both so they could integrate it all and so that it could operate behind corporate firewalls. We internet snobs make fun of that, but I understand why they do that. But as we talk about how our internet should operate -- how open standards for identity, for example, should work -- the irony is that we could look at the interlocked IBM platforms to see the promise of it. It's closed, for a reason, but it shows what an open structure would look like if it operated on truly open standards. I wonder whether there's an opportunity for IBM to offer these functions at a retail level.
So thanks to Jeff Schick, I got to see Stern's technology and IBM's and get onto the show and so I'll take back my snickers about Notes, most of them.