John Roling takes a look at the Notes 8 beta's user interface improvements...

As a long-time Notes user, I'm really pleased with the direction Lotus is taking with the new client. It's no longer ugly, it works a lot more the way you think it should, and the move to the Eclipse-based framework really has the potential to increase the amount you can do with the product.

The only downside I see is that the design changes will require you to invest a bit more in training than previous Notes upgrades. That said, the improvements are definitely worth the effort. Notes is changing, make sure you're part of the evolution.
John picks up some of the key points of the new release as well, such as
Quite literally, you can stay inside of Notes to create documents as Lotus has included their "Productivity Tools" with Notes 8. With a Notes 8 license, you are entitled to Lotus Documents (word processing) Lotus Presentations (slideshow presentations) and Lotus Spreadsheets. These three applications are customized versions based on the open-source Open Office suite. They can work on documents from Microsoft Office, IBM Smart Suite, or the new Open Document standard.

This is obviously something IBM is going to push heavily in its battle against Outlook and Exchange. Having these tools included free can significantly reduce what a company has to pay in licensing costs to Microsoft. Granted, these editors aren't nearly as full-featured as their Microsoft counterparts, but they have enough features to probably satisfy 80-90 percent of your users. Imagine being able to save Office licensing fees for that much of your work force. It's a pretty powerful return on investment message.
Indeed.

Link: Intranet Journal: My Life with the Dolled Up Lotus Notes 8 Beta >

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