A few days ago, a partner forwarded along a non-confidential e-mail from Microsoft announcing their new "Notes Transition Partner Program (NTPP)", which is also found on their website.  Could it be, that after three failed attempts to run a Notes platform migration effort, they'd really try again?  Apparently so.  That neutered "red bull" program from 2005-6-7 seems to have clearly died out, but it also seems like they've decided it is time to try again.

Without reprinting the full e-mail here, I have to make some observations about it.  All the pundits who feel like Microsoft is turning into the IBM of the 80s really would have fun with this.  Every element of their new program has its own convoluted name (would you like to use the "business value analyzer suite", or is the "customer engagement solutions (CES) model" more your style?).  Everything is "new", which I guess it would have to be after the previous tools have all fallen flat.

The other thing I especially like is that Microsoft has a presentation in this project updating partners on the IBM sales strategy and technologies, which will be presented by "knowledgeable people who have both IBM/Lotus and Microsoft sales experience".  I guess that, once again, the supposed high-road approach that one Microsoft employee has represented in comments on this weblog has flown out the window.  (Reference: "my answer is ALWAYS 'You should get your information about IBM's product plans from IBM...you shouldn't ask me,' and that's the answer that I think most ex-Lotus folks here will give when asked.")

As you all know, I'm not throwing stones here at MS for running this play.  We at IBM have similar efforts, and have had some great successes recently at Exchange to Domino moves, licensing optimization discussions, and clearing some of the defensive hurdles from the road ahead.  But I also believe we say what we do, we do what we say, we represent Microsoft accurately and make corrections when we're wrong.  Blogging has been a great tool to help with information transparency -- and consistency -- in the market.

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