For ten weeks now, we've covered the saga of the new Microsoft Application Analyzer for Lotus Notes Domino 2006.  People like Paul Mooney and David DeWell have dissected the tool's logic and found that it does very little in terms of analyzing Notes apps...and is subject to manipulation.  Last week, we also learned that the Application Analyzer interrogates a little-used Notes property to determine application activity levels ... and doesn't error out when that property is unavailable!  Instead, it just assumes the application is unused.  Nice.

While Microsoft has, through a weblog (be sure to read the comments), acknowledged some of the challenges with this tool, despite all the problems, Microsoft is still shipping it.  They are even planning a series of seminars to "train" business partners on using the Application Analyzer starting next month.

Tom Duff eloquently summarizes the problem here: ethics. If the tool has little functional value, reports bad data, and is easily manipulated, why is it even in market?  We know the answer to this -- it doesn't matter to Microsoft.  They have a conversation starter, and a piece of marketware that just by its existence, creates the impression that the scope of a Notes migration is simpler than in reality.  In customers who have gone down this path, they have spent more time, money, and effort than anticipated to try to migrate their apps -- in most cases, realizing that after all, the Notes platform provides unique value and shouldn't be migrated.  Usually, this is determined too late -- mail is already migrated, and as was seen at one example, hundreds of dollars per-user spent for no quantifiable return on investment.

(Gee, with all the links in this entry, I suppose we should create a wiki on this topic).  Anyway.

After reading Duff's writeup on this, I reached a decision. As of now, I'm done writing about the Microsoft Application Analyzer for Lotus Domino 2006.  It is so beyond worthless and unethical that it just isn't worth anymore of my time and attention.  Enough with this "bull".

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