On my way out of the Westford MA labs yesterday, I was pinged by Jan Kenney and alerted to a little hiccup in our release staging process.  See, the Notes/Domino 8.5 release was completed and signed off by the development organization earlier this week.  The final builds were done last week.  The code is complete.

That means we're now in the submarine-like phase between code completion and actual release to market.  Microsoft calls this "release to manufacturing", which I think is a bit of an outdated term for software since physical availability of CDs/DVD-ROMSs is no longer the first access a customer has to new software releases.  Whatever you call it, there's a bit of process work that goes on to ready download/entitlement/delivery sites, marketing content, developerWorks updates, support queues, press announcements, and everything else.

Honestly, the critical path for all those activities would normally have finished up sometime around Tuesday next week...not the ideal date/time to launch software and expect anyone to notice.  Moreover, like many organizations, we have a lot of people at IBM heading out for holiday vacations, and driving to a date next week simply made no sense.  Thus, we made the call that we are not actually releasing Notes/Domino 8.5 products (including things like Traveler 8.5, LEI, etc.) during the next two weeks.  It's not a "slip" in the sense that we weren't able to finish the project in time... simply a marketing decision (we make those, you know) to optimize release for its greatest impact.

I still can't say publicly what our official release and launch plan is, but we've pre-briefed a number of industry analysts --their feedback has been universally positive.  It will be exciting and different (which you can translate to meaning that we're not waiting for Lotusphere), and you will hear all about it at the right time.

Post a Comment