E L S U A ~ A KM Blog by Luis Suarez

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Lotus Notes 8 Demo – A Whole Lot More than Just Another E-Mail Client

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It looks like the last couple of days I have just been posting about particular screencasts that have become available regarding IBM offerings that are in the pipeline to go live some time during the course of this year and which touch the realm of knowledge sharing and collaboration. So far I have been posting about Lotus Connections, then Lotus Quickr and it looks like I may well have one more for you. At least, for now. This time around on another offering that I have been making use of myself for a number of months and which some of you may find interesting as well, specially since it is something that I have covered over here already in the past and which I mentioned I would be digging into it further some more.

Yes, I am talking about the next version of Lotus Notes 8, currently in beta 2, and which will go live some time during the course of this year. Not far from where we are today, actually. Going along with the previously mentioned screencasts on Connections and Quickr here you have got another screencast on the subject of Lotus Notes 8. It lasts for a bit under six minutes. And pretty much like with the other two, you can download the demo directly from here or get a copy of the script over here as well. It is one of those demos that I would certainly recommend to all those folks out there who would want to see the word groupware reinvented, once again. Whether you like the application or not, this particular screencast will show you what Notes 8 has got to offer. Lots of things, you would agree with me, but if there is anything clear coming out of it is the fact that it is no longer just that e-mail client that people seem to have learned to love or hate.

It will be a whole lot more than that. Yes, it would allow you to still process and work with your mail, and implementing a lovely set of features for that, too, by the way, but the key thing is how Notes 8 is going to extend its reach into other areas to encourage knowledge sharing and collaboration both in a synchronous and asynchronous fashion.

In this particular demo you would then be able to find out a whole lot more about how the new Lotus Notes integrates plenty improved e-mail, calendaring & scheduling capabilities along with Instant Messaging, next to Activity Centric Computing and Composite Applications. Features like improved threaded discussion follow up, side preview, recalling messages that have been sent out already, etc. are now put together with sidebar applications, like Lotus Sametime 7.5.1, Activity Centric Computing, Quickr Content Libraries or a customised RSS / Atom feed client that you can use to subscribe to your favourite feeds.

You would also be able to see from that screencast how Lotus Notes 8 provides an enhanced calendaring feature that, if anything, will be noticed for its compatibility with other popular Internet calendaring formats. From there onwards, you would also be able to check how the Address Book has been improved tremendously with business cards where you can see the pictures of your contacts along with some key basic data, making it a lot easier to remember who you have worked with in the recent past.

And from there onwards we go into the most exciting part of the demo itself which is basically talking about Composite Applications, also known as mashups, and how Notes 8 is actually going to introduce them as part of the client itself. In this particular demo you would be able to see a concrete example of one mashup and how it has been put together into the Notes 8 client itself. This is certainly going to be one of the most popular features from this offering as it would allow end-users to create their own mashups within Notes and share them with whoever else in the project teams. And all of that without having to make use of any other application. Pretty nifty.

Finally, the screencast finishes off sharing some further details on how you can also access Office applications like a word processor, a spreadsheet and a presentation to be able not only to create your own Office documents, but also to process a wide range of files you may be receiving in your Inbox from other knowledge workers. And again without having to leave the Notes client. All of them are nicely put together into a single seamless experience. Quite handy, if you ask me, don’t you think?

So, there you go. The last weblog post on screencasts demoing IBM tools that I will be doing for a while and which touch base on the next generation of Lotus Notes, Notes 8, which is probably going to differentiate itself from its former predecessors as the one client that puts together traditional communication tools like e-mail and calendaring along with several other social computing components, like RSS / Atom feeds syndication, Activities, Quickr, Composite Applications and Lotus Sametime 7.5.1.

Not too bad for just another e-mail client…

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