October 9 2010
We had tons of great press on this week's formal announcement of LotusLive Notes, but a few of the articles took a more negative angle...this one's subhead is "20-year Old Lotus Notes Gets Puffy Makeover":
Lotus Notes, which even during the '90s was clunky and nostalgic in a bad way got a cloud-computing makeover today.Now, the last sentence shows a very clear lack of understanding of what the cloud means, since a) companies don't have to build the back-end infrastructure and b) Domino hasn't exactly been a "giant infrastructure", well, in a long time, if ever.
LotusLive iNotes [sic] is the latest in a string of increasingly alarming facelifts foisted on the aging messaging platform by changing technology and IBM's compulsion to not ever give up on or try to convert customers from a product as long as anyone is willing to hang onto it. ...
The new version, Lotus Live, includes all the calendaring, IM, web conferencing, file sharing and other features of full-bore Notes. The launch ensures continued suffering for employees of giant corporations that consider the ability to build a giant infrastructure more important than the possibility of using it.
But that's not the point. The point to me is, I am beginning to wonder -- ok, accelerate my wondering -- as to whether if we had simply announced "IBM Cloud Collaboration" the reporter would have had to peer past the point of his biases and try to understand what IBM really announced. Whether he might take a look at whether Notes 8 is different than whatever prior experience or stereotype he applies to the "20-year old". Whether he might want to know about an environment secure enough that there won't be reports of unauthorized vendor reading of email, why an installed client is relevant and important to be an included capability in a cloud offering, and what it means that the strongest brand in IT has entered the cloud collaboration space with such strength.
It might not have made such a great headline. But the headline and article might reflect a broader perception issue, and if that is the case, I really want to think about how to overcome it. I know that the default response to this posting will be "more advertising", but Lotus Knows we're on taxis in Brisbane, billboards at Victoria Station and other UK print, on the radio, and in the pages of Wired Magazine. Advertising doesn't change the fact that Lotus Notes is going to be 21 years old in seven weeks. And if your visceral recollection of Lotus Notes is a stack of 5.25" floppy disks being installed on an OS/2 server running NETBIOS, then is any amount of advertising/marketing going to change that?
I much prefer the tone and tenor of the line in ReadWriteWeb:
We wonder if Ray Ozzie ever thought that he would someday looking from Microsoft's executive suite to see IBM release his Lotus Notes creation into the cloud.but even that is a start with a look in the rearview mirror.
LotusLive Notes and Engage combine to provide more capability, more access, more security, and more roadmap than Microsoft, Google, Cisco, Salesforce, or anyone else in the cloud collaboration space. Now we have to tell the world, with a view to the present and future.
Link: ITWorld: IBM puts clunky in the cloud >