The Bad was here.
Here is The Good
I did not get to see many sessions at all but the ones I did see were very good. There are so many more sessions I would have liked to see, for the information or to support the speakers I know well, but my own business schedule simply gets in the way this time of year.
In prior years I never really needed to ask for anything from the IBM Developers. This year though I needed several issues addressed and I found each person I spoke with in the Developer Labs to be very helpful. The issues I did not get resolved during the week I believe are being discussed via email. Thank you!
There is Real Opportunity with IBM Connections
Messaging then Apps 1992 – 2000. For those who pay attention, messaging was the beginning of All Thinge Lotus Notes. The platform was not really developed as a messaging platform per se but the entire product was built in such a way that you could develop a messaging application on top of it and call it Notes Mail which was the hot thing back in the early 90s. Messaging.
Lotus owned the messaging market via cc:Mail which was usurped into Notes Mail and, when Microsoft could demonstrably be proven to have taken the top spot in the Messaging market, IBM began calling Messaging a “commodity” and instead focused on the concept that they were the leading vendor in “collaboration.” For anyone hitching their wagon to the Notes-train in the 90s it was a heady time for business. IBM sells to businesses, not consumers, and so has kept Domino and Notes quite robust for many years (and I do not see that really stopping any time soon) but now it is very clear that IBM Connections is their future.
The way I see it…there is a lot of business opportunity now if you want get into this Connections space even a little bit. Domino has been tasked as the Messaging server for Connections. Connections was built as a social software platform for business (which to a lot of companies looked like a solution without a problem and a very costly solution at that) and now, Poof!, a new Messaging client is emerging in the form of Mail Next.
Messaging then Apps 2014 – ???? The underpinnings of all of this, Social Business Toolkit, oAuth, SAML, Embedded Experiences, XPages, Websphere, DB2, etc. are ripe now to start to be used to build real applications meaning the kind that Domino peeps are used to building.
The parallels to the early 90’s in terms of business opportunity are striking with one very notably big kink…in the 90s there was no IBM SmartCloud essentially offering the same technology you could deploy “at home” but without a lot of the delays and headaches. Other than that I see something big really coming as Messaging is once again the starting point that will lead into more functionality in the future that businesses will want and need and that Business Partners can provide.
I think the future is that big technology companies host big solutions for most businesses and that is truly a new world order but, before that gets here, there is a lot of money to be made by embracing Connections in such a way that you can provide real business solutions to companies who need them (not updating your status or finding an “expert”.)