Monday, January 28, 2008

Try, Try, Try to Understand

Really, put yourself in someone else's shoes/mind/laptop.
What do you see/hear or know?
Sometimes nothing, you just don't "get" the problem.
It's not unusual, one can't expect to see everything from all angles.
But what if you covered all angles and still don't get it?

So in essence, when someone says they love their Microsoft Sharepoint Server I really do wonder, what do they love? SOme questions I have for you:

Is it the ease which it is installed?
Simplicity of the UI?
It's limitations on the size of files and/or folders(which even Microsoft admits)?
Perhaps the integration to their network?
Could it be the availability to save/move or access the Sharepoint site from their IM client like one can do for Lotus Quickr via Sametime?
Maybe the admins enjoy keeping not one but 2 versions of Sharpeoint running since the 2007 version did not migrate data from the ealrier version?

Does your CFO know you have it and pay for it probably anywhere from 2-4 times, at least, in your Software Assurance and various Microsoft agreements?

It's that last point that may surprise you. I look forward to future discussions about this issue.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

What? No gutter in 8.0.1? And why unread is Bold Black

I can confirm from a high level IBM Executive I met very briefly today that the gutter which I and many so wanted to return and were told it would return in 8.0.1 is not.
It will be in 8.0.2 which is due in Q3 most likely. Of course by then 8.5 is expected(well Dec 32nd)so just wrap the code together get the developers to stop overlapping and get 8.5 out sooner.
Oh and it will be an option and UNABLED by default.

In a 2nd question I asked him why we went to a bold black line for unread emails after the red and I was told because that was a Windows(Outlook) I presume he meant standard.
That is NOT a good reason to do anything. While I admit Microsoft has some nice UI work from their team(although consistency in toolbars/ribbons and function keys still has a long way to go)I do not consider bold black part of that UI work.

Sure, red is a bad color in some cultures and if I was so interested in changing it I could track down the .css file 8 levels down in a some directory and change the color.

Would it be so hard to add a simnple 8 color check box into preferences to accomplish this for the END USERS who want to change it without bothering the poor overworked developers?

LS08: Admins just say FUC it

This Blog is brough to you by the letters F-U-C but sadly no K.

On occasion I do admit to being an administrator on here and NOT a developer, when not discussing more serious business(more on this next week).

However, while training in Mississippi last week before Lotusphere I taught an acronym to the group of admins that when you have a corrupted nsf or database or just want to make sure one is okay, you have to FUC it.

I am sure somewhere in the world this has been used by some admins, if not I stake my claim and all royalties may be paid in the form of a bottle of single malt scotch(please check on our stocks so we do not duplicate, unless you have Macallan 30yr old we accept all bottles including half full ones), but I digress.

Note to Paul Mooney, you can use this for next year's tips list. We can discuss speaking slots.

I do not believe you heard this in Lotusphere this year or ever
All admins know this, if not, please read the help files or email me for an excellent chart that outlines the switch options for these.
I am not going to detail the multiple ways to run these but there are at last count at least 8 diffeerent ways to accomplish these tasks if you include web admin, server console admin, rconsole, command line, admin client, DOS I mean windows command line, notes client, designer client and more. keep in mind I am talking asbout running it on demand, not at a set time in the configuration doc or notes.ini on the server, or a policy or well yuou get the idea.

F = Fixup
U = Updall
C = Compact

There is Q for quit but we are trying to keep the server up and not restart it.

Couldn't think of a K, although there is Kill from nsd -kill(run from your Notes program file, mine looks like c:\lotus\notes8\nsd -kill) which is used to stop all Lotus processes in the event of a Windows or Java conflict or some other reason which crashes your Notes client.

For those that wonder, yes I do run Notes R8 and Domino R8 on a ......Vista laptop. I also run R2,3,4,5,6,7 on it as well. No VM either.

So to all the new admins out there, I was there once too and there are no stupid questions when it comes to managing your Lotus infrastructure.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

LS08: Liveblogging Worst Practices

Paul and Bill, with assistance from the audience, proceed to remind us all how humbling it can be to be a new developer or administrator.
I do this for your benefit because you know you need the refresher.

Or just how much companies really should invest in proper training of IT staff.
AdminP is your friend, unless you are a new or junior admin!
Why not use policies to push the group back in to the ACL for #9 case study? probably an older version.
"ECLs work man" says Bill. And he is right.
Test first, backup and check your backups always!
Remember to set limits(reasonable) for attachments.
Go to and vote for client level attachment checking.
Turn client side http header caching on to speed up website serving.

Duffbert brought out the do as we say not as we do part of it.
"That's for people that don't know what they're doing"
Moral of the story, never interrupt Alan Lepofsky keynotes by updating the server code :-)

Reload, mount them on the wall, users not Paul or Bill and wait 2 years for them to return with new stories as the guys are taking a year off, or so they claim.

LS08: Customers and their problems

I attended a session where customers spoke about their decisions to not just go to Domino or Websphere et al, but how they got interest from the masses at all levels to go along with it.

Sure some laid it out as a direction and business decision, others did it be bringing it to a personal level. The medical health provider had an average age of 56 and was worried about their uptake on Sametime and other solutions. But it went well.

I loved this session. Ok it also included a client from South Florida which we would like to work with but I did not know that before attending.

After each one spoke for 5 minutes there was an open bar and discussion area. My more interesting discussion was about how to convince line/plant workers or even the guys on the delivery trucks to login for email. We also discussed executives that fear Lotus Notes of course.
You can not force people to change their patterns, but you can give them a choice.
If you run a promotion internally, the first 50 or 100, or some number which make sense, people that email you at will receive a (insert gift item of value or interest). But instead send it to everyone that logs in, make it either company specific or holiday or personal redemption.

Once they are in, you can show options, possibilities and remind them about being green, reducing paper and paperwork, faster payments on expenses, maps provided with full directions with delivery orders, instant answers to your questions via instant messaging, updated benefits, calendar scheduling, legible work orders or instructions.

I can go on but you get the idea.

Late, late, late last night by Jelly Roll's on the Boardwalk I ended up speaking with a guy that just left Boston for Orlando and also recently graduated college. We were discussing sales, competitive analysis and management, in addition to what all the people with badges were from and why IBM would do a conference like this or if IBM liked macs or not.

He is ambitous, not to the larry Ellison level, but wants to move up in management(he is in retail in Downtown Disney) and we discussed some basic tenets that can work. I put it in his terms and when I didn't he did ask what I referred to and I did this without acronyms.

I explained competitive analysis is like the (apologies to my non-US readers for this american football reference)New England Patriots being reviewed by the New York Giants for ways to win. Everyone knows if you hit Tom Brady he is a mess for a quarter or 2. But aside from that what else is the Patriots weakness. You watch films, see which side they run or pass to or if someone sometimes gets flagged for holding or maybe a linebacker that jumps too early.

I also told him if he wants to make more sales to NEVER ask a yes/no question until you are ready to ask for money/signature/contracts.
Just like the bartender that asks "Which beer do you want?" instead of "Do you want a beer?" I suggested he greet people in his shop with "What character do you like?" or "what's your favorite sport/musician/country/state?" depending on the shop in question.

So my question for you is, what do you ask your customers?
"Do you use Domino?"
"How do you communicate within your organization?"

The answer, or in this case your question, may help you in Orlando this week.

And now on to the Worst Practices - the Bets of the Worst from Bill and Paul.

LS08: Updates, take 2

Let's try again to post this.

Project Liberate:
The other day I discussed this and now IBM is pushing it out a little more.
Antony Satyadas added this to his Microsoft FUD site which is a good starting point for some people in the competitive arena.

Had some great conversations with Ed and Alan about this and while I am still ont he fence, they said the Business Partner (BP) community has been asking for it. So if it fails, who is to blame? Highly unlikely it will fail, IBM just dished out some major money for the company and usually gets their money worth. I await a demo box and look forward to what this may bring us.

Wish I had the same excitement or interest. As a BP, this will not work for my firm. We do NOT do application development or create tools or any other applications. we just build Lotus/IBM infrastructures that work, and work well. Now what if we, as a BP, want to leverage this IBM hosting and offer products to our clients? Alan suggested to think of this as a menu, not an application. So if I want CRM like functions, great, but what if I really want to host Quickr sites? Is this going to be a reasonable price structue to accomodate the upsell on our part? Maybe not.
But as was said yesterday a few times, not everything IBM does is for it's partners.

Grumble, bad blog software, should have used Domino!

Sorry for this post. I am really annoyed at Blogger for crashing(YET AGAIN) for the 3rd time in 3 days after I commit a post to the blog.
My bad, being lazy and not copying it before sending it.
You see insanity really is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different outcome.
So I am now hunting for a Domino Host for my blog.
Anyone recommend one as I had not planned on opening our hosting site for another 3 months.

Ls08: Oh the Bloggers you'll meet!

Where to begin, so many people, and we all are in this together.

But until you put a face/voice/body to the person, well how do you know they even exist?

What if Alan and Ed really are the same person?
Will the Schwartz be with you?
When would Paul Mooney stop repeating, go enter it in
Who would answer if the gutter will return sometime to a Notes client if not Mary Beth Raven?
Coding faster or better than Julian?
How about Podcasts being IBM coverups if Bruce didn't materialize.
Or if Declan Lynch of Blogsphere, is the real Declan Lynch?
Perhaps finding out Chris Byrne really worked with Bob Costas?
And Chris "I don't code, really I don't" Whissonant playing at Jamfest
Or Nathan "Lotushead" Freeman really dyed his hair yellow for the Sphere?

So really they all do exist, it's no figment of your imagination and once a year you can see many of them gather in one place for that special occasion known as Lotusphere.

My apologies to anyone I left out, I blame the bartenders at il Mulino who REALLY know how to take care of their guests.

And to all a good night, there's still 2 days left!

LS08: dead post

And the winner is...
The person I shared my power strip with in the overflow I hope you benefited from it and remember to pay it forward. Help your fellow Lotusphere people and you will be rewarded with a long and fruitful life of future Lotuspheres. And add a power strip to your backpack for next year.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Lotus Evangelist BoF

I popped in to see, hear and listen to friends Greg and Duffbert in their BoF on Lotus Evangelism. Never too old to learn and never underestimate what people need I went in search of new ideas, issues from people.
They gave out an excellent cheat sheet about how to be an Evangelist(no religous training is necessary) which helps new people and even those who have been to multiple Lotusphere's.

Always remember, it's too late(well usually) to save the ship if your boss already invited microsoft in to visit.
Like vampires that supposedly have to be invited in to someone's house before they can attack, so it is with MS, once you let them in, they never leave without blood and you should start on the path of evangelising early and often.
I am sure they will post their cheat sheet somewhere, so check on

Great meeting you both in person finally!

The Opening Session and Bluehouse vs. Foundations

Caution: This is my perception of the announcements and if I am wrong, please let me know.
I am writing this as a Business Partner(BP) thinking and customer 2nd.
Good stuff smushed up at the end which should have been reversed and more time spent on them, and um, less on portal server(IMHO).
Not that the other parts were not great either, 801 has some great pieces added, widgets, conference number in meeting, the ability to create an on the fly sametime meeting(no idea if you need advanced server for it), 8.5 domino premiers and has cool designer usage, the DWA advances which make it look like the Standard R8 client, including widgets/quickr/sametime and then the 'lightweight" on bandwidth and processing which is a HUGE bonus. Can't wait for it or 801!

Now the Foundation is another story. I went in search of IBMers in the know, well they were at the stand, and the discussion ensued about using this mini server running Linux and Domino which is supposed ot replace an SMB MS small business server. Now maybe it will and maybe it won't. I fail to see, aside from the obvious move from MS, why eithwer a client would want this or why I as a BP would want to install it.
It is NOT a hosted solution, so I was told, but is meant to be onsite, naturally because of the file/print functions of the Linux server. It can do much more so it is an interesting idea as i said in theory.
If the ONLY reason is to get people off windows, well, perhaps this is an answer. Will let you know after I demo it since they promised to add me and one of my clients to play with it.

Bluehouse was also confusing to me, as a BP that is. IBM wants to host "something"(the ibmers at the stand words) and not just any infrastrcuture app like Domino, Quickr, Sametime or Connections.
OK, so what will it host? Some suggested a similarity, maybe, not sure.
As a BP, my question is..where is the money? IBM hosts it, and the app and manages the solution and probably the client, so what do we as BPs get from it?
I am looking into more on this as Ed pointed out in his blog:

"The notion of software-as-a-service has become more dominant in the industry, and today IBM is announcing Lotus "Bluehouse" (codename), to provide extranet collaboration tools. "Bluehouse" expands on IBM's introduction of Sametime Unyte, a hosted e-meetings service, which is now incorporated into the "Bluehouse" environment. "

So now it is semi-Sametime like and some yet to be determined other code.
OK, it's in beta, cut it some slack, but I was left pondering what to do with it and why we would use it over the existing SaaS moddel for products(aside from cost) or who will do the application development and get comped or who will keep the intelectual capital created as an application.

Or as Alan says it in his blog which sounds like Quickr, which depending on how you view hosted(Quickr is a web based solution so in my mind it is/can be a hosted solution, licensing notwithstanding) applications is more confusing to me.

But I look forward to more details to come out on both of these as they are in line with my business plans for the year so maybe IBM IS on to something, but the fog needs to get lifted a little.

Monday, January 21, 2008

LS08 BD DAY: Microsoft's Software Assurance

From what I learned and revisited in Lotusphere today.

I've written a few times about the Exchange side of the equation and even Sharepoint but I learned more today.
And now so will you.

Here's the premise:
Microsoft has offerred you or your client Sharepoint and Exchange for free.
And your client wants the same from IBM to stay with Lotus.

The reason is because they want to put you into an enterprise agreement which has Software Assurance(still an oxymoron). Software Assurance, if you do not know, allows for a company to receive "free" upgrades on their licenses IF new software comes out in the next 3 years or however long you commit to int he agreement.
You can also do this if you know you will be updating soon.
Of course you pay for this benefit...each year of the agreement.
And the cost for SA is about 1/3 of the total licensing cost. So not a small chunk of change.

So let's look at all the companies that bought into it in 2003 for example.
Name one product which you paid for an upgrade that materialized from the "Desktop Professional" or "Professional Desktop" or even the "Enterprise Desktop".

Windows upgrade from XP, nope.... Vista came out in 2007
Office upgrade from Office 2003, 2007 came out in 2007
Exchange upgrade from Exchange 2003, nope....Exchange 2007
Outlook upgrade from Outlook 2003, nope......Outlook 2007

So what did you pay all that money for in the first place?
Well, MAYBE you were on 2000 and you expected to move to 2003 someday. Fair enough.
What if you bought this in 2004? Same problem. 2005? You start to see a pattern of course.

If your company continues to do this, as one company admin told me today theirs does, not only are you wasting money, you are perpetuating the Microsoft arms in your company.
If you convinced your company to review the policy, you would see a huge reduction in licensing to MS.
Your company SHOULD care and reward you for saving them money. If your boss doesn't, go to his boss. Someone wants to pocket that budget money, trust me.

Of course Sharepoint(MOSS) is free to you, because Microsoft gets you to buy licenses for:
SQL(server and CAL)
Communications Server(server and CAL)
and if you used advanced options in MOSS you also need
Office 2007!
And more pieces I can't even remember.

Don't forget you also MUST be on Windows 2003 server and updated AD and Exchange 2007 which requires 64bit code and thus 64bit Windows Server.
PLUS the new hardware.

So Sharepoint being free is like when you buy a dining set and get the choice of seat cushion color for free.

If it's free it's for me, but in this case it isn't free and really isn't for me....or you.

You always have other options....think about it and look into it.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Live Blogging from the Sphere, MS Pricing

I probably can't publicly write this up but I am in the session on Microsoft pricing, competitive practices.
If you think you need to discount your offerring, you need to come here andlisten to this or ask me later how to deal with it.

your customers need to udnerstand just how much the Sharepoint solution will cost. I will try to post a detailed discussion(without pricing) to understand the layers of confusion.
All I can say is WOW! Percy go get them!

Business Partner Day

Registered, got my backpack, id cards, which general session to go to.
Running into many, many people, trying to get some more meetings set.
Saw Ed Brill already and he filled me in on his new management capacity, but i will let him make it public.
In a session on IBM's advertising for the next year. Some good things from IBM if you are a BP, but way too many in my opinion for a BP to be focused.
One thing I am surprised to see they are not pushing Sametime8 and its excellent mobile client, in the slides they said they are leading people to ST 7.5. Tim K. was there so hopefully he will make note of it.
Show some Lotusphere ads (people aslepp on a couch)which I never saw which is unusual as a BP, but a cool ad.
Just found out registration is higher than 2007.
Way to go everyone!
Missed posters from opening session, bummer!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Lotusphere parties, business and where's the Poker game?

4-6 nights of nonstop parties(depending on when you are coming or going).
One night I have 3 to go to and one of them is NOT even related to Lotusphere!
I think most nights there are at least 2 that I am aware of, except Wen night, every0one wants to go to Universal, must check parking fees for those of us driving.

Last year someone sponsored a Poker tournament which I was unable to attend, as I have not seen anythign about one this year, although a few of us did want to set one up, if there is one out there, someone let me know where/when.

Now partying is all very nice, and you should never do it alone, so make sure before you are sloshed or worse you spend some time on business.
Meet everyone, trade cards, beam them, synch phones or do whatever you must do but business comes first.
Ok, maybe after the 1st beer.

1 week a year to meet and find most of the Lotus companies, don't waste it on free beer and food the whole time.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Training is Done! What did we learn?

I hope the people I trained over the last 2 days retain some of what we discussed. Sure they have the books and notes but will they make changes?
I tried to impress upon them that they, and their manager, can change the world. But it gets done in a process one step at a time. Can't do everything in a day.
What was interesting was the feeling from them that they are just the IT guys and have no input to the workings of business, even if they may know h0w to perform many of the non-IT jobs in the company.
If they decided to propose a solution to something to the proper(and listening) executives they would probably get further in their careers. I hope they follow this path, it leads to great rewards and at least a Lotus Exige(MSRP $56,990) in their future like the one we saw at lunch.

It's a shame when good people can't see their future.
Many of us have this, we can't see how we can make a difference or produce more revenue, sell more tickets/seats/cars/licenses.
Few have the ability to see the open seas amid the storm, find the correct route and lead a course to a better life or way of working.
Still others are perfectly content in their livelihood or place in life and that works as well.

As we edge closer to Lotusphere, my thoughts are of course on business development and you can't gain clients in Orlando if you just have the feeling your "just a Lotus guy or girl."

Open up your mind and see the Evangelist inside and realize everyone you meet is also and that is a bond which does not come easy in many other software brands. You are your companies evangelist, gather your knowledge!

Lastly, for all those that complain there is no corporate solution for iPhones....
Lotus gets hip again by being on the iPhones as a corporate solution, this should get interesting very quickly now.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Training and the Lotus Evangelist

No, not for me, although going to Lotusphere is my main training of the year.
I am doing an advanced administration(R7) class next week and it amazes me how much I know, and more importantly how much I never use or forgot about.
It's about 50-50 because let's face it, mail rules really are not that practical all the time, but a Directory Catalog(Dircat, condensed directory, laptop/travel nab) is priceless in large organizations.

And so it goes for training. Sometimes you get to stuff it all into a day or 2 or 3 or in Lotusphere cases 5!

It's great training for me and the admins attending (anyone reading that needs it, just email me).
Why for me? Because at Lotusphere there is supposed to be some certificate examss on sale or free to Business Partners and the more I can remember the better off I will be, especially as I am not one for studying much.

Those attending get to work on their NAB directly, monitor their network and implement some changes and functionality which they may or may not be using to its fullest.

I hate teachers that read the manual or tell you to read it. It's much more enjoyable to interact with real data and real user issues and look at how you can work on various problems. Some exercises are included, others are how to set it up and run.

Do I have an outline to cover? Yes and no. The outline exists but I never cover it 100% because preferences change and issues arise and the point of the documentation provided (although rarely used for it) is to provide enhanced documentation and information for very specific circumstances.

I may not be the gratest teacher/trainer, but every time you do this you get better.
So evangelism gets a stretch for the training, it's a Lotus happy shop and I am there to get them excited about Lotus yet disappointed, they are not going to Orlando.

Lotusphere comes to you is going tobe big this year I thihnk.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008 a new and wonderful site for anyone that lives and breathes Lotus, or wants to from Yancy Lent.
The index is on all blogs, known more than unknown, and twitter and pieces and parts in between which he hasn't even shown us yet I bet.
In some cases it just helps for general knowledge, or where the parties are in orlando.

Monday, January 7, 2008

R8 Addressing, You Worked Where?

As some of you know, Lotus Notes R8 is all about you/me... the user.
Make life better. And it does, it is and Outlook clients want to see it in action.

Now a part which I like is you can now retain email addresses from every email you send or receive in a sort of indexed view. So the email you deleted, you might find the person's email address still there. Thank the Lotus God.

On the other hand you may find yourself amazed at the email addresses you have in your history. I have about 15 that come up now. Cool, but weird since some are 12 years old.

Some users may find this odd that 6 years after the Lotus/IBM merger for instance, you can still come up as joe bloggs/sta/lotus as well as joe bloggs/sta/ibm.

The answer my friend is delving in deeper and you will need to wait for 801 to resolve this in a simpler manner.

In Notes 8, a view is created in the Personal Address Book (names.nsf) which stores up to 2000 contacts to which mail has been addressed. When you address a memo, the client will automatically provide entries from this view which correspond to the text being entered.

But if this is an issue for you or your client and they just can not be bothered to check who they are emailing, then you need to follow this tech note I have copied the text for those unable to link to the file:

The contents of the Recent Contacts view can be reset by shutting down the Notes client, and moving or deleting the contents of the directory,\workspace\.metadata\.plugins\\...

where is the path to your Notes Data directory, such as C:\Program Files\IBM\Lotus\Notes\Data.

Note: The previous contents of the Recent Contacts view may still display until a new message is sent, which populates an entry in the Recent Contacts view and causes the dipTable.ser file in the directory to be re-created.

In the end, moving ahead brings about more possibilities than previously known or thought of, so it is here too.

I look forward to where the 801 and later versions take us for the contacts/pnab/pnames.nsf/personal address book which so rarely gets a 2nd look by so many in the industry.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Domino.Doc Updated and not Forgotten

First, there is a session at Lotusphere, it conflicts with Ed Brill's session. Decisions, client wins over my friend this time. The information is posted in the comments of the previous post.

I received an email in reply from the IBM Offering Manager, Lotus Team Collaboration and Document, she said:

"We are working on a roadmap for Dom Doc to be presented at Lotusphere. As
you know, it is a mature product. We have many customers who are pretty
happy with it and want to be assured of its longevity. Of course there is
also interest in integration with Lotus Quickr, which also figures into our
I'm hoping that you can hang in there for a couple weeks (or until
Lotusphere) and things will be a bit clearer."

I applaud the move to Quickr but respect that some clients will not be happy with this as it trivializes Doc or possibly infringes on their security models.
Either way, Lotus is still working on it, thank heaven and we will get some answers soon.

This means the decision is a game time one(meaning Tuesday or wendsday of that week) so if you are playing Fantasy Software "Delivery Date" edition (compared to EOL Edition or Microsoft Timing edition), I would bet more on Atlas than Doc coming out before July 1, 2008.

Domino.Doc, the end is nigh!

So it is with much sadness we must presume the end is in sight!
Yes, after some valid attempts, IBM/Lotus is probably going to deep six, EOL the DOmino.Doc application otherwise known today as Lotus Domino Document Manager(LDDM).
While a quick read of the agenda at Lotusphere shows not 1 session devoted to it, I recall seeing some reference in a list recently, so maybe there is a "best practices for moving off .Doc" session.
Tell me I'm wrong.
Find me the PM who has responsibility for it to say what it's future is.
The forum has this to say about it, read all the posts to understand, or not, the direction. Especially Jelan's.
NOTE: Doc is not yet certified to Domino R8, nor is it fully compatible with Vista, although I use it and do not have any issues with Vista.

My clients need to know the future.

We go way back, I taught EMEA IBmers how to install and configure .Doc and I was on the early beta testing of it.
Sure it had some issues in the early days as do most 1.0 versions but in it's simplest form(maybe too simple since Quickr now does basic checkin/out) it handled files and access quite well.

The Quickr monitor as it is called is an updated desktop enabler, of course without the ODMA issues. Lotus produced "Connectors" for Quickr so it hooks into Sametime, Windows Explorer, Internet Explorer(sorry firefox, not 100%) and the Quickr Monitor.

How amazing it would be to have all that as part of .Doc, but not gonna happen right now, down the road maybe, but does IBM see the value in it over other pieces of the puzzle?

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Stability vs. Cutting Edge

We would all like to think of ourselves as bleeding edge, top of the line tech managers, staff or whatever your range of business.
But reality kicks in sometimes.

I know, I'm a Miami Dolphins fan and right now, there are
many questions, few answers. The biggest, how did a great team hit rock bottom?

In the IT world, it's easier sometimes to see the slide coming because the signs are there and no one is reading them, usually because we have no time.

Last post I showed a graphic of a Lotus Domino server which ran, without fail or stoppage for 177 days. Which is cool, great and impressive from a stability perspective.
BUT, what if that is a bad sign from an operations perspective?

If you can't answer these questions well enough for your CXO, maybe you should revisit what you are doing for your clients and/or employers.

Does this imply my client is adverse to change or was I told not to do something?
Is change control systems (if you use them) threatening your advancement and opportunities ?
Did we/me not manage their servers properly?
Who should have upgraded the Lotus server application level
Who should have upgraded the Windows server Operating System level?
Are we missing something we could benefit from either of these 2 upgrades, do we even know what?
Quarterly updates come out almost regularly for Lotus and IBM software, why did these not get installed?
Microsoft releases updates monthly usually, evidently these were turned off since usually we have to reboot the server once the patches are installed, are we open to security vulnerabilities now?
Do we do IT Audits in our company? If so, why did they not say anything to us about this as well?
Are we a leadership organization or a follower? Take a look at our competitors market cap or stock price or recent quarter/annual numbers and see, you may not like the answer.

If IT is essential, why are we not treating it that way?

Your car needs oil and an oil change or it will come to a grinding halt, your server may be more forgiving, or not, but the marketplace is not and rewards those that advance or live on the cutting edge.

So in the end which are you really?