Archive for January, 2012

Lotusphere 2012 from the inside out

Lotusphere 2012 is  just a memory now (well, a memory enhanced by instagram  and flickr and other  photos sites…).

For 14 years I attended as an “insider” – an IBM employee.  This year was my first year not as an IBM employee; I was the guest of business partner panagenda.

During my 14 years as an IBMer, I participated in various ways.  My first several years were as the Sametime UI designer.  We had a pedestal on the showcase floor my very first year. My second year, there was an entire “Sametime lab” that I worked in. After that is a bit of a blur… I do remember being in the meet the developers lab one year as a Sametime representative… and another year, Marty Moore and I were in the Innovations lab demo-ing the Workplace rich client (which  basically became the Notes 8 client).

In the past few years I was in the UX lab (we didn’t always have a UX lab.. can you believe it!!)

I’ve also been a speaker at most of the 15 Lotuspheres I’ve attended.

This year was so familiar… yet different. I felt right at home at the BALD get together (the Bloggers’ informal party at the Big River Brewery on Saturday).

As a “temporary business partner” I thought that Lotusphere 2012 was a great event. The Opening General Session was the BEST in years! The pacing and energy were excellent and I think the OGS team really listened to feedback from last year.

My primary participation this year was working the panagenda booth… I was great at handing out Bucky Balls :).  I also did a BOF with Florian Vogler about managing information and finding the balance between too much and not enough.  I really enjoyed having a different purpose at LS  this year.






Lotusphere: Stop by booth 508 for free copy of The View

To those of you attending Lotusphere 2012 in Orlando next week, I’ll have several copies of The view, Vol 17 Issue 2 from 2011, to give away.

The contents of this issue are:

  • Version Control for Domino Designer  (Julian Buss)
  • 7 Ways to Ease users’ Transition from MS Outlook to Lotus Notes (Mary Beth Raven)
  • Lotus Votes! A Ready-Made Function for Your Notes 8 Users (Richard Thompsen)
  • Mobilizing Domino Data using Kryos Velocity AppXtender (John M. Wargo)
  • Xpath: A Flexible Solution for Filtering, Visualizing, and Binding XML Data in your XPages Applications (Karsten Lehmann)
  • Mobilize Notes Applications to iPhone and iPad Using Apple Dashcode (John M. Wargo)
  • Creating “Domino Friendly” Entries in Google Analytics  (John M. Wargo)


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Collective Intelligence, Collective Compassion

In a previous post, I argued that as users of social media and as people striving for collective intelligence, that the “Borg” character from Star Trek is something we should aspire to.  Certainly, the idea of being able to immediately and seamlessly work together to solve a problem quickly or react to a situation in new and different ways, is something that we as human communities want to do.

It would have been great to have this kind of “borg-like” learning and response to the natural disasters of 2011- for example, the earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear issues in Japan. Note that my example is NOT about making more money, it’s about humanitarian aid.

The potential for “social media/collective intelligence” to engender COLLECTIVE COMPASSION might be the most powerful use of social media. We already see examples of this.  We see kids with terminal diseases who want to “trend” on twitter – we help make that happen.  We provide moral and even financial support  to people far away. And I do not mean just earthquake victims. I mean people we barely know, yet to whom we are connected in some way.

This past year, Rob Novak blogged about his friend Troy Reimer’s son, who has a serious disease. Many of us responded with words (emails/tweets/postings) of encouragement and with donations.

Also, Mitch Cohen tweeted about his wife’s battle with cancer, encouraged her to blog, and received various types of emotional support thanks to social media.

Most recently, my friend Maureen Leland mentioned that a teenage relative of hers had been injured in a hockey accident and is hospitalized. She pointed me to a facebook page, a Caringbridge page, and a web site for donations to offset the medical bills that had all been set up to support the kid. And yes, I went and posted word of encouragement.

Sure, we need to do business and make money, and collective intelligence can help us to do that. But collective compassion might be the key to taking the next step towards “perfection.”


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Star Trek’s Capt. Picard was wrong. The Borg are not our enemy. They are what we aspire to be.

In the TV series  Star Trek: the Next Generation  (and Movie First Contact),   the crew of the Starship Enterprise fights against an enemy called “The Borg.”  The Borg are depicted as cybernetically enhanced humanoids of various races, organized as a “hive mind” collective that can think and learn together.  The Borg sound byte is:

“We are the Borg. We will add your biological and technical distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us. Resistance is Futile.”

I assert that “Borg-like” communities are what we aspire to be, in that the Borg leverage a collective intelligence to rapidly adapt to any situation.  While the Borg are depicted as “the bad guys,” there were elements in the show that pointed out how some people  (Character Seven of Nine) missed the connected-ness of being in the collective. How can we be connected with computers so that we act more intelligently than any individuals, group or computer could? Indeed, the Center for Collective Intelligence at MIT is exploring just that.  And, I am fairly certain that we are enjoying various aspects of early “Collective Intelligence”, even if it’s something as simple as using Trip-it to find other travelers so you can share a cab.

When we separate the definition of collective intelligence from the idea of the Borg, then collective intelligence is very appealing. Why, then, to the Borg have such a bad rap?  The purpose of the Borg is to try to achieve perfection (what’s wrong with perfection?) – although the definition of perfection appears to be based on perfect intelligence alone, without accounting for emotions such as compassion.

As part of my job, I think about how social media/collective intelligence can be used to improve business.  I, and many of you, are about to attend IBM Connect.

At the conference, I hope I can learn more about leveraging collective intelligence, which means, I suppose, that I aspire to be a bit like the Borg… and maybe that’s a good thing.


Why I am going to Lotusphere even though I no longer work for IBM

I’m going to Lotusphere 2012 (and IBM Connect)  because I want to!

Lucky for me, panagenda invited me to help staff their booth (408!) on the showcase floor. I haven’t staffed a booth since Sametime 1.0 – back before the new big dining hall was built. We were in some kind of a tent the whole time. I am thrilled at panagenda’s offer because it will be a great way to catch up with many of you, and because their Marvel client is a good way to manage the Notes client. There have been many times when a customer would ask me ” can I do this or that” to manage the Notes client, and I’ve been able to say “If you get Marvel client, you can do that.”

I also want to go because my new job is still very much about leveraging social business and “mass collaboration” for innovation, so I am hoping to learn from some of the success stories and other presentations.

I’m taking vacation to come to Lotusphere. I know that many people do. Thank goodness my kids and husband know how much I enjoy the community, so they understand. My boss laughed when I told him what I’m doing on my vacation. But, since he did manage me 6 years ago at IBM Lotus, he also understands the excitement.

Only 1 more week until I head to Orlando! 🙂




Can we crowdsource some books for my kid’s school?

Hey folks,

If you have one or more of the following books taking up space on some shelf…, and you do not need it any more, please send it to my daughter’s charter school in New Hampshire, USA.  A charter school gets little funding, so they are always looking for help in various ways. The number is the number of copies they need.

Just take it to the post office/Fed ex, whatever is cheapest (Bring it to Lotusphere and give it to me at panagenda booth 408) or mail it to:

NH Academy for Science and Design
316 Daniel Webster Highway
Merrimack, NH 03054-4115

Thank you! Here’s the list:

The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway 10
Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare (we need the SparkNotes version) 22
A Separate Peace, John Knowles 45
Guns, Germs, and Steel Jared Diamond 4
Into the Wild, Jon Krakauer 5
The Double Helix, James Watson 30
All Quiet on the Western Front, Erich Maria Remarque 20
The Forever Wa,r Joe Haldeman 6
The Moon is a Harsh Mistres,s Robert Heinlein 5
Left Hand of Darkness, Ursula K. LeGuin 4
Snowcrash, Neal Stephenson 4
Neuromancer, William Gibson 7
The Physics of the Futur,e Kakov 8
Player Piano, Vonnegut 4
An Air that Kills, Schneider and McCumber 4
What Technology Want,s Kelly 6