Workplace, and groupware’s future 30 Sep, 2003
As Justin highlighted yesterday, Russell Beattie recently posted about IBM Lotus Workplace which is interesting given his background (he's 'blogged before about how he started off with Lotus Notes, and often thinks about applications using the form / view paradigm).
Now, Russell is fairly positive about the move towards Workplace, and thus Websfear-hosted J2EE collaborative applications. Although I think his comment "if I can just plug Notes capability into any J2EE server, it would be an awesome thing to have" is well-placed, it's overly optimistic. IBM have an extensive and expensive product line that comes under the Websphere umbrella. I can't see how they're going to be inclined to make things easy for non-Websphere J2EE engines to link up with the Workplace technology. I imagine it's going to become heavily meshed with portlets and the like.
But what about the little fellas?
And what about the non-M$ shops? OK, so IBM claim "multi-platform support" for the Workplace product line, but is it really?
Supported Internet browsers
- Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional with Service Pack 3
- Microsoft Windows 98
- Microsoft Internet Explorer, Version 6.0
- Microsoft Internet Explorer, Version 5.5 with Service Pack 2
- Netscape Navigator, Versions 4.7 and 6 (for Internet mailbox portlet in WebSphere Portal)
Hmm. It'll be interesting to see how Workplace and Domino Express, pan out. So anyway, I carried on surfing around, and was reminded of Volker's incisive post about email, collaboration, and smaller organisations. One of the comments in the thread pointed to a new groupware solution called the REBOL Internet operating System (IOS). Now this is something for "the little guys" and to me, epitomises what groupware is all about: groups, not multi-national monolithic corporations! So far so good, but what about REBOL's system requirements?
In addition to supporting Windows 95, 98, NT, ME, 2000, and XP, IOS runs on a wide variety of Linux systems, BSD, Solaris, SGI, AIX, HP/UX, and more. We plan to support Macintosh OS/X. It is possible to support Win CE devices, Sharp Linux PDA, Sony Playstation, Nintendo systems, and XBox if a large order is dependent upon them.
Now that's multi-platform support!