First glance 05 Feb, 2004
Volker has already posted about certain aspects of the Workplace showcase set-up (i.e. IBM not providing the required access code). So now we’re in, how does it look? Not bad, not bad at all. But we want Lotus to produce the best product they can, so there’s always scope for improvement :-).
First up: instant messaging awareness. Why the MSN look? Not keen personally, and I don’t think Lotus had to do this — they had an identity all of their own with the Sametime L&F: nothing fancy, but it worked. Oh well, by no means a biggie.
Next up: managing one’s contact list. I ended up adding the same person to my contacts list multiple times, because the user interface gave me no cues that the “Add To Contact List…” action had been successful. Unfortunately, neither does the contact list weed out duplicates. The end result:
So, once you’ve ended up with multiple contacts, you can remove them right? Hmmm. There’s no simple “Remove…” option when context-clicking names. So, some further delving is required. Ah! Here we are: “Organize Contacts” OK, so in we go. Gah! Of the three duplicates, Workplace lets me remove one, but not the other two. How peculiar.
OK, so moving on, let’s look at the calendar: all well and good. Renders just fine, and pretty much works as expected.
Except when you perform a search. Erk!
I’ve also tinkered with email, and that's OK. The rich text editor works in Mozilla Firebird 0.7, and who knows, one day Mac users might be supported too. That would be cool.
Team Space. Uh oh, the show-stopper. Attempting to set up a Team Space looked promising, but resulted in a hung browser and no Team Space. All of my Firebird tabs went doo-lally, and I had to close the browser.
Overall, the UI is looking good, and the functionality is getting there. Workplace shows promise: there are a number of glitches, and a lot more capability needs to go in there, but one thing I am especially glad to notice is that the usual server performance issues don’t seem to be present in this showcase. Not at the moment anyway. Unlike Lotusphere Online users, I didn’t get a single Internal server error, and overall application response times were pretty snappy.