Monthly Archives: October 2009

Email, Religion, and Politics – Oh My!

I’ve worked with email in some shape or form for more than 22 years.  From 3270-terminal based clients, early text PC-based clients, Windows clients, Mac clients, Web clients, mobile clients, etc., etc.  And one common thread I’ve observed is that email ranks up there as a discussion topic with religion and politics.  You better be prepared for the answers you receive when you ask someone a question about email.

You might think that you’re asking a simple question to which you’ll receive a simple answer when you ask — “what do you use for email?” Uh, NO!  The person will launch immediately into a discussion about their likes or dislikes about the email client they use.  “Oh I just love Outlook, and I use it at home.” Or “I’ve been using Eudora for years, couldn’t live without it.  My whole life is in Eudora.”  “I use Entourage and I have it synching between multiple Macbooks and my iPhone.”  And of course nearer and dearer to my heart are those comments about the love or hate for Lotus Notes.  And when someone says they absolutely hate Lotus Notes, of course I want to know why!  “So why do you ‘hate’ Lotus Notes?”  “It’s slow.”  “How much memory do you have on your PC?” “512 Mb.”  Simply amazing!  It wouldn’t occur to the average user that performance could be improved if additional memory were added to their workstation.  And memory these days is cheap!  Or you’ll find someone who used Lotus Notes R4 and based their opinion of the product on their experience with a product 12 years ago! Or “my cousin told me that Lotus went out of business.” WHAT?!

My point is that people form opinions about email clients and they seem to stick to them.  What is it about email as a technology that makes someone form such an emotional bond?  Is it because it is a mode of communication?  Is it because their “life is stored in email”, e.g., that it provides a sense of electronic history for them when technology all around us is changing so quickly?  Is it because they as individuals aren’t geared to handle change from product to product?  Or do we as software engineers need to be more sensitive to the idea that email is a somewhat “religious” experience for the user?  That perhaps users may like to think that the choice of an email client is personal somehow?  Would customization of the client interface help?  Or is it because one client does something slightly different than another?  Maybe there’s a correlation between email client preference and political party preference?   Interesting notion!  What do you think?!

Notes 8.5 on Mac OS – Full Text Indexing of Attachments is not supported

I was reviewing the latest support technotes and saw the following — I’m not sure of the implications.  What happens if the attachments are indexed?  In any case, this may be of interest for those who support Mac clients!
 

TECHNOTE: 1317667 Macintosh: Full-text indexing of file attachments is not supported

Problem:

For Notes 8.5 on Macintosh OS, full-text indexing and search of file attachments is not supported.

Resolving the problem 

This is a third party software limitation

An 8.5.1 Notes.ini setting Administrators can love!

Sometimes Domino Administrators can find joy in a simple NOTES.INI setting – especially when it might makes our lives easier! 

There is a change in LOG_SESSIONS=2 with 8.5.1 that now includes IP address in the logging of user sessions.  Why might this be significant?  Well let’s say a user calls days after the fact and wants some assistance with an issue – you will now be able to identify the IP address of the Notes workstation that they were using at the time.  IP address has been available for IMAP sessions, but was not included for Notes client connections.  Additionally, your auditors might also find this setting to be of use in the course of an investigation.  And we know we like to keep auditors happy!   So if you’re running 8.5.1, be sure to take advantage of this setting!

Opened session for ‘Imaadmin/LovesDomino’ (Release 8.5.1) SessId 00090AC2 Ip ‘999.9.999.i999′ ‘Auth’ ‘C’ 

A bit of goodness with 8.5.1 – don’t forget Tivoli Directory Integrator 7.0!

With the exciting news about Notes/Domino 8.5.1 going gold on Monday October 12th, don’t forget that with 8.5.1 you’re now entitled to Tivoli Directory Integrator V.7!  

TDI can be found in the “Associated Products at No Charge” section of your Passport downloads.  And remember you may use TDI as long as a Domino or Notes process is part of a TDI assembly line. 

TDI 7 features a new interface and is loaded with additional features.  Be sure to visit the Tivoli Directory Integrator Version 7 Information Center for more details!

LotusKnows Universities — or at least I’d like to think so!

We’ve seen a lot of numbers lately including how many of the Fortune 100 companies are using Notes/Domino.  And I for one am thrilled to see all the press.  But, what I’d really like to see are those same rankings for universities. 

The Center for Measuring University Performance publishes a report each year ranking universities in terms of research.  This includes federally funded research, faculty who are nationally/internationally recognized, endowments, etc., To be in the top 50 of this list of course is very prestigious.  And university presidents/chancellors/provosts all look at these lists and ask “what are top research universities doing in terms of information technology?” And I would ask, “what are they using for collaboration?”  

Another list is the U.S. News and World Report Best College Rankings.  Again, decision makers ask “what are these top universities doing differently than my university?” 

Faculty and administrators also read the Chronicle of Higher Education– both online and in print.  I’d love to see some LotusKnows ads planned for Chronicle. 

And if colleges and universities aren’t using Lotus – why aren’t they?  Is it because they have bought into the Google cloud model? Or have they committed to Microsoft?  You might be surprised as to how many universities are only now beginning to use collaboration tools.  Many still rely on open source IMAP systems for faculty/staff email only.   So why not get some numbers in print — work the network and use a little peer pressure! 

And please don’t assume that just because these same universities have many grants and endowments that they want to spend lots of money on collaboration.  Faculty almost universally believe that  – “free is better.”   So instead of asking the question how are the competitors making money with their cloud solutions, perhaps it’s time to think outside of the box with IBM/Lotus’ own solution for higher education.  Perhaps, the long term advantage is faculty/staff and students who may be decision makers in the future and who recognize the value of the Lotus family of products and want to stay with them.  Folks in the yellowverse — do you know what is your school using for email?