IBM’s Lotus Development Corp has signed up Lycos Inc to integrate features from its portal site into the Notes R5 client software and announced a bevy of web tools and platform extensions at the Lotus Developers Conference in San Francisco. The most important of these is that Domino services now supports Microsoft Corp’s COM, meaning […]
IBM’s Lotus Development Corp has signed up Lycos Inc to integrate features from its portal site into the Notes R5 client software and announced a bevy of web tools and platform extensions at the Lotus Developers Conference in San Francisco. The most important of these is that Domino services now supports Microsoft Corp’s COM, meaning developers can use Visual Basic and other associated tools and draw on Domino’s workflow and collaboration features.
The agreement between Lycos and Lotus means that Lotus can now present the Notes client as its equivalent of Microsoft’s so-far unrealized ‘digital dashboard,’ part of the knowledge management strategy that Microsoft has been pushing in the last few months. Timothy Browne, general manager of Notes product marketing, claimed his company had beaten Microsoft to the punch, saying that Lotus was very much first, in other words, we’re delivering on it. The deal means that users can get individualized content and search the web, without ever leaving the R5 Welcome page, along with the usual Notes desktop features. With Outlook [Microsoft’s Notes equivalent], you can’t do that today, Browne noted.
Both Lotus and Lycos are on the same page when it comes to benefits of the deal. Browne said that Lycos content, which is available in 12 languages, would help to further globalize Notes. While Travis Ebel, Business Development Manager for Lycos, said that he felt that the deal would help Lycos move into additional markets. Lotus signed a similar portal within Notes deal with America Online Ltd in March last year. Ebel said that the difference between the AOL deal and the Lycos deal was that Lycos would offer more tailored content and have more of a global feel. The Lycos portal will be available in the next release of R5, scheduled for July.
The theme of the first day of the Lotus Development Conference was extending the Domino platform so that it could be used with other tools. The aim, said Michelle Deziel, general manager of web applications, was to, open up the Domino development environment. As well as supporting Microsoft’s COM, web developers can now use Macromedia Inc’s Dreamweaver and Microsoft’s Front Page 2000 as web tools.
Lotus has also introduced Domino Runtime Services, which allows a user to make an off-line copy of a web application that can be replicated with the application on the server side while on the road. Deziel expects that this service will be used for sales force automation applications. The workflow technology that Lotus bought with its acquisition of German company One Stone and its Process Ware software has now been subsumed into Domino, with the release of a stand-alone application, Domino.Workflow. Editions of Domino that support COM, Dreamweaver and Front Page 2000 are expected to arrive in the fourth quarter, while Domino Runtime Services will go into beta at that time. The Domino.Workflow application is expected later this year.