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MacRumors
Jan 17, 2008, 02:37 AM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com)

The Associated Press reports that IBM will be releasing a version of its free Lotus Symphony office suite that is compatible with Macs next week (http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/APPLE_IBM?SITE=WILAC&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT), along with a version of Lotus Notes for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

Lotus Symphony (http://symphony.lotus.com/software/lotus/symphony/home.jspa) is a free productivity suite consisting of a word processor, spreadsheet application, and presentation application, currently in beta for Windows and Linux. It is based on the Open Document Format (ODF) standard which has been rising in popularity recently.

Meanwhile, iPhone/iPod Touch version of Lotus Notes promises to increase the devices' appeal to the corporate market, which has already reportedly seen some success in the corporate realm (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2007/12/06/iphone-winning-corporate-customers/) despite RIM's continued dominance. While details of how Notes will be implemented on the iPhone were not detailed, the article does state that Apple and IBM have been working together despite the release of an SDK. Note, there have been indications that some may have had early access to the iPhone's forthcoming SDK (http://www.macrumors.com/2007/11/26/iphone-sdk-already-seeded-to-some-developers/).

The releases are reportedly part of a new partnership between Apple and IBM. Apple once used IBM's PowerPC processors, however software collaboration breaks relatively new ground for the two companies. IBM says that IBM's search for Microsoft alternatives has brought them together.

"We have a lot in common," IBM spokesman Mike Azzi said. "We're going to cross-pollinate."

Article Link (http://www.macrumors.com/2008/01/17/ibm-to-release-lotus-symphony-for-mac-notes-iphone-compatibility/)



Full of Win
Jan 17, 2008, 02:54 AM
Three Words:

COPY AND PASTE

W/o this, what is the point for the iPhone app?

Also, it sounds like Apple is trying to cover its ass if/when Microsoft pulls the plug on it Office suite. If the next version of Windows is delayed, e.g. Vista, and OS X is still gaining market share, then I'd bet they do the nuclear option and pull the MacOffice plug.

Avicdar
Jan 17, 2008, 02:55 AM
Did anyone see this coming? Surprised as heck..Lotus Notes?

mkjellman
Jan 17, 2008, 02:57 AM
if true, this is a big step for apple. IBM still plays a large role in the corporate world and they still make very compelling products. I can't respect what they have done for the industry enough and if they are working with apple on this, it will push the iPhone into the hands of users that want it, but have a stubborn IT department.

GNUMatrix
Jan 17, 2008, 03:03 AM
There is a lot they could do with Apple if they were so inclined. They were also suggesting that R8 for OSX was going to be released during MacWorld, weren't they? Would be nice to be on par with the other platforms again.

And if they were to collaborate a bit further, I'm sure I'm not the only person out there that would be interested in DB2 on OSX as well, long rumored but never really materialized...

There are probably dozens of other products as well if they were to want to help Apple get a leg up in the corporate world. And why wouldn't they?

mattvolp
Jan 17, 2008, 03:11 AM
This is really, really cool. Does anyone here use it though? How does it compare to other word processors?

Evangelion
Jan 17, 2008, 03:13 AM
Three Words:
COPY AND PASTE

W/o this, what is the point for the iPhone app?

Um, the iPhone-app in question is basically a groupware-solution. Since we are already using email on the iPhone, why couldn't we use Notes-email as well?

Lotus Symphony is a whole different ball of wax.

GregA
Jan 17, 2008, 03:18 AM
There are probably dozens of other products as well if they were to want to help Apple get a leg up in the corporate world. And why wouldn't they?

If IBM decided to support Macs/OSX for corporate accounts worldwide, that would be a huge, huge thing.

All the rest is good too of course (software etc).

GregA
Jan 17, 2008, 03:21 AM
This is really, really cool. Does anyone here use it though? How does it compare to other word processors?

Lotus Symphony is IBM's version of OpenOffice.
ie: it doesn't just use the OpenOffice format... it IS open office, cleaned up by IBM.

(whatever happened to WordPro, Lotus 123, etc?)

weckart
Jan 17, 2008, 03:24 AM
I tried Lotus Symphony on Ubuntu. Clunky, slow, buggy as hell. Did not uninstall properly and left its hideous icons all over the shop.

If IBM really makes an effort at cleaning up the underlying code, then it may be a contender in the future, but not right now. Not installing this one.

sebastianlewis
Jan 17, 2008, 03:28 AM
Heh, interesting eh? IBM clearly sees profit in being on Mac OS X.

Three Words:

COPY AND PASTE

W/o this, what is the point for the iPhone app?

Also, it sounds like Apple is trying to cover its ass if/when Microsoft pulls the plug on it Office suite. If the next version of Windows is delayed, e.g. Vista, and OS X is still gaining market share, then I'd bet they do the nuclear option and pull the MacOffice plug.

By the way, Microsoft makes way too much money off of Office for Mac for them to cancel for a petty reason like that and I'm getting sick of seeing crap like this turn up in forum after forum, you do realize that before there was even a "partnership" between Apple and Microsoft in '97, Microsoft had just formed the MacBU?

The reason for that was probably so that the main Office team could focus on delivering Windows updates faster, but the reason for not canceling was because Microsoft was making too much money off of it (even though the Mac version at the time was outdated).

Given the performance of Microsoft's consumer electronics "attempts" some shareholders would clearly be pissed if Microsoft cut off not only a profitable product, but a profitable product on a GROWING platform so please, PLEASE, cut the crap about Microsoft canceling Office for Mac as a "last resort" to kill off growth for the Mac.

Sebastian

kresh
Jan 17, 2008, 03:41 AM
I'm want to be excited about Symphony, but it's not like I need another suite of office applications though.

I took advantage of the MS Mac Office "BFD" and "Super Suite Deal". So I received 3 licenses for MS Mac Office 2004 Student and 1 license for MS Mac Office 2008 full version for a grand total of $36.98 plus tax. I just received my $100 rebate from Microsoft. Talk about Microsoft buying back market-share that they lost to iLife '08, it's just WOW!

I felt so bad for selling out to Microsoft that I bought iWork '08 and made a $25 donation to the developers of NeoOffice. All said and done I got all of this for less than MS Office Student on Apple's on-line store.

It makes me wonder what kind of impact IBM can make with Symphony when there are some really awesome applications already in this space for Mac?

IBMwares for iPhone is welcome news though, just to shut up the "iPhone's not for business" crowd.



edit: Sorry, I didn't mean to go on and on like I did :(

sunfast
Jan 17, 2008, 04:52 AM
Interest in OS X like this can only be a positive thing. Especially from a big business player like IBM.

kaiwai
Jan 17, 2008, 05:00 AM
Lotus Symphony is IBM's version of OpenOffice.
ie: it doesn't just use the OpenOffice format... it IS open office, cleaned up by IBM.

(whatever happened to WordPro, Lotus 123, etc?)

I'd say it has been killed off; I'd say when push comes to shove, it was easier for them to base a new office suite on OpenOffice + Eclipse SDK than going out and trying to bring SmartSuite to Linux and Mac OS X.

At the end of the day; more choice, better support - its great for customers! its freedom baby yeah! lol :D

MrCrowbar
Jan 17, 2008, 05:01 AM
Meh, I like iWork. Fast, lightweigt, works fine for my needs. And keynote presentations just look better :)
In my Eyes Open Office is even worse than the Microsoft thing. I just don't want to use something that can't even display and print Text properly without having two letters overlapping. I'll check out what IBM did with it, maybe it's usable.

davidjearly
Jan 17, 2008, 05:12 AM
Meh, I like iWork. Fast, lightweigt, works fine for my needs. And keynote presentations just look better :)
In my Eyes Open Office is even worse than the Microsoft thing. I just don't want to use something that can't even display and print Text properly without having two letters overlapping. I'll check out what IBM did with it, maybe it's usable.

I completely agree. I think iWork is a fantastic package. I am only starting to use Numbers but Keynote is outstanding and Pages is excellent too.

As far as I am concerned, iWork 08 is one of the best value software packages available on the Mac.

oberonx
Jan 17, 2008, 05:15 AM
I'd say it has been killed off; I'd say when push comes to shove, it was easier for them to base a new office suite on OpenOffice + Eclipse SDK than going out and trying to bring SmartSuite to Linux and Mac OS X.

Lotus Symphony is Open Office based, it's not related to Smartsuite. I haven't used it, but the interface does look a lot more polished than NeoOffice. If it works as well as Open Office does in Windows, then it might be a strong Office 08 contender, especially being free and all. And not forgetting the IBM/Lotus brand which will matter in the corporate world.

oberonx
Jan 17, 2008, 05:20 AM
I completely agree. I think iWork is a fantastic package. I am only starting to use Numbers but Keynote is outstanding and Pages is excellent too.

As far as I am concerned, iWork 08 is one of the best value software packages available on the Mac.

I bought iWork 08 and was planning to get rid of Office but the idiotic way iWork handles Office files made me give up on it. Even though it import and exports .doc and .xls files competently, they can only be opened and saved through the Export menu and don't go in Recent Files either. It's usable, but I really don't understand why Apple made it such a pain to use Office files instead of integrating it properly. Yeah, I could use .pages but most people I know don't use iWork so that's not an option.

kaiwai
Jan 17, 2008, 05:29 AM
Lotus Symphony is Open Office based, it's not related to Smartsuite. I haven't used it, but the interface does look a lot more polished than NeoOffice. If it works as well as Open Office does in Windows, then it might be a strong Office 08 contender, especially being free and all. And not forgetting the IBM/Lotus brand which will matter in the corporate world.


WHo said its related to smart suite, spend some time and actually read what people write instead of putting words in their mouth.

I said that Symphony/Notes 8 replaces SmartSuite. I then went on to say that they replaced it with Notes 8/Symphony because what they want to do in the future, in regards to providing a multiplatform solution, wasn't possible with SmartSuite/"Notes Classic".

Notes 8/Symphony is a big move away from what they did in the past. Its not just a 'we'll grab OpenOffice and rebrand it".

naquada
Jan 17, 2008, 05:38 AM
I'm an IBM employee.. so this is fantastic news for us.. notes has been out on macs for some time.. but the idea of notes access for the iphone and ipod touch is great.. I'm hoping this might give some weight to the iphone and ipod touch supporting the LEAP security for wifi.. which would make my iphone just invaluable for work!!!!

..and before you ask.. no i dont know any inside information.. and if i did, i could pass it on anyhow!! :)

The postings on this site are my own and donít necessarily represent IBMís positions, strategies or opinions.

davidjearly
Jan 17, 2008, 06:20 AM
I bought iWork 08 and was planning to get rid of Office but the idiotic way iWork handles Office files made me give up on it. Even though it import and exports .doc and .xls files competently, they can only be opened and saved through the Export menu and don't go in Recent Files either. It's usable, but I really don't understand why Apple made it such a pain to use Office files instead of integrating it properly. Yeah, I could use .pages but most people I know don't use iWork so that's not an option.

I think iWork handles Office files nicely. To me there is little difference in choosing 'Save As' or 'Export' from the file menu. Office files can be opened by right clicking and selecting Pages/Keynote/Numbers from the 'Open With' menu. No need to import.

You can also set iWork to be the default for opening Office files.

I've never had an issue with Pages not working well with Word files.

autrefois
Jan 17, 2008, 07:03 AM
"We have a lot in common," IBM spokesman Mike Azzi said. "We're going to cross-pollinate."

IBM and Apple are going to "cross-pollinate"? Don't want to think about that one too much...

edesignuk
Jan 17, 2008, 07:07 AM
Lotus Notes, baaaaaaaaaaad :eek:

jocknerd
Jan 17, 2008, 07:34 AM
According to one of the guys on the DB2 team, DB2 is being ported to OS X as well. Check out this blog: http://antoniocangiano.com/2007/09/19/db2-on-mac/

oldMac
Jan 17, 2008, 07:54 AM
however software collaboration breaks relatively new ground for the two companies.


Relatively new ground?

You're all a bunch of newbies!

Us old guys remember Pink, Taligent (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taligent) and OpenDoc (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OpenDoc). All of which were big software collaborations between Apple and IBM back in the day. Of course, they all went horribly wrong, too.

weckart
Jan 17, 2008, 08:26 AM
I'd say it has been killed off; I'd say when push comes to shove, it was easier for them to base a new office suite on OpenOffice + Eclipse SDK than going out and trying to bring SmartSuite to Linux and Mac OS X.D

I would say moribund rather than killed off. Serious development stopped several years ago, but it is still supported on Windows and OS/2 with infrequent update patches being delivered - I assume some corporate customers still have not moved from Smartsuite onto other office packages.

The Windows version is still on sale, btw.

JeffTL
Jan 17, 2008, 08:27 AM
As a (somewhat begrudging) Lotus Notes user at a university, this is big news and may well sell me an iPod Touch. The server I have to use doesn't have IMAP or SMTP/POP turned on, and the Web main won't even work in Safari on a Mac, much less an iPod or iPhone.

thejadedmonkey
Jan 17, 2008, 08:28 AM
This is sooooo cool!!!!111!!one!!!eveven111!!!!!!!!!!!

Do you guys think that maybe one day, like, with their partnership and all, they might even swtch processors to the superior power PC architecture?????? Like OMG!!11!!!1!!11!evenentyfirst!!11!!!!!one!!!!
I hear the G5 is a BEAST!!!!!!!!!

:rolleyes:

Ok, so this is a good thing. Don't look at it as IBM and Apple partnering, look at it more like IBM sees the benefit of supporting Mac... or in other words, we've finally reached critical mass!

bugabuga
Jan 17, 2008, 08:58 AM
*shudder* Lotus office products are usually used only in one case -- when you have to due to company standard. And even the fact it's a re-badged Open Office won't help much :( It used to be that Lotus interface engineers only had one goal "be different from Microsoft" and I've suffered via those clunky buggy non-intuitive products immersly.
NoooooO! Keep it awaaaaay! Bad office product! Shoo!

mitsu13gman
Jan 17, 2008, 09:05 AM
Well, we're on Notes 6.5 here at work, and the current web interface works just fine in Safari on the iPhone.

That said I would really enjoy the coolness factor of being able to access my corporate email from the iPhone's mail interface. I have traveled a lot in the past and being able to get email on the fly (and respond to it) would make travel that much easier. Especially since I never take a laptop with me.

kingtj
Jan 17, 2008, 09:27 AM
I totally agree with you. IBM could do a lot by developing a whole line of OS X versions of their products.

The bottom line is, IBM has kissed Microsoft's butt for far too long, and always gotten burned in the end for doing it. They had a really good opportunity to take over the x86 PC market with the OS/2 operating system, but slowly let the whole thing die on the vine -- all because the majority of managers at IBM couldn't see past the "profitability" of offering Windows on their PCs, and releasing Windows-compatible software, instead.

Now where did THAT thinking lead them? Their hugely popular "Thinkpad" line of portables was sold off to Lenovo in China. They've abandoned the desktop PC market. And their "flagship" competitor to Microsoft Office? Well, let's just say you don't see a whole lot of companies standardized on IBM Word-Pro/AMI Pro as their word processor anymore, and it's quickly becoming a good bet that a given company uses MS Outlook and Exchange, vs. Lotus Notes for email/scheduling.

IBM thrives today, only because they changed direction to becoming more of a "solutions provider". There's always more money in the consulting side of things, and custom-configuring things for people who don't want to do it for themselves.

Their software could find a new "niche" if everything was available for Mac OS X though. This would finally legitimize Apple XServes as suitable application servers for business (good for Apple) too.


There is a lot they could do with Apple if they were so inclined. They were also suggesting that R8 for OSX was going to be released during MacWorld, weren't they? Would be nice to be on par with the other platforms again.

And if they were to collaborate a bit further, I'm sure I'm not the only person out there that would be interested in DB2 on OSX as well, long rumored but never really materialized...

There are probably dozens of other products as well if they were to want to help Apple get a leg up in the corporate world. And why wouldn't they?

aristobrat
Jan 17, 2008, 09:36 AM
Well, we're on Notes 6.5 here at work, and the current web interface works just fine in Safari on the iPhone.
That's good to know. We're on 6.5.5 where I work, and the web interface is unusable in regular Safari and Firefox, so I never tried it on my iPhone.

Stampyhead
Jan 17, 2008, 09:51 AM
Lotus Notes, baaaaaaaaaaad :eek:

Oh, it's not that bad. I use it here at work and although the interface is kind of ugly and I had to enlist the help of our company's Lotus Notes expert just to get it set up, now that it's going it seems like a pretty powerful email and calendar app. I still prefer Apple Mail and iCal personally, but for those who need Notes email on their iPhones this will be a good thing.

bacaramac
Jan 17, 2008, 10:12 AM
Well, we're on Notes 6.5 here at work, and the current web interface works just fine in Safari on the iPhone.

That said I would really enjoy the coolness factor of being able to access my corporate email from the iPhone's mail interface. I have traveled a lot in the past and being able to get email on the fly (and respond to it) would make travel that much easier. Especially since I never take a laptop with me.

+1 on this note....I use Lotus Notes at work and would love this feature.

jaydub
Jan 17, 2008, 10:14 AM
It's very mature, but we so affectionately call it "BlowtusGoats" here at work for a reason. I would run away from putting this on an iPhone.

paulbaker
Jan 17, 2008, 10:40 AM
I bought iWork 08 and was planning to get rid of Office but the idiotic way iWork handles Office files made me give up on it. Even though it import and exports .doc and .xls files competently, they can only be opened and saved through the Export menu and don't go in Recent Files either. It's usable, but I really don't understand why Apple made it such a pain to use Office files instead of integrating it properly. Yeah, I could use .pages but most people I know don't use iWork so that's not an option.

The first thing I did was uninstall 2004, but I soon found out that Numbers will not even open the complex spreadsheets that we use (built by a vendor relying heavily on macros is why).. so I keep a copy of Excel....

Object-X
Jan 17, 2008, 11:06 AM
Three Words:

COPY AND PASTE

W/o this, what is the point for the iPhone app?

Also, it sounds like Apple is trying to cover its ass if/when Microsoft pulls the plug on it Office suite. If the next version of Windows is delayed, e.g. Vista, and OS X is still gaining market share, then I'd bet they do the nuclear option and pull the MacOffice plug.

IBM wants on the iPhone train. IBM sees this as an oppertunity to push thier Lotus software by integrating it nicely with all those iPhone users at the office; which will undoubtably be a very large number. This is a great partnership for Apple, becuase it will help Apple's push into the smart phone market despite not having much presence in the corporate world. It benefits IBM because it gives their office software an advantage over Microsoft's. Now, if IBM would only write a version of Lotus for OS X.

agentkow
Jan 17, 2008, 11:26 AM
That's good to know. We're on 6.5.5 where I work, and the web interface is unusable in regular Safari and Firefox, so I never tried it on my iPhone.

I'm on one of the few employee Macs in this University, and while we all have Lotus Notes 7.0.3, the web interface doesn't render properly or work very well in Safari but it manages to actually send email, while on the flip side, the interface is great and really handy in Firefox but it never actually sends mail.

They've even got IMAP turned on and I've managed to get mail in Apple Mail.app, but for the life of me I can't figure out how to send mail...

twoodcc
Jan 17, 2008, 11:26 AM
awesome news. it's good to partner with IBM again, methinks. looking forward to more iPhone apps!

kironin
Jan 17, 2008, 11:45 AM
Hard to get excited about this when I have so many free choice alternatives already. If I am really just writing I use WriteRoom. Then for blogging, multimedia note taking and misc stuff nothing beats Journler. Then for word processing there is Bean (www.bean-osx.com) or the more mature AbiWord. For heavy duty, there is NeoOffice. I haven't found any compelling reasons to upgrade to iWork'08 and certainly don't see a reason to ugrade MS Office X 2004 to 2008 given the rarity with which I use it. Ticks me off that I am paying for things I will never use like Entourage.

I think Bean and Jounler would be great on a 2nd generation iPhone.

mitsu13gman
Jan 17, 2008, 12:23 PM
That's good to know. We're on 6.5.5 where I work, and the web interface is unusable in regular Safari and Firefox, so I never tried it on my iPhone.

I just double-checked, and we're on 6.5.3, September 14, 2004.

I will warn you that it requires a significant data overhead to bring up, so only try this on Wi-Fi.

That said, it works fine (at least for checking messages, I don't remember if I tried to send one or not), so I was pretty happy with it.

JD92
Jan 17, 2008, 12:33 PM
This is great news! I used to use NeoOffice but it was too big and slow so I switched to iWork 08, but it annoys me that it has no support for ODF and so I can't share my .pages files with my Linux PC.

Hopefully with Lotus Symphony there will finally be a good office suite with good compatibility for standards (i.e. not .doc, .docx or .pages).

:-D

csimmons
Jan 17, 2008, 01:55 PM
Three Words:

COPY AND PASTE

W/o this, what is the point for the iPhone app?

Also, it sounds like Apple is trying to cover its ass if/when Microsoft pulls the plug on it Office suite. If the next version of Windows is delayed, e.g. Vista, and OS X is still gaining market share, then I'd bet they do the nuclear option and pull the MacOffice plug.

If Apple continues to gain share and MS does decide to do the so-called nuclear option, it would be one of the dumbest moves in corporate history.

It simply makes no business sense for MS to pull Office from the Mac. Cutting off your nose to spite your face.

Kind of like the music labels holding back new releases from iTunes in favor of Amazon as a means to "hurt Apple", when the latest stats show that the Amazon Music Store has actually <b>helped boost sales</b> of the iPod.:eek:

MacFly123
Jan 17, 2008, 01:57 PM
I completely agree. I think iWork is a fantastic package. I am only starting to use Numbers but Keynote is outstanding and Pages is excellent too.

As far as I am concerned, iWork 08 is one of the best value software packages available on the Mac.

AMEN! I LOVE iWORK \'08 :) It does everything I would ever need it to do so simply, and it is all beautiful :) I take pride in not buying a single Microsoft product :)

starkmjs
Jan 17, 2008, 02:28 PM
I'm on one of the few employee Macs in this University, and while we all have Lotus Notes 7.0.3, the web interface doesn't render properly or work very well in Safari but it manages to actually send email, while on the flip side, the interface is great and really handy in Firefox but it never actually sends mail.

They've even got IMAP turned on and I've managed to get mail in Apple Mail.app, but for the life of me I can't figure out how to send mail...

I don't have an iphone yet, but have tried several at the Apple stores, and the webmail we have at work for Lotus Notes will NOT run on Safari at all. It is Firefox only, which really bums me out because as of now there is no way to get my corporate email on an iPhone.
IT will not enable the IMAP function (security issues blah blah blah), so I am really hoping this Lotus Notes for the iphone comes through.

It's the only reason I haven't bought one yet.

ayale99
Jan 17, 2008, 03:01 PM
Lotus Notes is horrible! I just started a new job about a month ago and am now forced to use this poor excuse for an email program. It looks like the interface hasn't been updated since 1991! I could care less if it came to the iphone. Entourage IMO is the gold standard.

jhande
Jan 17, 2008, 03:41 PM
We use Notes 7 (testing 8) in the company I work for, and this is major news!

For those of us that are tethered to IBM, this is an excellent shoehorn for Apple into the corporate workplace. Even our CTO has gone fruity. The trickle down effect looks go solidly in place. This announcement will only strengthen this.

One of our sysadmins came over to me today and started asking about my MacBook, integration, and noticed that I haven't had any support tickets ever.

They *will* be assimilated, and the pace will accelerate.:D

The thing that gets me is that I'm seeing more and more Apple laptops (mainly) in the enterprise. Almost without fail, it's because a top or middle manager decided to take the jump, and the rest follow.

yellow
Jan 17, 2008, 05:04 PM
Very cool. Very very cool.

My quasi-corporate environment currently says no to iPhones because they cannot be used with our Domino Servers (they're not turning on IMAP/POP).

But this would be a huge chink in their no-iphone-armor.

My chances of getting a free iPhone just went up 75%!

On another note, I'm curious if this is just a front end for iNotes via Safari, or a stand alone client that connects directly to the Domino servers.

GNUMatrix
Jan 17, 2008, 05:18 PM
Lotus Notes is horrible! I just started a new job about a month ago and am now forced to use this poor excuse for an email program. It looks like the interface hasn't been updated since 1991! I could care less if it came to the iphone. Entourage IMO is the gold standard.

Disclaimer: I've been a Notes/Domino develoepr on and off since around R4 or so.

I'm always amazed at how many people dislike Notes so much. Given the alternative of Outlook (pick your version) and Exchange, Notes/Domino is a far more capable product and has a far richer history and maturity to it than almost any other product out there. Is it a big program? Yes. But if you think about what it does, what it is capable of, and what it brings to even a small organization, even today it is still a "killer product" by most definitions. The problem has always been that it isn't Outlook. And it isn't Exchange. And it isn't IIS/Apache. And it isn't sendmail. And it isn't (product X). It's actually ALL of them in a nice cohesive package if you've got the time and inclination to learn what is there... But I guess that's the catch.

starkmjs
Jan 17, 2008, 06:08 PM
Disclaimer: I've been a Notes/Domino develoepr on and off since around R4 or so.

I'm always amazed at how many people dislike Notes so much. Given the alternative of Outlook (pick your version) and Exchange, Notes/Domino is a far more capable product and has a far richer history and maturity to it than almost any other product out there. Is it a big program? Yes. But if you think about what it does, what it is capable of, and what it brings to even a small organization, even today it is still a "killer product" by most definitions. The problem has always been that it isn't Outlook. And it isn't Exchange. And it isn't IIS/Apache. And it isn't sendmail. And it isn't (product X). It's actually ALL of them in a nice cohesive package if you've got the time and inclination to learn what is there... But I guess that's the catch.

..but the majority of people I talk to, really dislike this program. I'm sure you've put a lot of time and energy into it, but I have to agree with the other poster. It's slow, and just not very user friendly.

Don't worry, though. I produce television commercials for a living. And the majority of people I know think most ads suck.

Is what it is.

Having said that, I'd love to have it on an iPhone, so I could get my corporate email. Like I said before, as soon as I here this is happening, I'm buying my iPhone.

Well, maybe after the 3G version comes out..

GNUMatrix
Jan 17, 2008, 06:19 PM
Don't worry, though. I produce television commercials for a living. And the majority of people I know think most ads suck.

Fair enough! I'm also very much looking forward to seeing what this actually looks like. I live in Canada, however, so unless it also coincides with Rogers finally getting a clue (unlikely) I still won't be getting an iPhone. Hopefully it will also work on the Touch.

The interesting thing is that if there really are 140 million Notes users out there, that could bring a pretty hefty boost to the 4 million iPhone sales so far. Maybe the 2008 target of 10 million is REALLY conservative???

skeen
Jan 17, 2008, 06:23 PM
So I don't understand, are they releasing a native app...?

gauchogolfer
Jan 17, 2008, 06:26 PM
Maybe this will help my company come to grips with people using iPhones for work email. It would be nice if they could get calendar updates going remotely also, since it's a bit of a pain to enter new appointments manually on my iPhone. Email I can at least access via webmail (though not easily, since we have RSA keys).

We're using Notes 7.0.2 btw.

aristobrat
Jan 17, 2008, 06:33 PM
The problem has always been that it isn't Outlook. And it isn't Exchange. And it isn't IIS/Apache. And it isn't sendmail. And it isn't (product X).
Actually, for me (and most of the folks I work with), the problem is that the user interface is utter rubbish.

agentkow
Jan 17, 2008, 06:48 PM
..but the majority of people I talk to, really dislike this program. I'm sure you've put a lot of time and energy into it, but I have to agree with the other poster. It's slow, and just not very user friendly.

I concur. Case in point:

- To put a clickable link in most email programs = paste the link.

- To put a clickable link in a Lotus Notes email = paste the link, go up to "Create" in the menu bar, choose "Hotspot" from the menu, then select "Link Hotspot" from the flyout, then click in the "Value" box in the window that appears and paste your link again, then close the window.

GregA
Jan 17, 2008, 07:23 PM
the majority of people I talk to, really dislike this program.
Back in 1995 I was doing some basic support and rollout of Notes v4, and the general attitude I read everywhere was:
"Notes does badly what no other program can do at all"

It sounds like it's still in a similar place.
It was great for doing certain simple database things, really amazing, but as an email/calendar program it was overkill & just didn't fit the paradigm correctly.

The pity is that cc:Mail used to win awards for its interface, & that brilliant little calendaring program (whatever it was called). It's just they couldn't pull their simplicity into Notes... but I haven't looked since v4.

kaiwai
Jan 17, 2008, 07:26 PM
I would say moribund rather than killed off. Serious development stopped several years ago, but it is still supported on Windows and OS/2 with infrequent update patches being delivered - I assume some corporate customers still have not moved from Smartsuite onto other office packages.

The Windows version is still on sale, btw.

I'd say that IBM will continue to sell Smartsuite till it is no longer viable - and Symphony/Notes 8 has feature parity with SmartSuite. You would be surprised that there are sill companies out there using lotus smart suite.

SheriffParker
Jan 17, 2008, 07:39 PM
I wonder when Apple will name their OS that they run on the iPhone.

Its kind of long winded to say "Program X will be available for iPhone/iPod Touch" as if naming the hardware is the only thing they can come up with. If it is a slender version of OS X, they should give it a name.

thunng8
Jan 17, 2008, 07:44 PM
Back in 1995 I was doing some basic support and rollout of Notes v4, and the general attitude I read everywhere was:
"Notes does badly what no other program can do at all"

It sounds like it's still in a similar place.
It was great for doing certain simple database things, really amazing, but as an email/calendar program it was overkill & just didn't fit the paradigm correctly.

The pity is that cc:Mail used to win awards for its interface, & that brilliant little calendaring program (whatever it was called). It's just they couldn't pull their simplicity into Notes... but I haven't looked since v4.

Version 7's interface is still quite clunky and does thing quite a bit differently to other applications. Version 8 supposedly fixes most of that .. but I haven't tried it myself.

rjohnstone
Jan 17, 2008, 11:47 PM
Notes... yuck. Hate it.
I've been forced to use that horrible app every day at work for the last 8 years.
It's slow, bloated and not very user friendly.
It eats server storage like it's candy.
The Domino DB structure is a joke.

jasonbuzz
Jan 18, 2008, 07:59 AM
Disclaimer: I've been a Notes/Domino develoepr on and off since around R4 or so.

I'm always amazed at how many people dislike Notes so much. Given the alternative of Outlook (pick your version) and Exchange, Notes/Domino is a far more capable product and has a far richer history and maturity to it than almost any other product out there. Is it a big program? Yes. But if you think about what it does, what it is capable of, and what it brings to even a small organization, even today it is still a "killer product" by most definitions. The problem has always been that it isn't Outlook. And it isn't Exchange. And it isn't IIS/Apache. And it isn't sendmail. And it isn't (product X). It's actually ALL of them in a nice cohesive package if you've got the time and inclination to learn what is there... But I guess that's the catch.

Lotus developers always tout the capability of Notes and how much more powerful it is than everything else. I think we all get it, but at the end of the day, Lotus Notes is an ugly, ugly beast. It's clunky, unintuitive, the undo button is useless, and it's hard to do simple things like "copy and paste". And that is just scratching the surface....It isn't near as intuitive as Microsoft products which of course lag way behind Apple products.

My company also uses Notes and I've subsidized the iPhone for them. However, I can get corporate mail on the iPhone using some workarounds (autoforwarding copies of all messages to a yahoo plus account which allows me to respond as if I'm responding from my corporate account :D)

jasonbuzz
Jan 18, 2008, 08:10 AM
I concur. Case in point:

- To put a clickable link in most email programs = paste the link.

- To put a clickable link in a Lotus Notes email = paste the link, go up to "Create" in the menu bar, choose "Hotspot" from the menu, then select "Link Hotspot" from the flyout, then click in the "Value" box in the window that appears and paste your link again, then close the window.

AMEN!!

Here's another one:

Accidentally delete an e-mail message? Undo won't work. Move the message back to inbox won't work. You have to "restore" the message back to the inbox. Granted it's not that tedious, but completely unintuitive and annoying.

agentkow
Jan 18, 2008, 11:07 AM
Here's one to show how current the software is:

- In any view, click on the search icon (where you can conveniently only search in the view you are in, not multiple folders or anything too crazy like that) and here are the web search options:

- AltaVista
- Google
- Hotbot

I literally had to got to AltaVista and Hotbot to see if they actually still existed...

yellow
Jan 18, 2008, 11:13 AM
A while back I ran across an issue in Lotus Notes that just floored me.

On the Mac, there is a SOFTWARE limitation that make it so a Notes archive has a max size of 2GB. It was put in the software back in the days of HFS, when the hard limit of a single file was 2GB. Here it is, 12+ years later.. still the same basic code.

I'm always amused to see the old fashioned wrist watch icon pop up, indicating that there are carbonized portions of the code running.. meaning the code is old as hell.

Of course, the Finder does that too..

But I can't complain too much about Notes. My work will stick with it to the bitter, bitter end.

Robort
Jan 21, 2008, 11:14 AM
So I don't understand, are they releasing a native app...?

No, it's just the web interface, according to Ed Brill's blogging of the announcement:

8:50 AM Jeff discusses Traveler and other mobile innovations in Notes/Domino 8.0.1. Mentions DWA "lite" mode and DWA support on the iPhone.

Ratty
Jan 21, 2008, 03:40 PM
Before anyone gets too excited :rolleyes: about this news just remember IBM's past excursions into applications and operating systems etc. (I don't mean the boring corporate high end stuff). As a retired IBM employee with considerable experience with IBM's software products over several decades I would say they do not have the 'balls' to see any worthwhile product through to the end. I have been on their roller coaster ride of Topview for DOS (early windoze competitor), the application suite out of Mountain view labs (hollywood, legato, can't recall the rest) OS/2 what a ride here, (As Bill said "the OS of the 90's), journal file system and mico kernel for OS/2 follow on product (yes there was one!), first integrated Internet kits etc. etc. the list goes on and on and where is it all now. The bean counters at the top loose their nerve when the going gets tough. Symphony will go the way of the rest, the Notes client for the iPhone may be a success but who will be left out there to use it.............:eek:

Call me cynical but I have too many memories!

mfacey
Jan 28, 2008, 10:47 AM
Still no mention of the Symphony suite for mac... Also, nothing to be found on IBM's website. What gives? Office 2008 is scarily unstable (especially Excel). I need something to carry me over until MS sorts it out. Guess I could just use neooffice, but still...

yellow
Jan 28, 2008, 10:55 AM
I believe it was put on hold because Steve Jobs had a tantrum about the release stealing the thunder of the iPhone SDK?

kaiwai
Jan 28, 2008, 11:17 AM
Before anyone gets too excited :rolleyes: about this news just remember IBM's past excursions into applications and operating systems etc. (I don't mean the boring corporate high end stuff). As a retired IBM employee with considerable experience with IBM's software products over several decades I would say they do not have the 'balls' to see any worthwhile product through to the end. I have been on their roller coaster ride of Topview for DOS (early windoze competitor), the application suite out of Mountain view labs (hollywood, legato, can't recall the rest) OS/2 what a ride here, (As Bill said "the OS of the 90's), journal file system and mico kernel for OS/2 follow on product (yes there was one!), first integrated Internet kits etc. etc. the list goes on and on and where is it all now. The bean counters at the top loose their nerve when the going gets tough. Symphony will go the way of the rest, the Notes client for the iPhone may be a success but who will be left out there to use it.............:eek:

Call me cynical but I have too many memories!

I'm a little more optimistic in that I see them finally re-investing after Lou Gestner running the companies R&D and innovation into the ground in the name of 'efficiency'. If you don't know how bad Lou is, read his background on how he ran Nabisco into the ground. Turned it from a number one company, and when he left, it to be bought out by Kraft, the number 2 company when he first took over. People worship as a god, I see him as an over hyped manager who got lucky - and even with IBM, large acquisitions, and never considerations made to the integration into the larger business plans. Just acquisitions for acquisitions sake.

mfacey
Jan 28, 2008, 12:32 PM
I believe it was put on hold because Steve Jobs had a tantrum about the release stealing the thunder of the iPhone SDK?

What does the iPhone SDK have to do with the release of an open source office suite?

The Notes iphone compatibility thing is a separate issue (and one I don't care about because I don't have an iphone - yet:p).

MacAodh
Jan 29, 2008, 08:48 AM
So I'm guessing it's neooffice or openoffice for me then :(. A well, there both grand anyway.

kepardue
Apr 4, 2008, 09:56 PM
I really, really like iWork. Pages has made the little bit of writing I do gorgeous and so far has the best floating objects support of any word processor I've used, and Keynote is by far superior to PowerPoint or OpenOffice Presentations. I even like the whole concept of having multiple sheets on a page in Numbers (seriously, why haven't spreadsheet software makers thought of that by now?).

Problem is, I'm a bit of an open standards freak, and I want to know that my documents are by default viewable on OS X, Linux, and Windows and that the format they're saved in is fully documented and will be accessible in 50 years time.

Apple made a good move with OOXML support, but despite what you've heard, OOXML is neither "open" nor "standard". I'd rather work with ODF, and I can migrate the others in our office to ODF and (with the recent very usable Aqua OpenOffice.org release) have almost identical rendering. So I'm kind of limited to OpenOffice/Symphony/what-have-you until Apple releases an iWork that opens and saves ODF files (or heck, I'd even take OOXML, just something that I could share with Windows users) natively--I just don't see that happening, in the same vein as Microsoft, Apple's need to do things their way has led them to create their own format that defies standards and sets us back a decade in the open data portability movement. I'm pretty sure that you couldn't describe the multi-spreadsheet-per-sheet concept in ODF.

I have high hopes for OpenOffice.org 3.0, but I just don't see it having that Mac touch to it.

seymourloo
Apr 15, 2008, 04:43 PM
Hello... just wondering if anyone knows the status on when Lotus Symphony for Mac will be available?

MacAodh
Apr 16, 2008, 07:19 AM
I really, really like iWork. Pages has made the little bit of writing I do gorgeous and so far has the best floating objects support of any word processor I've used, and Keynote is by far superior to PowerPoint or OpenOffice Presentations. I even like the whole concept of having multiple sheets on a page in Numbers (seriously, why haven't spreadsheet software makers thought of that by now?).

I love pages as well but it just drives me nuts some of the things in it. For example, if you have it doing capitals at the start of the sentence, you can't take them off if your just saying Eg. you have to manually go back and change it at a later point, rather then pressing command-z like both word and oo.org.

I have high hopes for OpenOffice.org 3.0, but I just don't see it having that Mac touch to it.

Yea, I agree, it's looking great but it's missing that little something...

No word for the mac... there's a product that just drives me nuts. Neooffice any day over that piece of ****

doug in albq
Jan 8, 2009, 02:56 PM
A full year later and IBM's Lotus Symphony is finally available.

I like it, I did a write-up of it in my most recent blog.

kepardue
Jan 19, 2009, 09:33 AM
For those interested, Symphony for Mac is now out of beta and is generally available: Announcement (http://symphony.lotus.com/software/lotus/symphony/buzz.nsf/web_DisPlayPlugin?open&unid=FAEC928255A9D94E852575430044AAE6&category=announcements).

WPeterson
Jan 20, 2009, 02:33 AM
:cool:

long-waiting app. ibm should bring this out earlier!
we know lotus is really professional app for biz. if we need more biz than entertainment on iphone. lotus, ms exchange should be supported naturally.