Lodahl's blog: 11/01/2008 - 12/01/2008

30 November 2008


The monthly newsletter from the Danish community is out: http://doc.oooforum.dk/Nyhed/2008December.pdf

28 November 2008

The Internet - not all success

Over the last 10-15 years the Internet has become every ones daily tool.
We use Facebook, twitter, we blog and search for news and knowledge. We can find a satellite overview of almost any place on earth, and even the star heaven can be browsed.

Most of it is progress, compared two the times before Internet

I've been involved with computers and IT for about two decades now. I remember when we first head about electronic mail (later it became e-mail). First as a new way to communicate internally, but soon also with external contacts. It took a few years before we could rely on this new kind of communication media because not all contacts ad access to an e-mail account and even if they had, we couldn't be sure that the account was actually used. Computers was not a common thing.

I can find very few things that are not so good. I'll try to explain one of the major mistakes when the Internet was (commonly) implemented in the early nineteens: The personal e-mail account. Well as a private person it's ok, but in professional life, it was a big big mistake.

The problem today in a large company is, that correspondence, whether it is outgoing, incoming or internal, is stored in individual databases or tables. E-mails belong to the owner of the mail account and not to the employer. Of cause, legally, it might belong to the company, but technically, it's individual stored in different places.

One of the consequences is additional expenses is, that companies are investing huge amounts of money in additional software. For two major reasons:

  • The law dictates that the company is responsible for storing and keeping any evidence intact
  • Our daily work dictates a need for transparency in communication

Doing that, is fighting symptoms.

Why don't we solve the original problem and redirect all in- and outgoing mail to one common or a few departmental mailboxes and suspend all personal mail account in the company ?

I don't know about you, but I think I'll need a few weeks to get used to it. But perhaps it could help?

15 November 2008

Why not Lotus Symphony right away ?

As I often advocate for OpenOffice.org in both private and business societies, I get questions about Lotus Symphony and Lotus Notes 8 from time to time. My advise to companies that are already using Lotus Notes is, to take Lotus Symphony serious as a future possibility. Right now I say: "Use Openoffice.org 3.0".

The reason for not advocating Lotus Symphony at the present time is, that the application is basically build on old code. If you look at it from a functions- and features perspective, the Lotus Symphony is not as rich as OpenOffice.org. At the same tim IBM has been very closed when it comes to information about the actual plans. Last autumn I asked IBM if there where plans to move from OOo 1.x code base to 3.x code base. I also asked if IBM had plans to implement support for extensions. No reply. During this years OpenOffice.org Conference IBM announced that there are plans to elevate the application to OOo 3 code base but still no time frame for the plans (did I miss something?). That is the reason why I put Lotus Symphony 'on hold' as the best alternative for the moment. I hope IBM will show me that they can do better, but at the time that happens, a lot of customers will be using OpenOffice.org. With a clear and accurate time plan for the development of Lotus Symphony, lots of customers might be able to make another decision.

I see a lot of good perspective in Lotus Notes in the future. It give meaning to build productivity tools on the same (eclipse) platform and the screencasts I have seen so far from Notes 8.5 looks nice. Imaging composite applications with Lotus Notes, Websites and a spreadsheet or text document ? It gives very good meaning.

02 November 2008

3.0 and all

The third generation of OpenOffice.org was released last month. The release generated a lot of downloads from all over the world, and for the first time we could see that the servers gave up. Statistics for the first day was rather inaccurate but on the second day, we could see the Dansih version downloaded more than 13.000 times.

Last week I participated in a TV program on Danish National Television DR1. 24 minutes about open s ource software on prime time. The Ubuntu community could measure a 5-double of website acivity and the OpenOffice.org community could see a +30% activity on downloads. Great. And I can now call me the first and only official IT-Hippie in Denmark. Well, I can live with that.

The TV program was very nice. A family of four accepted to give up all Microsoft Software for two weeks. All computers was replaced with open source software (surpise: the family survived).

I was very happy to di a live presentation of OpenOfffice.org 3.0 at the Ubuntu release party in Copenhagen on saturday. Unfortunately Ubuntu has decided not to include 3.0 in Ubuntu 8.10. Unfortunately my Linux box was 'at the hospital' that day and had to do the presentation on Windows. Ok, I think the Ubuntu community can accept that. Thanks to the guys that fixed my computer at the event.