Category Archives: LS11

Lotusphere Recap: The Blogger Open

For the third year following the Lotusphere Closing General Session a group of people headed over to the Fantasia Garden Mini Golf Course for the “Blogger Open”.  This year we had 60 golfers out on the course, and it would appear that Disney is willing to have us back again next year again.

Big thanks to the event sponsors

Special thanks to GSX for providing the grand prize, and to  Research in Motion, the London Developer Co-op, HADSL, and the IdoNotes Podcast for providing additional prizes.  Congratulations to  Mike McGarel for his excellent performance in Lotusphere Idol, and for once again taking on the challenge of designing and building the Blogger Open website (done in XPages of course).   Also thanks to Joe Hoetzl for the blogger open graphics.

Congratulations to all the winners (and losers since they got prizes to) and thanks to everyone who showed up to play and have a good time.

Thanks to Warren Elsmore for taking some pictures and letting me use his camera to take others.

[flickr-gallery mode=”photoset” photoset=”72157625981430752″]

If not before see you all again next year in Orlando, and put the 4th annual Blogger Open on your calendar for January 19, 2012.

Lotusphere Recap: Thursday – Questions and Answers, Answers and Questions

Thursday, the final day of Lotusphere, always a good one.  Another early start attending the 7 AM BOF Deploying Lotus Connections facilitated by Miguel Estrada and Mac Guidera.  Once again a nice sized crowd especially for 7 AM on Thursday, and more good conversation.

I spent a little more time in the User Experience Lab, and then it was off to Gurupalooza, Susan Bulloch did a great job moderating the session, lots of good questions from the audience.  Gurupalooza is always a good time, with lots of good information shared in a fun setting.


Following Gurupalooza was the inaugural Ask the Product Managers session, hosted by Ed Brill.  Despite any of the pre-Lotusphere chatter about this session it went really well, in fact so well Ed promised it would be back next year.

90% happy with Ask the Product Managers. Thanks for making it successful! We’ll do it again at LS12! #ls11Thu Feb 03 17:37:27 via Twitter for BlackBerry®

I wasn’t planning on live blogging Ask the Product Managers, but after a last minute request a hastily assembled crew of Sean Burgess, John Head, Sharon Bellamy, Stuart McIntyre and I managed to capture most of the Q&A as well as some photos, you can see the live blog post here.

After a morning of Questions and Answers the closing session featured Watson, in a game of Jeopardy (for those not familiar in Jeopardy your are given the answers and have to come up with the Question. I really enjoyed the closing and I will probably tune in to Jeopardy next week when Watson plays for real against the all time Jeopardy champions.  I posted some video from the closing session here.

When the closing session ends, it always seems like the week flew by in a blink, I went up on stage for the traditional “bloggers photo”, it’s always amazing to see how fast they start breaking the room and the big stage down, and with in a few hours it is hard to even find a sign anywhere in the hotel that Lotusphere was there.

Fortunately the fun wasn’t over yet, there was still the Blogger Open, and one more night with friends before heading home very early Friday morning, a full recap of the Blogger Open will  be posted soon.

Lotusphere Recap: Wednesday – We Interrupt this Program, TWIL, and The Hulk

Wednesday morning and once again I made it to a 7 AM BOF, this time it was Customizing Lotus Connections, facilitated by Clayton Coleman, and Mac Guidera.  Another impressive turnout for a 7 AM session, and more good conversation about Lotus Connections.

Next up was the final keynote session of Lotusphere 2011 “The Future of Social Business” (live blog of The Future of Social Business). This was a terrific session, especially Dr. Andrew McAfee’s portion.  If you missed it, it’s worht taking a few minutes to watch, Dr. McAfee comes on about 2 minutes in.

Watch live streaming video from ibmsoftware at

Following the keynote, in another Lotusphere first for me it was time to go “off campus” for a bit, I never knew before that IBM has a briefing center in Epcot Center, where I had the pleasure of spending a few hours on Wednesday.  The briefing center is about 10 feet from here


They also have a “Smarter Data Center” with used to run some of their exhibits in Epcot which I was taken on a tour of during the visit.


Back “on campus” where I finally found some time to spend in the Meet the Developers, and User Experience labs, as well as finally making it down to the Vendor Showcase before they all packed up and went home.

Before heading off to Universal there was time for another Birds of Feather session, this one facilitated by Luis Benitez, the topic was Lotus Connections: Lessons Learned from the Field.  The session had a standing room only crowd (remember this was an hour before Universal), and was a terrific discussion on deploying Lotus Connections and driving adoption.  Sacha Chua was in attendance and sketched notes which you can see here.

At the same time as this session the live edition of This Week in Lotus was recording a few doors down the hall, I managed to get in there for a few minutes as well, and somehow wound up on the panel for the last few minutes as well.  If you haven’t yet listen to this episode, and others, Stuart and Darren somehow find the time to deliver a new episode every Friday, give them a listen.

Finally time to head off to Universal Islands of Adventure for some fun, The Incredible Hulk roller coaster is one of my favorites (though 4 times was a bit much), and while I am not a Harry Potter fan I did make it on to the Forbidden Journey ride, great ride, but I prefer the plain old roller coasters not the ones that include all the 3D effects.

Thanks to GBS for adding a little extra fun to the evening, I was a finalist in their $10,000 drawing, though I didn’t win.


Back to Disney, another fun evening at Kimonos, and a precious few hours of sleep before the final day of Lotusphere 2011.

My Speedgeeking slides on Managed Replica #LS11

I had a great time participating in Speedgeeking at Lotusphere, I wanted to share my slides from the session (all 7 of them).  In looking them over I realize that they were really designed to be spoken to, but I don’t have time to make any changes right now, so figured I would share them in case anyone was looking for them.

Lotusphere Recap: Tuesday, Keynotes, Innovation Lab, Milkshakes, and Speedgeeking

An early start Tuesday for a 7 AM BOF, Extending Lotus Connections, facilitated by Mac Guidera, and David Brooks, in what became a theme for the week an excellent crowd for a 7 AM BOF at least 25 people in the room.  It was great to see both a good turnout and a lively discussion between customers and business partners about API’s in Connections, how they are being used, what is new in 3.0, and what else is still needed in future versions.

Following the BOF it was back to the “bloggers den” where I spent a good part of the morning.  First for the Tuesday keynote “Becoming a Social Business” (Live Blog of Becoming a Social Business).  I really didn’t know what to expect from this keynote going in, it turned out to be an excellent session.  See the live blog for the full write up, and click the pictures below to see them in more detail.

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Following the keynote, was the LotusLive Cloud Collaboration Strategy Session (Live Blog of LotusLive Collaboration Strategy), another good session reviewing LotusLive changes in 2010, plans for 2011, and a few customer stories. See the live blog for the full write up, and click the pictures below to see them in more detail.

IMG_3874 IMG_3895

Still saying in the same seat in the same room (at least it was a comfortable seat) the Lotus Mobile Strategy Session was up next (Live Blog The Lotus Mobile Strategy).  If you walked away with nothing else this year (there was a lot you should have walked away with) the message that IBM gets mobile, is committed to expanding Traveler, and building out other device specific apps for Mobile is a clear takeaway.  Very interesting that throughout the session clear commitment to  Apple, Android, Nokia and RIM, not a single mention of Windows Mobile, not even when discussing the current version of Traveler that does support Windows Mobile, not a big deal from my perspective, I wonder what others thing.  See the live blog for the full write up, and click the pictures below to see them in more detail.

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After spending almost the entire morning in the same room, it was time to move on, a quick lunch and then a meeting with the Global Customer Partnership Council (GCPC).  As a council we meet throughout the year, but Lotusphere provides one of the two opportunities we have each year to meet in person.  It was too bad that this overlapped with Lotusphere Idol, which I would have really liked to see.

Following the GCPC it was back upstairs to my seat where I spent the morning for the Application Development Strategy Session (Live Blog Application Development Strategy).  I was a little surprised that attendance in the room seemed light for this session, though it might have been that most of the developers were off in xPages sessions at the time.  The energy was certainly there around xPages, so I am guess conflicting sessions and the late afternoon time slot were the reasons for the lower attendance.

Following the App Dev session I spent an hour in the Innovations Labs, this is definitely one of the jewels of Lotusphere, I always put aside time to spend in the Innovations Labs where you can see projects from IBM research and specifically research from the IBM Center for Social Software.  A lot of this work takes place behind the scenes throughout the year, and this is one of the few opportunities to see some of these projects in public, and remember some of todays research projects are tomorrows products and features.  I hope to follow up later on with posts on a couple of the projects I saw in the labs in detail.

Still plenty left to go on Tuesday, a quick stop at the Penumbra Ice Cream social for a quick milkshake, thanks to Penumbra I needed that to get me through Speedgeeking which was next on my list.

I had never been to Speedgeeking at Lotusphere before, something always seemed to conflict with it on my schedule. To solve that problem I volunteered to speak at Speedgeeking, and it worked I finally made it.  I did a 5 minute pitch on Managed Replicas in 8.5.2, I will get my slides posted soon.  Fun event, new group to give your “session” to every 5 minutes, very informal, and a lot of fun, glad I volunteered to participate.


From there the day wrapped up with Dinner, the Australia Party at Jellyrolls (if anyone asks the Australians know how to party), a visit to Kimonos, and eventually a (very) little sleep before doing it all again on Wednesday.

Lotusphere Recap: Monday OGS, Students, and lots more

Monday was one of my busiest Lotusphere days ever, and if you know about some of the days I have logged at Lotusphere past you know that is really saying something.

Oddly Monday is a slightly later start then the rest of the week with no 7 AM BOF sessions (yes I made it to 7 AM sessions but we will get to that in later updates), but I was still up early, and in my seat in the “Bloggers Den” ready for the OGS at 7:30.


I don’t intend to review the entire OGS here, the band was rocking, Alistair was good, the panels were long and drawn out, the demos rocked (you might have read a little about this already). The thing that really kills me about the OGS is how after all the prep they seem to consistently run over. This years OGS went almost 40 minutes over, which had a domino effect (no pun intended) on the rest of my morning.

Following the OGS I scrambled over to the Swan to give a brief presentation to the Analysts. This was followed by a run back to the Dolphin for an interview over lunch.

Next up I lost 10 minutes finding the location of my 1 PM meeting, for future reference the lobby level of the Dolphin is the 3rd floor (the signage could be a little clearer).

Next up a quick run over to the Yacht Club convention center for one of my favorite parts of the day, maybe even the week. I was fortunate to be asked to participate in a panel being held for the students. The panel was a discussion on the use of Social Media tools in business, and skills students should expect to need when transitioning from college to the workplace. The panel was moderated by Alice Chou, Director IBM Developer Works, and included Marcia Conner, Jim Deters and Rex Lee . After each panelist introduced themselves we took questions from the students, we probably could have taken questions all day, they were very enthusiastic (including the guy who walked up on stage in the middle to distribute his resume). At the conclusion of the panel all of the panelists were mobbed with additional questions. Unfortunately I only had a few minutes to spend as I was off and running again back to the Dolphin

Next up on the Monday agenda was the Lotus Connections Customer Council, always a great discussion with other customers and the product managers.

Following the Customer Council meeting was a brief stop at the vendor showcase which was packed for the Monday evening reception, followed by the Press, Analyst, and Blogger reception.

After that was UKLUG Night, thanks to all the  sponsors for hosting, and letting me attend despite my inability to speak with a British accent.


In all seriousness while UK Night was a great time (and there might have even been some beer) there was also a raffle which raised $3500.00 for an excellent cause congrats to all those involved in organizing.

Following UKLUG I finally had dinner (and by dinner I mean Ice Cream), visited Kimonos, and the Dolphin Lobby, and wrapped up a long, but good Lotusphere day.

20 Random Thoughts from Lotusphere 2011 #LS11

Some completely random thoughts in no particular order

1. The WiFi held up nicely this year, vast improvement over previous years

2. My first and only cup of coffee the entire week was on Thursday morning – don’t know how or why but I am not a Starbucks fan and the cup I had was terrible so just as well

3. Warren Elsmore gets extra geek points no not for a Lego model of the Dolphin Hotel, but for loading a custom firmware on his camera

4. For the first time in 7 Lotusphere I made it to the Vendor Showcase Monday night for the reception

5. It was really nice to walk around not surrounded by piles of snow for a week

6. Still impossible to do everything at Lotusphere, sessions I wanted to see, friends I wanted to see present, people I wanted to spend more time with.. no regrets though, I did what I could in the time I had.

7. No football on Sunday I really like this setup but based on next years dates, looks like it will be either Wild Card or Divisional playoff games on Sunday

8. They changed the vendor for Kosher meals this year, I enjoyed the meals much more this year then in the past.

9. Mat Newman – life of the party, delivered one of the most talked about sessions of the week, walked away with a couple of awards for ISW (if you haven’t yet check out Wildfire on OpenNTF), you can say he had a good week, and added a lot of fun to my week.

10. Riding the Hulk 4 times in 2 hours is a bit much, the first three were fine, the fourth one took me a little time to recover from.

11. Carrying a camera at all times is a guarantee of capturing great memories from the week – it’s a trade off I leave the DSLR in the room sacrificing quality, but using the point and shoot which is easier to carry and use all the time.

12. More on photography – for a second year in a row I was good at not only taking pictures, but getting in to pictures myself as well, nice to come of of pics taken with my friends, not just of them.

13. I was at Kimonos at closing 3 nights…. I never thought I would say this but I might need to learn from Paul how to have an early night

14. 500 Students at the OGS good… shame they were bored… the rest of their day was good though (More on this in another post)

14. OGS trending on Twitter…. way cool

15. Of all the events I have attended, Lotusphere remains the most unique, and the only one I have seen that evokes such passion from it’s attendees

16. I still like the older (2009 and prior) badge holders better, the velcro closed badges of the last 2 years are prone to opening, and itch the back of your neck (fortunately I was prepared with a Curious George bandaid to keep it shut, and prevent the itching

17. The UKLUG guys know how to throw a party

18. The Australians really know how to throw a party (see number 9)

19. Brian Cheng rocks demos! (and is an all around good guy)

20. Not carrying a laptop for most of Lotusphere made the week so much easier… Smartphones and Tablets FTW!

Lotusphere Closing Session Videos of Jeopardy #LS11

This years Closing General Session was built around Watson, and the upcoming Jeopardy matches it will be playing.  Julian summed it up really nicely so instead of recapping it again, I thought I would just share a few videos I captured during the game.

Round 1

Round 2

Final Jeopardy

If you are not familiar with the show, you can visit it’s homepage or read about it on Wikipedia.

Lotusphere Recap: Sunday Jumpstart Day #LS11

Jumpstart day was a little different for me this year then in past years.  I generally try to do something different on Jumpstart day, attend a session out of my area of expertise, in the past that has generally meant finding a Development session to get through, this year that didn’t happen, I had a busy day that left little time for sessions.  The day went something like this

Business Development Day OGS: This was a first for me to attend, as a customer an opportunity for me to hear a slightly different angle on the Lotus Strategy. Much like the OGS on Monday this session ran a bit long, but the panel they brought up on stage was a little more engaging than the ones on Monday morning.  Overall good experience to sit through, not sure I would invest the time again next year.

JMP206: How I Went Beyond the Hype, Narcissism, and Trendiness to Become a Social Software Super HeroBruce promised “something different” and he and Chris Martin delivered.  A 2 hour session on how to effectively use Social Media with some thoughts of their own, and videos of others with in and very importantly from outside of the Lotus Community.  Two of my favorite slides from the week came in this session:



Sunday afternoon shifted from sessions to other events.  First Lunch, presentations, and informal networking with the IBM Accelerated Value Program (formerly Premium Support) team and other Accelerated Value customers.  Followed by a reception and meeting for LotusLive design partners.

This took me to the Lotusphere opening reception, which I still have not quite figured out what the theme was but involved these people (or were they props, decorations? really not sure)


This is a real person, there were a bunch of these around he would freeze and appear to be a statue, and start moving in time to freak out the closest person


Cupcake anyone?

And finally the strangest one of all

Nothing like being stopped for a conversation with a head sticking out of a table, and she stopped whoever she could for a conversation.

There were a lot of other people doing all kinds of interesting things floating around the opening reception, while I didn’t get a chance to capture them all, I think you get the idea.

Dinner, the first visit of LS11 to Kimonos, and a (relatively) early end to Sunday, getting ready for the OGS and a very busy Monday.


Lotusphere 2011 by the Numbers #LS11

Slowly starting to catch up from Lotusphere and try to capture it all before I either forget, or can’t read my notes (even the ones I typed).  You all know I love looking at numbers so here are some of my personal numbers, and some provided at the closing general session.








Steps per Day






Tweets per Day






Conference Numbers (from the Closing General Session)

2011-02-03 15.13.24

Note: I am still seeking clarification from the conference organizers if the bacon was for the conference over all or if this just represented Julian’s bacon consumption.

2011-02-03 15.13.33

I don’t know how they came up with this number, but I am guessing half of it is transportation to Universal on Wednesday (the only bus ride I took all week)

2011-02-03 15.13.50

Now this one is interesting, based on peak WiFi usage (during OGS perhaps?) iPhone was the most popular device at the conference, and there were tons of iPads as expected too.  I am not surprised that Android came in at the bottom of the pile, but I am surprised how far behind it lagged the other categories.  I used my iPad plenty during the week, but my Droid X was by far my primary device throughout the week.

While we are talking WiFi, this point will probably be made a few times but it is worth repeating, the WiFi was terrific this year, kudos to the Lotusphere team, this has been a pain point over the last few years, but they seem to have listened and figured it out this tear.