Lotusphere 2012: Part 1

Posted by Theo Heselmans on January 17th, 2012

LS2012I normally write a blogpost every day at Lotusphere #LS12. Not this year though. Every year I meet more people I'ld like to hang out with, and I get more socially involved too. So nights are short and thus free (blog) time is running in short supply.

For the first time in the 17 years I've been at Lotusphere, I arrived on Friday evening instead of Saturday. Big difference, as it allows you to 'grow into' LS, and not been thrown into it. Meeting a lot of friends in the Dolphin bar/rotunda was way more relax than seeing them in the frantic sports-bar.
I had my first 'Rogue' beer, but not my last :-).
In bed rather early (1am), due to a long day. Up at 4.30h due to jetlag :-(

Penumbra Prism Award 2012At 8am the meeting with the Penumbra Group started. Very constructive discussions and prep for the annual Penumbra dinner and Ice Cream Tuesdae (not a typo).
The Penumbra Dinner, held at the Fulton's Crab House in Downtown Disney was really good. Met a lot of (IBM) people. Susan Bulloch (aka NotesGoddess) won the Prism Award. Well deserved! You see her on the picture, with Alistair Rennie and Jamie Magee.
Back in the Dolphin bar where I had a great time with Marnix Kemme, Martin Schaefer and way to much beer with Martin Donnelly. Thanks guys for making sure I had a serious hangover the day after !

Sunday was shopping day, despite the fact that there are really excellent sessions at Lotusphere. Marc Surinx and company picked me up for a relaxing day.
As is customary, the Opening Reception (aka Pool party) was held on Sunday evening. It always ends when the fun begins (9pm is just too early to close down). Of course it continued in Kimono's. Made it to bed before 1am (seriously!).

On Monday Lotusphere really kicks off. More about that later.

Category:  Lotus  Notes  Domino  LS12  | TechnoratiTechnorati: , , ,

2011 Wrap up

Posted by Theo Heselmans on January 13th, 2012

IBM ChampionLet's start by wrapping up a weirdly busy (last) year, since it's been some time this blog was updated (no apologies here, follow me on my blog @theoheselmans, where I got more to say):

  • 2011 was weird in a sense that I was moderately busy work-wise doing projects, but I still having the feeling that the extra free time I got was filled up with a lot of trivia. I did a lot of Excel related development in 2011, and little exciting Lotus stuff.
  • I got involved with the Penumbra group, and am now a full member of this great bunch of top-notch experts! Catch one of us at Lotusphere (#LS12), and you might get invited to Ice Cream Tuesdae.
  • IBM elected 50 (now 63) Collaboration Solutions Champions worldwide. I was honored with this title/award too. Because of this I got invited to the Leadership Alliance Conference (aka LoLa) in Boston. We saw some exiting stuff (under NDA), which we can finally talk about in a few days, as most will be made public at Lotusphere.
  • Another thing that kept me occupied (although not nearly enough), was the beta-testing program for a cool new thing from Teamstudio. I developed my first (still rough) iPad app using it.
  • We had a great holiday in Zakynthos (Greece) and a short one in the Mosel area (Germany).
  • Of course we've had some really great wine tastings too, e.g. about Argentinian Zapata wines. The local wine-twips got together twice, and a third winetwunch is planned for February. Really nice to see twips IRL.
I'm writing this wrap up from Orlando, where I'm enjoying my yearly pilgrimage called Lotusphere.
You'll read more about it in future blogposts.
I might blog more this year, but since our 2-day BLUG event is coming up in March, I'm afraid I'll spent most of my free time preparing for that.

Anyway, thanks for reading my blog
and please do follow me on twitter @theoheselmans

Category:  Lotus  Notes  Domino  Personal  | TechnoratiTechnorati: , , ,

First WineTwunch: a major success

Posted by Theo Heselmans on July 1st, 2011

A couple of weeks ago an idea started spreading across the Belgian wine-twitter scene: let's get together and enjoy what we like best: Wine!
Filip, Jelle and Peter were the culprits. They took the initiative, and soon managed to get everything together:

  • a date and time (yesterday)
  • a sweet location
    (Wine-bar Pazzo in Antwerp)
  • 15 eager people (Filip, Jelle, Peter, Danielle, Olaf, Stijn, Hans, Jonas, Jens, Werner, Melanie, Fabrice, Kaat, Wim and myself)
  • a great flexible menu (moderately priced too)
  • corkage fee included (important!)
Each of us would bring 1 or 2 (or 3-4) preferred bottles, and we would share, taste and evaluate them together (blind as it turned out).
Well, we ended up having close to 30 bottles!
A feast to make even Bacchus jealous with envy !

We sure had some beautiful (and some less blessed) wines to go through. A decent pace was needed, but there was no real rush.
On the table:6 bubbles, 8 whites, 14 reds and 2 sweets (and a homebrew beer from Hans to round the evening night off).

Here's an overview of the wines we tasted:

Cava Can Festis (SP)

Entre-Deux-Monts (BE)

Champagne La Closerie Extra Brut 2004 (FR)

Champagne Jean Michel 2004 Blanc de Blancs (FR)

Franciacorta Satén van Pizzini (IT)

Champagne Francis Boulard Brut Nature 2006 (FR)

Riesling 2009 – Philipp Kuhn – Pfalz (DE)

Le cèdre Viognier 2007 (FR)

Genoels-Elderen Gold 2000 (BE)

Clos d’Opleeuw 2006 (BE)

Chablis 2008 – Alice & Olivier De moor (FR)

Riesling ‘Montiggl’ 2009 – St. Michael-Eppan (IT)

Velich ‘To’ 2008 Apetlon (AUT)

Meursault ‘Les Narvaux” 2009 – Jobard & Morey (FR)

Buena Pinta 2010 – Manchuela (SP)

Saint Cosme ‘Little James Basket Press’ (FR)

St. Joseph 2009 – Dard & Ribo (FR)

Quinta do Crasto Tinto 2009 (PT)

Gevrey-Chambertin 2009 – Philippe Pacalet (FR)

Pommard 2006 – François Mikulski (FR)

Malophet 2010 (FR)

Isole e Olena ‘Cepparello’ 2004 (IT)

Els Pics Priorato 2008 (SP)

St. Joseph ‘Les pierres seches’ 2007 – Yves Cuilleron (FR)

Finca Sobreno Reserva 2005 – Toro (SP)

Rosemount Estate ‘Balmoral’ 1994 (AUS)

Amphoraey Vineyard 2000 – (IL)

Mauro 2005 - Castilly y Léon (SP)

Moscato d’Asti Ca’d Gal ‘Lumine’ (IT)

Château Chalon 2000 – Vin Jaune 2000 (FR)

(Beer) Ceci c'est pas une Saison (BE


As you can guess, we all had a great evening, and I'm sure we'll do it again.

Many thanks to Filip for doing most of the organization, and to all the fellow wine-lovers, for bringing good wine and for being great company.
Cheers to all of you.

Category:  Wine  | TechnoratiTechnorati:

iPad: my favorite apps (1 year later)

Posted by Theo Heselmans on June 22nd, 2011

Image:iPad: my favorite apps (1 year later)Almost exactly 1 year ago, I wrote a blogpost about my favorite iPad apps.
A lot has changed during that period, not the least having almost 100,000 iPad specific apps in the App Store. Daunting !
What hasn't changed, it my enthusiasm for this device. I use it all the time!
The huge success of the first iPad was followed by the same overwhelming interest in the iPad 2.

I'm regularly asked (not only by newbies) what my favorite apps are (at the moment), so like before, here's my short-list (out of the >400 installed apps!).
I categorized them again, so if you're e.g. not into games, skip that section.
I marked all 'to be included in demo's' with an *. New ones (since previous list) are marked by
.
Productivity

  • *iWorks suite: Numbers, Keynote, Pages (spreadsheet, presentation and word processor)
  • NewsRack: easy, flawless RSS reader that syncs excellent with Google Reader
  • Things: To-do list, also possible to group by project (a good alternative is Wunderlist)
  • *iThoughtsHD: mind-mapping done right
  • Bento: easy to use database for creating your own. Syncs with Bento on the Mac (I use it for my wine inventory and tasting notes)
  • *Mail: just great, and combined with Notes Traveler just super!
  • Contacts: syncs using Traveler too
  • *Calendar: id., and has nice week and month views
  • Jumbo: just a great/big calculator
  • Safari (not the best browser, but will get better with iOS5)
  • Simplenote: easy notes in the cloud. Can be shared too.
  • ThinkBook: a new (for me) tool for outlining. Need to use it more.
  • Echofon: for twitter streams (Twitter itself is not bad, but I prefer this one)
  • Flipboard: Cool way of consuming news/tweets/blogs
Reference material
  • AppAdvice: daily iPad/iPhone news, great tips, temporarily free apps,...
  • AppShopper: similar to AppAdvice, but only for apps (no news)
  • SwissQuote: stock updates (Bloomberg is OK too)
  • *Videos: movies, TV-shows, podcast,...
  • *iBooks: read books and PDFs too (Kindle app is nice too)
  • *Photos: slideshows, using 'Origami' is just stunning
  • *Zinio: a magazine reader. Some magazine editions are free. (for my Belgian readers: Knack and Trends is also available !)
  • Weather+/Celsius/Fahrenheit/WeatherPro: all good weather apps
  • Buienradar HD (only for Dutch and Belgian users): the rain forecast: always accurate
  • TMobilis Pro (only for Belgium): live traffic updates (iPhone app, but works OK)
  • Maps: built in, but very useful
  • Google Earth: just like the one on a PC/Mac
  • *Comics: the iPad is made for comic reading. You can download some free samples. Too bad it's only US comics
  • Dictionary.com: simple, free and good (the dictionaries from Brentwick are much better, but not free)
  • IMDb: great way to find Movie/Actor info.
  • Wikipanion: my favorite Wikipedia browser
  • *WebMD: medical info, a lot of it on-line only, but the first aid stuff is available off line, and very thorough
  • Epicurious: cooking recipes
  • Airports: very detailed info about any airport in the world (you need to be on-line though)
  • *Fotopedia Heritage: discover the world by pictures: a must have
  • Hubble Top 100: super cool images of the galaxy, planets, stars, nebula
  • Coca Cola Heritage: beautifully made history of Coca Cola (watch the 'old' video)
  • EMD PTE: the periodic table like you have never seen it before (this is a free version)
  • *Coins HD: nicely made reference about coins in the world. Very detailed, with excellent pictures  
Games
  • Words with Friends: my current favorite game: play 'Scrabble' with people around the world
    (wanna play with me: my username is 'Theo Heselmans')
  • Angry Birds (regular or Rio): addictive !
  • *Pinball HD: 3 very nice pinball's
  • Lux DLX2: if you like 'Risk' games, check this one out. Lots of maps too (my favorite: Spacestation LUX)
  • Osmos HD: addictive and very attractive: do yourself a favor: buy it and enjoy
  • Shanghai Lite: en simple, but nice (and free) Mah-jong, my wife's favorite game
  • *Scrabble: great fun, and one of the few games that is not rushing you. Too bad there's STILL no Dutch language support
  • Solitair Forever: at least a hundred different Patience card games. My favorite is Yukon
  • *Asphalt 5: there are about 5 different racing games, but this one was cheap, well rated, and arcade style
  • Ice Age Delux: a very cool platform/puzzle game. Lots of levels
Utilities
  • *Dropbox: exchange files with your Mac/PC/iPhone, and send them to supporting apps
  • MyPics HD or Web Albums: 2 cool ways to watch/share/upload your pictures to (Google) Picasa  
  • GoodReader: exchange files from different sources and send them to apps
  • *DocsToGo: edit Excel and Word files (the premium version also supports Powerpoint). Sync them with your PC/Mac
  • QuickOffice HD: edit all kinds of documents (including MS Office)
  • *RDP lite: Windows Remote Desktop connection. Connect to your Windows Server/PC and take control of the screen/keyboard/mouse
  • VNC Viewer: take over your PC/Mac using VNC
  • Splashtop: Control your PC/Mac, better and much faster (video too), and supports international keyboards)
  • EyeTV: watch TV (live or recordings) if you have EyeTV on your Mac
  • Adobe Ideas: simple but nicely done sketching app
  • PhotoPad: edit your photo's. Lots of different adjustments, filters,...
  • PS Express: mini photoshop. Very good too
  • Maps: Google Maps. Very nice on the big iPad screen
  • Time Zones: cool way to show the time zones
  • *Yelo (only for Belgian Telenet users): TV guide, inclusive programming; live TV watching too
Music
  • *GarageBand: a must have, even if you don't know anything about making music. Replaces many other music apps  
  • *Discovr Music: great source for discovering artists/bands, based on what you like. Lots of info about them  
  • Remote: control your iTunes music remotely (works very well with Apple Airport Express)  
  • Shazam: recognize music/songs
  • RadioZone (Belgium only): live radio, but also re-listen to latest news and traffic
Other stuff you need to demo
  • *Pocket Pond: your own very well rendered pond, with koi, moving water, sounds and multi-touch support
  • *Gravitarium 2 or Gravilux: play with thousands of stars. your finger is a gravity well
  • *Uzu: finger art too (there are many others, but this one's my favorite)
  • *Epic Citadel: Move in 3D through a castle
  • *Molecules: 3D rotating representations of molecules (e.g. DNA)

Other stuff I missed and absolutely need to have or show ?

Category:  Apple  Macintosh  | TechnoratiTechnorati: ,

UKLUG’s over, and it was great

Posted by Theo Heselmans on June 2nd, 2011

Image:UKLUG’s over, and it was greatManchester is a great city, and luckily we've seen a bit of it. On top of that, if you organize a LUG in the Museum of Science and Industry (MOSI), then there is no other option for us nerds, then to be there.
Warren, Kitty and the rest of the team did a great job, as ever: smooth organizations, top-quality speakers, excellent sponsors, casual atmosphere, lots of attendees. Thanks guys!

As I've started to 'know' quite a lot of people, it's always bliss to see so many old (and young) friends, and have a chance to make new ones.
Sure we had a lot of social events and dinners, and they were memorable, but in the end you come for the sessions, right ?
I did go to quite a few, and did learn a lot:

  • Ted Stanton did a great job in the keynote, and doing good demos too. I was impressed with the analytics stuff.
  • John Head explained the competitive advantage we have in Notes/Domino development. His knowledge about both the IBM and Microsoft world made it absolutely worthwhile.
  • Paul Calhoun showed of the latest version of GBS's Transformer. A cool product to convert existing Notes applications into XPages apps.
  • Peter May gave us some background about how he struggled to became a XPages developer, having a 'classic' Notes development background. Very useful insights indeed!
  • Tim Tripcony did the same session as he did at BLUG, but this time I had the time to attend. And it sure was interesting. Themes make XPages so much more powerful.
  • Another session by Paul Calhoun. XPages Extensions seem to be a must have, but at the same time a 'work in progress'. Having it decently documented and included in a next release, will make it so much more appealing.
  • The speed-sponsoring session, hosted by Bill and Steve is always a blast, and there are always surprise topics (and cool give-aways/prizes).
  • The Introduction to XPages was a 2 hour hands-on, and proved to be highly successful. All XPages gurus where available. Cool.
  • Carl Tyler presented my most favorite session of the event: His personal 23-year experience at IBM and Lotus. Seeing Lotus Notes version 1 (yes 1.0), LIVE, is just mind-blowing. Going into memory lane is always fun, but Carl was sometimes hilarious. Thanks Carl.
  • Paul Mooney's session 'AdminBlast 2011' is not up my alley, but I did learn some useful do's and don'ts in the admin world. Besides, Paul is a great speaker and always fun to go to.
UKLUG is finished as an event, but it will live on for quite a while. Most sessions are available for download too.
Here's some of the picture (and vids) I took. Check out the (long) one where Carl tells the story of his 'Superman' gig.

Hope to see a lot of you (again), and one of the LUGs or Lotusphere/SocialSphere/SoftSphere/...

Category:  Domino/Notes  BLUG  | TechnoratiTechnorati: , ,

BLUG 2011: It’s a wrap

Posted by Theo Heselmans on April 9th, 2011

Image:BLUG 2011: It’s a wrapThis 3rd big BLUG event is the second one I've organized, and I made 2 wrong assumptions:

  • It would be a lot easier, because I had done it before, and all bases were covered (website, workflow & mailing-tools, ...)
  • A two days event would be the same effort as a 1 day event
Well, the first one was partially correct. But still, it's a pretty big task, and involves a lot of things to think about. I decided to work with ToDo lists (Think on my iPad), and that helped a lot. I certainly felt more in control, and at ease.
I really miscalculated on the 1-day vs 2-day duration: you need more than twice the speakers, and as we had to find a bigger (read: more expensive) venue, we needed more sponsors too. Now, don't get me wrong: I got enough abstracts in to fill the 40+ slots. I could even be picky. Our sponsors for 2011 where very generous too. No, what I underestimated was the serious increase (more than double!) in communication (mostly emails).
This was the first time we had to deal with a regular (conference) hotel, but the hotel staff, especially Dalia, were a pleasure to work with: very professional, approachable and keen to help. The Crowne Plaza in Antwerp was an excellent choice: easy to reach, lots of car parking, close enough to the city center, and above all, an almost perfect conference room layout.
Next to the sessions and sponsor area to organize, there are the 'after-hours' social events too: speaker & sponsor dinner and city trip.

The day before the actual event there is always a lot to do: set up sponsor booths, beamers, fill the bags (we had almost 20 items to put into 300 of them), prepare the speaker room, reception area,...
Luckily we had help here. Thanks guys/girls.

As soon as the conference starts, all I needed to do is walk around :-), and check if everyone was happy: speakers set up, and ready to present, sponsors satisfied, reception area OK, catering ready, attendees at ease, speedsponsoring prepared, raffle organized, ...
I was glad my short introduction went OK. I prepared all my slides using Keynote on my iPad. So, after Kevin Cavanaugh took over, I was time for me to relax a bit.

But all this is forgotten, when you see and hear the positive reactions of the attendees, sponsors and speakers. Except for a few small hiccups, everything went pretty smooth.
There are so many people I need to thank, but I think I've done that to most of them in person.

Most speakers have already submitted their presentations and/or sample applications.
Katrijn, our photographer took a lot of pictures, of almost everyone.

The evaluations that came in were mostly very positive. They also contained some very useful ideas on how to improve things. Thanks for that.

So, am I going to do it again? You bet, it's certainly worth it, and fun too.
Let's meet again, end of March 2012 !


Are you organizing, or thinking about organizing a Lotus User Group, I would certainly go for it. The result is absolutely worth the effort.

Hope to see many of you at UKLUG in Manchester.

Category:  Lotus  Notes  Domino  BLUG  | TechnoratiTechnorati: , , ,

BLUG: March 31th-April 1st 2011: Announcing Speakers and Agenda

Posted by Theo Heselmans on February 23rd, 2011

Image:BLUG: March 31th-April 1st 2011: Announcing Speakers and Agenda5 weeks from now, our third major BLUG event is starting. Our first 2-day event, and it's still FREE.
This weekend we announced the complete agenda and all approved sessions. It was tough to decide which abstracts would be accepted. And as usual those that made it are happy, and others are disappointed.
The winners for sure are the attendees, and boy, do we have something for you !

Image:BLUG: March 31th-April 1st 2011: Announcing Speakers and AgendaOur keynote speaker will be
Kevin Cavanaugh,
IBM Vice President
Messaging and Collaboration Products.

We got some more great and famous speakers lined up,
a lot of them had a presentation at Lotusphere !
Bob Balaban, Ulrich Krause, Roland Driesen, Paul Mooney, René Winkelmeyer, Vince Schuurman, Warren Elsmore, Kathy Brown, Martijn de Jong, Tim Tripcony, Paul Calhoun, Chris Miller, Gab Davis, Martin Donnelly, Tony McGuckin, Paul Withers, Tim Clark, Carl Tyler, Eileen Fitzgerald, ...
Here's the full
list of approved sessions,
and the 2-days agenda.

Your sponsorship or donations are still very welcome.
To our sponsors for 2011: Thank you, on behalf of all attendees!

Registration for this FREE Event is required. Hurry, seats are limited.

Hope to see many of you there !

Category:  Lotus  Notes  Domino  BLUG  | TechnoratiTechnorati: , , ,

Lotus Related Books: on sale

Posted by Theo Heselmans on February 16th, 2011

LS2011We've always complained about there being so few books about our beloved software. At Lotusphere #LS11 we were treated to 2 brand new and interesting books (which sold out very fast):

Image:Lotus Related Books: on sale Overview of IBM Lotus Sametime 8 Essentials: A User's Guide, by Packt Publishing
Written by Marie L. Scott and Thomas Duff
  • Collaborate securely with your colleagues and teammates both inside and outside your organization by using Sametime features such as instant messaging and online meetings
  • Make your instant messaging communication more interesting with the inclusion of graphics, images, and emoticons to convey more information in fewer words
  • Communicate with other instant messaging services and users, such as AOL Instant Messaging, Yahoo Instant Messaging, and Google Talk and know how someone's online status can help you communicate faster and more efficiently
  • Discover how the Sametime Meeting Center can maximize the productivity of teams in your organization with the use of online meetings, training session playback, seamless voice/video integration, and screen sharing
  • See how Sametime works in common, every-day, real-world situations with tips, resources, and detailed screenshots
Packt Publishing is doing a great job, providing us with very good books. Besides this one about Sametime, they also cover topics such as IBM Lotus Notes 8.5 User Guide and IBM Lotus Quickr 8.5 for Domino Administration. Mary, Gab Davis and Tom are working on an Admin guide for Sametime too.

Packt has a special offer on all IBM print books, throughout February:
Buy any IBM print book and receive a 20% discount
Image:Lotus Related Books: on sale Mastering XPages: A Step-by-Step Guide to XPages Application Development and the XSP Language, by IBM Press
Written by Martin Donnelly, Mark Wallace and Tony McGuckin
(Tony and Martin will be at our BLUG event, end of March)

The first complete, practical guide to XPages development - direct from members of the XPages development team at IBM Lotus
Martin Donnelly, Mark Wallace, and Tony McGuckin have written the definitive programmer's guide to utilizing this breakthrough technology. Packed with tips, tricks, and best practices from IBM's own XPages developers, Mastering XPages brings together all the information developers need to become experts - whether you’re experienced with Notes/Domino development or not. The authors start from the very beginning, helping developers steadily build your expertise through practical code examples and clear, complete explanations. Readers will work through scores of real-world XPages examples, learning cutting-edge XPages and XSP language skills and gaining deep insight into the entire development process. Drawing on their own experience working directly with XPages users and customers, the authors illuminate both the technology and how it can be applied to solving real business problems.
You can find this book e.g. on Amazon. Pretty hefty, not cheap, but a bargain nevertheless !
I bought mine at Lotusphere and got it signed by Martin.
(PS. There is another XPages book on Amazon, but that's a book to avoid!)


Thank you Packt and IBM. Thank you Marie, Duffbert, Martin, Mark and Tony.

Category:  Lotus  Notes  Domino  | TechnoratiTechnorati: , ,

Unexpected Email

Posted by Theo Heselmans on February 5th, 2011

Image:Unexpected EmailWhen I was at Lotusphere, I got a very unexpected email from my mother. Why unexpected?
Well, to start with, she's turning 81 soon, and she has never used a computer in her life.
We, her children, gave her an iPad for Christmas, so she could use it for some leisurely gaming (solitaire mainly) and looking at her photo's.
After some basic 'training' she managed to 'surf the web' a bit too.
But this week, to my utter amazement I got a (albeit short) email from her.
I'm pretty proud of you Mam!
To her (in Flemish/Dutch): Ik ben zeer trots op je, Ma!

Category:  Personal  | TechnoratiTechnorati:

Lotusphere 2011: It’s a wrap

Posted by Theo Heselmans on February 5th, 2011

LS2011Day 4: Thursday
As there weren't that many session this morning at #LS11, I had a chance to catch up on some sleep. Sorely needed too !
At 10am the Gurupalooza was on. Susan Bulloch (track manager for the BP track this year) did a good job of keeping everything under control. Most questions were about admin stuff though. Still I like coming to this session every year, as it gives me the opportunity to see a lot of (now) familiar faces on stage at the same time.
As I do every year, I went out and did some shopping. I returned to find that the brand new 'Ask the Product managers' went very well. Everybody seemed happy about it. I have to read the live-blogging when I get home.
I was back in time to get in line for the annual BloggerOpen mini-golf tournament. This is a fun and relax way to spent some time with friends, and wind down. Many thanks to Mitch Cohen for organizing this, and to the many sponsors.
I went to dinner at Shula's with Bill Malchiski, David Leedy, Garret Wolthuis and Ali. Excellent food there, but a but pricey. Had a very decent Jack Kendall cab sav from 2006. The first really good wine I had this week.
As most nights I ended up in Kimonos. Enjoyed myself as usual, and was glad to have a chat with some countrymen. As this was the last night, it was sad to have to say good-bye to so many people. As we got thrown out of Kimonos around 1.30h, we opened the unofficial bar at the Dolphin Rotunda. That vodka and whisky wasn't that bad at all. Thanks Mark ! Mary Beth got us some nuts, chocolate and candy, so I stayed a while. Can't remember being in bed that late/early (3.30h). After a few hours of (deep) sleep, I started packing. I gave Mary Beth a lift to the Airport. I had a stopover in Newark, and now I'm waiting for my 7 hour long flight back home to Brussels. I'm pretty sure I will be sleeping this time !
I'm always delighted to come to Lotusphere, but I'll be glad to be home again. It's been a though but fun and informative week !

My conclusions
for this year's Lotusphere:

  • It was a great event, as ever, but without any real highlights re. product announcements
  • The 'Lotus Software' brand, even if contradicted at the 'This week in Lotus' live recording, is gradually disappearing imho. It might be a good thing to get rid of the 'Lotus is old' adagio, but, having used the yellow brand for over almost 20 years now, it saddens me to see it go.
  • I've recently started tweeting, after holding back for 2 years, so this was my first sphere on twitter. And I don't regret it. It's a cool way to stay in touch with everyone. Reading other people's reaction to spoken (or non spoken) words is sometimes enlightening. At the same time it's cool to read what's going on in other sessions. I do hope we get an update on the stats about the total amount of tweets and blogs with the #LS11 tag. The intermediate figures were mind-blowing.
  • The Wifi was rather good this year. There even was decent coverage in the hotel rooms. A few occasional dropouts, but way better than we've had before. Thanks for that.
  • The proliferation of iPads. I read that at the Opening General Session alone there were 1200 iPads in use on the Wifi network. That's 1 person in 5 ! The battery life is staggering. I'm been using it throughout the day, and always had over 50% left at night.
  • I got a lot of T-shirts this year, but by far the coolest/nerdiest one, I got from Nathan (GBS). It reads: </bitching> <doing>
  • During the BloggerOpen, I had a chat with Donna Bieg, recently appointed to be in charge of dealing with the community. She's been with IBM for about 20 years, but hasn't been involved in the Lotus product line.
    She told me:
    "You are aware that you've got an Exceptional Community, are you?"

    I am, thank you.
  • Don't run down an escalator going up ! I did, and was rewarded with a sprain that (still) hurts
Lotusphere might be over, but we'll have our own mini-sphere in less than 2 months. Our BLUG event, March 31th - April 1st, is around the corner. Lots of things to do for that. We are going to try to make it an exceptional experience too.

PS. @Phigment: Sean, thanks for getting those chocolates to Kevin Pettitt. Don't eat them all. @LotusGuru: Kevin, make sure you get at least a few ;-)

Category:  Lotus  Notes  Domino  | TechnoratiTechnorati: , ,