Bob Balaban's Blog


    Bob Balaban


    Why you should come to Lotusphere, and, Tell me what to post about!

    Bob Balaban  December 29 2007 10:40:00 AM
    Greetings, Geeks!

    Yeah, yeah, I haven't posted in a while, blahblahblah, busy, blahblah, slacking off for the holidays, blahblahblah.

    Ok, now that we've got that out of the way, what do you want to talk about?

    Seriously! Repeat readers of this blog know that mostly I pose questions for you, "my geek posse", on topics about which I would like YOU to educate ME. Usually I describe one or more ideas we (IBM Notes/Domino dev teams) have where we want feedback from you. And (thank goodness, FSM, whoever) we get it! You, collectively, have been TERRIFIC about providing educated, thoughtful and VERY helpful input. There are things that were on my dev hit-list that no longer are, because of you. There are things that we weren't going to seriously address that we now are, because of you. And there are many things that we are now going to do a bit (or a lot) differently, because of you.

    So, THANKS!!

    At the moment, in the "season of getting ready for Lotusphere" (more about Lotusphere in a bit), some of us in scenic, suburban Westford, MA are continuing to work studiously on NMFR (next major feature release), some are building those special "preview" demos for 'Sphere (snippets of new functionality that haven't appeared in public yet) for their own or someone else's session, some (particularly the Lotusphere Content Team) are reviewing the presentation content for the conference. Some are doing all of the above.

    We often call it the "silly season". Ok, no, we don't really. But we should. In reality, people call it other things, only some of which I can repeat in a family-oriented blog. Mostly it's something like "Lotusphere Season", which apparently stretches from early December through the end of the conference, in late January.

    Ok, (honesty time) all of the above is basically just a long-winded lead-up to the fact that I can't think of anything interesting to ask about. Been trying for over a week, (really!), but nothing useful has occurred to me. Then, just about 10 minutes ago, I had a (possibly) brilliant idea: find out what the posse wants to know, and then talk about that for a while!

    How's that  for lazy, huh? I'm almost proud of myself. But really, this is kind of in keeping with the way I've been running the blog (no, not the lazy part) -- find out what the geekdom thinks, and go with that. And, it's also a kind of thank-you/open-Q&A opportunity for you. Ask away! Suggest topics on which you'd like me (or a guest blogger) to post. If I can answer without violating IBM confidentiality rules, I will. If I don't know the answer, I will either say so, or find someone else who does.

    The other thing I thought I write about briefly is, well, Lotusphere, and why you might want to attend (in case you haven't yet decided to do so).

    I have personally attended all 14 Lotuspheres so far, and this next one will, I think, be one of the best (and not only because it'll be my 15th). Attendance has been on the rise for the past couple of years, and my (unofficial) sources tell me that the exhibit space is expected to sell out. The number of sessions will be up, too. As a track manager (I supervise the content for the Jumpstarts) I get to see all of the submitted abstracts, and give input to the other track managers on which they should select for the conference. There's a TON of great session content on tap for Lotusphere08. A lot of it, of course will be focused on Notes and Domino, but there are a lot of other products (some new, some not-so) to talk about. A majority of technical sessions will be about stuff we've recently shipped, but quite a bit of content will also preview what's coming in '08. My session (only doing one this time) will describe how we're changing the way the server generates HTML output so that developers can effectively use CSS and JavaScript to improve the look'n'feel of their Web apps.

    Unlike in previous years, the presentation content will be online BEFORE the conference, AND again after (some speakers change their decks a little, so we're also going to give those who do the opportunity to publish the "as delivered" version too). Rocky is organizing another Jam-fest, there will be a Guru-palooza, and the plan is to have a special surprise Asker-of-the-First-Question at the Meet the Developers session (you Lotusphere regulars out there know exactly what I'm referring to).

    Should be a really good one! (No, I do NOT know who the guest celebrity speaker will be, and I do NOT know where the big Wednesday party will be, so don't even bother to ask).  YES, I will have some special handouts (while supplies last). Hope to see y'all there!

    Happy New Year to everyone!