Is Lotus Notes the next Selectric Typewriter? This USAToday article about IBM turning 100 reveals some clues into the motivations that drive IBM which might tell us about their plans for the future.
“Don’t make the mistake of thinking IBM is a corporate old-timer that just watched technology evolve. It has remained at the forefront through the decades and tops several of its whippersnapper rivals in some regards. “
Of course we’re talking about the same company that totally missed some opportunities like the operating system for their personal computers that has gone on to become their nemesis. We’re talking about a company that has taken the once-famous brand of Lotus and made it disappear from the public eye better than a Harry Houdini magic act.
“This isn’t like the auto industry, where the combustible engine still exists, or oil, where many parts of the business are the same,” Iwata says. “We have to let go of what we have invented. We stopped making typewriters, punch-card machines, PCs. We had to move on.”
Hmm. Is this foreshadowing? When I was 8 years old I saw the movie “Old Yeller”. In spite of all the clues, I did not did not see that coming. I thought that dog would live forever. Have I gotten any better at reading the clues? Probably not. But here’s another one:
“•Ability to move into new businesses without abandoning core tenets. IBM is a classic example of a company that had to get into entirely new businesses, without turning its back on what got it to where it is, Collins says. If you consider what IBM’s mission is, it’s not about computers or technology. It’s about allowing its individual employees to create ways for its customers to solve operational problems, Collins says. Whether that’s a task best done with scales, typewriters or computers doesn’t matter; what matters is that customers’ needs are answered, Collins says. “
I don’t know how this movie will end. Maybe we’ll learn more on the Greenhouse webcast about the future of the Lotus brand June 28 at 10:00AM ET.
Meeanwhile, let’s get some popcorn and watch a few movie trailers.
This should be a great boost to the IBM brand recognition:
(excerpt from Webby Awards )
The Webby Awards would like to honor Watson as the Webby Person of the Year in celebration of his groundbreaking scientific and technological achievements as the most comprehensive question-answering computer system. As the first computing system with an unparalleled handle and understanding of the natural language, Watson captivated millions as he competed on the game show, Jeopardy!, ultimately becoming the first non-human champion. It is undeniable that Watson has open the floodgates for advancement in all future computing systems, which is undoubtedly deserving of recognition and praise.
IBM is doing some great things in research these days. Check it out at the IBM research website.
Welcome to my new home. Please visit my original blog at BleedYellow to view earlier posts.
The purpose of this alternate blog from my blog at BleedYellow.com is in part a re-branding to be easier to find
(Notes Guy –> Lotus Guy).
The content will continue to be edgy, thought-provoking, and otherwise politically incorrect with technical tidbits thrown in for good measure. Wallflowers are welcome, but the value comes with dialog and collaboration, not monologue. So please join in.
And if you’re looking for an expert Domino system administrator, I am for hire.
David (The LOTUS NOTES Guy in Seattle)