PACKT Publishing reached out to me recently to see if I'd be interested in reviewing their new book 'IBM Lotus Sametime 8 Essentials: A User's Guide.' Given my history with the product (and having answered no small number of questions about how it works), I was interested to take a look. (Disclosure: PACKT Publishing provided me with a complimentary electronic copy of the book for review purposes.)
I found the book to be a very thorough and well-organized look at how to use Sametime instant messaging and Web conference features, running from the basic embedded capabilities in Lotus Notes all the way through Sametime Advanced and Sametime Unified Telephony. For users new to using Sametime, or even those moving up to a "modern" version from Sametime 3.1 or its ilk, this would be an excellent "how-to" guide as well as a reference companion. While the concept of "instant messaging" is something most people are familiar with these days, Sametime is packed with enough features and capabilities that it's helpful to have a resource that walks through all of the capabilities, explains the preference settings, and highlights some of the more advanced (and less-than-obvious) features.
Authored by Marie Scott and Thomas Duff, who should be no strangers to those in the Lotus community, the book is very well laid out and walks through topics including using Sametime in Lotus Notes, setting up and using the Sametime Connect client (from setting up your the contact list up through transferring files and screenshots, and everything in between), scheduling and leading a Web conference, using chat rooms, broadcast communities and instant share in Sametime Advanced, and using Sametime Unified Telephony. The Appendices cover new features in Sametime 8.5 and 8.5.1, as well as using Sametime in other applications such as Lotus Connections or Microsoft products... and even contain a link to the Sametime song.
The books is structured in a way that covers the basics before moving on to more advanced features, something novices should appreciate, as they should the use of accompanying visuals, preference setting descriptions and index in the back.
Having been involved in books like this before, I know there is often more material that could be included than there is room for. That said, there are a few things that I wished had been called out - features that I used to get a lot of questions on or that I discovered even veteran Sametime users weren't aware of (and my apologies if I just missed it in the book). For example:
You can drag and drop a file into the chat area to initiate a file transfer, instead of using the paperclip icon
Clicking the "search directory" option when typing name will find that person even if they're not in your contact list (I've discovered colleagues who had been using Sametime 7.5 for over a year and still thought the only way to chat with someone was to first add them to their contact list.)
You have the option to have separate chat windows or a single tabbed chat window (and can start a chat with a new user directly from within the chat window).
Those are all minor points, though. To re-iterate what I said earlier, I'd highly recommend this book to anyone starting to deploy Sametime or upgrading to Sametime 8.x, and it's certainly a worthwhile reference to stick on the office shelf for new hires using Sametime for the first time. Well done, Marie and Tom!
Trident Marketing Increases Revenue 1,000% with Predictive Analytics
Thu, May 9th 2013 7:17a Adam Gartenberg A few weeks back I attended the IBM Big Data, Integration and Governance Forum in Charlotte, NC. (If you haven't made it to one yet yourself, we've got more of these events coming up in a number of cities in the US and around the world.) It's always good to hear our executives speak about how IBM is approaching the area of Big Data, the type of use cases that we're seeing businesses focus on, and learn more about the latest innovations in the fields of Information Integration and DB2 wit [read] Keywords: ibm
IBM X-Force Trends: Data Breach Issues and Solutions (Upcoming Webcast)
Wed, May 1st 2013 4:17p Adam Gartenberg If you are an IT security, compliance and data management professional, you're likely working harder than ever to secure your enterprise against both internal and external threats. If you'd like to get a better look into recent public vulnerability disclosures and understand the lessons that can be learned from those situations, you'll want to check out the upcoming Dark Reading "IBM X-Force 2012 Annual Trend Report: Data Breach Issues and Solutions" webcast. (May 9, 2pm ET) Join Ro [read] Keywords: ibm
Reminder: Big Data at the Speed of Business Broadcast (4/30)
Wed, Apr 24th 2013 1:16p Adam Gartenberg As a reminder, we'll be holding a broadcast next Tuesday, April 30th, where we'll be discussing details on the recent DB2 with BLU Acceleration and Big Data Platform announcements. The event will feature General Manager Bob Picciano, VP of Development Martin Wildberger, VP of Product Strategy Inhi Suh, as well as first-hand experiences shared by a client panel and a Q&A session. The broadcast will be held at two times, 11am-12pm EDT and 9pm - 10pm EDT, and you can register here. [read] Keywords: ibm
Announcement Review: IBMâs New Moves in Big Data
Thu, Apr 11th 2013 9:18a Adam Gartenberg Joe Clabby of Clabby Analytics has posted his first take on the DB2 and Big Data announcements we made last week. You can read his full write-up here: IBMâs New Moves in Big Data: Acceleration, Optimization, and an Open Source Alternative (pdf) IBMâs New Moves in Big Data: Acceleration, Optimization, and an Open Source Alternative IBM Almaden Labs, San Jose, CA, April 2, 2013 In a major, multi-faceted announcement, IBM announced yesterday that it will soon deliver âspeed-o [read] Keywords: ibm
New Ad: Big Data and Analytics
Mon, Apr 8th 2013 9:15a Adam Gartenberg Here's a new ad on Big Data and Analytics that will be debuting on TV at the Masters golf tournament this week: More: Big data and analytics can help predict trends down to the customer. Sales down to the shelf. What can big data and analytics do for you? Learn more at http://ibm.co/10x97Xc [read] Keywords: ibm
Two opportunities to learn more about the Data Mgmt and Big Data announcements
Thu, Apr 4th 2013 6:18a Adam Gartenberg If you'd like to learn more about all of the Data Management and Big Data announcements made yesterday, we've got two great opportunities coming up. First up is a Google Hangout Video Chat this Friday, April 5, starting at 2pm US-EDT. During the chat you'll hear from panelists Jeff Kelly (Wikibon), James Kobielus (IBM), Mike Martin (BTRG) and others. Head on over here to learn more and RSVP. The second opportunity will be to join us on April 30th for a broadcast event featuring Genera [read] Keywords: ibm
Information On Demand 2013: Call for Speakers
Wed, Apr 3rd 2013 9:16a Adam Gartenberg Session proposals for this year's Information On Demand conference will be accepted from April 4th - 30th, so if you have an interesting story to share about products, solutions, or implementations, please head on over and submit a proposal. IT professionals, including managers, architects, and developers should submit proposals for technical sessions across Information Management, Business Analytics and Enterprise Content Management. C-suite executives and senior decision makers in Line [read] Keywords: ibm
NY Times: Why Big Data Is I.B.M.âs Friend
Wed, Apr 3rd 2013 9:16a Adam Gartenberg The Bits blog in today's NY Times highlights some important news on Big Data that IBM is sharing today while also describing why Big Data is so important to the businesses that IBM works with (and why IBM in turn is putting so much investment into related technology.) Case in point: I.B.M. just announced a series of technologies intended to make data analysis faster and more powerful. That is probably good news to Big Blueâs core customer base of large corporations, which are increasin [read] Keywords: ibm
From Big Bang to Big Data: ASTRON and IBM Collaborate to Explore Origins of the Universe
Thu, Mar 14th 2013 11:09a Adam Gartenberg "The SKAâs [Square Kilometer Array's] more than 500,000 antennas scattered across southern Africa and Australia will produce a torrent of data thatâs equivalent to 10 times the daily global Internet traffic." IBM continued to push the push forward the cause of Big Data this week with an ambitious initiative: better understanding the origins of the universe. It's one that will require the latest approaches to extracting value from big data. The quote above comes from [read] Keywords: ibm