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Latest 7 Posts
Danze – Great customer service
Mon, Feb 11th 2013 108
What do you call a blog that’s updated once a year?
Thu, Feb 7th 2013 123
The MoSCoW principle
Thu, May 3rd 2012 129
Working on features with no value – frustrating
Fri, Apr 27th 2012 118
Mr. Potato Head of Agile or How to fill a box
Wed, Apr 25th 2012 119
eBooks are our faceless friends
Fri, Apr 20th 2012 128
Agile does not mean fast
Mon, Apr 16th 2012 104
Top 10
Ability to work disconnected – does it matter so much?
Fri, Apr 8th 2011 319
How to send doclinks outside of Notes
Wed, Dec 29th 2010 156
The MoSCoW principle
Thu, May 3rd 2012 129
eBooks are our faceless friends
Fri, Apr 20th 2012 128
What do you call a blog that’s updated once a year?
Thu, Feb 7th 2013 123
Mr. Potato Head of Agile or How to fill a box
Wed, Apr 25th 2012 119
Working on features with no value – frustrating
Fri, Apr 27th 2012 118
Danze – Great customer service
Mon, Feb 11th 2013 108
Agile does not mean fast
Mon, Apr 16th 2012 104
The cost of Agile
Wed, Mar 7th 2012 97


Alex Kassabov
 
Blog Title Alex Kassabov
Blog Description Talking about me, my work, IBM, Lotus, and whatever else
Blog URL http://kassabov.wordpress.com
RSS Feed http://kassabov.wordpress.com/feed/
PlanetLotus Feed http://planetlotus.org/profiles/rss/alex-kassabov
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Feed Last Checked Oct 31, 2014 10:15:48 AM EST. Realtime Update:
Landed Here Sep 24, 2008
Location Chicago, USA
Posts: # / 1st / Latest - -
Total Hits 4,655. myPL RSS Selections: 90


Recent Blog Posts
108


Danze – Great customer service
Mon, Feb 11th 2013 8:10a   Alex Kassabov
One of the things I always like to write about is great customer service, those unexpected moments of absolute excellence that surprise you and tend to make you a customer for life.  This time, the award for amazing customer service goes to Danze, a popular faucet maker. Several years ago we remodeled the kitchen and bought a new Danze faucet, D455158.  (A quick disclaimer: I did not pay the MSRP. You can get one for a lot less elsewhere.)  It was new then and now, 5 years later, one little [read] Keywords:
123


What do you call a blog that’s updated once a year?
Thu, Feb 7th 2013 7:08a   Alex Kassabov
Answer…… AlexKassabov.com   A few days ago I was talking blogging with a coworker and a friend.  We both lamented the difficulties of blogging, how hard it is to write good content, and how hard it is to make time to keep one’s blog regularly updated.  And we both have let our blogs to stagnate lately.  So then and there I vowed to resurrect my blog, to dust off my old friend, to start blogging again.   A few days went by. Then a whole weekend.  And I still didn’t fin [read] Keywords: blogging email xml
129


The MoSCoW principle
Thu, May 3rd 2012 9:12a   Alex Kassabov
I’ve always wanted to write a spy novel: a handsome spy hero, a gorgeous girl, a foreign location in the heart of an evil empire, enemies outwitted and defeated. But most of all — an attention grabbing, instantly captivating title.  Unfortunately, this is not one of those posts.  Maybe, when I cross into the myth-filled middle age, suffering a mid-life crisis, I’ll throw all caution to the wind, retreat to a secluded location and pen my critically acclaimed literary debut.   [read] Keywords: facebook twitter xml
118


Working on features with no value – frustrating
Fri, Apr 27th 2012 9:12a   Alex Kassabov
Few things on a project are as frustrating as being forced to work on a feature that adds no value to the immediate goal of releasing a product. When project managers who are new to product development confuse product ship date with the project deadline, you end up being forced to deliver features that will not be used for weeks or even months to come. Perhaps, not ever. That’s when you sit staring, with a twitch in your eye, at the most basic story. Those “I’d rather be ” [read] Keywords: development facebook office twitter
119


Mr. Potato Head of Agile or How to fill a box
Wed, Apr 25th 2012 9:12a   Alex Kassabov
In the Downtown Disney Marketplace there’s a store called Once Upon a Toy. One of the areas inside of the store sells various loose Mr. Potato Head parts: Disney themed parts, Star War themed parts, Halloween parts — almost anything you can imagine. Some parts, like the eyeballs, are small. Other parts, like the arms, are larger. And yet others, like the hats and the shoes, are large. They sell parts by a box: pick up an empty cardboard box, fill it with whatever parts strike your fa [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
128


eBooks are our faceless friends
Fri, Apr 20th 2012 9:12a   Alex Kassabov
I love my Kindle. I’ve read probably a hundred books on it and will definitely read many hundreds more. I love everything about it: the convenience factor, the screen, the storage space, the form factor — everything. I’ve read about a hundred books, but, if it wasn’t for Shelfari, I probably wouldn’t remember reading half of them. Not what the book is about, but the very fact that I’ve read this book. If I were browsing library shelves and happened to pick up [read] Keywords: notes facebook twitter




104


Agile does not mean fast
Mon, Apr 16th 2012 9:11a   Alex Kassabov
When people think of Agile, what drives customers’ interest in Agile is thinking that Agile will enable them to get projects don’t faster and cheaper than the classic project management. But that is not always the case.   Agile is not synonymous with fast. The dictionary defines “agile” as “able to move quickly and easily”. An Agile team is one that can quickly and easily react to changes in project’s requirements and new ideas as the project takes shap [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
73


I’m baaaack! On the road again
Mon, Mar 12th 2012 9:13a   Alex Kassabov
I’m baaack! On the road again. I know it’s the wrong song, but it my head I sound like Aerosmith singing “Back in the Saddle”. 60 degrees in early March in Chicago, weekend — I’m riding! Get that bike out of the basement; dust off my helmet and the riding glasses; and let’s see whether all this riding on rollers is going to pay off. First of all, no amount of indoor training can truly prepare you for the road. No matter how fit and strong you think you [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
97


The cost of Agile
Wed, Mar 7th 2012 8:12a   Alex Kassabov
A lot of customers want to run their projects Agile. Agile is hot, sexy and all the cool kids are doing it. But when your customer asks you to run their project Agile, do they really know what they are getting into? Everybody likes the advantages of Agile: the daily stand-ups, the working product at the end of every iteration, the team working on features that add value. But there is a cost and a time commitment that is not always expected or understood. An Agile project runs on user stories. &# [read] Keywords: admin development facebook twitter
69


Agile or waterfall
Thu, Mar 1st 2012 8:13a   Alex Kassabov
Coke or Pepsi? Miller or Bud? Mac or PC? Agile or Waterfall? When a consulting company embarks on a project, what is a better methodology to use: Agile or the traditional Waterfall? What projects lend themselves better to one or the other? Waterfall methodology seems to work better when a project presents a known problem with a known solution. Upgrading a server, creating a time-off system, or building a submarine — all are projects that are better executed by the waterfall approach. You k [read] Keywords: policies consulting facebook mac server twitter
49


What are rollers. Exercise takes over
Tue, Feb 28th 2012 7:10a   Alex Kassabov
Is it too late to talk about Christmas presents? My Christmas present, the one I got myself, has kept me so busy, I’ve hardly had time for anything else in the evenings. No, I’m not talking about the new Call of Duty game (even the Black Ops have more or less fallen by the way side) or the American Idol DVD box set (as if I would watch it). What I got for myself was a set of Travel Trac Inertial Rollers. If you’ve never seen or heard of rollers, they are like a treadmill for yo [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
42


New year – new goals
Sun, Jan 1st 2012 12:08p   Alex Kassabov
And on the first day of the year, it’s Shelfari that sets my first goal of the year for me. And in the mean time, WordPress reminds me that I’ve been away from my own blog too long.  Long enough to have forgotten how to use it. So here’s to two immediate goals for this year: read more and blog again. Happy New Year, everyone!!! [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
51


Lion Mac OS – Apple’s Vista
Thu, Aug 4th 2011 9:10a   Alex Kassabov
I did it. I couldn’t wait. t joined the ranks of Apple Fan Boys. I installed Lion OS X the day it came out. I had 30 bucks in iTunes gift cards sitting around. It was dumb. I learned from my mistake. Enough said. If I were to write a product review of Lion, as a user, I would give it a thumbs-down. It feels like a very raw attempt at bridging the gap between the mobile and the desktop computing paradigms. Apple promised to bring all the best of iOS to my laptop and it didn’t work. I [read] Keywords: apple desktop facebook iphone laptop mac mobile twitter vista
55


MWLUG 2011 – PSC will be there
Mon, Jul 18th 2011 10:11a   Alex Kassabov
The Midwest Lotus User Group Conference 2011 is back again for the third year. This year it is in Milwaukee, Wisconsin at the Sheraton Milwaukee Brookfield Hotel.  And once again PSC will be there.  We’re one of the sponsors and our team – John Head and Luis Guirigay – is speaking.  John has a couple of sessions on why developing modern apps in Notes/Domino makes sense.  Luis, together with Kim Greene, will deliver their ever-popular session on Domino Health Checks. Overall [read] Keywords: administration domino ibm lotus notes xpages application development facebook networking twitter
59


Hero next door (Chicago – Frankfurt flight diverted to Cleveland)
Mon, Jul 11th 2011 9:14a   Alex Kassabov
You might have caught the story about a Chicago – Frankfurt flight being diverted to Cleveland because of an unruly passenger.  A man was acting suspiciously prior to the take off and during the flight.  He ended up having to be restrained by a flight attendant and the passengers.  Well, imagine my surprise when I found out that the flight attendant in the story was my next door neighbor and my friend. Saturday night, he, I and one other neighbor sat outside into the wee hours hearing [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
71


Calibre – Best e-books software
Fri, Jul 1st 2011 8:20p   Alex Kassabov
If you read e-books, you need Calibre.  Simple as that. Well, let me rephrase that.  If you’re a Kindle user like me and only ever get books that are available on Amazon, you probably don’t have much for Calibre.  Same goes for the dedicated Nook users. But if you get your books from a variety of sources, then Calibre is an awesome piece of software. First of all, it gives you a nice visual tool to manage all of your e-books: the ones saved on your computer and the ones already on [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
42


Productivity in 33.33 minutes
Mon, Jun 27th 2011 8:21a   Alex Kassabov
There’s so much to do every day: email to be checked, blogs to be read, IMs to be sent and answered, news to be read, tweets to be read, and tweets to be posted.  But you also have some very specific tasks that need to be accomplished.  Unless you’re a social media maven, you probably don’t get paid to tweet.  You get paid to work, to meet deadlines, and to accomplish those specific tasks, tasks that include writing: code, documentation, copy, presentations, and proposals &# [read] Keywords: email facebook mac twitter
81


SafeCopy Backup – Great Customer Support
Fri, Jun 24th 2011 9:17a   Alex Kassabov
When your boss repeatedly points out that you haven’t blogged in a while, perhaps you should listen and pick it up again.  Besides, this is good…  In a world of negative blog posts and customer-to-number conversions, when I come across exceptional customer service, I like to point it out. Earlier this year, when Mozy decided to raise its prices, I switched to Safecopy backup.  In addition to lower price, Safecopy runs much better on my laptop not draining the battery with constant [read] Keywords: facebook laptop twitter
50


John Head – an IBM Champion for IBM Collaboration
Wed, Jun 22nd 2011 10:09p   Alex Kassabov
Congrats to John Head for being named one of this year’s IBM Champions for IBM Collaboration Solutions.  Way to go, John.  The honor and the recognition is well deserved for someone who’s been a tireless champion of Lotus for so many years. [read] Keywords: collaboration ibm lotus facebook twitter
48


R.I.P., my dear 4Runner
Mon, May 2nd 2011 9:10a   Alex Kassabov
I am saddened to say that my dear beloved 2000 Toyota 4Runner is no more.  After exactly 11 years and a few days of faithful service, I had to put it down, trade it in, get rid of it.  I’ve always said that I will drive it into the ground and I almost literally did. I came home on Wednesday to find a trail of liquid leading down the street and into my driveway, culminating in a big puddle of pink, Pepto-Bismolish looking liquid under the truck.  The coolant reservoir was completely empt [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
61


IBM Lotus Domino: Classic Web Application Development Techniques – Book Review
Fri, Apr 29th 2011 10:10a   Alex Kassabov
The folks at Packt Publishing are continuing to expand their shelf of IBM Lotus books.  Their latest addition – Classic Web Application Development Techniques by Richard G. Ellis. Before I tell you how absolutely awesome this book is, I have to get something off my chest.  The word “Classic” in the title is the absolute key word here.  Mr. Ellis starts off the book by saying that everything here was written for and tested with Domino Designer 8.0.  Upon reading that senten [read] Keywords: domino ibm lotus notes xpages ajax application applications css development facebook javascript twitter
51


Axure updates its Beta 6
Fri, Apr 22nd 2011 8:12a   Alex Kassabov
Axure released what may be its last update to its beta release of version 6.  The update can be downloaded from the Axure website.  The update contains some cross-platform fixes, making this one of my favorite pieces of software.  The 100% fidelity between the Mac platform and Windows is amazing.  I don’t think I’ve seen any other software that is able to reproduce its UI so flawlessly between different operating systems. The update also extends the beta version from end of April [read] Keywords: facebook mac twitter
60


Thrashing
Thu, Apr 21st 2011 8:11a   Alex Kassabov
As I get older I realize that I hate thrashing, jumping between multiple tasks.  Thrashing is not the same as multi-tasking.  I can still walk and chew gum; listen to a meeting, take notes and balance my chair on 2 legs at the same time. Thrashing is working on a document, jumping into your email because you just remembered that you forgot to send that email, getting stuck in your email because you just got an email from a client asking for your help, remembering that there was something you n [read] Keywords: lotusphere notes desktop email facebook laptop twitter
40


You get what you pay for
Wed, Apr 20th 2011 7:18a   Alex Kassabov
Store brand cough medicine vs. Robitussin.  Store brand cereal vs. Cheerios.  Emerson vs. Sony.  You don’t have to pay a lot to get a lot.  Pay less and get a product that’s just as good as its higher priced competitor.  In a lot of cases that works.  $3 for 8 bars of Irish Spring soap or $11 for a bar of L’Occitane?  I’m going for Irish Spring. But when it comes to cycling, the old adage of “you get what you pay for” holds a lot of truth. When I got m [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
41


The Lazy Project Manager – Ridiculously Simplified Synopsis
Tue, Apr 19th 2011 6:18a   Alex Kassabov
The Lazy Project Manager is arguably one of the better project management books I read in a while.  It does not propose to teach your hard project management skills, the ones that being a PMP is all about: WBS, costs, schedules, etc.  Instead, it focuses on some of the softer skills, the ones that we often forget about, thinking that a good Gantt chart is all a project needs.  You probably have heard it all before at some point, but the book is a short, it reads well and serves as a great rem [read] Keywords: facebook office twitter
319


Ability to work disconnected – does it matter so much?
Fri, Apr 8th 2011 9:10a   Alex Kassabov
One of the strengths of Lotus Notes that always gets brought up in any technology discussion is the Notes’ off-line abilities.  To date, nothing else truly matches the replication engine that’s been a core part of Notes for the past 20 years and the ability of Notes to provide full fidelity of applications in disconnected mode.  Many Notes proponents, when discussing pros and cons of Notes vs. other technologies, will beat their chests, “But, replication!  A couple clicks [read] Keywords: lotus notes application applications blackberry facebook iphone laptop mobile twitter wireless
47


Axure – Wireframes, prototypes and specs
Wed, Mar 30th 2011 11:10p   Alex Kassabov
I just can’t stop talking about this tool since I discovered it a month or so ago. Axure allows you to design your user interface by dragging objects onto a page and manipulate them.  At first it feels like Visio: drag boxes onto a page, type up some text — and your screen/form is created.  But it is a lot more. Using buttons, dynamic panels and object events you can create a pretty well functioning user interface of your project. Once you have it all setup, click one button and Ax [read] Keywords: css facebook interface mac twitter
42


Mac Mail Plugin makes Mail useable
Wed, Mar 23rd 2011 2:14p   Alex Kassabov
Finally!  There’s a Mail plugin that makes the Mail application useable.  Well, to tell the truth, it’s been around for a while but I have just found it.  It is new to me. Enter WideMail, Widescreen Apple Mail Plugin.  The 3 huge improvements, for me, that it delivers are: Control over the message preview window and ability to have it on the right. Alternating row colors or row separators.  Row colors don’t quite work for me, but separators are great. Last but not least i [read] Keywords: apple application facebook mac outlook twitter
35


SafeCopy 10% off Discount Code
Tue, Mar 22nd 2011 7:10a   Alex Kassabov
In February of this year, when Mozy announced its price increase, SafeCopy was running a 10% off promotion.  You just had to use the ‘switch’ discount code at checkout time. The promotion was supposed to be over at the end of the February, but the discount code is still active.  I was able to use it this past weekend when signing up for SafeCopy.   So if you’re thinking of signing up with SafeCopy, use the ‘switch’ discount code. [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
46


Bye-bye Mozy, hello SafeCopy
Sun, Mar 20th 2011 2:09p   Alex Kassabov
Earlier this year Mozy announced a price increase effectively doubling my monthly subscription cost.  The new price was going to hit me on March 28th, so this was the weekend to stop procrastinating and select a different backup provider. After some, not too terribly extensive, research I ended up going with SafeCopy.  While not unlimited, the price was right — 50 bucks a year for 200GB of data.  According to my Mozy statistics, I backup only about 60-some GB.  The decisive factor for [read] Keywords: desktop facebook interface laptop mac twitter
40


What are you reading?
Wed, Mar 9th 2011 8:10a   Alex Kassabov
LinkedIn now has a “Reading List by Amazon” application.  If you add it to your profile, you can let people see what books you are reading, have read or are planning to read. Look through the recent updates of your network or of the entire LinkedIn for that matter. Look through their reading lists.  People read nothing but business, management, technical, self-help and an occasional biography  books — in short, non-fiction”smart” books.  Nobody, almost not a sin [read] Keywords: application development facebook linkedin network profile twitter
39


The Lazy Project Manager or Where Do I Fit In
Thu, Mar 3rd 2011 11:14p   Alex Kassabov
I picked up this book by accident, looking through the top free Kindle books.  Of course, a project management book that has “lazy” in its title is bound to catch one’s attention. If you’re looking for an advice on how to screw the pooch and be an effective project manager at the same time, this book is not going to teach you anything.  What it will teach you though is how to stop being one of those project managers who are always busy and yet accomplish little.  Inste [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
46


Look, ma. I’m in a book!
Wed, Mar 2nd 2011 8:17p   Alex Kassabov
I was fortunate enough to be a reviewer of Packt’s new book in the IBM’s series: Lotus Quickr 8.5 for Domino Administration [read] Keywords: administration domino ibm lotus quickr facebook twitter
51


How to do a demo
Tue, Mar 1st 2011 8:17a   Alex Kassabov
Recently I sat in a couple of project demos, where I just wanted to say, “Stop! Time out!  Let’s start over.” A demo of your project or product is a proud moment.  This is when you get to show off the fruits of your labors, of all the hard work of the past few weeks or months. And for the same reason this could be a very scary and nerve wracking moment: what if something goes WRONG?  You know all the weaknesses of your product, you know where the skeletons are buried and you [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
49


It’s not the software, it’s how you use it
Thu, Feb 24th 2011 11:17a   Alex Kassabov
What drives collaboration?  It is not the latest collaboration software, offering eye-popping features and kick-ass integration.  It is the desire of teams to collaborate.  Like the proverbial horse, you can lead a team to collaboration, but you can’t make them collaborate. On of my projects now I’m working with an amazing team of great software developers.  The team is small, there are 6 of us.  The velocity of the project is great with 2-week sprints delivering minimally viabl [read] Keywords: collaboration connections quickr facebook integration sharepoint twitter
54


Introducing newest Lotus blogger – Wil How
Tue, Feb 22nd 2011 8:13a   Alex Kassabov
I am excited to welcome another Loti blogger to the community.  And having him as a member of the Lotus team at PSC makes it so much more special. Wil How (yes, it is Wil with one L; I had to add him to my custom dictionaries) joined PSC about half way through 2010.   And since then he’s been almost exclusively working on a large XPages project, converting existing Domino application(s).  It’s been a great journey of learning for Wil and I’m glad that he finally decided to [read] Keywords: domino lotus notes xpages application blogger community development facebook twitter
43


Lotusphere 2011 recap
Sat, Feb 12th 2011 10:14a   Alex Kassabov
It was last week this time that I was saying goodbye to the sunny and warm Orlando and dreading facing the 6-foot piles of snow on my driveway back home in Chicago.  A week later, I keep looking back at Lotusphere 2011 and wondering what it was that I walked away with. Last night, someone asked me how the Lotusphere went and what was new.  I summed it up in two words: “Get. Social”.  ”Oh yeah,” I added, “and Xpages”. I could’ve mentioned all the vari [read] Keywords: lotusphere xpages facebook twitter
47


Mac Mail – 1 month later
Thu, Feb 10th 2011 8:14a   Alex Kassabov
So it’s been a little over a month since I took the plunge and switched my email from Domino to Exchange.  All this time I’ve been trying to exclusively use Mac’s native tools for my email and calendar.  After being a Lotus Notes user for longer than I remember, using Mac tools was a bit of an adjustment. The good thing about these Mac tools is that they all integrate seamlessly with Exchange: mail, calendar and address book — even free/busy checking.  Configuring and [read] Keywords: calendaring domino lotus notes richtext application applications blackberry email exchange exchange facebook interface mac server twitter
37


Mozy unlimited subscription is gone
Tue, Feb 1st 2011 4:15p   Alex Kassabov
I need a bit of help possibly selecting a new backup provider. “For the first time since 2006, we’re adjusting the price of our MozyHome service and wanted to give you a heads up. As part of this change, we’re replacing our MozyHome Unlimited backup plan and introducing the following tiered storage plans: 50 GB for $5.99 per month (includes backup for 1 computer) 125 GB for $9.99 per month (includes backup for up to 3 computers) You may add additional computers (up to 5 in total) or [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
41


Shelfari is connecting to Kindle – Finally!
Mon, Jan 31st 2011 4:15p   Alex Kassabov
Oooooo  can’t wait! Wonder if they will automatically updated book’s status when I finish reading it on my Kindle. [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
41


My new job
Mon, Jan 31st 2011 3:14p   Alex Kassabov
I started to write this as I sat in a little courtyard at the Disney Swan hotel an hour before our session (JMP208) on how to integrate your Lotus Notes with other desktop applications.  As I looked around and enjoy the weather, I feel a little sadness realizing that this might very well be my last Lotusphere. Once upon the time, John Head called me “The general of PSC’s Lotus/Collaboration practice”.  Well, I am that general no more. At some point last year, I realized that [read] Keywords: collaboration ibm lotus lotusphere notes applications community consulting desktop facebook twitter
49


JMP208 The Never Ending Integration Story: How to Integrate Your Lotus Notes, Domino, and LotusLive applications with Microsoft Office, .NET, and Lotus Symphony
Sun, Jan 30th 2011 4:17p   Alex Kassabov
Slides from our Lotusphere 2011 session – JMP 208.  The demo database will be next. [read] Keywords: domino lotus lotusphere notes symphony application applications database facebook integration microsoft office twitter
59


Evernote automatic backup feature
Sun, Jan 23rd 2011 6:16p   Alex Kassabov
This is one of those unexpected features that I didn’t know about until I needed it.  Of course, it was mentioned on the Evernote’s blog back in April, but who reads documentation, right? One day I was editing a document attached to one of my Evernote’s entries.  I got confused in my open Word windows, modified the wrong version of the document, saved it back to Evernote and closed Word.  So there was no going back and undoing it in Word. In my desperate and panicked attempt [read] Keywords: notes facebook twitter
35


The scourge of email
Wed, Jan 12th 2011 8:14a   Alex Kassabov
Somewhere I read or heard about a guy who would check his email twice a day: at 8 AM and 4 PM.  He had an auto responder set to reply to all emails that he will check email and respond in one of those time slots.  I want to be that guy. At some point along the way, during the evolution of electronic communication, email ceased to be a collaboration tool and became a distraction tool.  Like a Pavlov’s dog, at that ding, buzz, popup, vibration, the ever famous “You’ve got mail [read] Keywords: collaboration blackberry email facebook instant messaging laptop mobile profile twitter
41


Kindle, Shelfari and reading books in new year
Sat, Jan 8th 2011 11:18p   Alex Kassabov
According to Shelfari, I read 42 books in 2010.  That’s 3.5 books on average per month.  Today, on January 8th of the new year, I already read 3 books and am working through 2 more.  So I’m ahead of pace. I credit my increased book consumption speed to my new Kindle and audiobooks. I started the year with reading on a Kindle.  For a long time I foolishly resisted getting a book reading device.  I just didn’t want to give up that feeling of having an actual book in my hands [read] Keywords: facebook integration ipod laptop twitter wifi wireless
47


Looking for Lotus developer-consultant at PSC
Thu, Jan 6th 2011 8:17a   Alex Kassabov
It’s a new year and we need to start it off right.  How?  By hiring another Lotus consultant developer to our team. We’re looking for the usual skill set: strong development skills strong web development skills knowledge of web development outside of the standard Lotus package: JS, CSS, extJS hopefully some XPages or at least the aptitude to learn it quickly. In addition to the technical skills, we would love to hire someone who can manage him or her self, their clients, their pr [read] Keywords: lotus notes xpages css development facebook twitter
156


How to send doclinks outside of Notes
Wed, Dec 29th 2010 10:17a   Alex Kassabov
A client of mine was in the process of migrating from Notes to Exchange (don’t ask, they really had no choice).  The migration was supposed to be pretty quick, so we didn’t bother with coexistence: just use SMTP to forward emails between systems. They have a couple of applications, mainly a CRM system, in Lotus Notes, which send out email notifications with doclinks to documents in question.  When the email would show up in Outlook, instead of a doclink they saw plain text listing [read] Keywords: lotus notes applications database email exchange exchange facebook outlook smtp twitter
35


Advantages best practices of local mail replicas
Thu, Dec 23rd 2010 4:19p   Alex Kassabov
Many congratulations to Luis Guirigay for having his article on Advantages and Best Practices of Local Mail Replicas published in the Domino Wiki.  After many review cycles the article was finally added to the wiki. If there’s anything you wanted to know about local mail replicas but were afraid to ask, Luis is the ultimate authority on the subject.  It’s great to see another article published by the PSC team. [read] Keywords: domino ibm ldd lotus notes facebook twitter wiki
48


Moving on up to the Exchange side
Thu, Dec 23rd 2010 9:17a   Alex Kassabov
I took the plunge.  I finally did it.  I moved. As some folks read and reacted with disbelief on Twitter, I switched my email platform from Notes to Exchange. We, at PSC, have been running both systems in parallel for quite some while:  Exchange for the Microsoft team, Notes for the IBM/Lotus team.  And as a Mac user, I just wanted to use Mac Mail and iCal. Sadly, Lotus continues to take the high road when it comes to allowing people to use clients other than Notes with its Domino servers. [read] Keywords: domino ibm lotus notes apple blackberry email exchange exchange facebook mac microsoft outlook twitter
45


LastPass Acquires Xmarks
Wed, Dec 15th 2010 4:14p   Alex Kassabov
Back in September I blogged about Xmarks ending its service in January of 2011.  It was rather disheartening, there’s nothing else out there that does such good job of synching bookmarks across browsers and devices.  In vain I looked for alternative solutions, almost ready to give up. Now, the welcome news is that LastPass, the password synchronization company, recently acquired Xmarks.  It looks like Xmarks is going to be around beyond January of next year.  Thank you, LastPass.  I&# [read] Keywords: facebook laptop password twitter
39


PSC is a salesforce.com partner
Wed, Dec 15th 2010 10:14a   Alex Kassabov
As we’re expanding our offerings, PSC is now officially a salesforce.com partner. The folks on our team has done a number of projects involving the salesforce.com platform from building custom Lotus Notes connectors, to assisting with implementation and integrating it with VoIP telephony platforms.  So it is time to become an official partner. Looking forward to doing more projects on this exciting platform. [read] Keywords: lotus notes facebook twitter
21


Hey ho hey ho it’s off to Lotusphere we go
Fri, Dec 10th 2010 3:17p   Alex Kassabov
[read] Keywords: lotusphere facebook twitter
18


First snow of 2010
Mon, Dec 6th 2010 5:18a   Alex Kassabov
[read] Keywords: facebook twitter
38


PSC speaks at Lotusphere 2011
Fri, Dec 3rd 2010 11:12a   Alex Kassabov
I’m excited to say that PSC will be well represented at Lotusphere next January. John Head and I will once again present a Jumpstart session titled “The Never Ending Integration Story: How to Integrate Your Lotus Notes, Domino, and LotusLive applications with Microsoft Office, .NET, and Lotus Symphony”.  We promise all updated content and new demos updated for new versions of all software pieces involved. John has another session he will be doing, too.  But I will let him tal [read] Keywords: domino lotus lotusphere notes symphony applications facebook integration microsoft office twitter
48


Can IBM Vulcanize Lotus’ tires?
Tue, Oct 19th 2010 11:31a   Alex Kassabov
In Russia, vulcanization (вулканизация) is a popular method of repairing damaged tires and, often, a profitable roadside business.  So when listening to presentations on Project Vulcan, I can’t get an image of an Eastern European road tire shop out of my head. Vulcanization may be a good idea for a new tire on a commuter car.  How well it will work for a 20-year-old Lotus  and a set of tires that are at least 10 years old remains to be see.  Will IBM be a happy vulcanizer, [read] Keywords: collaboration ibm lotus exchange exchange facebook twitter wiki
41


PSC speaking at Chicago Information Technology Architects Group
Mon, Oct 18th 2010 3:30a   Alex Kassabov
Tim Murphy and Mike Vogt, both of PSC, will be speaking this Tuesday, October 19th, at the Chicago Information Technology Architects meeting.  The topic of their presentation is Design Patterns. Design patterns are core to creating understandable, maintainable systems. Tim and Mike will discuss various design patterns and their application to business solutions.  Examples will be given from both .NET and Java perspectives. If you would like to attend, follow this link to register for the mee [read] Keywords: application facebook java twitter
46


XPages? Why?
Tue, Oct 5th 2010 4:28p   Alex Kassabov
Somebody asked today, “If you are using a Discussion database in your environment, have you converted it to the new XPages template?”. My answer, “Why?”. In all of the excitement around XPages, amongst numerous blog posts one message seems to be missing. Why XPages? Why should I care? The I in this question is not the geeky technologist I who gets excited by the new technology and the tags. The technology is very cool and it lets me do things I was never used to be able [read] Keywords: lotus notes notes client xpages application applications community database development facebook mobile security twitter web 2.0
48


IBM releases LotusLive Notes
Tue, Oct 5th 2010 9:28a   Alex Kassabov
The cost of email is $5 per user per month. Today, IBM unveiled LotusLive Notes, a service that delivers your email in the cloud on a server sitting in one of the IBM’s data centers.  What differentiates this from other cloud email offerings is the choice IBM allows users to make: use a browser or use a Lotus Notes client to access your email.  Effectively, a company could move (outsource) its email infrastructure to the IBM cloud and not impact how people use their email. I got to try L [read] Keywords: domino dwa ibm inotes lotus notes notes client email facebook interface mac password server twitter virus
47


New LotusLive first impressions — me like!
Mon, Oct 4th 2010 3:32p   Alex Kassabov
OK, sarcasm aside.  I’ve spent the last hour playing with the new features on LotusLive.  Without going into too much details, I like it. The default interface, which you can customize, looks better.  The color scheme doesn’t look like iNotes that you know and love.  It just feels better overall, more polished, more professional. I’ll reserve the final judgement call until after I get to play with other integrated apps.  But the first impressions are really good. [read] Keywords: inotes facebook interface twitter
14


Oooo… How exciting!
Mon, Oct 4th 2010 2:27p   Alex Kassabov
[read] Keywords: facebook twitter
38


Bye Bye Xmarks (part 2)
Wed, Sep 29th 2010 11:31a   Alex Kassabov
In response to my yesterday’s post about the upcoming demise of Xmarks, Jim Casale suggested that I could use my own WedDAV server to do the synching. What a great idea, I thought.  I never previously noticed the Advanced settings option to use your own server.  So reading a little bit on what’s required, I set off to configure my Windows 7 desktop as an IIS server supporting WebDAV.  After doing some reading on setting up IIS with WebDAV here and Xmarks with one’s own serv [read] Keywords: desktop facebook firefox server twitter wiki
33


Bye bye Xmarks
Tue, Sep 28th 2010 4:31p   Alex Kassabov
Xmarks service ends January 10, 2011.  If you’re one of the existing users, earlier today you should’ve received an email like this.. Details of their decision to cease operations is outlined on the Xmarks blog.  The primary reason being luck of available funds. I’ve been using Xmarks for a few years now.  It’s a service that I will miss.  I don’t think that their alternatives, synch tools built into Firefox or Chrome, will cut it for me.  I liked being able to [read] Keywords: email facebook firefox twitter
42


Twitter is NOT a social network – I agree
Tue, Sep 28th 2010 10:34a   Alex Kassabov
Earlier this month, at Nokia World 2010, Kevin Thau finally openly confirmed that Twitter is no longer a social network.  While this seems to have come as a shock to a lot of people, I couldn’t agree with Kevin more. When I first joined Twitter, it promised to allow me to communicate with my friends in quick short messages.  It offered itself as a micro blogging site. Today, it no longer mentions my friends.  Instead, it promises to deliver short, timely messages from so-and-so.  It is [read] Keywords: blogging facebook network twitter
41


The way it ended
Mon, Sep 27th 2010 3:28a   Alex Kassabov
Saw this episode for the first time last night. [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
36


Evolution of BlackBerry
Sun, Sep 26th 2010 1:27p   Alex Kassabov
[read] Keywords: blackberry facebook twitter
39


Making Money in a Down Market
Tue, Sep 21st 2010 8:28p   Alex Kassabov
How long, how many years will it take for us to stop sending and receiving ads like this? What needs to happen to the economy for it to stop being a “down market”? [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
41


Apple in the Enterprise
Tue, Sep 21st 2010 5:27p   Alex Kassabov
Last week PSC was invited to participate in the global IT summit held by one of our clients.  We had a couple of hours to facilitate a discussion and to present our view on several topics.  One of the “hottest” discussions was centered around Apple in the organization.  Users (executives) want it, IT is afraid of it. The ever expanding presence of Apple device in the enterprise cannot be denied.  And it is no longer just the creative and marketing departments that are using them. [read] Keywords: ibm lotus notes apple application applications blackberry citrix consulting desktop enterprise facebook iphone mac microsoft office sap twitter vmware
39


If your heart not in it, you not working hard enough
Wed, Sep 15th 2010 4:31p   Alex Kassabov
The other day I was talking with a coworker about riding and he said that he likes to push himself and go as fast as he can. To which I replied, but how do you know that that is all you can do? Recently I started riding with a heart monitor and it was an eye opener. Your speed alone doesn’t tell you anything about how hard you’re working. If you’re going 20+ miles per hour but your heart rate is in 130s and you are not channeling Lance and you don’t have a contract with a [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
47


Just learned a new word – Drayage
Wed, Sep 15th 2010 3:29a   Alex Kassabov
The Mac dictionary doesn’t have. Thank you, Google and Wikipedia. [read] Keywords: facebook google mac twitter wiki
39


PSC kicks off another XPages discovery project
Tue, Sep 14th 2010 11:32a   Alex Kassabov
As organizations are upgrading to Lotus Domino 8.5.x, the XPages technology is attracting interest and gaining acceptance in the corporate world.  Last week, the PSC Collaboration team kicked off another XPages discovery project to assess the effort involved in converting an existing Lotus Notes application to XPages. Our client’s project management application was built and web enabled over the course of many years using the traditional Lotus Notes approach: build the client UI, then web [read] Keywords: collaboration domino lotus notes xpages application facebook interface twitter web 2.0
31


Welcome to AlexKassabov.com
Fri, Sep 10th 2010 6:29p   Alex Kassabov
So I took the plunge and registered AlexKassabov.com. Thank you, GoDaddy, for up-selling me left and right.  I now own .NET and .ME of the same.  They are not going anywhere yet. And for all those who cannot spell or too lazy to type the 2 “S” in my last name, the AlexKasabov variations, too.  Sorry, my Bulgarian namesake, you weren’t using it anyway.  Wonder how much the Press Officer of PFC Levski, Alexander Kasabov, would offer for the domain. [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
39


It is time for a domain of my own
Fri, Sep 10th 2010 11:27a   Alex Kassabov
I think it is about time I had a domain of my own.  All these kassabov.wordpress.com, akassabov.posterous.com just aren’t cutting it anymore. The question is what domain to select.  Decisions, decisions, decisions: kassabov.com — taken alexkassabov.com .org .net? akassabov.com .org .net? something-completely-off-the-wall.com? Any suggestions? [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
45


Once you go bib you’ll never go back
Tue, Sep 7th 2010 10:27a   Alex Kassabov
If you’re like me, when you were in the clothing section of your local bike shop, you might have glanced at bib shorts hanging off a rack.  To me, bib shorts always seemed like a gimmick designed to make you pay more for the same functionality delivered by an ordinary pair of bike shorts.  After all, why would you want to go biking dressed up for a greco roman wrestling match? But no more.  One day, prompted by a good sale, I succumbed to picking up a pair and I never looked back.  Bi [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
42


Fiasco of my first Posterous post via email
Thu, Sep 2nd 2010 11:28p   Alex Kassabov
I thought I would be cool, all social media connected and witty at that.  I thought that Posterous was going to enable me to be all that. I took a picture of something with my phone.  I composed a very clever caption for it and a couple of very witty sentence to go with it.  I put all that into an email on my BlackBerry and sent it off to Posterous right then and there. What I didn’t remember was that my BlackBerry adds my corporate signature to every email.  Oops!  I mean, OOPS!.   [read] Keywords: blackberry email facebook twitter
53


My fan is driving me crazy
Wed, Sep 1st 2010 1:28p   Alex Kassabov
This is slightly dissapointing…  The right fan in my brand spanking new MacBook Pro is making noise.  It’s very low but very noticeable.  More so late at night when all is quiet and not even a mouse is stirring.  So I’m off the Apple store tonight.  Luckily there’s one right across the street of where I’ll be this afternoon.  Hopefuly they can do something about it and quick. And in the mean time, hurry up, Time Machine.  Back this puppy up. [read] Keywords: apple facebook macbook twitter
42


Watching Gangster No.1
Wed, Sep 1st 2010 3:27a   Alex Kassabov
There’s something about these gritty English and French gangster movies. Oh yeah, and testing this whole posterous thing at the same time. I’ve been looking for something that would post easily to multiple places. This [Posterous] seems to be able to do the magic. Feel like I’ll be taking a lot more pictures… [read] Keywords: facebook twitter
29


PSC Collaboration Team is Growing
Wed, Sep 1st 2010 3:27a   Alex Kassabov
I want to welcome Andrew Barickman to the PSC’s Collaboration team.  Andrew has uncountable years of experience working and consulting in the IBM Lotus arena.  In one of his previous lives he even worked for Lotus and, as I learned today, before R5, his was the 3rd name to appear in the “Elvis is Alive” Easter Egg.  (Remember that one?) Andrew is an outstanding professional: a consultant and a technologist.  I’m excited to have Andrew join the PSC team. [read] Keywords: collaboration ibm lotus R5 consulting facebook linkedin twitter
37


Waiting… Anticipating…
Sun, Aug 22nd 2010 2:31p   Alex Kassabov
And I’m waiting…  And anticipating… Sadly my new MacBook Pro won’t get here until middle of next week, exactly when I’ll be in Boston. [read] Keywords: facebook macbook twitter
31


PSC is writing new Lotus certification exams
Thu, Aug 19th 2010 9:27p   Alex Kassabov
Once again, a member of the PSC Collaboration team, Luis Guirigay, was selected to assist in preparing a couple of new certification exams: Websphere 7 Administration Lotus Quickr 8.5 Administration While Luis is already the most certified person I know, now he’s got a couple of new certifications to add to his belt.  Great job! [read] Keywords: administration collaboration lotus quickr facebook twitter websphere
54


Panic moment
Tue, Aug 10th 2010 11:28p   Alex Kassabov
Sitting in a kick-off meeting for a new project with a new client.  First time I’m meeting these folks.  I glance over and see that one of the client’s team members is on my blog.  What followed was 30 seconds of intense soul and memory searching, trying to determine if I had posted anything in recent history that may be deemed not 100% kosher.  This was followed by a much longer period of regretting not having posted anything that may be related to this current project.  A litt [read] Keywords: twitter




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