Engage Week & Lots of News

This week was the Engage conference held in Rotterdam – the largest and (IMO) best event Theo Heselmans has given us yet.  Rotterdam is a lovely city and the water taxi that took us from the restaurant back to the boat last night turned a 5 minute ride into a James Bond chase sequence – at several points he took corners by tilting the boat almost entirely on its side (there goes Tim!) and then onto the other side (bye Mike!) before pulling a handrake turn and reversing up to the dock – worth every cent of four and a half Euro.   I don’t usually find time to attend sessions beyond the keynotes because I get caught up presenting and doing other things (I find it hard to think what right now but let’s group it under “meeting people”) but this week I was rushing from presentation to round table to meetup so here’s a summary of my highlights, kept as short as I can so you aren’t tempted to tl:dr

HCL brought the energy, the enthusiasm and a huge team of people showing how far they have taken Domino, Notes, Traveler, Sametime , Verse on Premises etc.  IBM had energy too but their focus was Connections/Workspace and although it continues to develop, we in the ICS community have been starved for progress on the other products.  HCL together with IBM hosted several roundtables on Domino, Application Development, Notes Client, Verse on Premises etc where we got to ask for or complain about what we wanted or felt was missing and answer questions about design priorities.  I won’t go through all of that other than to apologise to everyone else in the Domino/Sametime roundtable who didn’t get a word in once I started.

From that Domino round table we heard about a couple of much needed and unexpected features coming in v10 (both of which I think are so new they haven’t yet been named) around the area of TCO. One is what I’d call a sync feature for Domino where you can tell a server to keep specific folders in sync with other servers in its cluster. Those folders could contain NSFs but also NLOs (DAOS files), HTML files or really anything else.  The server will create the missing files and it doesn’t use replication to do that.  Even better, if the server detects a NSF file corruption it is capable of removing its own instance of the file and pulling a new one from a cluster mate – all without any admin intervention.  Another great tool will be the idea of shared encryption keys for NLO files so that Server B will be able to copy even encrypted NLO files from Server A by decrypting and then re-encrypting them.  Management and maintenance of NLOs and the DAOS catalog was high on my list of enhancement requests.

From the Application round table we heard about how the integration with Node and Domino will work,  there will be a npm install – DominoDB that will allow Node developers to access Domino data via the Node front end. Queries to Domino from the Node server will be using high performance gRPC (remote procedure calls)  – in the same way Notes and Domino use NRPC for proprietary access. The gRPC access used by Node for Domino will eventually be open source.  The front end of the Node server will be surfaced using the Loopback API gateway.

Essentially what this means is that any developer who can program using Node will be able to use their existing skills against Domino NSFs.  That Domino systems will, in one step, become accessible to a much wider group of developers and systems is the main application development goal.

Domino statistics and reporting can be uploaded into and analysed from within the New Relic platform.  If you find this as interesting as I do then you too are clearly an administrator,

HCL Places.  So that was a surprise.  HCL demoed a working (but very basic) prototype of a new product they had been developing in secret (well no-one in the room knew of it).  A lightweight desktop collaboration client that runs against a Domino NSF. It can include mail,, sametime , video, mentions and Notes applications.  All on premises.  Here is a terrible image of the prototype which – yes I know is cluttered – but focus on the features not the look and you can see that HCL are trying to take Domino somewhere we’ve all known it could go but never had the chance.   The image was shared out by Jason Roy Gary who built and demonstrated the prototype and whose role at HCL is (I think)  Vice President Engineering and Innovation, Collaborative Workflow Platforms.

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In a week full of good news the two best were that a beta program for v10 will start with phase 1 in June and phase 2 in July.  June will be a closed beta and July open.  If you want to register for the beta program when it is announced then sign up for the newsletter on the Destination Domino site here

Plus there was this .

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I don’t want to minimise the contribution by IBM themselves at Engage, each of the roundtables included IBM’ers alongside HCL’ers and there was certainly plenty of activity around Connections and Workplace but right now, in this blog, I’m revelling in the fact that Domino is finally getting the attention it deserves.   Plus look at these great pens – they have little yellow highlighters in the top and when I asked IBM if I could buy some for customers they were happy to give me a “few”.

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So – long story (it could have been sooo much longer) short.  A great week , I learnt a lot, my session on Docker was standing room only in boiling heat, I had the chance to talk to people I rarely get to talk to and Engage was in another great location.  I don’t know how Theo will match this next year but I look forward to finding out.  Plus I got chocolate as a speaker gift.

Now don’t go messing with my high.

Branding and Re-Branding

On user community day here at IBM Think I was asked to fill in for a presentation that was originally going to be presented by a social marketeer who would talk about how to brand yourself.  Unfortunately I’m not a social marketeer or any kind of marketeer however I have recently been putting a lot of work into changing both Turtle’s brand image and my own personal brand.  With that in mind I thought it would be useful to talk through how I ended up with a brand at all and my thought processes that took me through the recent changes.

I hope you find it interesting.  A big “thank you” to Chris Miller of “idonotes” fame who read through and sanity checked this with me with only 1 days’ notice.  He’s far more of a marketeer and I am and can speak to how to use those social tools to promote yourself, which I really can’t and so didn’t try 🙂

Connect 2017 Plans & Presentations

I’m very excited to confirm that three of us from The Turtle Partnership will be at Connect 2017 in San Francisco in February.  Between us there is some overlap in what we hope to get out of a conference but our interests are very different. My fellow IBM Champion Mike Smith will be attending strategy briefings, client stories and anything to do with futures.  Tim who looks after the development side of Turtle is keen on Monday’s hackathon and the new technology sessions as well as the Workspace and Watson APIs.  For me, as well as technical sessions about new products, I’m working a lot in the hybrid and security spaces so those sessions (including my own) are of interest to me. I also always enjoy the expo and this year the pop up and theater sessions that fall outside the traditional breakouts are something very different I’m suspect I’ll get a lot out of.

I am presenting and hosting three sessions this year:

On Wednesday at 12pm in Moscone West, Level 2 – Room 2009 I am presenting

Benefits and Risks of a Single Identity

What is valuable about a single identity, why is that something people want and how achievable is it? As people work across multiple systems they encounter an equal number of barriers where they must authenticate or otherwise prove their identity in order to gain access. Ideally we always want to be showing the same information about ourselves regardless of where someone searches or how we are found. In this session we’ll discuss the issues behind both creating a single identity and simplifying authentication. We’ll also review the risks you need to be aware of, the technologies available to you and the importance of good and current personal information.

On both Wednesday and Thursday in the Expo Engagement Theaters on the Expo floor we are doing Nerd Girl sessions.  On Wednesday we will have sparks talks around the topic of The Imposter Syndrome and on Thursday around the topic of Relationships IRL.   

The Imposter Syndrome is about the feeling of being unqualified in a situation.  We are looking for only four speakers who can talk to that, either because they live it, have been through it and have lessons to share or have experience of working with or managing people who have it.

Relationships IRL is about how we build and maintain connections with people when many of us work alone, attend web meetings that have no time for small talk or spend the majority of our time looking down at devices and not out into the world.  Again we are looking for 4 people who can speak to those issues or even if you don’t consider it an issue and why.

The Sparks talks do not have to be about your work or career, both the Imposter Syndrome and Relationships IRL can refer to any aspect of your day to day life.

If you are going to be in San Francisco, would be interested in joining us or would consider speaking then please reach out to me or any of the Nerd Girls to discuss.

The really great news is that since both sessions are in a theater room on the Expo floor, anyone with a $89 USD Discover Connect pass can attend.

The Imposter Syndrome is on  Wednesday at 12pm EXPO Engagement Theater # 750

Relationships IRL is on Thursday at 9.20am EXPO Engagement Theater # 300

Whilst You’ve Not Been Looking Something Amazing…

Next week in Eindhoven there is an IBM conference running for two days but if you haven’t been paying attention you may not have noticed what Engage has become and if you don’t act very quickly  – like today quickly, you’ll miss a fantastic and free opportunity.

Started and run by Theo Heselmans , Engage has grown far beyond the original Belgian community and this year – with almost 400 attendees and 85 speakers he’s providing an event for attendees from around the world and another great location – the Evoluon in Eindhoven.   Even if you made it to Florida in January (and especially if you didn’t) what’s awaiting you in Eindhoven is something very new including strategy sessions, round table discussions and content that hasn’t been seen anywhere else.  That includes my session – this year with puppetry (because how better to explain SSL vulnerabilities than by using hand puppets) .

The keynote is being given by an IBM team led by Inhi Cho Suh the new General Manager for IBM Collaboration Solutions, Suzanne Livingston (Group Product Manager, IBM Mail, Chat, Meetings & Social Cognitive Solutions), Chris Crummey (World Wide Executive Director of Evangelism and Customer Experience) and Sara Gibbons (Senior User Experience Designer).  

The round table discussions  are definitely something I’ll be attending too, scheduled 4x each day and each individually hosted by either someone from IBM or an event sponsor. Want to talk to Inhi Cho Suh about ICS strategy? Ed Brill about Verse Deployment or Matt White about extending your skillset to Cloud technologies?  You won’t easily get that opportunity again.

All that is just the beginning, take a look at the full agenda here then RUN don’t walk to try and grab the last 20 or so places before registration closes.

As for me, I’ll be driving over next Tuesday and presenting Thursday morning so I have plenty of time to go to sessions myself and just generally see and talk to people.  If you want to meet up or have any questions to ask me, just email or DM me and we’ll get something organised.

My session is at 11.30 on Thursday morning  is Building & Deploying SHA2 Certificates
If you saw my session with Mark Myers at Connect in January you may wonder if this is the same thing.  It’s not.  For a start I have hand puppets and no Mark.  I hope to explain where to expect your highest risk, how to stay secure by having a strategy and how to generate and actually deploy SHA2 certificates in Domino, WebSphere and IBM HTTP Server.

I hope to see you in Eindhoven !

 

Announcing A New Kind Of Event For The UK

I’m very happy to announce that, together with our friends at LDC we are putting together a technical networking event in London this March. This is something new and different and we hope people will come to exchange ideas across a broad range of topics, share what they are working on and learn from others.

Collaboration Stack Community Event
Do you work with collaboration platforms? Meet your peers at an informal, technical get-together. Whilst making valuable new contacts, you can share ideas, debate best practice and explore emerging technologies.

We hope to have interactive talks on broad topics such as security, development languages, and single identity including round table discussions where we can brainstorm ideas.

The date of March 21st is set and it will be in central London. It will also be free.

This is a community event, we will not be having a sponsor area , but if you or your company want to get involved please contact anyone from Turtle or LDC. We will be looking for topic ideas and round table moderators as well as session leaders.

Watch our site http://cscevent.com for more news and registration details.