IBM gives Lotus a dose of Web 2.0

IBM on Monday took the wraps off products meant to take consumer technologies like blogs and Web bookmarks to the business world. At the company's annual Lotusphere customer conference in Orlando, Fla., Big Blue introduced two new products--Lotus Connections and Lotus Quickr--and articulated its overall strategy for incorporating so-called social networking with its corporate customers. […]

IBM on Monday took the wraps off products meant to take consumer technologies like blogs and Web bookmarks to the business world.

At the company's annual Lotusphere customer conference in Orlando, Fla., Big Blue introduced two new products--Lotus Connections and Lotus Quickr--and articulated its overall strategy for incorporating so-called social networking with its corporate customers.

IBM also said that the next major version of its Notes client software, code-named Hannover, will be available by the middle of this year, with a public beta coming out next month.

As previously reported, IBM is seeking to incorporate tools popular with consumers on the Web, such as shared Web bookmarks and blogs, into its collaboration software.

Lotus Connections, which IBM calls a social-networking tool, allows knowledge workers to find colleagues of similar interests and to share information easily, according to the company.

The application provides a dashboard view of colleagues' workplace activities, as well as blogs, profiles and listings of work-related communities employees belong to. These tools have been optimized for use within corporations with the addition of more robust security and the ability to audit information, said Michael Rhodin, the general manager of IBM's Lotus division.

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IBM, Lotus Notes, Domino