Domino, Lotus roadmap revealed

The next version of Lotus Notes and Domino will ship in February and will feature an array of updates, including a new Web 2.0-style feature called My Widgets, IBM said yesterday during its Lotusphere show in Orlando, Florida.

Lotus users will have a new panel for different types of widgets. Their interaction with the mini-programs will be enhanced through a technology, Live Text, that can analyse text, spot patterns and phrases and then link them to a widget that could be useful. For example, users could receive information about flights after clicking a flight number in an email, IBM said in a statement.

The Lotus Notes and Domino 8.0.1 release will also include Lotus Notes Traveler. The application will be able to push email ā€” including associated content like attachments and calendars ā€” to Windows Mobile devices, IBM said.

In addition, IBM unveiled a new email security appliance, IBM Lotus Protector for Mail Security; and said the fourth beta of its free desktop software suite, Lotus Symphony, will be available by the end of this month.

Symphony has seen more than 400,000 users download the English version, IBM said. The software is available in 24 languages overall. IBM said a new plug-in, WebSphere Translation Server, will be available on the Symphony community site. The tool can provide real-time translation of content created in Symphony, according to IBM.

IBM also looked further down the road, saying that Lotus Domino Designer 8.5 will feature more Web 2.0-style capabilities, such as AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) programming, and RSS or ATOM content feeds.

The company's news comes as rival Microsoft is crowing about its success in luring Lotus users to its unified communications and collaboration platform.

Also on Monday, IBM company also announced its Open Collaboration Client Solution will come in a version compatible with the Linux-based Ubuntu operating system.

The Open Collaboration Client Solution bundles together Lotus Notes; the Lotus Sametime messaging platform; Lotus Symphony; WebSphere Portal; the Lotus Connections social networking software; Lotus Quickr, document management and collaboration software for teams; and Lotus Expeditor, an Eclipse-based development environment.

In addition, IBM and Red Hat announced a new partnership aimed at SMEs. The companies plan to sell an offering that combines Red Hat's Enterprise Linux Advanced Platform and Enterprise Linux Desktop with IBM's Lotus Notes client, Symphony and Domino server.

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