While Portal offers interactive business capabilities vs. a static web site..there is also a need to provide social collaboration capabilities within the portal environment for an effective business. As with a business portal, users can interact with the enterprise, such as to obtain valuable information, assistance, or download documents... with a social portal they can ask questions, discuss various subjects, make suggestions/recommendations, find people in their network with similar interests and much more.
While IBM Connections brings in these social collaboraton capablities for any enterprise.. when integrated with portal helps develop a social portal solution. This integration is achieved by developing a set of portlets for various IBM Connections services such as profiles (Directory of colleagues you can use to build a network and locate expertise), bookmarks (Social bookmarking tool that you can use to save, organize, and share Internet and intranet bookmarks), blogs (Online journals you can use to deliver timely information with a personal touch), activities (Collaboration tool for collecting, organizing, sharing, and reusing work related to a project goal), wikis (Repository for sharing and collaborating on pages of interest to your group) and forums (View and contribute to discussion topics). These portlets offer personalized social content to the user and allow read/write capabilities. They offer similar user experience as the native IBM Connections application. These portlets offer various configurations and customization capabilities to suit various customer requirements. Existing customers for Portal and Connections benefit with this solution and have the business portal to be social by bringing in social content from social repository like IBM Connections into portal.
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