Well, more product delays, MS Office once again! So what? This is not the first time, Do you think this will be the last time?
CNN: "Microsoft faces a tough challenge in convincing users to upgrade from previous versions of Office, which may seem just fine to many users"! http://www.cnn.com/2006/TECH/ptech/06/29/microsoft.office.ap/index.html
Gartner has also commented on this - see my previous blog entry: http://www-03.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/AntonySatyadas?entry=office_upgrade_hard_to_justify
According to news.com (http://news.com.com/Microsoft+delays+Office+2007+again/2100-1012_3-6089694.html?tag=nefd.top )
"Gartner analyst Michael Silver noted that the delay in Office could hit some businesses hard, particularly those that signed volume license contracts in late 2003. Such Enterprise Agreement or Software Assurance contracts offer, among other things, the right to any new versions of the product that come out over a period of time, typically three years."
If you read that and then the recent article by Ephraim Schwartz on Microsoft Enterprise Agreement from InfoWorld (http://www-03.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/AntonySatyadas?entry=innovation_has_moved_off_the ) which is also available in the InfoWorld newsletter (http://newsletter.infoworld.com/t?ctl=12D356D:1F4EFDF ),
And read additional facts such as Vista delay, cost of upgrade! (http://www-03.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/AntonySatyadas?entry=supercomputer_pc_to_run_vista ),
And read what BusinessWeek wrote recently about other innovations in the marketplace: Watch your back Microsoft Office (http://www.businessweek.com/technology/content/jun2006/tc20060628_286363.htm?sub=techmaven ),
it can lead you to
imagining a day without Microsoft: (http://www-03.ibm.com/developerworks/blogs/page/AntonySatyadas?entry=imagining_a_day_without_microsoft )
The department of management sciences, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, in association with NIC, conducted the first National Seminar on Open Document Format, on June 23rd. The event focused on the impact of ODF on India and the Indian governments. IBM, TCS, Red Hat, Novell and other members of India-ODF Alliance as well as institutions like IIT Bombay, CDAC, OSSRC, ICEG, ODFAlliance, and IIM Ahmedabad participated.
Inaugurating the seminar as its Chief Guest, Mr. R. Chandrashekhar – Additional Secretary, MCIT, Govt. of India, welcomed the initiative and emphasized the need to adopt open standards as well as ODF – specifically in national e-governance projects.
Some of the key presentations made at the National ODF Seminar included:
- Role of ODF in E-Governance – Mr. R. Chandrashekhar (Additional Secretary, MCIT, Govt of India)
- Relevance of ODF for Indian industry – Rajdeep Sahrawat, VP, NASSCOM
- Economic Impact of ODF – Prof Dass, IIM Ahmedabad
- Role of ODF in Common Service Centre (CSC) project – Ms. Aruna Sundarajan, IL&FS/NeGP
- The ‘Tamil Nadu’ experience – Mr. Umashankar, MD, ELCOT
- Impact of ODF on India – Mr. B Singh, Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS)
- ODF & E-Governance – Dr. M. Moni, National Informatics Centre (NIC)
EFY News Network (India) National Seminar On Open Document Format, http://www.efytimes.com/fullnews.asp?edid=12519
Check this out, from Ephraim Schwartz, InfoWorld, June 27th: Time is right to bargain with Microsoft - as desktop software becomes less important, companies have leverage over the software giant for a better enterprise agreement! http://www.infoworld.com/article/06/06/27/79602_27OPreality_1.html
"There is a shift taking place, away from mammoth applications and the support they require. Our very own Oliver Rist says you’ll need 2GB of RAM to run Windows Vista (http://www.infoworld.com/4210 ). But on the horizon are downloadable applications from the likes of Google, not to mention mashups, reusable Web services, and the OpenDocument format.
Plus, the fact that the desktop is no longer the center of the universe means you can now safely consider, where appropriate, Linux desktops. It may not be right for all 50,000 of your desktop users, but maybe there are 25 percent who would do nicely without all the bells and whistles of a Windows desktop.
Finally, other leverage points you can use, according to Gartner, include convincing Microsoft that you can walk away from the deal and use your currently established licensing rights, or that you can upgrade Windows via the hardware refresh, rather than through an EA agreement.
It’s hard to say when exactly the world changed, but certainly everyone can agree that innovation has moved off the desktop. Perhaps it is time to stop paying it tribute."
"Microsoft has never had a strong message in that area" continued Forrester IT analyst Brown.
This was in response to IBM announcement that Sametime will integrate into Microsoft Office, Outlook, and Sharepoint! (http://www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/pressrelease/19882.wss )
Ephraim Schwartz, Infoworld, June 26, 2006, http://www.infoworld.com/article/06/06/26/79612_HNibmsametime_1.html?source=rss&url=http://www.infoworld.com/article/06/06/26/79612_HNibmsametime_1.html
"Not merely a pop-up IM window in Outlook, Office applications or in SharePoint, Sametime creates an availability icon, a small green box, next to any name in the document. A user need only click on the name of the sender of an e-mail, for example, and an IM communication begins. Other features that will be available using Sametime in Microsoft applications include sharing an application or launching a Web conference.
The Eclipse based Deployment Platform allows companies to run on multiple operating systems and to create plug-ins. It will be very easy for third-party ISVs to build plug-ins to Sametime. Some of the plug-ins already being deployed by IBM include a video conferencing plug-in built by Avastar and a call center technology from Instant Technologies. The call center plug-in is being used by the Canadian Navy to create what it calls Officer of the Day, a service that looks for availability not by person but by role within the organization."
See http://www-142.ibm.com/software/sw-lotus/products/product3.nsf/wdocs/homepage for more details.
According to ZDNet news, "In a blow to Microsoft, Belgium's government departments will be instructed to use an open file format for internal communications . ODF is to be the standard format for exchanging documents within the Belgian government. This proposal, which was approved by Belgium's Council of Ministers on Friday, increases the pressure from governments worldwide on Microsoft to embrace open standards."
Dominique Deckmyn, ZDNet: Belgian government chooses OpenDocument , June 23, 2006, 11:40 BST,
According to Steve Hamm, BusinessWeek, July 3rd edition (http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/06_27/b3991412.htm ):
"It's being updated furiously, but Microsoft's once-irreplaceable program now has some viable rivals. ...
Don't expect Vijay Sonty to get any Customer of the Year awards from Microsoft Corp. The chief information officer for Florida's Broward County school system negotiated to pay only $14 per copy this year to outfit 40,000 employees with the Microsoft Office productivity suite. At retail, the bundle of the Word, Excel, Outlook, and PowerPoint lists at $399. But for Sonty, even a $14 annual subscription is still too expensive. That's why over the next three years he plans on cutting his Office purchases to 5,000. In its place, he's buying IBM Workplace, which not only includes Office-like applications for employees but also delivers online learning to the district's 274,000 students. His price: $4 per person per year."
"Over time, the software world is expected to move more to online applications. Gartner considers them a serious threat to Office just because they're so easy to use. "For consumers, I don't think you need to pay the premium to buy Microsoft Office anymore," says Credit Suisse's Maynard.
Further down the road, some techies believe productivity applications as we know them will become much less important. Instead of opening separate word processors and spreadsheets, people may tap into those functions within other applications—much as they now use a word processor within their e-mail programs. If that happens, Microsoft Office, rather than the company's customers, will look like the dinosaur."
According to Gartner analyst Annette Jump, reported by Andrew Donoghue, CNET http://news.com.com/Office+upgrade+hard+to+justify%2C+warns+analyst/2100-1012_3-6086693.html?tag=nl
Only companies who have spent the money for upgrade are likely to adopt office 2007!
- IT managers find it extremely hard to justify this upgrade!
- Only 2% of companies who didnt have Microsoft Software Assurance (a key component of their enterprise agreement) had adopted for Office 2003!
- This will be more like forklift migration!
- Office 2007 will only catch 10% of Microsoft's installed base by the middle of 2008, as only a small percentage will have moved to Vista by that point.
The costs of supporting the suite through a help desk will actually increase in the short term as users become acquainted with new features.
Check this out: Dr Charles Palmer, head of security and privacy for IBM Research and Bob Bragdon, publisher of CSO Magazine discuss the evolution of cybercrime and how best to fight it!
- Spam in email traffic from new and unknown bad sources is decreasing, to an average of 57.9%.
- Average of 1 in every 50.6 emails contains a virus.
- Vertical industry with greatest % of virus traffic is wholesale, followed by Education
- Monthly rate of phishing attacks is increasing.
Check out IBM's safety and security solutions here:
and IBM is Leader in Gartner magic quadrant for Security Event and Information Management:
According to John Fontana, Networkworld.com (http://www.networkworld.com/news/2006/061606-exchange-2007.html )
"Corporate users who migrate to Exchange 2007 (yes, no upgrades!) will face mandatory infrastructure changes that, while advancing security and management could add complexity and costs to their networks"!
According to the article, you will need to deal with the following:
- Requires 64bit processors - so you have to buy new hardware.
- The new role based architecture may require upto 5 exchange servers to support remote client access, transport/routing, unified messaging, and mailboxes.
- New clustering limitations - move from server consolidation thought to server expansion, given the increase in # of servers required.
- Eliminate all Exchange 5.5 servers from the environment!
- No in place upgrades from Exchange 2000/2003 to 2007.
- Exchange no longer will have its own site topology.
- Integrate Exchange with a PBX - specs not available yet.
- Need compatibility kits for third party 32bit plugins that may not run on Exchange 2007
I expect Microsoft will soon release the following:
- detailed migration and best practice guidelines for users
- public beta of Exchange in July 2006
- licensing options requirements for Exchange 2007
So, why wait?
Move to Domino or DAMO (for Outlook fans), run it on Linux, to help save some money so you can invest it in other mission critical initiatives!
Ephraim Schwartz has this interesting discussion going on in Infoworld: http://www.infoworld.com/article/06/05/23/78519_22OPreality_1.html and the blog: http://weblog.infoworld.com/daily/archives/2006/05/talkback_your_w.html on May 23rd.
Josh Greenbaum, principal at Enterprise Applications Consulting, says, "Downloads for [StarOffice] would bring the Internet to a screeching halt."
"Good technology is transparent and invisible," Cooper says, "and we haven’t gotten there yet."
Finally I asked our own tech guru, Jon Udell, what he thought. On the whole, he thought Microsoft’s disappearance would be a good thing, saying, "I hope it would jump start the kind of competitive innovation we haven’t seen forever."
Well here are top 8 things that come to my mind!
08. No more FUD! I can close shop now :-)
07. End of the era of proprietary formats
06. Imagine the amount of money that gets freed up since customers need not pay Enterprise Agreements!
05. Open standards rock - "opening office and windows to fresh light, air"!
04. Acceleration of SOA and Web 2.0 open standards adoption.
03. Exchange partners join IBM ...
02. Accelerate innovation!
01. More java developers