In Notes 8, (and previous versions) the default for "Reply" includes any attachment that might be in the message. We are considering changing the default to "Reply without Attachment" for the Notes 8.0.1 maintenance release.
My colleage Jeff Eisen has brought up a couple of important points, however, and we'd like your feedback. He's concerned that a maintenance release is not the place for this kind of change (for example, we do not update the documentation in a maintenance release, and thus the only place where a change like this is documented is in the release notes, which end users.)
We do not want your help desk people and admins to bear the wrath of users who hit "reply" and assumed the attachment was going with it, and then lost data.
For those of you who want to leverage a Notes 8 look and feel in your templates without building the outline view and action bars etc. from scratch, please note that Chris Reckling posted a Notes template on his InsideLotus blog that pretty must follows the look and feel style conventions that I outlined in the User Experience design guidelines
The Notes 8.5 public beta 1 is at the moment planned to be available to you around 9 am eastern time Friday morning.
This is not a guarantee, just a heads up, so that those ofyou in, oh, say, Australia, can stay up late and keep pushing the refresh key on your browser so that you can win a beer from your geek mates for being the first one to download it... that kind of thing.
One of our internal teams (LanguageWare-- they provide the spellchecker and some stuff for Live Text, and other stuff) is going to betaking a full week out to focus entirely on "entity extractiondevelopment" which is geekspeak for "recognizing what a word is"-- "Hannover" being a city OR a development project, things likethat. So if you have some entities which you really would like tosee included please let us know.
By entities we mean any named thing in text, like projects,technologies, people, times, companies, organizations, places,addresses, legal jargon, ... etc.. this is your chance to suggestsomething a bit more off the wall, or even very mainstream and domainspecific.
Here are some things I know Samantha would want to be automatically identified:
Dates/Times and roles (due date, sent date, event date, etc.)
Relative Dates/Times: "today", "tomorrow", "noon next Tuesday", etc.
As we speak to customers, we are hearing about the growing use (some call it their "addiction to") of Blackberries and other PDAs. This has made us curious about a few things regarding how people at your company use them and how you use them.
What is the current % of employees who use PDAs at your company?(a ballpark figure is fine, e.g. less than 10%, maybe 50% etc)
Are there any company policies that restrict usage to certain job levels or roles?
What are the main things that other people at your organization DO with their PDAs?
Has the use of PDAs reduced the amount of printing? (and if so, what gets printed less?)
Is there a push to get people onto these devices?
Do you see shift coming in the next year toward this?
Your own usage:
If you don't use a PDA now, do you see yourself getting one soon?
If you use a PDA now, which one do you use?
What are the main things you do with it?
What are the biggest changes you see in your usage of a PDA vs. a larger-screen computer?
Does the ability to sync data to a PDA lessen the amount of printing you do? For example, do you look at your meetings on the PDA instead of printing out your schedule?
Our friend and colleague, Cynthia Ice, passed away earlier this week.She was an accessibility expert and tester-- a tireless advocate foraccessibility for Lotus Notes and other products, starting with Notes 5I believe.
Every blind user of Lotus products, and every salesperson who has towork with accounts that require accessibility, owe Cynthia Ice a greatdebt. Her work is described a bit in the following article in USA Today.
Her life had great purpose-- to make software usable for people withdisabilities. Please help her to continue to accomplish her purpose byfixing an accessibility bug in her honor. All you Notes app devs around the world -- if all your databasesare 100% accessible, that's great. But chances are, they are not. So take a few minutes to make sure that all your menu items havemnemonics (underlined access keys), or that a screen reader reads yourform in the proper order.
IBM developers -- take a look at your spr queues and see if you haveany accessibility ones, and see if you can find some extra time to fixone -- for Cynthia. [Read More]
Last year I had the privilege of presenting at both. This year, ILUG asked first, so I'm going to ILUG.
DNUG speakers include Kevin Cavanaugh, Brent Peters and Bob Picciano.
ILUG speakers include Alan Lepofsky, Ed Brill, Myself and a few other hard-working and fun-loving IBMers. Notice how ILUG got all the good IBM bloggers :)
ILUG is free, and I think there are a few spots left, so hurry on over to their website to register.
ILUG is a lot more relaxed than Lotusphere, where we are not allowed to do things like toss out give-aways into the audience during our talks. ILUG has to such restrictions, and in fact, in some sessions they hand out beer when you walk in the door! While I do not plan to give out beer, I do plan to bring several give-aways to bestow upon the Lotus faithful. This might be in the form of a "pop-quiz" about what is coming in Notes 8.5. The desgn team and I have posted quite a bit of what is coming in Notes 8.5 to this blog, so read our former posts to prepare (hint: It also never hurts to know the names and job roles of our design personas, especially new newer ones, like Ida, Fred, Raj, Michaela and others...)
The "Central Triage" meetings have been going on regularly for quite some time now. That is, each area has local triage meetings to triage bugs, and then we we get close to things like public beta, we move to a central triage, where representatives come together .
We are right now talking about one team (the "single log on"initiative) who managed to get thru this central triage beta process so far without any bugs! Their manager is checking into that to confirm it-- would be cool, and fun to reward them. Of course, then the challendge would be for you beta testers to find as many single log on bugs as possible :)
Speaking of the public beta, it should be soon. We take every day (and every bug) as it comes. I am hoping that it will be in time for DNUG and ILUG next week, , because then not only can I demo it, but you can fiddle with it as well.
The Notes/Domino 8.5 public beta is now available. The forum with all the details (download, release notes, etc.) is at http://www-10.lotus.com/ldd/nd85forum.nsf
I and the rest of the design team monitor that forum, and thus, most of the discussoin will move there; this blog might not be that active for a bit because all the action is taking place over on the feedback forum.
We are planning on doing some usability testing with external users. We have plans to go to customer sites to do usability testing of Notes 8.5, using our "Renovations on the road" approach that Betsy Comstock and the user studies team came up with. As I am sure you all know, Renovations is where Samantha, Ted and Betty work.
We take Renovations on the road by traveling to the customer site, where they have reserved offices or conference rooms for us, and we set up the server (we named it "the big bad wolf") and 3 clients (who are of course named Piggy1, 2 and 3). Then real end users at the customer site come and participate in usability tests. The mail, calendar and contacts are all to do with Renovations topics.
Of course, the ideal thing is to have users install the betas and use it on their own mail, but you admins are very protective of your end users and you don't usually let them install things like "public beta 1" :) so for business end users, we have found that "Renovations on the road" is the next most useful approach.
The closing sessoin of ILUG is commencing. There's still a lot of energy-- one sponsor is throwing out "stress ball brains" and people are having fun.
The "Customising the look of Notes 8" session (Volket, Paul et. a., notice the proper English spelling of "Customising") went well and was well attended for a 9 am session on the last day.
Then the "Linking Notes to the world with Live text" was also well attended. It was an after lunch sessoin adn the room was warm, so the session was a bit quieter than I wanted. Actually, Andrew Davis did most of the presentation, and kept asking for folks to "Stump" him with wiidget requests. Nobody during the session could... but then he spent the next hour with somebody trying to buidl something and he just announced that he's been stumped. Poor Andrew. But he'll forget about it soon once John Head buys him all that beer he deserves :)
Samantha, a Promotions coordinator at "Renovations" (a fictitious company)
Ted, the VP of merchandising at "Renovations"
Betty, Ted's AA
Hannover is for
Samantha Daryn, Promotions Coordinator
Samantha works in the Marketing department of Renovations, a chain of home improvement stores. Samantha is the Promotions Coordinator, reporting to Marketing Manager Amadou Alain. She is based in Chicago, at Renovations headquarters, but travels periodically to industry events, marketing events, and Renovations store locations.
Samantha's Work goals
As promotions coordinator, Samantha's main job is to create and manage promotion programs that boost sales and customer loyalty for the Renovations stores. She also has to increase brand awareness of a line of power tools called "Power Renovations". Promotions programs include Web site content, newspaper inserts, catalogs, exhibits, in-store displays, and special events, and may feature purchase incentives such as discounts, rebates, and contests.
Her interpersonal work goals include:
•Staying in touch with her team and customers, staying organized and having good relationships with the people on her team and with customers.
Samantha is responsible for:
•Designing promotions programs and producing promotional material. Samantha works closely with a visual designer; a copywriter, and the web master and outside consultants.
•Coordinating promotional activities with goals of the advertising and marketing departments
•Collaborating with Renovations store managers on the display and administration of in-store promotions.
•Evaluating promotions by ROI (Return on investment)and brand recognition
•Budgeting and financial reporting
Samantha's Work Day
Samantha's day is frequently full of meetings. She and her colleagues meet regularly to discuss the status of their projects, and she attends planning and status meetings with Marketing management. She also meets with Renovations store managers to collaborate on promotion plans, placement, and execution.
Samantha uses an IBM Thinkpad T30 laptop running windows XP, and a Mac PowerBook G4 (15 inch monitor) . The IS department loaded the IBM Thinkpad with the following:
•Lotus Notes 6.5 client with mail, calendar, and contacts applications. She's a bit frustrated with mail and contacts compared to Outlook, which she used at her last job. She uses seven other Lotus Notes databases (She has local replicas of the first two). The IS dept created the local replicas and the replication schedules for her; she has no idea how to make a local replica of any of the others or how to change the schedule)
•IE 6.0, to keep tabs on competitors' web sites as well as the Renovations site. She uses Google Maps when she needs directions for visits to store locations, and is also a veteran online shopper.
•Microsoft Word 2002 and Microsoft PowerPoint 2002. She is a real power user of Powerpoint.
•Lotus Sametime 2.5
The IS department put Lotus Notes and several Adobe products (Illustrator, Photoshop) in the Mac so that she could work closely with the visual designers in her department.
In addition to her laptop, Samantha has her own computer at home, on which she uses Hotmail, MSN Messenger, AOL Intant Messenger, and Skype IP phone to keep in touch with friends. She also has a personal cell phone and a PDA, which she often uses for work-related activities. And, of course, she never goes anywhere without her iPod.
Hannover is for
Ted Amado, VP of Merchandising and Marketing
Ted is the highly-respected, busy, competitive head of Merchandising and Marketing at Renovations, a chain of home improvement stores. He is based at headquarters in Chicago, where he spends about 80% of his time in scheduled meetings. Ted travels on business about 25% of the time.He depends on his Administrative Assistant, Betty Zechman, especially to manage his calendar and travel.
Ted’s Work Goals
As VP of Merchandising and Marketing, Ted’s main goal is to increase profitability and generate new revenue streams through delivering excellent promotional activities, both inside the Renovations stores and in outside media and special events.He sees his role as setting longer-term strategy and doing whatever is needed to keep his direct reports successful implementing projects such as improving store atmosphere, developing and delivering advertising, promotions, special point of sale displays, etc.
Ted manages by motivating and leading his employees.He seems to know everyone, and uses his relationships to accomplish business goals.He is often the “face of the company” to outsiders, and enjoys the spotlight.
Ted’s Work Day
Ted arrives at work around .He first scans email to “check the pulse” of his responsibilities. Ted gets over 100 email messages a day and many include large attachments. Ted attends to as many as he can and sorts them into folders for Betty to handle, projects he’s working on, and people he needs to meet with.Often there are phone calls, voice messages, or Sametime chats about urgent items.Ted keeps track of his work by making sure everything is on his calendar.He checks to make sure he’s ready for today’s meetings, checks an email folder named “Urgent” and occasionally prints out information he’ll need. He also looks ahead at the meetings for the rest of the week.
Ted spends at least 80% of his usual work days in meetings. Betty schedules the meetings, taking care to allow time for Ted to get from one to the next.She understands his work and priorities well, and therefore knows which meetings and people to squeeze into his schedule.In any day, Ted may have 10 or more meetings scheduled, but that may change drastically during the day as new issues arise that require Ted’s attention.
When Ted travels, Betty takes a more active role in scheduling, monitoring Ted’s email for important issues, routing or handling any she can, and alerting Ted to anything he might need to know about immediately.
Ted hates surprises and makes sure he’s up to date on business and consumer trends.At free moments during the day, he peruses newspapers, trade publications, analyst reports, websites, etc., and forwards interesting items to his staff, often with a request for an individual to follow up or get more information.
Ted uses an IBM Thinkpad T41 with the standard Renovations set of software, including Lotus Notes 6.5 with mail, calendar, and contacts applications. Ted also has access to several Notes databases with sales, corporate finances, project management, and Ted’s specialized database of merchandising vendors; some have reports or views tailored for his personal use.Ted often depends on others on his staff to create summary slides and status reports based on information in these databases.If anything goes wrong, he calls his IT person to fix it.This is not because he’s uncomfortable with the technology; it’s that it’s just not a good use of his time.
Ted also uses PowerPoint and Excel.He has a cell phone and Palm Pilot.
Ted was the first in his family to graduate from college and he still wears his University of Chicago class ring.Soon after joining Renovations, he earned his MBA.He’s the recipient of the Merchandising Innovation Award for 2004, which is on display in his office.
Ted and his wife Victoria, an art gallery administrator, and their 16-year-old daughter Valerie live in Skokie, a diverse suburb north of Chicago.They love to play tennis.
Hannover is for
Betty Zechman, Executive Administrative Assistant
Betty Zechman is Executive Administrative Assistant to Ted Amado, VP of Merchandising and Marketing at Renovations.Betty manages Ted’s calendar, email, travel, and whatever else she can to support him in his responsibilities.Betty also provides indirect support to the Senior Managers of the Business Development Division.
Betty’s Work Goals
Betty supports Ted Amado in whatever capacity he needs, managing his calendar and inbox, providing support information for meetings, making travel arrangements, etc.She supports Ted and his senior managers by helping to create spreadsheet reports and presentations.Betty also leads the team of administrative assistants, and makes sure their hardware, software, and training needs are met.
Betty really wants everyone to be well taken care of.She is highly efficient, trusted, and knowledgeable about Renovations’ business and Ted’s responsibilities and priorities.
Betty’s Work Day
Betty arrives in the office around .Her low-walled cubicle is right outside Ted’s office.She has a large paper calendar on her desk and yellow stickies on and around her monitor.Betty checks her voicemail, scans Ted’s mail and calendar, and then her own.She makes sure there are no changes to Ted’s calendar since last night and updates it if needed.Meeting changes come via the phone, email, or Sametime rather than as Notes calendar invitations since Ted has little free time and other entries must shift to accommodate changes.
When something urgent comes up, Betty contacts Ted right away.If he’s offsite or not in the office yet, she calls his cell phone. If he’s in a meeting, she uses Sametime or walks to the meeting and speaks to him directly when the meeting ends.When Ted’s schedule changes for later that day, Betty makes the change in Notes and also contacts Ted if she thinks he might not see it there in time.
Aside from all the calendar work she does, Betty helps make sure that Ted has everything he needs for his meetings, such as information from email, lists of attendees, and directions if he’s offsite. She prepares monthly report spreadsheets and transforms Ted’s draft PowerPoint slides into more polished presentations.She sets up meetings with other management team execs, suppliers, analysts, and other people inside and outside Renovations and she organizes larger meetings by doing everything from managing materials to ordering lunch.Betty also sometimes routes email or replies to it on Ted’s behalf (cc-ing Ted), especially when he's traveling.She sorts email he needs to take care of into folders: “Urgent”, “Read”, and “Personal.”She also deals with email Ted has sorted into folders for her: “Edit” or “Print.”
Betty is Notes savvy in both mail and calendar but hates repeating meetings.She wishes she could use the group calendar but needs something that would allow her to see what everyone is doing all at once.Her own mail isn’t as organized as Ted’s.She uses her inbox as a to-do list and only files items when they are finished.
Betty's Work Tools
Betty’s primary computer is an IBM ThinkCentre desktop workstation running Windows XP. She also has an IBM T30 Thinkpad that she uses when she is out of the office to keep all of Ted’s information current.
Lotus Notes 6.5 is her email and calendar tool. Betty loves Sametime Instant Messaging and could not live with out it.
She uses MS Word, PowerPoint, and Internet Explorer 6.0.
Betty also has to use “Reserve” an internal room scheduling application (web-based).
Betty is the mother of two daughters, both married and on their own.She also has two grandsons, Ryan and Joey. Betty’s husband is an environmental engineer nearing retirement.They spend vacations and long weekends at their family’s little cabin on Castle Rock Lake, Wisconsin, where they enjoy swimming and teaching their grandsons to fish for muskies and walleyes.
Several of you have noticed the lack of Double right click in the public beta, and Nathan Freeman pointed out how to turn it on via some magic setting. After conferring with development, I entered a bug report to re-add the preference.
Please note: It will not work in all windows. It will not work for the spreadsheet, presentation or document tabs, or the embedded browser.
This means that it is inconsistent, and the inconsistency pained me greatly. However, here's the rationale: Only the advanced users know about it, and several of you have said you'd rather have it for some tabs rather than no tabs. Most (un, ALL??) business users are unaware of this preference and most likely will not be perturbed by this inconsistency. This is exactly the kind of compromise I wanted to avoid. I feel soiled, dirty, a bit like a politician....
In Notes 8.5 the Sidebar will be easier to manipulate. Specifically, it will be easier to: Drag a panel up or down. However, that still left us with the issue that each panel had a title bar that took up space, as shown in the following picture.
So we added the ability to drag a panel down to become an icon at the bottom, or drag it up to be an icon at the top.
In the public beta , you can drag icons DOWN so that the become an "icon bar" at the bottom. As of today's build, you can also drag them up, as shown in the screenshot below: