Tuesday, December 05, 2006

"Workplace" software -- from IBM, and from O3Spaces too!

I participated a week or two ago in an online survey being conducted on IBM's behalf. I remember that one of the questions was something like "What is your impression of the 'IBM Workplace' product name?"

I commented that the name was quite acceptable, except possibly down here in Australia where there's some contentious federal legislation about "Workplace relations" -- in general, the workers and particularly the trade unions don't like it at all. If you're interested, try a Google search such as http://www.google.com.au/search?hl=en&q=workplace+legislation&meta=cr%3DcountryAU and browse some of the items, such as Catholic Bishops call for changes to workplace legislation to get one point of view.

It surprised me a little to find that the name "Workplace" is used for another software product, and wonder what IBM thinks of it: take a look at O3Spaces - "The way to extend OpenOffice.org" which has as its opening paragraph:

O3Spaces technology enhances OpenOffice.org and StarOffice with an integrated solution for Collaboration, Document Management and Document Retention within teams and small businesses. O3Spaces provides the OpenOffice 2.0 and StarOffice user community with a professional out-of-the-box extension for team and project collaboration, O3Spaces means an affordable and integrated alternative for MS Office Sharepoint.
Pricing options are given at http://o3spaces.org/Page/sp6/nctrue/ where it states: "The O3Spaces Workplace software is licensed on a 'per user' basis in 5 user bundles for accounts from 5-100 users. From 100 users up, a per (virtual) cpu licensing model applies which is available on request. Base prices include a one year subscription for product updates, five direct support calls (3 day response), forum and wiki support."

It seems that the folks behind O3Spaces are going after Microsoft's Sharepoint marketplace ... that is, document-centric collaboration. Now, isn't this the playing field of IBM Lotus Notes/Domino and IBM Workplace? I wonder why I couldn't find any reference to either of them on the site. (The site search was in "coming soon" mode so I could have missed any such references.)

Would anyone care to comment or offer enlightenment?

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