Imagine combining this with Notes 8!

I was directed to a site for an interesting product by my subscription to Eclipse news. The piece wasn’t on Eclipse per say but on a product based on Eclipse. The product is called Tasktop and looks awesome. There’s a *very* nice Flash demo as well that I recommend you take a look at.

So what’s so special about this? Well besides being a nice tool with some, what appears to be killer functionality, it’s written on the same platform as Notes 8! (that would be Eclipse for those who hasn’t guessed that) It wouldn’t be a monumental task to bring it into the Notes 8 client. How’s that for a context sensitive workbench? Combine it with the workflow of Notes – you could work wonders. Imagine having context tasks in Notes combined with links to activities, e-mails, databases, views, Notes documents, Sametime transcripts, Quickr documents, documents on file shares… It makes my mouth water!


IBM should definitely pick up on this. That would be nothing like my dear old Notes client! It would be Notes on steroids!

P.S.: I know I went a little overboard with the exclamation marks! 🙂

Announcement: Sametime Awareness Simulator

So I’m finally done with version 1.0 of the Sametime Awareness Simulator (SAS) application that I hinted to during Lotusphere.

The purpose of the application is to solve the problem that all that run demos involving Sametime run into: How to get 20 users on Sametime, some available, some away etc. without running 20 concurrent Sametime Connect clients. With SAS you can simply manage all this from with one application.

From the screenshot on the right you can see the application with 3 users added. Only one is logged into Sametime and as you can see you can set the status for each individual user by right-clicking or using the menu or toolbar. There’s also a preference dialog for setting the hostname of the Sametime server to use.

I need you!

I’m interested in getting some initial feedback before releasing the application into the wild so if you need something like this let me know by e-mail (mh [at] I’m looking for 5 people or so to test drive the application. Please only write if you’re actually going to use it and not if you just need a new toy… 🙂

I will be releasing it soon enough.

Technical stuff

The application is written in Java using the Sametime Java API and using the Eclipse RCP application framework. It runs as a standalone application so you do not need Eclipse installed.

Plans for future improvement

  • Configure SAS to automatically add a predefined set of users. Now you have to manually add the users each time the application starts.
  • Add update site functionality to allow for easy updates and bug fixes.
  • Add functionality to allow users logged into Sametime using SAS to respond to chats (using predefined responses or simply echo), join group chats and accept file transfers.
  • Log into Sametime as a server application and use the LightLoginService instead of a fullblown STSession per user.

Sametime Awareness Simulator – part 2

Well I discussed the SAS with Nathan last night at the Welcome Reception and it seems like it struck a nerve and it’s something that’s usable for a lot of the guys in the showcase. I cleared everything out last night so I will probably be sharing the application during the day (Monday).

I have many plans for future enhancements. For now it only simulates awareness but a logical extension would be for it to be able to accept file transfers, join group chats and reply to 1-on-1 chats. One should be able to specify a prerecorded chat script for individual users.

More to follow…

Sametime Awareness Simulator

As part of the preparations for some of the stuff we (IntraVision) will be showing off at Lotusphere 2008 I have developed a Sametime Awareness Simulator. The simulator is used to simulate Sametime users in a demo environment without having to run multiple Sametime Connect clients when all you need is to simulate awareness (that is some users being available, some away etc.). The application will let you manually add username/password combinations or read the usernames and passwords from a configuration file at startup. It will also automatically set the awareness status as specified in the file (available, away, in a meeting, do not disturb).

Below is a screenshot of the application which you can see is written using the Eclipse RCP framework and the Sametime Java SDK. I hope I will be able to let you all to download the application for use in your own demos.

Now I’m off to the beach… 🙂

Show ‘n Tell Thursday: The missing link for plugging Notes into you Sametime 7.5 plugin (10 January 2007)

When you develop and run plugins for Sametime 7.5 on Windows or Linux you do not use a standard Java Development Kit (JDK) and standard 1.4.2 JVM. Instead you use a slightly modified version called the JCL Desktop JDK and the J9 JVM. The “slightly modified” means that some features have been removed from the JDK to make it “safe” for the Expeditor framework that Sametime 7.5 runs on.

An unfortunate side-effect of this decision is that you cannot use the Notes/Domino API (that is notes.jar or ncso.jar) without resorting to additional libraries. The reason is that the ever present lotus.domino.NotesException inherits from org.omg.CORBA.UserException which is an exception class that has been removed in the modified runtime class library (for more information about lotus.domino.NotesException see my post called Java in Notes/Domino Explained: NotesException).

Fortunately there is a way to remedy that. The solution is to include the ibmorbapi.jar library (can be found in c:Program FilesNotes7Datadominojava on my laptop) in your plugin alongside notes.jar or ncso.jar. The ibmorbapi.jar library is quite large (around 400kb) but I haven’t yet played around with it to see if you could simply get away with including the org.omg-packages.

Now you know why your plugin fails to compile due to indirectly referenced Corba classes.

Anyways – someone who has the ears of the Sametime development team might want to mention this to them. Apart from that – great product and its a joy to develop plugins for Sametime 7.5! 🙂

EclipseZone: IBM Sametime Instant Messaging To Be Eclipse Based

The word is spreading:

“Although to some us (thanks to little drop-ins by Chris Aniszczyk) this may come as no surprise, it has become official that the Sametime instant-messaging client is now built throug the Eclipse Rich Client platform components.”

The post also mentions the new Sametime 7.5 Microsoft Office features mentioned by Ed Brill yesterday:

“Sametime 7.5, which will be available in about two months, will allow people to use instant-messaging features without having to leave Office applications. For example, a person could open up an e-mail inside Outlook and find out whether the sender is available on Sametime and where he or she is located.”

Full post @ EclipseZone: IBM Sametime Instant Messaging To Be Eclipse Based