Posts Tagged 'research'

Talking Innovation and Technology /w IBM Research

Just returned from a very unique gathering, held by IBM HRL (Haifa Research Labs) and IBM GTU (Global Technology Unit). The 2 divisions teamed up and invited local bloggers (~25) to an evening of technology and innovation, coupled with food & wine of course. The purpose of the event was to expose some of the work HRL researchers are doing at the various locations in Israel and what applications and services have been deployed internally, towards a future IBM Product or Service.

Coming from Big Blue I was no stranger to the innovative thinking and the endless possibilities HRL researchers posses. No wonder IBM invests $6B annually in R&D. The presentations were more like short pitches, 10-15min each, covering 3 topics:

  • Do smarter people make smarter search engines?
  • Is it all about context?
  • Shouldn’t non-techies be able to create online applications?

The crowd was very involved in the pitch, questioning possible applications and services, how metadata is gathered and filtered, and more. As a research facility, HRL are quite lucky to have a testing population of some 350,000 employees – which definitely helps shorten development cycles.Obviously I felt a strong connection to the 1st topic, being an advocate for corporate collaboration and knowledge management (E2.0). I think my 1,000+ social bookmarks are still part of IBM’s internal knowledge base (Dogear), available at the company’s intranet (w3).

In short, great event, interesting discussions and awesome people to brainstorm with.

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Twitter grew 1,444% in a year

If someone here needed another proof to the change twitter has made, Nielsen released its Social Media QuickTake for May 2009, showing an amazing 1,444% growth in visitors – from 1.2m in May 2008 to 18.2m in May 2009. Wow! Time spent on per person (not factoring the twitter apps I imagine) has also risen – from 6min in May 2008 to 17min a year later (+175%). Both are amazing figures, showcasing the revolution twitter has made in 2008/9 – starting with The US Presidential Election, the Earthquakes in China and the Elections in Iran.

The question now is ‘what’s next’, for twitter, facebook and others, as they reach super-mass adoption, and would (obviously) prefer to avoid ‘the myspace phenomenon‘. Nielsen already noticed that the ‘month-over-month’ rate is very minor: +7% in # of users and -1% in time spent – which in social networking terms is bad. That halt in growth has to do in part to the business model, or lack of it.

Twitter is a lot of things, and I salute the guys for providing the platform and building an impressive ecosystem, but at some point in time someone at Twitter HQ will need to step up and present what they plan for twitter in 2010.

Understanding Lotus Connections –

Good thing I started reading C.G Lynch on, and RSSed his blog.

Late May, C.G. wrote an excellent article in, Understanding Lotus Connections, IBM’s version of Web 2.0 for the Enterprise. In the article C.G. points out the different approaches Microsoft and IBM are taking when developing enterprise social software solution, and why IBM’s approach is better:

IBM has taken a different approach than Microsoft. It got really serious about making their social software tools usable and easy on the eyes, which says a lot in a facet of technology where consumers (closely followed by start-up vendors) set the pace of innovation.

The article also quotes analysts from Forrester Research and Yankee Group, as well as Jeff Schick, IBM VP, Social Software:

“We see SaaS as a substantial initiative with IBM,” Schick says. “We’re in beta and focusing on it. We envision it for small and medium businesses, but also at the department level of enterprises.”

Lotus Connections is also pointing out the future of social software – mobile:

Last week, at the Wireless Enterprise Symposium in Orlando, Research in Motion (RIM) and IBM announced that Connections would be available on BlackBerry devices. Now, employees can connect with their colleagues while on the road.

and Jeff Schick added:

“We’re working with quite a few mobile platforms,” he says. “It [partnership with RIM] has been a whirlwind success, but we’re not planning to stop there.”

Link: – Understanding Lotus Connections – IBM’s version of Web 2.0 for the Enterprise

Social software and Shimon Peres

Shimon Peres, Israel’s President, visited Haifa Research Lab (HRL) this week, along with Meir Nissensohn, IBM Israel General Manager. Mr. Peres demonstrated excellent knowledge in internet and social networks, as several researchers presented their work in the field of business implications of social networks. Then Mr. Peres discussed in Arabic with Aya Soffer, using IBM’s MASTOR, a two-way, free form speech translator that assists human communication using natural spoken language for people who do not share a common language. The speech translator is in use in Iraq by humanitarian services, to improve communication with the local population.
Mr. Peres concluded his visit by driving ‘the virtual car’ (pictured above), a new driving simulator that enables social communication between cars on the road – to decrease accidents and improve road safety.

Links: (Hebrew): President Peres visits IBM Haifa Research Lab (Hebrew): Presidential Visit

In the picture below (from left to right): Mr. Shimon Peres, Israeli President, Dr. Aya Soffer, HRL (both sitting), Yossi Shoval, Media Relations Mgr. and Mr. Meir Nissensohn, GM, IBM Israel (far right).

IDC ranks IBM WebSphere Portal #1

Excellent report from IDC, which adds up to other awards and reviews, but this one marks IBM’s leadership not only in 2007, but also in terms of future implementations and releases.
The 2007 reports puts IBM WebSphere Portal in the lead for the 5th year in a row – not an easy task.. IBM’s market share in 2006 was 31.5%, well ahead of the competition.

IBM is “successfully selling portal solutions to businesses of all sizes in conjunction with other complementary products, especially those used for collaboration” according to IDC analyst Kathy Quirk. Kathy’s comments are very much aligned with IBM’s latest initiative, Web 2.0 Goes to Work, launched last month.

Larry Bowden, vice president of portals and Web interaction services at IBM elaborates:
“Portals have been primarily used to distribute information, but now things are getting more interactive,” he said. “You can have instant messaging, real-time chats with customers and constituents, and even video.”

Mobile & Media Consultant. I help startup companies launch products to the consumer market. Reach out: dvir.reznik [at]



This is my personal blog. The postings here do not represent the thoughts, intentions, plans or strategies of my past employers or of my clients. It is solely my opinion.