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IBM IBM Smart Business Technology

IBM Blue Business Platform morphs into IBM Smart Business

IBM Smart Business — After two years of work, I and hundreds of other IBM employees finally see the fruits of our labor. Here’s a press announcement about the general launch of the IBM Smart Business platform to the public.

Some background into IBM Smart Business… The premise was simple. There was a tremendous need to make IT less complex for small and medium businesses. To address this, three things were created.

  1. Smart Market: a Web-enabled, one-stop SMB marketplace clients can use to browse, rate and buy solutions or collaborate with other clients, industry experts and vendors from around the world.
  2. Smart Cube: a secure, turn-key computer designed to deliver integrated solutions directly to the client. Smart Cubes install and connect users to Smart Market within minutes.
  3. Smart Desk: a Web-enabled dashboard that clients can use as a single-point-of-contact for Smart Business maintenance, from updating applications automatically or subscribing to an on-demand service.

The model we tried to emulate in the project codenamed BBP was to think just like the Apple iPod model — the iTunes Store (Smart Market), iPod (Smart Cube), and the iTunes desktop application (Smart Desk).

I can only speak for the Smart Desk side of things, as I played a hand in its initial phases, parts of the GUI, and the build automation/testing of the Smart Desk.

UPDATE: I needed to retract some parts of this posting. Sorry about that.

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IBM IBM Smart Business Mobile Projects

Blue Business Platform. Moving on.

Some of you may not know, but for the past 1 year and a half, I’ve had the privilege of working on IBM’s Smart Business Platform (BBP) as a GUI developer. Now I get to focus on other assignments (i.e. Rochester International Association’s website redesign work). CTG the contracting company that helps me find work is looking for future job opportunities. Since I’m really interested in webdev and mobile, it seems logical that I’d be targeting mobile webdev positions/contracts. I do have leads, and I am currently evaluating my options. Stay tuned.

Categories
Mobile mobile 2.0 mobileweb Technology web 2.0

Why Mozilla Firefox is so popular

I’ve been thinking a lot about how web browsers have become the central strategy for much of Web 2.0 and the Mobile 2.0.  Cloud computing is the next major step for many tech companies’ strategic roadmap including IBM. One of the biggest contributors to this surge is Mozilla’s Firefox web browser.

Why has Firefox surged to  the top?  Two things. Add-ons/extensions, and tabbed browsing.  I cannot even imagine browsing the web without these innovations.  Those two simple ideas have made my online experience a sheer joy.  My top ten add-ons include:  del.icio.us, Foxmarks, Adblock, Google Browser Sync, Google Gears, Google Notebook, Operator, Greasemonkey, Firebug, and User Agent Switcher.

The upcoming FIrefox 3 also promises new innovations to make browsing even more simpler and useful. The aptly named “Awesome Bar” is indeed awesome.  You just start typing in anything that you’ve accessed in your browser URL, and it comes up with possible suggestions.  Unlike type-ahead, the suggestions you get can come from any position in the URL (not just the first n characters). Also, the performance and security enhancements are much needed as pre-Firefox-3 browsers had started to become slow.  I remembered the primary reason that I had switched from IE to Firefox back in the day was because Firefox 1.0 was so much faster than IE 6.0.  Performance is as much part of the user experience as UI. You can have the prettiest user interface, but if the user has to wait longer to get their information, they will perceive the product as crap.

Mozilla’s next phase is to rule the mobile browser space. The space is already crowded with the likes of Webkit, Opera, Pocket IE, etc. How awesome will it be to be able to keep those Add-Ons while surfing the mobile web on any smartphone platform. That’s Firefox’s bread and butter.  That’s what will make them successful in the mobile web 2.0.