When Dennis Callahan asked me for a quote for his article about Hannover, I actually gave him quite a bit more than I knew he could use. I almost always do that, first of all because I'm naturally verbose, and secondly because I don't know the overall emphasis of the article in advance so I try to give enough material that some of it is likely to fit no matter what the emphasis. In this particular case, Dennis was only able to use one sentence, but that's fine with me. He picked a good one ;-) Here, however, is the full text of what I gave him.
Contextual collaboration and the composite application concept are neat ideas, but it's activity-centric collaboration that is going to make the biggest impact by far. 95% of what we see in contextual collaboration and composite applications is little more than adding awareness and a somewhat smart buddy list to your display. Doing more than that is going to require a fair amount of effort, and it can be hard to see how it adds enough value to repay that effort. Activity-centric collaboration, on the other hand, is a new way of organizing work, and it's simple. Notes and Domino customers have plenty of work that can be organized with it quite easily, and it's easy to see how it adds a lot of value with a little effort. Of course, Workplace has its own value apart from Notes and Domino in both the portal and rich client arenas, but the customers who know the most about collaboration and are most committed to it are Notes and Domino customers. The way to get that huge Notes and Domino customer base to lead the way into Workplace is to make Workplace add value to existing collaboration. When I first saw IBM's Activity Explorer back in January, it was obvious to me that the very first thing that IBM customers will want to do with it is to create activities from their existing Notes and Domino applications. Back then, however, they couldn't do it, so while I was very excited about the idea of activity-centric collaboration, I was disappointed that IBM wasn't showing how it adds value for Notes and Domino customers. Hannover changes that. It's going to be great new ROI for Notes and Domino customers, and by proving the value of activity-oriented collaboration it's going to stimulate the market for all of the Workplace technologies.