The "Nifty Fifty"… "The Fantastic 40"…"Only Fourteen ?"

100% credit for Lotus who a long long time ago introduced the “Nifty Fifty”. A set of easy to use / easy to adapt application template that address many different needs of end users.

More recently Microsoft introduced 30 application templates for Windows SharePoint Services, which in the new version (WSS V3) turned into “The Fantastic 40“. 40 application templates with very broad functionality.

The Microsoft Application Templates did catch the attention of IBM people and the Notes community in general, as they are a good way of getting organsiations started. There was some speculation in the Notes community (Carl, Rocky Oliver) if or when IBM would introduce something like the ‘Nifty Fifty” again.

Well the long awaited happened … IBM is introducing 14 application templates for Quikr, their revived / redecorated version of Quickplace. Maybe 14 is just a start, or an indication of lack of creativity ? Hardly a distinctive offering these days.

Peter de Haas
Peter de Haas

Peter is gedreven door de eindeloze mogelijkheden die technologische vooruitgang biedt. Met een scherp oog voor het herkennen van oplossingen waar anderen slechts problemen zien, is hij een expert in digitale transformaties. Peter zet zich met volle overgave in om individuen, teams en organisaties te begeleiden bij het ontwikkelen van nieuwe vaardigheden en het implementeren van innovatieve oplossingen.

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7 reacties

  1. Dear dear.. You just love misinterpreting news, dont you ?
    Thats 14 just for quickr itself. Lotus Notes has a bunch. And of course Notes has the open source template repository over at http://www.openntf.org.
    You see, Notes has been around for a while, and will be around for a while. And doesnt need this “v1.0” kickstart stuff, like the “nifty fifty”…
    Finally, MS has released a collaboration platform. Its ten years late, badly architected, and of course doesnt replicate – giving it a v1.0 sense of single-point-of-failure. Still, its a start. Welcome.
    —* Bill

  2. My heavens Peter, scraping the bottom of the barrel for potshots now? As usual, MS thinks that quantity is more important than quality…

  3. @Ed, Bill,
    You shouldn’t take everything too seriously guys.
    I don’t see this as ‘scraping the barrel’ I do think it is good to more closely follow the developements / uptake of these scenario oriented templates, regardless of the platform …
    Beats the marketshare discussion

  4. I wonder if IBM had announced 140 templates rather than the 14 free templates in Quickr, what your comment would have been.
    You also failed to mention that there are over 160 opensource templates in OpenNTF.org or the countless free templates from Lotus bloggers and web sites around the world.
    I guess if SharePoint was more of an end user oriented development environment such as Lotus Notes, that Microsoft might not have needed to “seed the market” with free SharePoint templates in the first place.
    Or the assertion that Microsoft sales staff make that somehow the 40 free SharePoint templates can instantly replace the thousands of customised Lotus Notes applications installed around the world. But I guess that would simply invite another Vendor Lock-in comment from you.
    However, I agree with you that this sure beats the marketshare discussion.

  5. Ian,
    I am not sure if you are aware, but there is a lot of additional templates / webparts available for SharePoint as well a lot of them free. There is a big development / ISV community around SharePoint.
    Some exaplmes :
    http://blogs.msdn.com/sharepoint/archive/2007/03/27/community-kit-for-sharepoint-cks-2-0-to-kick-off-with-a-boost-from-the-solution-sharing-network-ssn-templates-and-web-parts.aspx
    http://www.codeplex.com/Project/ProjectDirectory.aspx?TagName=Sharepoint
    http://www.msd2d.com/default_section.aspx?section=sharepoint
    I fully agree that quantity doen’t matter, nor the fact that they are free.
    I’m not sure if I really understand your remark about SharePoint being not really end-user oriented. I would say it is. A lot of organisations however don’t want to create the a messy environment with all kind of adapted templates anymore and really look for strong out of the box solutions and an ISV ecosystem that integrates with this platform.

  6. So if quantity doesnt matter – as you put it – why crow about it ?
    You see, your not building yourself up as a credible voice in the cross-comunity – spewing out press releases and going for cheap shots like this just get everyone excited.
    Its your blog thats the reason I decided I have to go for MS at almost every opportunity. To reverse the trend of “Oh, isnt MS wonderful” that keeps getting punted out …
    😉
    —* Bill
    P.S. August. Seriously. We need to meet for a drunk…

  7. Bill,
    Bill I am sorry to see that you don’t view me as a credible voice in the cross community. This is the way I blog for some 3 years now and I gladly admit I have my ups and downs. I do think I have had some very good moments and yes also stuff I regret.
    For things like press releases, these may not be of interest to everybody but they do complete the picture. I think they are relevant and hey its my blog.
    I honoustly don’t want to be friends with everybody when it comes to opinion about the market and I do think having other opinions in discussions around Communication and Collaboration solutions for example matter. Therefor making things explicit (and sometimes silly) helps start discussion. You of all people should know that.
    My motivation for posting this specific post is really about the competitive edge with IBM in this playing field.
    – Is Quickr really a distictive offering with or without the templates or a counter tactic ?
    – Does IBM really see the templates and especially these specific templates and something (more) competitive ?
    – Why 14, why not revive / adapt the 50 that seemed to work in the past. Although I know little about why Microsoft exactly created the 40 templates I do know we have done extensive research into which functionality would benefit a certain target audience. That having a bunch of them multilingual (also in Dutch) matters, etc.
    (the above is not a complete summaryby the way; just a means to illustrate)
    In summary I am not impressed and nor are clients I would say …
    Gartner (yes Gartner …) seems to agree on this : http://www.peterdehaas.net/2007/01/gartner_ibms_qu.html
    I like the competitive edge in the discussion and try to be a good ‘blog citizen’ also I like to be as consistent as possible in it.
    I see the fact that I provoke you in sometimes really more as a compliment than anything else. Although I know you well enough to know you have a short fuse, there is apparently not enough (competitive) discussion out there ;-)if only my blog comes to mind in your analysis of the many many Microsoft blogs …
    Look for example on Ed’s blog, which I see as one of the centerpoints of the Notes blogging community. I almost know the real competitive discussion by memory, meaning there where few compared to the usual ABM / all in agreement type discussions. I am not judging Ed, nor his blog as I do think he is doing a great job and ofcourse his blog and the majority of posts / comments are biased.
    My few comments on his blog and others are often to tell the other side of the story. This can be provocative sometimes but I do try to keep it professional and never make it personal.
    As for that beer in August … your on. Ping me anytime and then let’s discuss cars, being 40 and other great things in life ….

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