Jo Grant: A vision of Symphony Spreadsheets Integration

IBM has built Lotus Symphony to be extensible from the ground up, so that it is able to be integrated with both other IBM applications (such as Notes and Quickr) and with 3rd-party solutions.  This also opens up the possibility of developers extending Symphony into areas that we might not even have considered just yet, such as metaverses or 3D worlds such as Second Life.

Jo Grant has written a great blog post exploring some of the possibilities for Symphony spreadsheets:

I was explaining my interest in integration between IBM Lotus Workplace products and Second Life in another blog but that description didn’t resonate. It struck me that a longer description might be worth a blog entry in its own right in my blog. I’ve been meaning to do a series of entries on possible integration points anyway so lets start off with the IBM Lotus Symphony Spreadsheet.

User Experience

Mark Ajeti is an analyst for a non-profit company who monitors public expenditure and is responsible for spotting trends in spending habits. His company recently migrated to Lotus Symphony because it is free and supports non-proprietary document formats. He imports his data into a Symphony spreadsheet to examine it in various ways. The charting feature provided is fundamental as seeing a picture of his data often helps him to understand more deeply what is going on than just numbers. With more data becoming available for examination the complexity of the relationships he is looking for has increased. He needs a more powerful way of looking at the information.


So Mark selects the elements of data he is interested in. He then selects a menu entry that was supplied by a plugin to Symphony. This looks a lot like the charting tool except that the charts he can choose amongst are all three dimensional. He chooses amongst these the data representation he wants to try and it informs him it is creating the chart definitions for Second Life.
Mark then switches tabs in his Symphony Environment to an embedded Second Life viewer supplied by another plugin. The Head’s Up Display his Second Life avatar is wearing indicates the new chart along with the other charts he has available for viewing. He selects the new chart and it begins to be constructed before him.
When it is finished he can examine the chart, fly over it, or walk through it to see the data from different angles. He can copy it to his inventory, and pass it to several colleagues along with his comments for their interest.


One of his colleagues, Louise M

Stuart McIntyre is a Senior Strategist at Fostering Community Limited. He curates a number of product-focused news sites, is a lapsed podcaster, founded the Social Connections user group and regularly speaks at conferences and events. This blog represents his own slightly-eccentric and usually-controversial opinions!