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Entries in Connections (29)


Watson Workspace Cognitive Collaboration Integrated with Buzzy Instant Apps

Yesterday IBM launched the Watson Workspace Essentials which is the first release of Workspace that is enterprise ready following the previous pre-release. I have been using and watching from the continual improvement of Workplace since it was first pre-released and over this time I have found more and more of my conversations moving from Sametime and Slack over to Workspace.

In short Workspace is a real time collaboration app that provides group and individual persistent chat, plus some built in cognitive capabilities that basically helps me to cut thru the noise and quickly focus on what matters. There is some great integrations with other cloud services via IFTTT and Workato. One of the capabilities that we have been exploring more of is the developer experience.

Workspace leverages the underlying Work Services Platform which provides a Webhooks API, Graph API, and Cognitive API's. Using these tools we have been looking at how we can intergrate Workspace with Buzzy Instant Apps and Buzzy for IBM Connections. My colleague and namesake Adam Ginsburg (he surf's while I cook on the grill. That is the key difference) created a quick Geek Sneak preview video yesterday to show off some of the integrations we have created between Buzzy and Watson Workspace.

Cool eh! If you would like some more info or have a play with Buzzy just let us know here


Get Your BUZZ On - Instant Apps for Connections

I have to say it! Damn this one is exciting. I am BUZZING (literally!)

Over the years since we launched Kudos Badges for IBM Connections about 9 years ago now, we have delivered a series of new products and capabilities for IBM Connections, all with a focus on adoption and improving the user experience and hence engagement for users of Connections.

After Badges, came Kudos Analytics delivering deep analytics and reporting to Connections. Kudos Thanks and Kudos Awards delivered peer to peer and management award and recognition programs. Then most recently Kudos Boards which dramatically improved team collaboration and projects in Connections using Kanban style user experience. We also have something else coming very soon....think Idea's and Innovation for Connections but more on that later;)

Lets get our Buzz On!

Well now this one takes Connections to a whole new level. The great team at Kudos has been busily working away with another great team from Buzzy to now deliver Buzzy for IBM Connections.

An intelligent instant app platform for IBM Connections and Watson Workspace

Buzzy for Connections provides a better way for users to interact with each other via Citizen Apps.

Many of us remember the days when on another platform we would empower users to create apps for many different purposes. This enabled citizen developers and end users to rapidly build situational apps so they could quickly get on with business and complete the job at hand. These might be apps such as Contract Registers, Job Applications, Expense Re-imbursements, Executive Reports/Briefings, Field Sales Reports, Event Management.........the list goes on forever.

Buzzy for IBM Connections brings these and many many more instant apps to the Connections platform. In a matter of minutes your line of business users are able to create intelligent (via Watson Services) apps for whatever business outcome they want to achieve. These apps are rapidly delivered via both browser and mobile clients, fully integrated with IBM Connections.

Maybe your Marketing Department are planning on running an event. So you create a Connections Community of course to get the team together to plan, discuss and execute the event. So now with Buzzy for IBM Connections you can create an Event Management App that helps you to store and share the planning details. You might create another app - Event Registrations - this time open to external users as well so they can submit their RSVP's for the event. You might also want to share post event collateral with the attendees of the event - just create another Buzz!

In another part of your organisation, your HR Department are managing the recruitment of some new staff. They create a HR/Recruitment Community, and add an App for managing and creating job positions. They can list the job positions and determine the criteria and type of skills needed. Once ready they can post the job publically via the Job Application Submission App that allows candidates to submit their resume and applications. Then the HR team can work together to review the resumes and vote on who should get the interview!

Over the next few posts we will demonstrate Buzzy for IBM Connections with a few videos.

If you are interested in some more information, a demo, or even want to give Buzzy for Connections a try for yourself you can let us know here - Buzzy for IBM Connections. Come join us and get your Buzz On!


Jay's awesome auto-magic News Feed tweak for IBM Connections 

The other day Jay was looking for something to do with his spare moments in between finalising Kudos Analytics Cloud and Kudos Boards Mobile (come on Jay you don't really have spare time;) and he made an awesome tweak to our internal deployment of IBM Connections. I thought it was worth sharing so here it is:

There's no mechanism in Connections by default to notify people of new posts in the News Feed. Forcing users to refresh the page, or click on 'Discover' / 'I'm Following' to find out if something new has happened. 


I had an idea to solve this problem with a little javascript injection into the header.jsp. 

A couple of hours of coding and testing later, it actually worked as planned and is now implemented in our production environment (feedback welcome). 


What does it do?

A - Shows a button with 'X New Posts' at the top of the news feed (screenshot below)

B- Updates the page title, which lets you see if there are any updates without switching to the tab. (Also makes the tab glow if it is pinned - as seen on Facebook, Instagram, etc.)



The script first checks to see if it's in Homepage on load. You don't want to make a request every X seconds from every page in connections.

It then periodically polls the RSS feed for the current stream to retrieve any entries since the time the page was loaded. (Thanks to Mr. Andrew "API" Welch for his input here)

If it finds any new entries, it shows a bar at the top indicating the number of new updates and, my favourite part, updates the document.title allowing you to see if there are any updates without the need to actually switch to the tab

You might need to refresh your homepage for it to take effect. And you might have to wait till there are some new posts as well :) 

 Code to implement this:

  1. Put the activity-stream-notifier.jsp file in the same folder as the customised header.jsp. 
  2. Add the following line at the end of your header.jsp:​  --%><%@ include file="./activity-stream-notifier.jsp" %><%--
The results are as per the below screenshot:


Well I think that is pretty neat. Hope you can make use of it!






Kudos Badges Embedded Experience - Connections-Tick Notes 9-Tick iNotes-Tick Mobile-Tick!

One of the great new features of IBM Connections 4 and the IBM Notes/iNotes 9 Social Edition clients is the addition of Open Social Gadgets and support for Embedded Experiences. This enables applications to provide in context integration so users can stay in the context of which ever client they are using and still interact with the application that is embedded. It really is awesome stuff and furthers extends IBM Connections as an application development platform.

So we here at ISW and Kudos Badges have taken full advantage of this new capability and developed a series of Open Social Gadgets that are used within the embedded experience across the various clients. Here is a video showing what we have done!

Come see us at IBM Connect at Booth C49 if you want to see it live or you can also catch us at The Social App Dev Throwdown!


An IBM Connect present.....Wildfire for IBM Notes 9 and Connections 4


Very pleased for Andrew Welch to provide this guest post:


We are very pleased to announce the next release of WildFire. It has been a long time coming, but all good things come to those who wait and just in time for IBM Connect!

We have resolved a few of the issues that have arisen due to the life-cycles of the various Social Network APIs, as well as implementing a few requests from users.
Most notably here is the support for the XING network & custom feed background colors.

As of a couple of days ago we had 6835 downloads of Wildfire from OpenNTF. We have no idea how many of these then get installed across a user base and how many are just single installs but we would love to hear if you are using Wildfire so please let us know.

In other statistics, WildFire has made nearly 5 Million API calls to Facebook in the last year alone!

Here is the list of improvements:

New network support: XING
XING was both the first and most recent requested network.  With the recent launch of the Public API for XING we thought it was time to reward our loyal WildFire users.  Now you can both post and read statuses from the XING community!

Custom feed background colors
After the overwhelming positive responses of custom background colors in iWildFire, it was decided to bring them to WildFire as well.  This will make the biggest difference for those with multiple accounts of the same type.  Now you can easily tell at a glance which network the status was retrieved from

Facebook updates
Recently Facebook removed the Offline Access permission WildFire was using.  This meant that new Facebook accounts added to WildFire could not work for more than 2 hours.  In the new version of WildFire we have moved to Facebook's new authentication protocol and users now have 60 days access.  After this time simple repeat the account creation for another 60 days.

Additionally, we have added the following Facebook Feed enhancements;

  • showing check-in locations
  • showing people tags
  • showing direct wall posts

Connections 4 support
WildFire 1.6 now supports IBM Connections 4.  You can now read and post status updates to your Connections 4 environments.  Additionally you can also comment upon posts.

LinkedIn improvements
WildFire 1.6 now supports new data structures introduced recently in LinkedIn.

IBM Notes 9 Support
WildFire 1.6 officially supports IBM Notes 9.

Performance improvements & General Bug Fixes
Some additional changes under the hood will speed up the rendering and reduce memory usage.

URL Shortening
WildFire has long supported automatic URL shortening by TinyURL when posting a status.  However, users reported trouble in keeping track of the amount of characters that had used.  With WildFire 1.6 we have added a more user friendly interface.  Simply paste a URL into the text area, or use the new keyboard short-cut (Alt+T) and the URL is automatically shortened.  This allows you to see the exact status message and length before it is sent.

Improved screen utilisation
Do you have limited screen real-estate and find yourself switching between widgets?

Users had reported their desire to keep an eye on their social feeds, but still wanting to display multiple widgets.
WildFire 1.6 includes the functionality to hide the Status Input field.  This means less wasted space and you never have to close WildFire again!

Reduced size
WildFire 1.6 is 20% smaller in size than previous versions.

In summary, WildFire 1.6 is worth the wait.  It's smaller, faster, more user friendly and connects you with more social networks than ever before!

Written by guest blogger;

Andrew Welch
Lead Developer of WildFire

Connect 2013: Booth C49
Twitter: @AndyLWelch
LinkedIn AndrewLWelch