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Cool Blog: Milestone 3 Demos, GroupWise Advisor Summit Plug

Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Dean Lythgoe

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Posted: 14 Aug 2007

On Thursday, August 2nd, the GroupWise Engineering team presented all of the features and functionality that they completed between milestone two and milestone three. It was very exciting! As much as we have talked about and discussed all of the new features in the Windows Client, there were several other components in this demo that stole the show.

Let me back up - During the development phase of Bonsai, we planned three major milestones. At the end of each milestone, the engineers present or demo what they have accomplished or what is "code-complete" at the end of that milestone. We have been presenting and completing features and functionality all along. This was the final milestone demo. We have been anticipating a bunch of new features and functionality in WebAccess. It was my belief that it would be the highlight of this demo. It certainly was - BUT to my surprise there were a few other components that really have come a long way and were equally impressive.

First up - Linux/Mac Client. This was the first demo of the day. Ron and Doug spent an hour going through all of the features that are finally code-complete in this client. Let me list a few: Notify, Change To, Home Folder, Navigation Bar, Schemes, Panels View, Web Page in a Panel, POP/IMAP Account Support, Find, and Discussion View. We also added several end-user options and preferences that have been missing. A lot of work has also gone into stability and performance (start-up, deleting message after message, moving from folder to folder, etc.) Those of you on Linux and Mac - you will be so pleased! It still might not have everything, but it was designed to meet "all" of the most sought-after features.

WebAccess was next. The virtual message list is sooo cool!! Improved calendaring, with multiple calendar support, day, week and month views. Publish Calendar, Quick Filter, Improved Address Book support, HTML compose, Spell as you go, TimeZone and Multi-language support, and message list column management. If you have users that love the web, but hate some of the quirky issues - make sure you get a look at the new Bonsai WebAccess. Kevin's team has done some outstanding work, and a lot of building blocks have been put in place for more, quicker features in future versions. Sirisha's Calendar efforts are impressive - you will love the interaction! My Windows engineers are jealous!

Install - new technologies, fewer prompts, more intuitive. We have revamped install with the latest versions of InstallShield and DemoShield. We have moved off of old technologies that have made the install awkward and clunky. Backend installs are all new - install all the agents at once - no more separate installs. System Creation without having to install ConsoleOne first. Corey's efforts here will pay big dividends, as upgrades and rollouts become easier and more manageable.

PDF indexing - Kent demonstrated how we are using the Stellent technology to be able to index and search any file type that the Stellent viewers support. You asked for this functionality, and now it will be part of Bonsai.

Windows Client - Most of the windows client has been code complete for a couple of months. During milestone three, there were finishing touches put on a several features. Task management continues to improve, the merging of CheckList and Tasklist is now complete. Printing of Checklist items is now working. RSS support was demo'd. Favorites folder is now part of the product and the completion of Contact Management features such as Notes/Contact association. Global Contracts Search control, new style sheets and photos in the style sheets. We also finished off several small calendar enhancements, such as Recurring Appointments only showing one entry in your in-box, Auto-Accept of your own appointments, Time Selector dialog offers Time Zone Selection - just to name a few.

Publish/Subscribe Calendars host was also demonstrated. Being able to extend your calendar information outside your organization is going to be big. Free/Busy info, HTML rendition of your calendar data by just hitting a link in a browser. Another feature that stole the show!!

It's difficult to mention everything - but this was a great demo! Reminder - this was only features that were completed between milestone two and milestone three. We had two other milestones with tons of other features hitting code complete.

Want to see the latest stuff? Come to the GroupWise Advisor Summit, September 30th to October 4th in Miami. I will be there with Product Management and a few members from my team.

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