HootSuite has just announced the private Beta integration with IBM Connections platform. This is an incredible combination of two leaders: HootSuite is the leading social media management system with nearly 7 million users. IBM Connections is the worldwide enterprise social software marketshare leader according to IDC for 4 years running. Needless to say, I’m excited to see our eco system continue to grow with market leaders such as HootSuite integrating with IBM’s social platform. This is just one of the many solutions we’ll be talking about at IBM Connect 2014, so if you haven’t registered yet, go do it now and take advantage of the early bird discount!

Do not use internal enterprise social media to state how brilliant you think management and their status updates are and how much their postings have changed your outlook on life, the way you’ll raise your children, or the very essence of your being. It’s fine to just click “Like.”

Socialize Me: A Little About IBM Connections Content Manager 4.5

One of the biggest announcements is the upcoming IBM Connections 4.5 release which we are targeting for March, just 6 months after the huge release of IBM Connections 4.0 ! I also had the opportunity to present for the first time the roadmap for IBM Connections at the conference. The feedback from the audience was tremendous. Those that went to the conference, you can download my slides from the conference site and I’ve also posted them in Greenhouse.

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Luis Benitez
Guaynabo, Puerto Rico

I am a Social Software Product Manager at IBM and an Social Business/Enterprise 2.0 enthusiast who simply loves the whole concept of innovating.

IBM Research: Q&A with Yaniv Corem, gamification expert at IBM Research
Yaniv Corem joined IBM Research – Haifa in June 2010 after completing his  undergraduate work at the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, and  earning his master’s degree in architecture and computer science from  MIT. Aside from his enthusiasm for rock climbing and bouldering, Yaniv  is passionate about projects that use the “wisdom of the crowd” to solve  difficult problems, complete tasks, gather data, and more.What is gamification?YC:  Gamification is the process of using game thinking and game mechanics  in non-game applications to increase engagement. Game thinking can be  used to make almost anything fun and encourage people to get involved.Does competition really help people learn?YC: Human beings are competitive by nature. Games bring out that  sense of competition within a safe and fun environment, where learning  takes place naturally. It’s not just competition that does the trick,  but an entire set of attributes that make games such powerful tools for  learning. Gamification creates a safe environment in which to experiment  without suffering the consequences. It also brings in the aspects of  new experiences, cooperation with other players, and just having fun. Competition can be an extrinsic motivator, for example, for a student  competing with other students for the best grade on a test. But  competition can also be intrinsic, when people push themselves to  achieve a certain goal. For example, a toddler learning to stack objects  will try the same thing over and over again, while grappling with  complex concepts like gravity and balance.How is IBM using gamification to help people learn and share information? YC: One great example is in the area of product adoption. New  users of Lotus Connections, for example, can find such a feature-rich  environment daunting. Bunchball, a leader in gamification, developed a solution for IBM called Level Up to help users adopt Connections. It takes complex learning processes  and breaks them up into smaller chunks called levels. At each level, a  user/player is asked to perform specific tasks that help teach how to  use the product. In return, the users are awarded points, badges, or  titles. Gamification could also be used to keep communities active by rewarding  members for their contributions. An interesting byproduct of gamifying a  community is the social analytics, such as finding the major  contributors; the most helpful contributions; the interaction among  community members, and more.

IBM Research: Q&A with Yaniv Corem, gamification expert at IBM Research

Yaniv Corem joined IBM Research – Haifa in June 2010 after completing his undergraduate work at the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology, and earning his master’s degree in architecture and computer science from MIT. Aside from his enthusiasm for rock climbing and bouldering, Yaniv is passionate about projects that use the “wisdom of the crowd” to solve difficult problems, complete tasks, gather data, and more.

What is gamification?

YC: Gamification is the process of using game thinking and game mechanics in non-game applications to increase engagement. Game thinking can be used to make almost anything fun and encourage people to get involved.

Does competition really help people learn?

YC: Human beings are competitive by nature. Games bring out that sense of competition within a safe and fun environment, where learning takes place naturally. It’s not just competition that does the trick, but an entire set of attributes that make games such powerful tools for learning. Gamification creates a safe environment in which to experiment without suffering the consequences. It also brings in the aspects of new experiences, cooperation with other players, and just having fun.

Competition can be an extrinsic motivator, for example, for a student competing with other students for the best grade on a test. But competition can also be intrinsic, when people push themselves to achieve a certain goal. For example, a toddler learning to stack objects will try the same thing over and over again, while grappling with complex concepts like gravity and balance.

How is IBM using gamification to help people learn and share information?
 

YC: One great example is in the area of product adoption. New users of Lotus Connections, for example, can find such a feature-rich environment daunting. Bunchball, a leader in gamification, developed a solution for IBM called Level Up to help users adopt Connections. It takes complex learning processes and breaks them up into smaller chunks called levels. At each level, a user/player is asked to perform specific tasks that help teach how to use the product. In return, the users are awarded points, badges, or titles.

Gamification could also be used to keep communities active by rewarding members for their contributions. An interesting byproduct of gamifying a community is the social analytics, such as finding the major contributors; the most helpful contributions; the interaction among community members, and more.

iWildFire is your feature rich IBM Connections App for iPhone and iPad. Created by leading Australian consultants and engineers of Connections, iWildFire delivers rich Connections functionality directly to your iPhone, iPad, or iPod. iWildFire allows users to not only connect to My DeveloperWorks, Lotus Greenhouse or Bleedyellow, but become a mobile user of their organisation’s own Connections environment. (via About iWildFire)

iWildFire is your feature rich IBM Connections App for iPhone and iPad. Created by leading Australian consultants and engineers of Connections, iWildFire delivers rich Connections functionality directly to your iPhone, iPad, or iPod. iWildFire allows users to not only connect to My DeveloperWorks, Lotus Greenhouse or Bleedyellow, but become a mobile user of their organisation’s own Connections environment. (via About iWildFire)