This week, between name calling, Salesforce found the time to respond to Microsoft's lawsuit with a countersuit. Meanwhile, the first Windows 8 details were leaked, a new way to search e-mails over corporate networks hit the circuit, and VoIP got some extra attention.
Here a Lawsuit, There a Lawsuit
Last month, Microsoft sued Salesforce for allegedly infringing on 9 of their patents. This week the CRM specialists fought fire with fire by countersuing, in addition to throwing in some good ol' name calling.
Having labeled Microsoft "alley thugs" and "patent trolls" in their response to the original suit, Salesforce is now accusing Microsoft of violating some patents of their own. The new claim is based on violation of five Salesforce.com patents, with a focus on SharePoint infringing Salesforce's Web-based work sharing. Salesforce has hired David Boies, a former DOJ-lawyer, to help them fight the battle.
No official comment has been made, but Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff made a tiny jab via blog post:
"It is surreal—both unbelievable and fantastic," he said in response to Apple’s market cap passing Microsoft. "This is a milestone that signifies a dramatic change of computing: Windows is on the decline, and new technologies such as iPads and iPhones, Android and Google Search, and Cloud Computing are on the way up."
Windows 8 Details Leak
As per usual, a cluster of leaked confidential documents have managed to find their way to the Web. The cluster consists of Microsoft presentations that appear to be evidence of the internal thinking on Windows 8, all the way from customer target audiences to the developer market.
Windows 8 will run on slates/tablets/notebooks and the next gen of desktops.
"Enterprise and personal worlds collide. We will help customers have a seamless experience across their personal and professional lives," said one of the documents, which leads us to believe that Microsoft is interested in unified in-boxes, location awareness, and other features.
It also appears that Microsoft is taking a few tips from apple. In addition to a slide titled “How Apple does it: A virtuous cycle,” there was also the following prototype:
Unsearch: Search E-mails Across Corporate Networks
We also welcomed Unsearch, the winner of this year's Enterprise 2.0 Launchpad competition, to the pool. Unsearch is an Outlook plug-in brought to you by a company called Baydin. It analyzes the e-mail you're reading and plugs related attachments and e-mail conversations into a right-hand column:
"We have two layers of proprietary technology sandwiched around Microsoft's tech," said Baydin's CEO, Alexander Moore. "First, Unsearch analyzes the e-mail and extracts keywords. Then, it runs the keywords through the search API and runs a set of proprietary algorithms on the search results to filter and reorder them. It then displays those processed results."
The result is a tool that is able to identify key concepts and return with related e-mails from across the corporate network so users will have all the information needed to reply/act knowledgeably. It also digs up information from network drives and SharePoint, as well as from Enterprise 2.0 sources such as wikis, blogs and activity streams.
Vopium Raises US$ 16.5 Million, Skype Gets Competition
A Danish VoIP technology company called Vopium just banked US $16.5 million in funding, and has a specific aim to gatecrash Skype's party. The mobile application allows users to make international calls or send SMS messages for a fraction of what traditional phone companies would charge, and they don't require users to change their current operator or SIM-card.
Furthermore, Raghuvinder Kataria, Vopium's primary shareholder, says he's hoping Vopium will become a viable alternative to Skype. “…we expect 10 million Vopium users in a few years," he said. "We believe that the market demands an alternative mobile solution to Skype and the fast market penetration of smartphones opens up new and more intelligent ways of communication. Vopium’s solution is unique because it offers the best conversation quality and is easy to use.”
Engagement and Innovation in SharePoint 2010
"Much has been written on SharePoint’s new social tools: MySites, activity feeds, tags, notes and others," said SharePoint specialist Michal Pisarek. "However, adoption of these features is poor and many organizations lack an understanding of how the tools can actually provide them with tangible benefits and save them money."
Pisarek digs deep into the details of leveraging hidden organizational structures here, in addition to listing tips on fostering innovation, increasing employee engagement and driving/improving search results.