NewsGator (news, sites) believes that social computing solutions like Social Sites are the next generation of operating system for the organization, calling them the "most productive home base for knowledge workers". They say the latest version of Social Sites -- v3.0 -- includes new capabilities that will transform the content in your organization into social knowledge that is both broad and deep.
We've covered the changes to NewsGator Social Sites for the past year or so, including the addition of Innovation Management in Social Sites 2.7. We even had the opportunity to talk with NewsGator CEO and President J.B. Holston on what organizations are looking for in their social computing solutions. So we were interested to see what new elements have been added to this solution.
Integrated with SharePoint
Now it's not really surprising that NewsGator believes solutions like theirs are the next operating system. After all they are integrated with SharePoint, a platform that many believe Microsoft is going to sell as the next operating system (maybe we'll get more info on that at the SharePoint Conference in October).
Social Sites 3.0
So what's new in this version of Social Sites? There are two primary new features that should bring out knowledge into the open:
Socialpedia: An internal website that leverages SharePoint's improved wiki capabilities inside a Social Site community, functioning as a sort of "wikipedia" for topic based communities.
Knowledge Explorer: Based on Microsoft Silverlight, this is a graphical view in the form of an expertise map that shows you all the people knowledgeable on a certain topic. Just click on a topic in the topic map an the graph will appear. These "experts" are even rated.
Bread and Deep of Social Interaction is Necessary
According to Gartner Research Director Nikos Drakos. “Breadth is needed to foster connections among every user and community in the organization, and depth is needed to capture all the salient content produced by each individual user and community. A collaboration strategy and social computing suite should include both of these approaches to social knowledge.”
In this case, we would say that Socialpedia supports the depth aspect and the Knowledge Explorer the breadth. Did we get it right?
Both these new features will be available in the Social Sites Enterprise. Social Sites 3.0 is publicly available yet, but NewsGator is taking names for the Beta program now by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.