NewsGator Tomoye 3.2 launched this week with news of its support for SharePoint Foundations 2010. Supporting a new management console, it makes maintaining communities of practice easier than before.

We've seen a number of new features and enhancements come out of NewsGator Social Sites over the past year, but it's been relatively quiet on the Tomoye front, until this week.

NewsGator (newssite) acquired Tomoye, a company offering communities of practice built on Windows SharePoint Services (WWS) last January (read about it here), so we expect that 2010 was focused on integration and getting ready to support SharePoint Foundations (essentially WSS for SharePoint 2010).

 Tomoye32.jpgTomoye 3.2

Easing Community Management

The big addition to NewsGator Tomoye 3.2 is a new management dashboard that brings together the most common activities required for a Community Manager. For community managers who don't have a lot of time, pulling together user account and membership management into a single window will be helpful. Tomoye 3.2 also shows many of the common management tasks directly on the screen as opposed to selecting drop downs and doing multiple clicks.

Tomoye 3.2 Account Management

Real Communities in SharePoint 2010

While SharePoint 2010 has come a long way in social computing capabilities, it doesn't offer communities -- at least not in the way that we expect a community to behave. Tomoye 3.2 brings real community capabilities directly into the SharePoint environment, managed and deployed through SharePoint central administration. These communities offer features such as structured questions and answers, wikis, blogs, video, expert discovery, colleague networking, tagging, file sharing, filtering social bookmarking, search and more.

With the integration of the two, Tomoye 3.2 also supports SharePoint security and search. In addition, SharePoint profiles are integrated with Tomoye profiles.

There is a certain amount of functionality duplication. SharePoint already has blogs, wikis and profiles, but they aren't available in the community setting that Tomoye provides.

Our customers are quickly adopting SharePoint 2010 and Tomoye is evolving with them,” said Eric Sauve, NewsGator vice president of Tomoye. “As one of our customers likes to say, SharePoint is where we work and Tomoye is how we work.”

 You can watch this video to see how Tomoye can bring communities to your SharePoint deployment:

It's also interesting to point out that the Social Sites and Tomoye teams have now been integrated into a single team. According to NewsGator CEO J.B Holston, this integrated team will "not only to synthesize the best of NewsGator Social Sites and NewsGator Tomoye, but to come up with entirely new capabilities that will redefine social computing over the next decade."

NewsGator Tomoye 3.2 is available now.