Lotus plays a Symphony

Following on from the announcement last week that IBM has joined OpenOffice.org… yesterday, Lotus announced Symphony. This is a suite of free productivity editors (Documents, Presentations and Spreadsheets) equivalent to those bundled in Lotus Notes 8.

Symphony is based on Open Document Format and OpenOffice.org, as well as using the Eclipse-based Lotus Expeditor framework. There’s MS Office suport and PDF export in there… and, according to Ed Brill’s write-up, you can also import Lotus SmartSuite files into the new editors.

Nice to see that it is available now for Windows and Linux, with Mac support planned. I need to give it a try.

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4 responses to “Lotus plays a Symphony

  1. Blimey that is a blast from the past isn’t it?
    Didn’t Lotus have a product called Symphony in the early 1980’s (long before MS Office anyway)?
    As I recall it was an integrated spreadsheet, WP and database offering the like of which was not seen again until at least the late 1990’s.
    It wasn’t free however….

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  2. You’re right, according to Ed Brill’s write-up. I’m not afraid to admit that the original Symphony was slightly before my time, but I think I have heard of it before.

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  3. Oops, I am giving away my age. I wrote a business application on Symphony in an early life for estimating costs for printed cartons – yawn…. The product was great though.

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  4. Yep. Symphony for a number of years beat 1-2-3 sales across Europe by a factor of 3 to 1. When Lotus US decided to not continue developing Symphony 2.0 in the mid to late 1980’s Lotus Europe set up a development team in Dublin and Windsor to do it and pulled another $100m+ revenue in over the next couple of years. Eventually standlone software dominated and sadly Symphony declined.

    (I worked for Lotus ’84 – ’90 and was in charge of product marketing and Symphony 2.0 back then)

    FYI. We are holding the 25th anniversary of Lotus Europe in 2009. Now that ages me!

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