Friday, September 15, 2006

Bridging the gap

One of the basic premises behind TimeBridge is the ability to optimize activities, scheduling and calendaring while letting our users continue to work from their own familiar environment. Given that our target users are busy professionals, we have integrated our services into Outlook (other platforms will follow). In this light, our Outlook extensions are much more than a simple plug-in - as a whole they create a seamless bridge between Outlook’s desktop and the world of web services. As Jeremy Zawodny said a couple of months ago “Nobody has made it easy to bridge that gap” - I agree - turns out that this level of integration is one of the most daunting technical challenges we face today.

As we believe this is critical, we have spent a lot of engineering time working with and around the Outlook application which is fraught with pitfalls and limitations. Microsoft doesn’t help much, and I wonder if they’re missing a trick or playing one?


  • Yori,
    We have been attempting to take Microsoft Office applications closer to the net for more than two years now - as opposed to Outlook, our attempts are directed toward Word, Excel and PowerPoint. We have built two product lines - one for real-time collaboration within Microsoft Office (http://www.instacoll.com) and a broader platform for document sharing from within Microsoft Office (http://www.live-documents.com).

    Our experience with Microsoft has been middling in the sense that they do not support/empower you in any way unless there is a deep congruence with their own agendas for various roadmap facets as well as choosing a development platform/paradigm of their choice (.Net et al). That said, we found it much easier to go our own way and built out our solutions without involving Microsoft in any way - the initial learning curve is definitely steeper but once you gain momentum, the ride is much faster...and if helps, we turned the curve around six months after we first got started!
    Best of luck!

    By Anonymous Sumanth, at 10:36 PM, September 21, 2006  

Post a Comment

<< Home