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IBM Connections 3.0.1 – Accessible Social Software for Business

By: Ann Abbott, IBM Collaboration Solutions Accessibility Lead

If you could have experts at your fingertips, build vibrant customer communities and instantly exchange creative ideas to your biggest challenges, there's no telling what you could do.

According to IDC, social platforms emerged as one of the leading technology trends for organizations, based on the recognition that people – customers, employees, business partners, and suppliers – are looking for ways to more easily collaborate, interact and share data. IDC characterizes social platform software as "promoting transparent and authentic two-way dialogue that is open, synchronous, and unstructured" and ranked IBM as the worldwide marketshare leader in the Social Platform market based on total software revenue for 20091.

Expertise within reach

Designed with business people in mind, IBM Connections 3.0.12 software gives you fast access to everyone in your network - your colleagues, customers and partners. Features like communities, blogs and activities can be set up for internal use — keeping sensitive business information safe — or for external use to help you engage and build trusted relationships.

IBM Connections 3.0.1 software does this by providing key components designed to help you keep in touch with important people, keep track of emerging trends and ideas, and stay in front of your competition:

  • Home page Collect the social data that's important to you so you don't have to search for it; then post a "microblog" status report for other participants.
  • Profiles Find knowledge throughout your organization using a directory and expertise location engine.
  • Communities Work together with people who have common interests and expertise, rally around a particular cause or project, and share information and ideas.
  • Blogs Present your ideas in a forum, receive feedback, and capitalize on the opinions and experience of others.
  • Bookmarks Find, save and share useful Web-based content with shared, social bookmarks.
  • Wikis Create and share content together with your teams and professional network.
  • Files Share documents, presentations and other files with your colleagues, eliminating duplicates and reducing in-box bloat.
  • Activities View, manage and quickly complete tasks with your teams by sharing assignments, documents and content.
  • Forums Exchange ideas with, and benefit from the expertise of others.
  • Social Stay current with updates from across your social network through the use of the home page, microblogs, and with tags.
  • Social Analytics Work with people who share common interests and expertise.
  • Social Everywhere Makes social and smarter collaboration more pervasive, across a wide range of devices and applications so that businesses have the ability to connect people with relevant information at anytime and from anywhere

"Social software helps enterprises define their collaboration agenda," said Alistair Rennie, general manager of IBM Collaboration Solutions. "The use of social software can transform the way people work, increasing the speed of business."

IBM Connections 3.0.1 is accessible and usable software that empowers all business professionals, including those with physical or sensory disabilities, to develop, nurture and remain in contact with a network of their colleagues; respond quickly to business opportunities by calling upon expertise in their network; and discuss and refine new creative ideas with communities of coworkers, partners and customers.

Accessible social software solution

IBM Connections 3.0.1 meets the most current accessibility standards, and uses the most up-to-date methods for doing so. It was developed using the latest WCAG 2.03 WAI-ARIA specification4 that addresses the accessibility of dynamic Web content for people with disabilities, mapping controls, Ajax live regions, and events to accessibility APIs, including custom controls used for Rich Internet Applications.

WAI-ARIA provides new navigation techniques to mark common Web elements such as menus, primary content, secondary content, banner information and other types of Web structures affording improved accessibility and usability of this Web 2.0 solution by people with disabilities.

User Agent manufacturers, assistive technology vendors, and accessibility tool providers have collaborated with the W3C5 to ensure that WAI-ARIA is an end-to-end working solution.

Free Trial on Greenhouse

IBM Connections 3.0.1 is social computing software for business that empowers you to be more innovative. Sign up for a FREE Greenhouse account and you will be able to engage in social networking by leveraging IBM Connections 3.0.1 on Greenhouse.

Discover how networks of coworkers, partners, and customers become vibrant professional communities that help you uncover information, develop and refine creative ideas, and collaborate with the right people to achieve faster business results.

1 Source: IDC Worldwide Social Platforms Revenue by Vendor, 2007–2009, June 2010, IDC #223817 by Erin Traudt and Michael Fauscette.

2 IBM Connections 3.0.1

3 Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0

4 WAI-ARIA Overview

5 World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)

Updated on June 29, 2012

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