Fact Sheet: IBM and Lotus Improve Content Serving Speed on the 'Net at the U.S. Open

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Even before the first competitors take the court & even after the champions depart with their trophies at the - 31 Aug 1998: U.S. Open, IBM's Web team will be serving tennis action and insights to fans around the world quickly and efficiently with industry leading software from Lotus Development Corp.

Just as tennis players rely on their fast serve speeds to keep them ahead of the competition, IBM's Web team relies on a custom-built software application based on Lotus Notes and Lotus Domino software to help them collect, manage and distribute the time critical content generated at the 1998 U.S. Open Tennis Championships and post it on the official tournament Web site , http://www.usopen.org.

The powerful collaboration of Lotus Notes and Lotus Domino, integrated client and server software offerings, allows multiple users to compose, edit and view content as a created Web page and publish content to the official Web site. The Web publishing application the IBM sports Web team uses at the U.S. Open is a custom application they have developed and refined as they strive to improve Web site performance from event to event in IBM's broad sports sponsorship portfolio.

"With the amount of content we serve on a day-to-day, hour-by-hour basis at an event like the U.S. Open, we need effective content management and publishing tools," said David Balcom, IBM's executive producer for the official U.S. Open Web site. "Lotus Notes and Lotus Domino help us to streamline our production process, meaning fans get more information sooner."

A key benefit for the team of writers, graphic specialists and site producers, the Lotus Notes based Web publishing application allows them to preview content as it would appear once posted to the Internet site. This user-friendly interface eliminates the need to mock up pages in HTML code and manually send them to the server. Thus, the Web team can post site content more quickly and efficiently than raw file editing and updating.

For example, a writer who has little or no knowledge of Web publishing can create a new item by entering text into a standard category template, such as "news". At this point, the writer can select a picture to accompany the story and choose to highlight a player's name from a drop-down menu. The story is automatically indexed then with other related stories on the Web site. When the writer saves the document, it is automatically queued to the site producer's workflow screen where it is flagged "ready for approval". From the site producer's workflow screen, the content can be approved or edited. Once the content is approved, the producer saves and "publishes" the document, which is then served onto the site in the appropriate section, such as "News" or "About the U.S. Open".

Technology Details

Lotus Notes

Lotus Notes is the full-service client for groupware, e-mail and the Internet that integrates e-mail, calendaring and scheduling, personal document management and intranet applications in one seamless interface. For the 1998 U.S. Open Tennis Championships, Notes serves as an end-to-end content and workflow management tool for the official Web site.

Lotus Domino

Domino is Lotus' messaging collaboration and commerce server for the Internet, intranets and extranets. For the 1998 official U.S. Open Web site, Lotus Domino will collect and manage content for the official tournament Web site. It will also serve all the content for the interactive portions of the site, such as the guest book, feedback and postcards.

Another benefit of Lotus Domino is automation through templates, enabling content to be published to the Web automatically once it has been created and approved. Lotus Domino provides the scalability and reliability to manage over 20 templates generated to help serve the content for the official tournament Web site.

Lotus Notes and Lotus Domino, combined with IBM database and Internet technologies, enable the secure development, management and deployment of information for the official 1998 U.S. Open Web site.

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* IBM is a registered trademark of International Business Machines Corporation.

** Lotus, Lotus Notes and Lotus Domino are trademarks of Lotus Development Corporation.

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