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DEMO bringing usefulness, simplicity to enterprise

Web 2.0 frenzy, smartphone enhancements, network testing highlight technology launchpad

By and , Network World
January 24, 2008 06:50 PM ET

Network World - Network World's DEMO always is a great event to check out cool new technologies for both consumers and businesses, but enterprise IT executives may want to pay particularly close attention when DEMO 08 hits Palm Desert, Calif. on Jan. 28.

DEMO Executive Producer Chris Shipley believes innovation in the enterprise is picking up, particularly in the area of collaborative tools.

“This is indicative of the Web 2.0 frenzy moving more toward business applications,” Shipley says.

About 80 new technologies will be unveiled at the event. Here are a few that might have an impact in the enterprise:
SpeakLike solves a problem faced in a business world increasingly reliant upon global collaboration. The company is launching an instant-messaging service that translates text in real time, allowing communication between people who speak different languages.

“There’s a lot more cross-border work with more global teams and outsourcing,” Shipley notes. “Having a resource that can help bridge the language barriers is valuable.”

SpeakLike is launching an invitation-only beta trial, with the service currently available in English, Spanish and Chinese. In the future, SpeakLike plans human-assisted translation chat (for a fee) and support for legal and medical translation specialties is launching a virtual team workspace application for use in the popular social-networking site Facebook. Users of the Huddle network will be able to collaborate with teams inside and outside of Facebook, and use the site to send alerts, reminders and approvals for documents and projects.

While Facebook is a great social platform, Shipley says until now she had been waiting for real business applications to take advantage of it.

“I think it’s going to be very interesting as Facebook moves forward, you’ll see it move into the enterprise as a collaboration platform,” Shipley says.

Rove Mobile and Legitime Technologies are separately releasing applications designed to give smartphone users a richer experience that mimics the functionality of a PC. Rove Mobile is launching PCMobilizr, which gives smartphone users remote access to their personal computers. The tool goes beyond syncing and file-moving applications and lets users see their computer screens and have control over the keyboard and mouse.

Legitime focuses more specifically on improving the smartphone e-mail experience, with LegiText, a message management service that’s carrier-agnostic and integrates with Exchange, Lotus Notes and various Web e-mail services. Users can configure their in-boxes to display e-mails in order of importance; group messages by sender, topic, project team, or personal or professional relationship; have threaded, searchable conversations; and access various tools to enhance business collaboration.

Mandiant is unveiling Intelligent Response, a security program that combats malware, viruses and phishing attacks with technology that both detects and solves each problem, in some cases anticipating problems before they occur, Shipley says. Mandiant’s previous product, First Response, gives IT security the information it needs to respond to threats by collecting file lists, registry information, event logs and other crucial information.

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