What Timedance got right

Most of the meetings I schedule cross organizational borders and doing so is always a painful process. Everyone feels the same pain to one degree or another and has felt it for years. Ad-hoc collaboration across borders is at the core of the agile enterprise's mission, but we still lack the tools to do it easily and effectively.

When a recent scheduling negotiation turned into a flurry of e-mail, as invariably happens, I asked, "Does anyone remember TimeDance?" Several folks did, and we paused for a moment of somber reflection.


Clearly this column is a plea for someone to resurrect TimeDance. I'm aware of several calendar- and event-oriented Web startups, including EVDB and Trumba, but these don't seem to place ad-hoc shared spaces at the centers of their missions. My guess is that we'll see new entrants take on that challenge soon.

Meanwhile, of course, Groove is being absorbed into Microsoft. How the two collaboration suites will mesh is anybody's guess, but here's my suggestion: When uniting Groove and SharePoint, make sure that anyone can create a borderless and administratorless shared space. Also make sure that anyone using any modern browser can join and have a rich experience. In that regard, Outlook Web Access -- an early and still leading example of the AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) style of application development -- points the way. [Full story at InfoWorld.com]

A reader pointed me to www.meetingwizard.com which, at first glance, looks useful. You never know until you try, of course, and trying groupware necessarily involves other people's time and attention. If you're scheduling something with me soon, let's try this and see how it goes. Meanwhile, it sure would be nice to augment this static tour with a screencast.

Former URL: http://weblog.infoworld.com/udell/2005/04/29.html#a1225