What are SAP, IBM, Oracle, and Salesforce.com doing with OpenSocial in the Enterprise?

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Google has posted videos of all the sessions at the recent Google I/O 2009 developer’s conference.

SAP attended as part of the session on “OpenSocial in the Enterprise”). Overall, the session was a little disorganized and meandering, but it did end up giving an overview of what companies like IBM, Oracle, SalesForce.com, and Atlassian are doing to leverage social networking technologies such as OpenSocial within organizations:

The highlight of the session (OK, so I’m biased) was a demonstration by John Mayerhofer, VP, Standards Strategy Group of SAP, showing the Social Network Analyzer technology (see below, or link directly to this demo)

Unfortunately, not much time was left for Q&A session. The most interesting question was about “What are the barriers to social systems in the enterprise?” and the answers included a mix of technical and social concerns:

  • Security and identity were mentioned as special problems.
  • There was some frustration than social networking APIs don’t take into account enterprise needs.
  • Exposure to the consumer social networks actually leaves a negative impression, people fear that it’s just about socializing, rather than collaborating.
  • Everybody agreed that it was early days
  • The session ended with a hopelessly vague question/comment about needing to “liberate users” rather “concentrating on the enterprise”.

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