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Collaboration: From Notes to Outlook to Gmail to Notes

Fri 10 Jul 2009, 10:25 AM

by Ben Langhinrichs
Email collaboration is a no-brainer, right?  You send or forward or reply from person to person, sharing information with everybody involved.  It may not be as efficient or elegant as using a shared Notes database, but it is what a lot of the world thinks of when they think of collaboration.  So, as a simple test, I thought I'd start with the most commonly used versions of Notes, Outlook and Gmail, and try sending mail from one to another.  I assumed Notes 8 to be most widely used, although if somebody objects, I can do this from Notes 7, which may still be ahead of Notes 8.  I assumed Outlook 2003 to be most widely used.  I used the "normal" version of Gmail.

My first test is with a SpamGeek log file that Daniel Nashed posted in the Business Partner forum a little while ago (allowing distribution with attribution), as this was a fairly complex table that was being shared, and might well have been forwarded via email.  Look at the original image, and then how much is lost after being forwarded to Outlook and Gmail and back.  Then look at the third image and see how much more is preserved with iFidelity added in, even including the tabbed table, despite the fact that the email is forwarded through both Outlook and Gmail.  iFidelity 3.0 can make the entire collaboration more effective, even though it only runs inside Notes.

Original SpamGeek log file sent from Lotus Notes 8

Original email sent from Notes 8

Email in Lotus Notes 8 after being sent to first Outlook 2003, then Gmail, then forwarded back.  
Note that the table is flattened out (not tabbed), the tab titles are missing entirely, along with whatever contextual information they carried, the cell borders inside are all missing, the spacing is off, the fonts are smaller, and so on.

Email round trip without iFidelity

Email in Lotus Notes 8 after being sent to first Outlook 2003, then Gmail, then forwarded back, with iFidelity used

Email round trip with iFidelity

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