Learn more about Genesis at Adobe MAX

In a week we will reveal some more details about Genesis at Adobe MAX and also demo the latest version in development. We have been quiet on this Blog for a while, being busy writing code and working with our early pilot partners. Now we are ready to demo and meet you at MAX.
So if you are interested in Enterprise 2.0, mash-ups, enterprise Flex development and knowledge worker collaboration make sure to come to our MAX session on Monday at 2:00pm (Moscone West 2014). You might also want to pre-book the session in your agenda builder.
In the session we will talk about the use cases for Genesis, provide an overview of the functionality and give an extensive demo of the current client. Specifically for Flex developers we will discuss how you can convert your existing Flex applications to Genesis “tiles” and publish them in the Genesis catalog. If you have been developing interesting Flex applications for business users Genesis provides a new way of distributing your apps.
If you want to discuss Genesis 1:1 just drop me an email (mzeller[at]adobe.com) and we can meet during the conference.

First Public Genesis Demo at the Office 2.0 Conference

I just got confirmation from Ismael Ghalimi that I got a presentation session at the upcoming Office 2.0 conference in San Francisco. It will be the first public demo of the Genesis development in progress and I am excited that we can do it at Office 2.0. I attended the conference last year and really liked the mix of customer, vendor and analyst presentations. The vendor showcase was really interesting as well and I will certainly roam it this year again to find potential partners for the Genesis eco-system.
So if you are attending Office 2.0 please come to my session on Friday at 8:15am (I know it is early, but I promise it will be worth it). If you didn’t plan to attend Office 2.0 you might want to consider registering last minute. As an incentive all attendees will receive a HP 2133 Mini-Note PC.
Office 2.0 kicks off this fall’s conference season for me. The following week I will present at SAP TechEd in Las Vegas and other conferences including SAP TechEd in Berlin and Adobe MAX in San Francisco. More about those soon.

Enterprise UI Summit

Tomorrow morning I am flying to Aspen to participate in the first Enterprise UI Summit. The Summit is organized by Jive Software and brings together an interesting mix of enterprise software practitioners and UI designers from companies like SAP, Google and Adobe. In preparation for the summit I answered a couple of questions which Jive CMO Sam Lawrence emailed me the other day. You can find the discussion here. His blog has also the profiles of other participants which are worthwhile to read if you are interested in UI design for enterprise applications.
I am certainly proud of the Genesis UI design and excited to show it to some other experts in the field and get feedback.

First Press Article on Genesis (code name) from ITworld

Chris Kanaracus, a Correspondent for IDG News Service, is the first to publish an article about Genesis. I guess Chris stumbled across this Blog and found it interesting enough for an article. The article is accurate and I especially like the quotes:

Bob Gourley, former CTO of the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency, has been using Adobe’s Connect and Acrobat.com collaboration offerings for his consulting business. Those tools and the workspaces concept in Genesis collectively generate “a really disruptive capability,” he said in an e-mail.

Ronald Schmelzer, an analyst with ZapThink, largely echoed Gourley. “If there’s any company that can do the lightweight enterprise mashup thing credibly, it’s Adobe,” he wrote in an e-mail.

By the way we have still a few slots available to meet and discuss Genesis during our roadshow in Austin next week (7/16 – 18) and in Chicago next month (8/12 – 14).

We Want to Meet You!

During the next months we will conduct a couple of roadshows as part of our effort to get early feedback from potential Genesis (code name) users. We plan to visit three regions in the United States: Dallas/Austin, Seattle/Portland and Chicago.
We are specifically interested to talk with Sales Management, Sales Operations Management, Finance Management (focus on Financial Planning and Analysis) as well as IT professionals in charge of enterprise collaboration. If you are interested or know someone who might be interested to meet with us please contact me at mzeller[at]adobe[dot]com. The Genesis team (there will be about four of us) will visit your company and conduct a 2 hour session to discuss your current usage of business applications and collaboration tools as well as demonstrate the latest version of Genesis and encourage participants to provide feedback into our product roadmap. You also will be first in line to get an invite for the Genesis private beta release we have planned for later this year.
If you are wondering what Genesis is all about see my previous overview post.
Looking forward to hear from you.

The Elevator Pitch

I just finished a new summary description (marketing types call it elevator pitch) for our product initiative code-named Genesis and also took a few new screenshots. Let me know how I could improve the description to make it easy to understand for people without previous knowledge about Genesis.
Genesis is a new product initiative at Adobe with the objective of joining business applications, documents and the web on every knowledge workers desktop with integrated collaboration capabilities. Using the very intuitive interface of the Genesis desktop client (built on Adobe AIR) knowledge workers (like sales and finance professionals) are able to create custom workspaces combining views into business applications, analytics, web sites and documents. Workspaces can be easily and securely shared with other colleagues or business partners outside the company and provide out-of-the-box real time collaboration capabilities like instant messaging, voice and video as well as screen sharing and white boarding. The Genesis desktop client will be provided as a free download (like the Adobe Reader and Flash Player) and the sharing and collaboration infrastructure is provided by Adobe as a hosted service allowing users to adopt Genesis without or only minimal involvement of the IT department.
A Sales Deal Room in Genesis
Pic. 1: A Genesis Workspace – Sales Deal Room includes Salesforce.com opportunity, Pipeline Analysis, Google News and related files and documents (view large screenshot)
The Genesis Organizer and Catalog View
Pic. 2: The Genesis Organizer manages all workspaces and provides access to catalogs full of templates and tiles (widgets and applications to customize workspaces) (view large screenshot)

Participate in Genesis User Research

In the coming weeks we will conduct a wave of user research for Genesis (code name) in the Bay Area. Our target user groups are finance professionals who need to report company performance to management (FP&A) as well as sales and/or pre-sales professionals who work on complex deals.
If you are interested to provide early feedback on Genesis, influence our roadmap and earn $150 on the side please see the following postings on Craigslist:
Finance Professionals
Sales Professionals

Code Name Genesis – The Future of the Enterprise Desktop?

Starting a new blog is always difficult. There are so many things I want to talk about at once. Looking back at the last five years of blogging the only thing more difficult then starting a blog seems to be maintaining the blog.
So why another blog? This is actually not my personal blog (you can find that over here) but the blog of the Adobe Genesis team. I envisioned Genesis together with Steve Yankovich (an Adobe Entrepreneur in Residence) about 9 months ago and since then we build a small team to bring this vision to the market.
So what is the goal of Genesis? With Genesis we try to significantly improve the daily work of information workers in the enterprise. I have been working for the last 15 years on various enterprise software solutions. At Adobe I helped building the partnership with SAP and deliver SAP Interactive Forms by Adobe. During the last years I investigated how new technologies like Adobe Flex and AIR can improve the productivity and usability of enterprise applications. Talking with many customers it became apparent that end users continue to be frustrated about the many information silos and that useful internal information, like Business Intelligence data is not being utilized because it is to hard to access it. Additionally the state of collaboration tools in most enterprises is still limited to email and voicemail. While I believe that the rise of tools like wikis, forums and blogs (I use all of those internally as well as externally) are helping to bridge teams and facilitate conversations between customers and companies, they are still hard to adopt for the regular business user (I am sure the tools will improve gradually). Also I am convinced that there is another major white space today that is not being covered by those tools: A workspace on my desktop, which allows me to mash-up applications and documents in a business context (e.g. a specific customer deal I am working on), share that workspace with others (e.g. sales engineering and legal team) and then collaborate asynchronously or in real time. In a nutshell that’s what we want to deliver with Genesis. The first release of Genesis will be a free AIR based client and a hosted service which facilitates collaboration. Since there is no expensive or complex server infrastructure, business users will be able to use Genesis without the involvement of their IT department.
By the way the timing of this first blog post is no coincidence. Adobe just released Acrobat.com, which is clearly an important milestone for Adobe’s transition from software to SaaS (more about it here). Genesis actually uses the real-time collaboration API’s of Acrobat.com to provide seamless application sharing within the Genesis workspace. It is getting late but before I leave you here is a link to a demo of an early Genesis prototype. I promise I will record a new demo as soon as I get my hands on the latest build.
As a team we agreed that we want to involve our customers and partners early during the development of release 1. We have already talked to many companies and people in 1:1 meetings and private webcasts. This blogs makes the conversation public and we are excited to get your feedback and keep you in the loop about our progress.
Matthias Zeller
Group Product Manager