IBM/Lotus aggressively galloped into its collaborative software future last month, promising not to avoid any fights and laying out plans to expand its Notes/Domino platform with an emphasis on a services architecture model.

New Lotus general manager Mike Rhodin opened the vendor’s annual Lotusphere conference in Orlando, Fla., by telling nearly 6,000 attendees that the future is already within sight. And he laid to rest, again, questions that the future of the Notes/Domino platform included a makeover or worse.

“For the record, there is no architectural shift involved [for Notes/Domino], it is pure growth with no regression,” said Rhodin. “There will be continued support for all Notes applications.”

Rhodin and IBM/Lotus executives also took a more aggressive stand in the on-going competition with Microsoft, often calling out the vendor during the general session keynote for its perceived shortcomings in product and delivery schedules.

“We have been the leader for 15 years, and I have no intention of backing down,” Rhodin said later at a press conference.

Robert Par