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IBM's Lotus takes aim at Office market - Symphony software is its free alternative

"Software industry graveyards are littered with the remains of products that tried to challenge the dominance of Microsoft Corp.'s Office software. Some of the tombstones have the letters IBM carved into them - remember SmartSuite? You can still buy it, but almost nobody does.

So why is IBM Corp.'s Michael Rhodin, general manager of the Lotus software division in Westford, taking another run at Office, with a free office software alternative called Lotus Symphony? After all, Lotus's core business is collaboration software, like its Notes and Domino products, which help business teams work together from anywhere in the world. What's that got to do with word processors and spreadsheets?


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