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Tag: announcement

Introducing Yammer Integration

By Andrei Soroker

Today marks the arrival of the Sameroom Yammer integration. (!)

(Fast-forward to instructions.)

As with most things Yammer, it's not particularly clear what this really means, so let me explain.

Why would you want to connect Yammer with Lync (Skype for Business), regular Skype, Slack, HipChat, HipChat Server, Salesforce Chatter, Cisco Spark, Cisco Jabber, or other collaboration platforms?

In a word, because of entropy (increasing, obviously).

Let's consider the process of a mid-sized company adopting Microsoft Office 365.

On Monday, everyone starts using email with Microsoft Outlook.

On Tuesday, a subset of employees discover Outlook Groups—one place for team communications and sharing on mobile, on the web, and on the desktop—and start using that.

On Wednesday, IT conducts a Microsoft Skype for Business training session, and some folks in accounts and marketing begin using Skype for Business for meetings and messaging.

On Thursday, account executives ask IT how to migrate existing Microsoft Skype groups with customers to Skype for Business, and, upon learning the answer (“you can’t”), double down on their use of regular, not-for-business, Skype.

Later on Thursday, summer interns tasked with field research realize they need something that works well on mobile and start a tried-and-true Microsoft GroupMe group.

On Friday, there’s an all-hands manadatory Microsoft Yammer training, resulting in a handful of new fans—particularly among executives—excited about the faster, smarter way to connect and collaborate across the company.

On Saturday, there’s a multi-hour service outage that sends ops and development teams scrambling to organize a recovery task force while stuck on playgrounds, boats, road bicycles, and parents-in-law’s back yards. The outage finally gets resolved with the help of group SMS.

Later that day, the engineering manager creates a HipChat team, hooks up integrations to GitLab and JIRA and send invites to the entire engineering department.

On Sunday, the ops manager returns from an off-the-grid hike in the Stanislaus National Forest and, upon learning the details of Saturday’s meltdown, creates a Slack team and requires all ops people to use it for all communication.

The sales team doesn’t notice any of it: they swear by Salesforce Chatter to connect, engage, and motivate employees—ones with a Salesforce license that is—to work efficiently across the organization regardless of role or location.

The resulting fragmentation across collaboration systems is almost impossible to undo and will continue to increase and accelerate as the company grows, new tools emerge, and teams become more specialized.

If the rumors don’t disappoint, Microsoft Skype Teams will soon become available as an alternative to HipChat and Slack—to the delight of those aiming to keep their company fragmented primarily across Microsoft’s stack.

Back to our mid-sized Office 365 company: we fast forward to the next executive meeting and overhear high praise for Yammer as a platform and bewildered disappointment at low adoption. Why won’t they all just use Yammer?

The executives mostly ¯\_(ツ)_/¯, but one of them suggests “using one of those integration services, like I T F T, or whatever it’s called, to cross-connect all the stuff we use around the company to Yammer.”

Brilliant! That’s exactly why you’d use the Sameroom Yammer integration. To empower teams to use whatever works best for them, while avoiding the immurement of resulting organizational memory that should— no, must!—be available to the entire company.

Instructions

The Sameroom Yammer integration can be configured to sync all top-level messages and files (but not comments) between a Yammer group and a room or channel in another collaboration platform.

It’s also possible to 2-way sync all comments in a Yammer post with a room or channel in another platform. This option is only available to users of Sameroom Enterprise, through -sameroom open/connect or -sameroom portal commands.

  1. We recommend creating a new Yammer user for the integration (with a name like Relay, or similar) and adding this special account to Sameroom on the Accounts page. If your Yammer group is private, invite the Relay account.

  2. Next, authenticate with a chat account you’d like connect with Yammer on the same Accounts page.

  3. On the Open a Tube page, select your Yammer account in Step 1 and your Yammer group in Step 2, for Side A. For Side B, select the room or channel in the other platform.

Below is a video of the integration in an Enterprise environment, where a Tube is created with open/connect commands. (To set up your own Enterprise environment, please fill out form 27B/6.)

Introducing Provider Health Status

By @abs

A key challenge for Sameroom—a technology that deals with dozens of external services—is resilience.

If some subset of external chat services misbehaves, Sameroom users of the healthy set should remain blissfully unaware of any trouble. When a misbehaving service comes back online, Sameroom has to detect this and re-enable all affected integrations, as quickly as possible.

We've spent quite some time tuning Sameroom to comply with these requirements, with pretty good results.

Next, we had to figure out a way to visualize the overall status, to give our customers a way to conduct first-line-of-defense troubleshooting in case something goes wrong.

Today, we're launching the first version of our Provider Health Status page:

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The Provider Health Status page is home to a graph with three pieces of information: the types of services in play (including the mysterious Other), the relative size of each service's slice out of the overall pie (all active—at least one live Tube—accounts registered with Sameroom), and the ratio of failed-to-healthy connections within each slice.

Our next task is to separate the various IRC networks into independent providers (they've historically been lumped into an umbrella "IRC" one) and to gather user feedback.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this new functionality, drop us a line.

Sameroom Enterprise

Today we're announcing Sameroom Enterprise—a set of features designed for managing Sameroom at larger companies.

These features include an [almost] unlimited Tube budget, access control policy, custom branding, team admin access, aggregate views of all accounts, Tubes, and Portals, and a searchable event log.

Each enterprise account gets a custom domain, like yourcompany.sameroom.io. Custom branding can be applied to the header and footer.

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Reserved Domains

One of the main features of the enterprise version is the concept of reserved domains: whenever a user signs up for Sameroom with a chat service associated with any of your corporate domains, the user is redirected to your corporate Sameroom page.

By signing into the corporate Sameroom account, a user doesn't have to worry about purchasing a subscription—they get access to the near-unlimited Tube budget (100K Tubes).

In return, IT admins gain visibility into high-level user actions—adding and removing accounts, or creating and deleting Portals and Tubes. (Not the content, however—just fact of existence.)

Admin Accounts

IT admins get special Sameroom accounts, with four additional features:

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The Admins view is list of privileged users:

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All Accounts View

Whenever someone adds their chat service account to your corporate Sameroom, the details of their account will appear in this administrative view.

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All Tubes and Portals View

Similarly, all Tubes or Portals created by anyone within your corporate Sameroom appear in the All Tubes and Portals view. List items are greyed out because they belong to users other than the logged-in admin.

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Security log

The Security Log is a searchable list of events related to Sameroom accounts, Tubes, and Portals within your corporate Sameroom environment. Events have permanent URLs and are searchable by type and a variety of time ranges.

For example, the query type:portal date:2016-05 returns all Portal-related events from May, 2016.

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Announcing Integration with IRCCloud

By @abs

If you’re in the market for an IRC-based collaboration system to keep your team connected in real time, IRCCloud for teams is your poison.

With IRCCloud for teams, your team—for $5/member/month—gets a private, cloud-based IRC server with web and mobile access, unlimited history access, and premium customer support (among other things).

But, as it happens in 2016, even after setting up your bespoke, cozy, ascetic collaboration hub with IRCCloud, you’ll likely find yourself and your teammates switching around like crazy between

  • A ton of Slack teams
  • Gitter
  • Skype
  • Hangouts
  • Two HipChat teams
  • That one Twitter DM group, whatever it’s called

Our new IRCCloud integration lets you not only create real-time, 2-way "tubes" between your team channels and rooms/channels in other services, but also create Portals to your team channels, which you can use to let anyone—a partner, customer, or vendor—to connect from their team chat, simply by navigating to a URL.

Furthermore, and somewhat unexpectedly, Sameroom brings federation to IRCCloud for teams, enabling two companies, on two different IRCCloud teams, to share a channel—safely, securely, and in a way that makes lawyers happy (because both parties retain history).

"Only two?"—I hear you sighing and shaking your head in disappointment. That was just a figure of speech! You can federate between any number of companies.

(To give it a try, start here.)

Announcing Our Integration with Planio Team Chat

Today we’ve released a new integration with Planio team chat.

Planio is an issue tracking tool for software developers. It’s based on open-source Redmine, and it includes an agile board, git hosting, and team chat based on IRC.

Team chat is a great way to surface updates to issues in your issue tracker. When you update an issue, it will show up in chat, giving you a real-time feed of what is happening in your organization.

You can now pipe those updates from Planio team chat in any of the other chat services supported by Sameroom.

To get started, follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Connect your Planio account to Sameroom on https://sameroom.io/accounts.
  • Step 2: Open a Tube between the Planio chat room for Side A and the other chat service for Side B. Note that you can choose another Planio team chat channel for Side B as well.

Now, you’ll be to pipe updates from Planio Team Chat to any of the other chat services, and updates in those services will show up in the Planio Team Chat channel.

You can also share your Planio team chat with another team (where you don't have an account) via a Sameroom Portal URL. You can create a Portal URL on this page: https://sameroom.io/create-a-portal.