I wasn't allowed to talk about this until now, but I wanted to share with you another of the reasons I'm not going to Lotusphere this year.

As I mentioned in my last post, I've made a lot of friends through Lotusphere and even got myself a wife in the process (a very good wife as a matter of fact). I'd also shared my Lotusphere experiences with several very close friends that I've worked with for many (many, many) years.

When I started my first job out of College at Basicomputer, we were all young geeks and many of us have stayed close over the years. Regarding a few of the guys (like Mike Mantho, Jeff Welch and David Via), we worked together in several jobs over the years. David, Mike and I all got into Lotus Notes at the same time (back in the Notes 2 timeframe) and we attended Lotusphere (with Jeff) together for many, many years. Mike's working at RIM and no longer makes it to Lotusphere. David remained tightly involved with Lotus (being an IBM employee) so I knew I would see him at Lotusphere every year. I might even go so far as to say that hanging out with him was one of my primary reasons for still going to Lotusphere these last few years. David is one of my best friends and hanging out with him at Lotusphere was one of my favorite yearly traditions.

Mike and Jeff have moved on to different things, and this year there's big changes for David as well. Although David Via has been very involved with Notes (now Domino) for so long, time are changing for him as well – he recently left his position at IBM and is joining the team I'm on at AT&T. No more Lotusphere's for either of us most likely.

David wrapped up his job at IBM at the end of the year and starts his new position (working with me again, amazing) at AT&T next week. I can't wait! David took over Ed Brill's old position; I wonder what IBM is going to do with the role now that David has left it. Only time will tell.

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