What about letting 3:rd party mail applications connect to Domino server for mail _and_ calendar/contacts/RnR?
Since IBM can charge for clients connecting to the Domino server it could be a nice deal for IBM. This could open new markets where the Notes client is seen as clumpsy and also have a bad name.
Possible solutions to acheive this:
1) IBM opens the source code for parts the Notes client (where properity stuff is removed), only to have the basic features for mail/calendar/RnR/Contacts still there. This mail client is driven as a community project which IBM sponsors. This mail client could become popular with a user community also adding features (similar to Thunderbird). Whis would be excellent marketing and goodwill towards IBM!
2) IBM writes a plugin for Thunderbird (and/or similar products like Evolution/Kmail etc) which makes the mail client also be able to use contacts/calendar/RnR.
Any of these alternatives will make Domino as a mail server a much more popular product and it will open new markets. Maybe in many cases move customers away from Outlook.
None of the alternatives would be that expensive for IBM, the trick is to extend Domino server with a new API so that you do not need Notes API-libraries to talk to Domino server (similar to what Lotus Traveler does), which is for example what Imap does (but just for mail). The client implementation is in alternative 1) maybe a big project but alternative 2) is not that big project.
Thunderbird project is without sponsor at this moment since Mozilla left it, now is an excellent moment for IBM to take over that project as a main sponsor.
If you do not agree, what is your reasons?