Jon Udell Says “Integration Is Hard”

… and he’s just talking about connecting Outlook 2007 and Google Calendar!

Bottom-line: support for standards is necessary but not sufficient. Even when products comply with standards like iCal, people struggle mightily to use those products interoperably. It’s the conceptual barriers that get in their way. It’s really hard to figure out how a concept expressed in one system maps to the same (or a similar) concept in another system. To make that easier, technology providers will have to agree on more than just protocols and file formats. We’ll also have to work together to minimize conceptual clutter and normalize core concepts.

Good to keep this in mind as we move forward with integrating wildly different social change tools.