JBoss, Inc. announced JBoss Portal 2.4, which adds support for the Web Services for Remote Portlets (WSRP) specification, a standard for enterprise portals and service-oriented architectures (SOAs). Supporting both the Java portlet API (JSR-168) and now WSRP, JBoss Portal is an extensible portal framework that integrates dynamic Web pages, applications and content within reusable portlets. Instead of bundling portlets and the portal into a single application, users can deploy portlets remotely and let the portal consume portlets as needed via WSRP. WSRP support in JBoss Portal 2.4 extends to both the producer, i.e., portlet containers, and the consumer, which is the system communicating with presentation-oriented Web services on behalf of users. Version 2.4 supports service description and markup interfaces and implicit cloning for both producers and consumers. In addition, version 2.4 extends support on the consumer side to standard window states and mode and the registration interface. The company also announced that it has joined OASIS (Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards), the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and WS-I (Web Services Interoperability). The JBoss community is also enhancing the JEMS platform with related technologies such as portlets and content management systems that enable enterprises to pick and choose the extensions that make the most sense for their portal applications. A library of portlets, themes and layouts contributed by the community is available. Licensed under the open source GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL), JBoss Portal is free to download and use for both development and production deployments. http://www.jboss.com, http://www.portletswap.com
The OpenDocument OASIS Standard (also known as ODF – OpenDocument Format), a format which enables users of varying office suites to freely exchange documents, has been approved for release as an ISO and IEC International Standard. OpenDocument was balloted through the Joint Technical Committee on Information Technology (JTC1) of the International Standards Organization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). The OASIS OpenDocument submission has been given the designation, ISO/IEC 26300. OpenDocument defines an XML file format for office applications. Suitable for text, spreadsheets, charts, graphs, presentations, and databases, the standard frees documents from their applications-of-origin, enabling them to be exchanged, retrieved, and edited with any OpenDocument-compliant software or tool. In May 2005, OpenDocument was ratified as an OASIS Standard and subsequently submitted by OASIS to the ISO/IEC JTC 1, Information technology, subcommittee SC 34, Document description and processing languages. As ISO/IEC 26300, the standard will continue to be maintained and advanced by the OASIS OpenDocument Technical Committee and the recently formed OASIS ODF Adoption Committee, both of which remain open to participation from users, suppliers, government agencies, and individuals. Current members of OASIS committees focusing on OpenDocument include representatives of Adobe, IBM, Intel, Novell, Oracle, and Sun Microsystems, as well as government agencies and other organizations, such as the Chanfeng Open Standards Platform Software Alliance in China, National Informatics Center of the Government of India, Netherlands Tax and Customs Administration, Royal National Institute for the Blind, and Duke University. http://www.oasis-open.org, http://www.iso.org
Stibo Catalog announced the next generation of STEP. With STEP 4.8 Stibo Catalog will release a new merchandising planning module to help catalogers drive sales. STEP Merchandiser gives product managers on-demand visibility and lets them analyze product performance of products and pages. The tool lets merchandisers pre-plan pages, as well as initiate product, image and copy writing workflows. Designed to tear down the walls between product managers and creatives, STEP Merchandiser will help reduce review cycles and increase the speed to market of new promotions and multiple versions. STEP Document Author is a new optional module designed to create documents such as data sheets and provide detailed information about a product that will often include tables, diagrams and long descriptive text and editorial text. Data sheets are updated regularly and reused throughout the life of a product. These characteristics lead to publishing workflows that can be very different to those used when producing catalogs and other direct marketing publications. The new tool will include an authoring interface within STEP PIM that provides both creation and reuse of data within a document format STEP’n’design will provide a print publishing tool for documents enabling a multi-page document to be paginated fully formatted with a single drag & drop. STEP 4.8 will support print publishing with QuarkXPress v7 and Adobe InDesign CS2 as well as Quark DDS and Adobe InDesign Server. Other enhancements will include Proof views in STEP PIM, Image Workflows, user password authentication using LDAP and support of external digital asset management systems via Asset Push. Stibo Catalog will be working with selected customers on testing STEP 4.8 and expects to commercially release the solution in Q4, 2006.
CambridgeDocs announced xDoc Server Version 2.02, and with it the ability to publish Microsoft Word .DOC files to PDF in a cross-platform environment. The Java-based xDoc Server can be called from any J2EE application server, including the popular platforms IBM WebSphere, BEA WebLogic and Apache Tomcat. Organizations can now process and publish high volumes of Microsoft Word content on Windows, Linux and Solaris serves – free of the licensing and performance issues related to installing Microsoft Office or Adobe Acrobat or Distiller on a server. This links business users’ preferences for Microsoft Word into IT departments who are consolidating servers and implementing applications ranging from contract generation to custom publishing. Previous generations of PDF publishing have relied on direct “print-stream” approaches, which rely on the original desktop applications “print to” a PDF format. By using Java and XML, the multi-threaded xDoc Server can also merge individual Word files, add data from databases into document “templates”, and publish as XML, HTML, or Microsoft RTF. A benefit of using XML as the file format transformation medium for xDoc Server is it helps companies in maintain corporate branding for document “templates” for policies, applications or contracts that are created in Microsoft Word, and that then require database information to be merged into these “templates” as part of a multi-threaded J2EE application. In these scenarios, the documents can be concatenated or merged together as necessary before being published to PDF and thereby retain their corporate “look and feel”.
Open Text Corporation (NASDAQ:OTEX) (NASDAQ:TSX:) (NASDAQ:OTC) announced that it has extended its global agreement with HP to provide customers with solutions that improve the way documents, emails and other information are managed though complex business processes. The solutions from Open Text and HP will help better manage information throughout its lifecycle in ways that meet both compliance rules and efficiency demands. The solutions will use Open Text’s Livelink ECM software and compliance solutions with HP Integrity servers and the HP StorageWorks File System Extender offering. In addition to Europe, the companies will focus on opportunities in North America to work with systems integrators and consultants on compliance solutions. Open Text and HP’s combined offerings help customers manage the massive volumes of documents and other content generated by ERP systems that run critical business functions, such as finance and human resources. Open Text is a member of the HP StorageWorks Information Lifecycle Management Partner Program. http://www.opentext.com
Mediasurface announced the launch of Pepperio. Pepperio is a solution created specifically for small to medium sized businesses enabling them to manage and maintain a robust and professional company website, offered on a rental (“ASP”) basis exclusively by accredited partners such as design and website agencies. Pepperio offers: Web based user interface for the creation and maintenance of content, pages and sections; WYSIWYG editing tools; Search engine; Brand consistency with every page; Separate site structure from content giving flexibility to site layout; Better SEO with system generated ‘metatags’ and friendly URLs’ and Multilingual content. Small and medium sized businesses will be able to gain better control of their websites with Pepperio. In addition to enabling website management, directly from their own desktop, Pepperio allows them to accurately forecast their website costs, eliminating the need to go through lengthy and difficult internal decision making processes for a new website. Mediasurface is currently recruiting partners, who can serve as a ‘one stop shop’ offering a full range of services, without having to worry about the technicalities of creating, running and hosting a software application. Pepperio is offered at a special introductory price of only GBP 99 per month. ,
I couldn’t resist buying an Intel iMac and installing Windows on it. It really was incredibly simple to add Windows. I’m not sure how I will actually use both OSs yet, but it occurred to me that in the often heavily mixed Mac and PC creative and publishing environments, a few Macs running both operating systems could be very useful for smoothing out some workflows in potentially non-disruptive ways. I’ll let others figure out if this is the case, but one issue they will need to think through is whether to format their Windows partition with NTFS (more secure and reliable) or FAT (more compatible).