Curated for content, computing, and digital experience professionals

Day: January 19, 2007

Textbook Legislation

This week’s Campus Marketplace has a nice article summarizing new legislation meant to regulate the sale of college textbooks– www.nacs.org/news/011907-legislation.asp. I’m not sure that the proposed legislation will do much to help students. This legislation could yield a bigger win by providing incentives for the College Publishing industry to focus upon furthering true cross media publishing initiatives and on developing alternate revenue models. The result would be lower priced product suites that would offer more utility and value for students. Of course, the win for publishers would be reduced used books and higher recurring revenues.

Blackwell Publishing Revamps Online Delivery Platform

Oxford, UK , Boston, USA, and Melbourne, Australia —January 12th, 2007—Blackwell Publishing announced its newly redesigned online delivery platform, Blackwell Synergy (www.blackwell-synergy.com).
Blackwell Synergy enables its users to search 1 million articles from over 850 leading scholarly journals across the sciences, social sciences, humanities and medicine. The redesign provides easier navigation, faster loading times and improved access to tools for researchers, as well as meeting the latest accessibility standards (ADA section 508 and W3C’s WAI-AA).
The new Blackwell Synergy website retains all the essential benefits that researchers, librarians and authors value and uses the same URL structure. In addition to a new look and feel, features have been repositioned to highlight options more clearly to users and enable them to make best use of the suite of tools available such as most read and most cited articles, citation alerts, download to reference manager software, and the ability to email the article to a friend. Full-text online access to the journals on Blackwell Synergy is available at thousands of institutions worldwide.
Key site features for researchers include:
– clear search and browse functions and ability to search within other databases
– abstracts and sample issues free to all users
– many articles also free after a certain time or as open access through the OnlineOpen initiative
– HTML articles include embedded references, figures and tables
– OnlineEarly and OnlineAccepted articles available online before issue publication
– quick links to the most-downloaded and most-cited articles by journal
– reference links and citing article links allow users to follow the research
– export citations of articles directly into reference management software
– receive e-alerts for tables of contents, topic and author research alerts, citation alerts and OnlineEarly and OnlineAccepted alerts
– all e-alerts available as email or RSS newsfeeds
This release does a nice job of supporting new standards, passing information from articles to content management systems, and support of new RSS protocols. The Online early feature rewards publishers that have solid cross media publishing practices.

On Localization Strategy

The universal challenge for most companies today is delivering a customer experience that transcends geographical boundaries. And engaging customers regardless of geography and cultural expectations is no small feat. From a content perspective, a significant part of the challenge is defining the relevancy of information provided throughout the customer lifecycle. For non-English consumers, a key facet of relevancy is information in their native language. As Kaija reminds us her blog on Multilingual Terminology, “you can always buy in your own language, but you must sell in your customer’s language.”

As companies expand multinational revenue goals to include emerging markets such as China, India, and Latin America, providing content “in context” becomes even more important. From this perspective, localization strategies for various markets become much more than a cost burden. Rather, they become a driver of competitive advantage and a strong foundation for global brand management. This clearly extends potential benefits way beyond project and product-specific ROI.

Certainly, most companies cannot afford to “just translate everything.” And in fact, mass translation without any prioritization based on geographic market analysis is inevitably a money pit. Think of it this way: geography and culture are both market segments to be evaluated for the revenue, brand presence, and customer base they can provide

That means a localization strategy should have significant amounts of collaboration between departments such as marketing, sales, operations, technical documentation, and customer support. This enables everyone who “touches the customer” to understand market segment goals and priorities. Then, defining the level of translated content provided and where/how it gets used should match corporate goals (in addition to the expectations of the targeted audience!)

And here’s where it gets tricky. We’ve found that the problem for organizations is less about the act of translation itself, and more about aligning the business processes that support it. The good news is that many companies are sharing their challenges, successes, and best practices on tackling this very problem. Check out our Content Technology Works site to read their stories.

Inmagic and WebFeat Partner to Provide Inmagic Presto

Inmagic, Inc.and WebFeat announced a partnership that will enable Inmagic Presto customers to conduct federated searches across virtually unlimited external data sources. Inmagic Presto is a Web-based enterprise application that enables organizations to provide authorized end users with immediate and consolidated access to the right information, even when it appears in varied formats and multiple locations across and outside of the organization. WebFeat users can simultaneously search across unlimited numbers of resources from a single interface. WebFeat’s translator authentication and session management technology enables WebFeat to search virtually any searchable database. WebFeat maintains a library of over 6,000 database translators. http://www.webfeat.org, http://www.inmagic.com

JustSystems to Provide xfy adapter for Notes and Domino

JustSystems, Inc. announced plans to launch its “xfy adapter” for IBM Lotus Notes and Domino. The adapter enables organizations to handle data stored in Lotus Notes and Domino databases in xfy, an application development and mashup platform for XML data. The new xfy adapter can access data stored in a Lotus Notes or Domino database, allowing organizations to leverage existing infrastructure investments and information. By combining this data with XML data from an XML database, XML documents within an organization or through Web services, it unlocks the information by presenting it visually with the xfy platform. xfy offers a wizard-like process to allow users to access external systems and applications. The XML data obtained from these sources is analyzed automatically, and displayed in a visual presentation that also enables end-users to switch the view and analyze the data from different angles. The original data is not edited or altered, so it enables organizations to comply with data security requirements. The adapter is scheduled for availability later this year. http://www.justsystems.com, http://www.xfy.com

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