Curated for content, computing, and digital experience professionals

Year: 2019 (Page 1 of 4)

Gilbane Advisor 11-20-19 — content value, enterprise search, EU, GOOG, FB

Content accounting: calculating value of content in the enterprise

Sarah O’Keefe provides a guide for measuring the business value of content for companies of all sizes. Helpful for content professionals, project managers, and senior management. Includes a sample P&L and balance sheet. Justify your project. Read More

content balance sheet

Content management on intranets: centralized, distributed, and hybrid models

This will be basic for many of you but is a clear and accessible description of the differences and the pros and cons of each model to share with non-specialist or non-technical colleagues. Read More

Google vs EU pubs and Facebook’s new trick

Frederic Filloux looks at the state of the complicated dance among EU publishers, Google, and Facebook in light of the recent announcements and motivations of each of them, and some research on news search behavior. A good read. Read More

The key to millions: enterprise search?

Steve Arnold dishes out a dose of reality in his inimitable slightly snarky way on the realities of the enterprise search market. Read More


The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.

Gilbane Advisor 10-22-19 — Interoperability, ambient computing, CCPA

Microsoft puzzling announcements

Jean-Louis Gassée has some good questions, including… “Is Microsoft trying to implement a 21st century version of its old Embrace and Extend maneuver — on Google’s devices and collaboration software this time?” Read More

Microsoft Duo

Integrated innovation and the rise of complexity

While Stephen O’Grady’ post isn’t addressing Microsoft’s recent Surface announcements as Gassée was, it is an interesting companion, or standalone read. Read More

Google and ambient computing

‘Ambient computing’ has mostly been associated with the Internet of Things (IoT). There are many types of computing things. But the most important, from a world domination perspective, are those at the center of (still human) experience and decision-making; that is mobile (and still desktop) computing devices. The biggest challenge is the interoperability required at scale. This is fundamental to computing platform growth and competitive strategies (see Gassée’s question above). Ben Thompson analyzes Google recent announcements in this context. Read More

Attention marketers: in 12 weeks, the CCPA will be the national data privacy standard. Here’s why

Now it’s 10 weeks. Tim Walters makes a good case for his prediction even though other states are working on their own legislation, and Nevada has a policy already in effect. Read More


The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.

Gilbane Advisor 9-18-19 — Good/bad Google, multi-purpose content, face recognition & DBs

Less than half of Google searches now result in a click

Some mixed news about Google for publishers and advertisers in the past few weeks. We’ll start with the not-so-good news about clicks, especially as it turns out, for mobile, detailed by Rand Fishkin…

We’ve passed a milestone in Google’s evolution from search engine to walled-garden. In June of 2019, for the first time, a majority of all browser-based searches on Google resulted in zero-clicks. Read More

Google organic click stats

Google moves to prioritize original reporting in search

Nieman Labs’ Laura Hazard Owen provides some context on the most welcome change Google’s Richard Gingras announced last week. Of course there are questions around what ‘original reporting’ means, for Google and all of us, and we’ll have to see how well Google navigates this fuzziness. Read More

Designing multi-purpose content

The efficiency and effectiveness of multi-purpose content strategies are well known, as are many techniques for successful implementation. What is not so easy is justifying, assembling, and educating a multi-discipline content team. Content strategist Michael Andrews provides a clear explanation and example of the benefits of multi-purpose content designed by a cross-functional team that is accessible for non-specialists. Read More

Face recognition, bad people and bad data

Benedict Evans…

We worry about face recognition just as we worried about databases – we worry what happens if they contain bad data and we worry what bad people might do with them … we worry what happens if it [facial recognition] doesn’t work and we worry what happens if it does work.

This comparison turns out to be a familiar and fertile foundation for exploring what can go wrong and what we should do about it.

The article also serves as a subtle and still necessary reminder that face recognition and other machine learning applications are vastly more limited than what ‘AI’ conjures up for many. Read More


A few more links in this issue as we catch up from our August vacation.

The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content management, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.

Gilbane Advisor 7-29-19 — Enterprise ML risk, web contract, web 3.0, news & scale

Managing ML in the enterprise

Regulated industries are often among the first to figure out how to implement new technologies in complex, high risk environments. This O’Reilly article looks at how finance (mostly) and health care model risk in the context of machine learning. There are useful and important lessons for enterprises in general. Read More


Model risk management

A contract for the Web

We all know the web has a boatload of challenges coming from a collection of commercial and national sources intent on subverting or replacing it. But organizations and consumers of the web have also been too complacent as these threats have grown. The World Wide Web Foundation’s mission is to “advance the open web as a public good and a basic right.” by changing government and business policies. The foundation has just published a draft “Contract for the Web” and is asking for input from governments, businesses, and citizens. That’s right, they want your opinion. Read More

Is Web3.0 the next lifestyle brand?

Web 3.0 does not, and will likely never have, a canonical definition. Web 3.0 refers to a collection of aspirations, similar to those of the Web Foundations’, and new technologies to support those aspirations and a decentralized web, such as blockchain and crypto. Since these technologies are not widely understood, marketing Web 3.0 etc. is a problem. Jeremy Epstein has some “half-baked” (his words) ideas on relating it to modern intentional lifestyle choices as away to build support. Read More

By running unwitting PR for Jeffrey Epstein, Forbes shows the risks of a news outlet thinking like a tech platform

If journalists want to criticize the anything-goes ethos of Facebook, it’s only fair to note when news organizations’ hunger for scale leads them down the same problematic path. Read More


The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.

Gilbane Advisor 6-26-19 —, iPadOS, open AI, agile vs waterfall

Introducing Deepnews Digest

Frederic Filloux and team have been working for 18 months on the project that uses a deep learning model to find the most relevant and non-duplicative articles on a particular news topic. They recently released a beta version of a newsletter that uses their model. The project, and his progress reports, are worth a look. Read More

Deepnews Digest 600

Agile versus waterfall

Apparently, there is some controversy over which approach is best. While this might make sense for a particular project, choosing one as an overall technology strategy is just silly. Scott Brinker explains (though he doesn’t say ‘silly’). Read More

The iPad operating system

Horace Dediu has one of the best takes on Apple’s WWDC announcements. I would agree that the new iPadOS is the most interesting/surprising of the announcements (Dediu says “most significant”). But I think the most interesting, if more predictable, announcement is the separation of the Apple watch App Store access from the phone. This is an important step in making the watch a stand-alone computing device with market reach well beyond Apple. Read More

AI can thrive in open societies

According to foreign-policy experts and the defense establishment, the United States is caught in an artificial intelligence arms race with China—one with serious implications for national security. The conventional version of this story suggests that the United States is at a disadvantage because of self-imposed restraints on the collection of data and the privacy of its citizens, while China, an unrestrained surveillance state, is at an advantage … This idea makes for a compelling narrative, especially for those trying to justify surveillance—whether government- or corporate-run. But it ignores some fundamental realities about how AI works and how AI research is conducted. Read More


The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content management, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.

Digital Experience is all about integration and agility

“Digital Experience” (DX) covers a lot of territory – so much so that discussions about DX technology often result in a consensus that collapses as projects surface incompatible expectations. “Customer Experience” (CX) had a similar problem, getting way out of hand with expectations of “omnichannel”, including brick and mortar. If you’ve been around enterprise software for a while you’ll be familiar with software category labels outgrowing their britches and acting like they can do anything, if you’ll forgive the anthropomorphizing. 

Digital experience is not a single thing that you buy. It is a solution you build with unique collections of products for a specific audience. This is not a walk in the park given the vast number of potentially-relevant components. It can help to keep in mind a few universal laws of enterprise software, and one very relevant piece of history. 

Universal laws of enterprise software

  • Software products never stop growing. Even if there were a cure for feature bloat, ongoing maintenance will add code.
  • Software categories, which are created by a combination software marketers and industry analysts, grow, shrink, and get re-purposed to meet the business needs of their creators, and to accommodate new technologies and industry applications. 
  • Software companies, like all businesses, need continuous growth. That means new products, expanded product capabilities, perhaps a suite, and if possible, a platform play for a bigger piece of the pie.
  • Software needs to be integratable because enterprises have complex data and workflows that all involve software. 
  • Software needs to be agile because even the best software engineers and product managers can’t anticipate all the ways customers will use the software, and neither can their customers. 

A lesson from the past

Before the Web juggernaut progress had been made in building graphical user interfaces for business applications and managing and presenting digital content in increasingly friendly ways. But the solutions were mainly proprietary, which meant multiple user interface learning curves, and complex and costly integrations. The Web, with a much simplified and standardized markup language for content and a way to present it in a browser, soon became the dominant digital experience for both business and personal computing. The Web experience was so simple that the audience for digital content increased dramatically. Brochure-ware and simple intranets blossomed. Then things got complicated. 

The promise of e-commerce and new business models fueled investment fever. But the integrations required between the web publishing and the backend systems necessary to support web commerce (pricing databases, supply chain, logistics, etc.), didn’t exist. Early attempts to build them were custom, complex, and costly, and the results were fragile. The technical challenges were compounded by a lack of domain and integration expertise in dot-com startups, and a lack of agility and organizational resistance in larger organizations. “Frictionless commerce” failed on the front and back-ends, and the dot-com bubble burst.

DX today

We have come a long way, but the pace of new technologies ensures integration and agility will remain core challenges. DX is riding high today and that is a good thing. DX is not a bubble. But that doesn’t mean there won’t be overly ambitious strategies, unsuccessful implementations, and weak products. 

  • Don’t forget the laws of enterprise software, or the lessons from the dot-com crash. 
  • Note that integratablility and agility are as critical for operational efficiency as they are for a smooth digital experience. 
  • DX is about audiences, not just about customers, employees, or partners – each of these can be made up of many audiences. 
  • Scope for success. Ensure your strategy includes achievable projects for well-defined audiences. You will be more successful and able to implement in less time by picking specific integrations that have high value, for example, content management ( CMS) with CRM, or e-commerce. 
  • Don’t limit DX technology research to a single analyst firm. They mostly cover the same vendors, but their analysis often differs significantly. 
  • Be sure to develop enough in-house expertise to make well-informed decisions about the applicability and readiness of new technologies such as deep learning, AR, blockchain. 

And of course, join us at Gilbane’s Digital Experience Conference in Washington DC, April 29 – May 1, 2019, where we’ll be looking at the latest DX technologies, integration strategies, and practices.

NOTE: This article was first published by eContent Magazine on November 26, 2018

Gilbane Advisor 6-4-19 — Martech metrics, B2C AR, B2B AR, machine talking

Martech stack metrics

Scott Brinker: “Martech stack utilization is a misguided metric… (when it’s disconnected from value)”. This is certainly true. Products/tools in your stack usually have many features, only a subset of which actually provide value for your needs. Identifying and

Martech stack value

focusing on those features can save resources and provide more accurate ROI calculations. Read More

4 questions retailers need to ask about augmented reality

It seemed like AR was poised for rapid adoption (beyond Pokémon Go) a couple of years ago when apps started appearing from Ikea and others. Indeed I thought so. There has certainly been a lot of activity and some very useful applications, but as usual the use-case specifications, cost justifications, integrations, and learning curve take a time-toll. Bain & Company has some good advice for execs creating or reviewing a plan. Read More

Google announces a new Glass augmented reality headset for B2B

Much of the advice in the Bain article we reference above is also relevant to non-consumer AR applications. Whether B2B AR deployments are ahead of B2C or not, project planning should be informed by research into both. ROI calculations will be very different, but technologies and user experience design considerations largely overlap. Google Glass was a consumer flop but their Enterprise Edition is making some progress and what they are learning is valuable. After all, employees and professionals are consumers too. Read More

Can we trust machines that sound too much like us?

David Weinberger raises a good point. He is not asking whether we can trust machines. He is asking whether we want to loose the trust signals we get from talking with humans when we can’t tell the difference between machine and humans voices. He also wonders about the efficiency and how our preferences will evolve. Human sounding machines will not always be the right choice. Read More


The Gilbane Advisor curates content for content management, computing, and digital experience professionals. We focus on strategic technologies. We publish more or less twice a month except for August and December.

How to make a business case for voice and chatbot experiences

Gilbane’s Digital Experience Conference

Washington DC April 28 – 29, Workshops May 1

attendees taking notes

For all the promise of voice and chatbot applications, widespread adoption has been limited to fairly simple use cases, and even then getting the usability and appropriate scale right is a learning experience. This shouldn’t be surprising given the dependence on natural language processing. Nonetheless, the potential for well-designed voice and chatbot experiences is large. Erin Abler can help you understand why some organizations have been successful, and how you can get started with a business case. 

B205. Making the business case for voice and chatbot experiences

Conversational voice and chatbot experiences are rapidly becoming the new norm in our houses, cars, and even some workplaces. Getting your news, weather, and driving directions is now as easy as asking for them aloud. But if you’re wondering what the business case is, you’re not alone. For many product owners, strategists, and marketers, it’s still hard to envision a viable way to get started. We work with clients every day who’ve taken on this exact challenge and found success. Through real-world examples, this presentation will show you how to identify and pursue the right opportunity for your next conversational design project. We’ll cover why people choose conversational interactions over other digital experiences, how to uncover legitimate use cases for your business, and how to avoid common stumbling blocks in the design and development process. You’ll walk away knowing how to identify a compelling conversational experience for your brand, and be ready to navigate the challenges and opportunities of working with emerging conversational interfaces.

Tuesday, April 30: 4:15 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Erin Abler

Erin Abler
Principal Conversational Designer



Learn more & register with code FG19 for best available price


Diamond sponsors

Google Cloud

Platinum sponsors

SAP digital experience
RingCentral logo


Gilbane Conferences have been providing content, computing, and digital experience professionals with trusted content since 2002.

« Older posts

© 2024 The Gilbane Advisor

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑