Bloomreach announced the launch of its new headless content module, Bloomreach Content. Bloomreach Content is built for commerce, enabling marketers and merchandisers to work as one to build immersive e-commerce experiences that enhance the customer journey.
Businesses of all kinds differentiate through immersive storytelling — content, images, and personalization that connect with customers and encourage them to convert with confidence. To achieve this, marketers and merchandisers must be empowered to work together, seamlessly connecting content and products throughout the consumer’s researching and shopping journey. Bloomreach Content helps close this gap with three areas of differentiation:
Fully SaaS: The Bloomreach Content module is fully SaaS, meaning it’s nimble, easy to implement, upgrades are automatic.
Merchandiser-friendly: Bloomreach Content offers marketers and merchandisers the ability to build and control the customer journey across digital channels, creating, testing, and customizing targeted, on-brand digital experiences.
Commerce-specific tools: Bloomreach Content users can enjoy fast page creation; in-page product merchandising; page scheduling; an API-first architecture; the ability to launch, manage, and customize campaign-specific landing pages and microsites, and more.
The new Bloomreach Content module is also integrated with modern commerce storefronts including Vue Storefront, Next.js Commerce, React Storefront 8, and SAP Spartacus, and supports modern web development platform partners Layer0, Netlify, and Vercel.
MerlinOne announced NOMAD, their new technology to search the visual content of objects, with no dependence on textual metadata. Need a photo of four people at a picnic? Just ask NOMAD to find it for you. Organizations may have their photos, graphics, illustrations and videos in a Digital Asset Management (DAM) system, but they still cannot find the right object they need while on deadline for a campaign. The problem is the scarcity of useful textual metadata which, so far, has been the only way DAM users can search their collections.
By applying a combination of Deep Learning AI technologies (all developed in-house by MerlinOne) to your search query, NOMAD understands the concept you are looking for and delivers precise results based solely on the visual content of an image, completely independent of the existence or accuracy of its metadata.
NOMAD understands language patterns as well as visual content. Just like it knows to group visually similar images, it also clusters phrases of similar meaning, reducing the dependency on a specific, controlled vocabulary to find what you’re looking for. NOMAD can be combined with other MerlinAI tools such as IMPACT and Visual Similarity to provide additional search capabilities.
This week we have articles by Kate Kaye, and Sarah Wang and Martin Casado, and news from Coveo, Quantum, Druid, Kentico, Retresco, and Mirakl.
Opinion / Analysis
Google may have to play nice in Privacy Sandbox, thanks to U.K. antitrust authority’s role as referee
Kate Kaye reports on Googles commitment to the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to allow them
to take up a role in the design and development of Google’s Privacy Sandbox proposals to ensure they do not distort competition. The CMA is now launching a consultation on whether to accept Google’s commitments. If accepted, the commitments would be legally binding.
This is related to CMA’s enforcement action against Google, the lack of support for FloC, and likely responsible for Googles recent decision to extend the life of cookies for two years. Kaye mentions the W3C, where there are ongoing discussions about privacy and what should be in a Privacy Sandbox, but it is not clear what CMA’s role would be —”referee” seems aspirational. It should be noted that Google is a master at creating industry initiatives and using their resources to influence or control development outcomes. FloC, AMP, Core Vitals, and schema.org structured data are all examples. (For deep dives see Michael Andrews’ Who benefits from schema.org?, and Scott Gilbertson on Core vitals and AMP).
A16z’s Sarah Wang and Martin Casado provide an eye-opening analysis of the short and long term costs of cloud computing. The near-term time-to-market and cost benefits of cloud are clear and well known, but over time they report
Across all our conversations with diverse practitioners, the pattern has been remarkably consistent: If you’re operating at scale, the cost of cloud can at least double your infrastructure bill. … the cost of cloud “takes over” at some point, locking up hundreds of billions of market cap that are now stuck in this paradox: You’re crazy if you don’t start in the cloud; you’re crazy if you stay on it.
The infrastructure costs go up if you stay on the cloud, and the cost and difficulty of moving off the cloud increase over time. They do offer some advice — mine is to read their article.
The Gilbane Advisor is curated by Frank Gilbane for content technology, computing, and digital experience professionals. The focus is on strategic technologies. We publish recommended articles and content technology news weekly. We do not sell or share personal data.
Neeva, an ads-free, private subscription search engine, announced the availability of its search product in the U.S. consumers can now go to neeva.com for a free three-month trial. Following the free trial, users can subscribe for $4.95 per month. Neeva is search reimagined — ads-free, private, and customizable. This all starts with flipping the traditional business model from an ads-based to a subscription-based service that is 100 percent focused on providing the best search experience for the consumer. Neeva delivers more relevant results and higher quality content. It blocks third-party trackers. And by connecting Neeva to email accounts, calendars, and cloud storage platforms, users can surface information that is most valuable to them without sacrificing privacy.
Moreover, Neeva supports the content ecosystem. Rather than being a toll collector for the web’s content, Neeva is strongly pro-publisher and is committed to creating revenue opportunities for content creators. Neeva will share at least 20% of topline revenue with content creator partners when their content is used to directly answer a Neeva customer’s query. Neeva provides a browser based extension, compatible with all major browsers, Chrome, Firefox, Brave, Edge and Safari. It runs across all devices and is available via an iOS app.
Coveo, provider of relevance platforms that transform search, recommendations, and personalization within digital experiences, announced new features in the Coveo Relevance Cloud to help ecommerce providers overcome a common obstacle in creating relevant web interactions, specifically for cold-start shoppers: lack of data. The Coveo Relevance Cloud’s new personalization-as-you-go capability leverages machine learning to help deliver personalized recommendations in real-time for anonymous shoppers without high volumes of data or segmentation rules, much like a sales assistant would look for visual cues from an in-store shopper. Coveo can learn in just a few clicks and react to current shopper intent with predictive query suggestions. Retailers can now aim to deliver personalization without the need for segments, profiles, user identification, or high volumes of data. Other capabilities now available in the Coveo Relevance Cloud that are salient to ecommerce practitioners, include: buy again recommendations, headless controller for product recommendations, smart catalog indexing, enriched commerce analytics and attribution dashboards, and Snowflake reader account access.
Solo.io, a modern API infrastructure company delivering application networking from the edge to service mesh, announced the general availability of the company’s API gateway based on Envoy Proxy, Gloo Edge 1.8, which is bundled with Gloo Portal 1.0, a full-feature developer portal for API management to catalog and share APIs. Both products are part of Solo.io’s Gloo API Infrastructure Platform, which allows organizations to transform to a cloud-native application architecture by connecting application services, service meshes, clusters, and clouds. Gloo Edge 1.8 includes:
Support for SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol)/XSLT: Additional XSLT (Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations) 3.0 support to modernize SOAP/XML clients and endpoints without eliminating SOAP from the web service portfolio.
Helm usability improvements: To define, set up, and configure applications and expose values in Helm, a CNCF project for users to define, install, and upgrade Kubernetes applications.
Improved Flagger in Envoy Proxy: Weaveworks’ Flagger as a native part of Gloo Edge for CI/CD management and traffic routing for A/B and canary testing.
Schema in Gloo Edge custom resource definition APIs (CRDs): The enablement of the use of schemas to validate CRD functions.
Gloo Portal 1.0 capabilities include: showback, chargeback, usage tracking of APIs; improved self-service usability; and full Gloo Edge integration.
DRUID introduces Oxygen, its latest technology release to advance the conversational automation space by making AI-driven virtual assistants’ deployments dramatically faster and simpler for companies of any size. DRUID Oxygen also introduces a new, more straightforward way for clients to design their intelligent virtual assistant with the help of an intuitive graphic interface. Conversational experiences can be designed visually by dragging and dropping different conversational flows into one diagram, which shows how the conversation with the bot would evolve. At the same time, this makes the chatbot implementation equally fast for a multinational with distributed teams of thousands of people as a small company with a dozen employees.
DRUID intelligent virtual assistants use an advanced NLP engine and proprietary conversational technology to accept and take action on virtually any data or document request within an enterprise’s technology ecosystem. Available in more than 45 languages, on any communication channel, including MS Teams, Slack, WhatsApp Business, FB Messenger, WeChat, and more. DRUID also includes more than 500 predefined conversational templates, targeting specific roles and processes in Financial Services, Insurance, Healthcare, Telecom, Retail, Energy and Utilities, Logistics, and other industries.
Quantum Corporation announced a new release of ActiveScale object storage software they say reshapes the way organizations store, manage, and extract value from their growing stores of unstructured data. ActiveScale 6.0 software delivers unlimited scalability and consistent performance at any scale without compromising data availability, durability, and security. This software is now available as a subscription on qualified platforms including the new ActiveScale X200 platform, a simplified and converged system platform that delivers high-density, high-capacity storage in a small footprint. ActiveScale 6.0 software is also now available for purchase through Supermicro, giving customers more purchasing options and flexibility to deploy ActiveScale software on the platform of their choice.
With ActiveScale, organizations can expand compute, networking, and storage resources for consistent performance with no performance tuning or rebalancing required. The unique, two-layer software architecture optimizes flash and disk resources, employing real-time heuristics to dynamically place data across all system resources in parallel for maximum efficiency and balanced long-term performance. When scaling out with the new platform, capacity, performance and object count are unlimited, creating a unified system cluster that grows to exabytes of capacity and billions of objects. Current ActiveScale customers benefit with the ability to easily expand their existing ActiveScale clusters with the new platform.