Archive for ECM – Enterprise Content Management

Box Announces Google Docs Integration announced new integration with Google Docs. Box users can now create, edit and concurrently edit with Google Docs. In the announcing blog post, doubt was expressed by over Microsoft opening Office 365 to 3rd party developers like themselves, and thus implies that this integration with Google will be the focus of the platform for the foreseeable future.

e-Spirit Integrates FirstSpirit CMS Into Liferay Portal

e-Spirit AG has added the open source Liferay Portal to their range of possibilities for integration of the FirstSpirit content management system into enterprise portals. The module was developed in cooperation with e-Spirit’s technology partner USU. Integrating FirstSpirit in Liferay will allow organizations to create employee portals that combine Enterprise 2.0 functionality, IT applications, content and collaboration. Organizations will also be able to provide their employees with access to Web 2.0 functions such as forums, blogs and wikis and offering them a platform to efficiently organize collaboration and share information beyond individual departments. The new module will be available in May.

What’s Next with Smart Content?

Over the past few weeks, since publishing Smart Content in the Enterprise, I’ve had several fascinating lunchtime conversations with colleagues concerned about content technologies. Our exchanges wind up with a familiar refrain that goes something like this. “Geoffrey, you have great insights about smart content but what am I supposed to do with all this information?” Ah, it’s the damning with faint praise gambit that often signals an analysis paralysis conundrum for decision-making.

Let me make one thing perfectly clear — I do not have an out-of-the-box prescription for a solution. It’s not simply a matter of focusing on your customer experience, optimizing your content for search, investing in a component content management platform, or adopting DITA – although, depending on the situation, I may recommend some combination of these items as part of a smart content strategy.

For me, smart content remains a work in progress. I expect to develop the prescriptive road map in the months ahead. Here’s a quick take on where I am right now.

  • For publishers, it’s all about transforming the publishing paradigm through content enrichment – defining the appropriate level of granularity and then adding the semantic metadata for automated processing.
  • For application developers, it’s all about getting the information architecture right and ensuring that it’s extensible. There needs to be sensible storage, the right editing and management tools, multiple methods for organizing content, as well as a flexible rendering and production environment.
  • For business leaders and decision makers, there needs to be an upfront investment in the right set of content technologies that will increase profits, reduce operating costs, and mitigate risks. No, I am not talking about rocket science. But you do need a technology strategy and a business plan.

As highlighted by the case studies included in the report, I can point to multiple examples where organizations have done the right things to produce notable results. Dale and I will continue the smart content discussions at the Gilbane Boston conference right after Thanksgiving, both through our preconference workshop, and at a conference session “Smart Content in the Real World: Case Studies and Real Results.”

We are also launching a Smart Content Readiness Service, where we will engage with organizations on a consulting basis to identify:

  • The business drivers where smart content will ensure competitive advantage when distributing business information to customers and stakeholders
  • The technologies, tools, and skills required to componentized content, and target distribution to various audiences using multiple devices
  • The operational roles and governance needed to support smart content development and deployment across an organization
  • The implementation planning strategies and challenges to upgrade content and creation and delivery environments

Please contact me if you are interested in learning more.

In short, to answer my lunchtime colleagues, I cannot (yet) prescribe a fully baked solution. It’s too early for the recipes and the cookbook. But I do believe that the business opportunities and benefits are readily at hand. At this point, I would invite you to join the discussion by letting me know what you expect, what approaches you’ve tried, where you’ve wound up, what you think needs to come next – and how we might help you.

Rivet Software Launches Crossfire 3.0 for Financial Communications

Rivet Software, the premier provider of standards-based business reporting and analytics, announced the release of Crossfire 3.0, an enhanced software platform that simplifies the process of SEC financial filings by managing the complicated preparation and review processes. Crossfire uses eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) technology to control document progression and centralize reviewers’ comments. Crossfire 3.0 is a standards-based reporting platform that specializes in internal and external financial reporting and analytics. Based on an XBRL framework, Crossfire 3.0 simplifies the user experience by eliminating the file management issue. Rivet’s integrated solution allows its customers to control the financial reporting cycle and comply with all SEC filing needs. Crossfire 3.0 includes an integrated Reviewer’s Guide that allows preparers and reviewers to closely collaborate across multiple iterations as the filing progresses from inception to completion. With this guide, users no longer need to interact with standalone documents to review XBRL tag selections and comment information. This “single document” system streamlines the process for reviewing and approving filings in a way not previously available. Crossfire 3.0 now preserves existing tags and comments when rolling forward from one filing to the next. When new data matches an XBRL tag from the previous quarter, Crossfire recognizes the match and automatically applies the tag throughout the document. The latest release of Crossfire allows users to change XBRL-tagged data in one location and instantly apply that change to exact-matched data throughout the entire document. Crossfire 3.0 includes the ability to split the XBRL templates so a filing can be worked on by different people in parallel. Once the separate pieces are complete, a user can simply merge them back into the master file. Crossfire 3.0 is supported by Rivet’s global professional services team 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

eZ unveils eZ Publish Enterprise 4.4

eZ has introduced eZ Publish Enterprise, which provides a package of software and services in a integrated, pay as you go product. As an eZ Publish Enterprise product, you will get all the power of the eZ Publish community project, along with professionally supported software that includes additional Enterprise features and services. This release of eZ Publish Enterprise integrates all the Enterprise services into a Service Portal in the administration interface of eZ Publish, making administrators’ lives simpler. With version 4.4, eZ Publish provides users a range of features that will help them succeed in their day-to-day use of eZ Publish, whether they are end users, occasional contributors, editors or administrators. The brand new built-in Online Image Editor will provide a simple way for editors to perform the most common tasks of photo management in eZ Publish. New with this version is the native support for HTML5 video without need for advanced development. Publishing on mobile devices such as the iPhone and iPad has been made easier. User Generated Content gets a helping hand with the addition of native support for reCaptcha, the Google-based free captcha service on the web, which helps prevent your website from being infested by spam. A new User Session handler gives more possibilities for the configuration of web servers. File system-based user session management multiplies the performance of eZ Publish servers when talking to a large audience of anonymous users. A new Archiving toolkit implements large volume archiving scenarios where old content can be moved to archive repositories, and can still be searched and rendered with the eZ Publish presentation engine. eZ Publish 4.4 improves section management, multi-site setup, and extension loading, but the biggest news is the Developer Preview of the forthcoming eZ Publish API. The eZ Publish API shows the way for developing remote applications for new devices. Connecting to eZ Publish and using its content and functionalities is easier than ever. The light-weight remote API makes eZ Publish the platform of choice for Mobile Content Management, whether you focus on the iPhone and iPad platforms, Android or Blackberry. The new Newsletter system, developed in collaboration with the CJW partner, an eZ partner and active member of the eZ community, is a prime example of community innovation.

How Smart Content Aids Distributed Collaboration

Authoring in a structured text environment has traditionally been done with dedicated structured editors. These tools enable validation and user assisted markup features that help the user create complete and valid content. But these structured editors are somewhat complicated and unusual and require training in their use for the user to become proficient. The learning curve is not very steep but it does exist.

Many organizations have come to see documentation departments as a process bottleneck and try to engage others throughout the enterprise in the content creation and review processes. Engineers and developers can contribute to documentation and have a unique technical perspective. Installation and support personnel are on the front lines and have unique insight into how the product and related documentation is used. Telephone operators not only need the information at their fingertips, but can also augment it with comments and ides that occur while supporting users. Third-party partners and reviewers may also have a unique perspective and role to play in a distributed, collaborative content creation, management, review, and delivery ecosystem.

Our recently completed research on XML Smart Content in the Enterprise indicates that as we strive to move content creation and management out of the documentation department silo, we will also need to consider how the data is encoded and the usefulness of the data model in meeting our expanded business requirements. Smart content is multipurpose content designed with several uses in mind. Smart content is modular to support being assembled in a variety of forms. And smart content is structured content that has been enriched with semantic information to better identify it’s topic and role to aide processing and searching. For these reasons, smart content also improves distributed collaboration. Let me elaborate.

One of the challenges for distributed collaboration is the infrequency of user participation and therefore, unfamiliarity with structured editing tools. It makes sense to simplify the editing process and tools for infrequent users. They can’t always take a refresher course in the editor and it’s features. They may be working remotely, even on a customer site installing equipment or software. These infrequent users need structured editing tools that are designed for them. These collaboration tools need to be intuitive and easy to figure out, easily accessible from just about anywhere, and should be affordable and have flexible licensing to allow a larger number of users to participate in the management of the content. This usually means one of two things: either the editor will be a plug in to another popular word processing system (e.g., MS Word), or it will be accessed though a thin-client browser, like a Wiki editor. In some environments, it is possible that both may be need in addition to traditional structured editing tools. Smart content modularity and enrichment allows flexibility in editing tools and process design. This allows the  use of a variety of editing tools and flexibility in process design, and therefore expanding who can collaborate from throughout the enterprise.

Also, infrequent contributors may not be able to master navigating and operating within a  complex repository and workflow environment either for the same familiarity reasons. Serving up information to a remote collaborator might be enhanced with keywords and other metadata that is designed to optimize searching and access to the content. Even a little metadata can provide a lot of simplicity to an infrequent user. Product codes, version information, and a couple of dates would allow a user to hone in on the likely content topics and select content to edit from a well targeted list of search results. Relationships between content modules that are indicated in metadata can alert a user that when one object is updated, other related objects may need to be reviewed for potential update as well.

It is becoming increasingly clear that there is no one model for XML or smart content creation and editing. Just as a carpenter may have several saws, each designed for a particular type of cut, a robust smart content structured content environment may have more than one editor in use. It behooves us to design our systems and tools to meet the desired business processes and user functionality, rather than limit our processes to the features of one tool.

Open Text Expands Solutions for the Global Legal Market

Open Text Corporation, the provider of enterprise content management (ECM) software, today announced that it has expanded its solutions in the global legal market including introducing key integrations between Open Text Document Management, eDOCS Edition (eDOCS DM) and Open Text Social Workplace available this fall. First released in the summer of 2009, Open Text Social Workplace supports a team’s ability to form, organize and collaborate on projects. Built to be flexibly deployed either standalone or as part of another solution, Open Text Social Workplace will integrate with Open Text eDOCS allowing users from within law firms to collaborate on documents and matters stored and governed within eDOCS. This includes new microblogging and instant messaging features and respects current permissions and governance rules. Open Text Document Management, eDOCS Edition helps eliminate inefficiencies caused by an inability to manage documents as well as the “islands of information” prevalent in many organizations. It helps control document-based knowledge assets by enabling users to capture, organize, locate and share business content in an integrated environment. With the release of eDOCS DM 5.3, full Windows 7 and Microsoft® Office® 2010 support and updated integrations are available. Also added in this release is new platform support for 32 and 64 Bit versions of Windows Server 2008,SQL Server 2008, and Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) support, while deployment costs are lowered through native Microsoft Windows Installer (MSI) support. eDOCS DM customers can now use the Open Text flagship records management offering with native integration, search and access from within the native eDOCS DM user interface. Records management of physical items, electronic records and email, as well as structured data from systems such as Microsoft SharePoint® 2010 and SAP are all available in this release. Support for Apple iPad is now available for WirelessDMS for eDOCS allowing users to access content from within eDOCS DM using the iPad device.

DotNetNuke Introduces Enterprise Edition

DotNetNuke Corp.,the Web Content Management Platform company, announced the release of the DotNetNuke Enterprise Edition. The Enterprise Edition includes the new DotNetNuke Content Staging feature that allows users to edit and approve content on a staging server prior to pushing the site to production. In addition, the DotNetNuke Web CMS includes a Content Localization feature that enables management of multi-language web sites. The Content Localization feature is included in all Editions of the platform including the Enterprise, Professional and Community Editions. Exclusive to the Enterprise Edition, Content Staging allows users to create a separate staging server where all intended production web site changes can be implemented and tested before being published publicly. It has features for organizations with many content contributors and tight restrictions on web site content publishing and review. The system will compare the staging server configuration to the production server and identify missing components and provides a detailed view of all planned changes. Other features include: An audit tool that creates a record of all publishing events; A “white list” in which users can define which modules should push both their settings and content during publishing and which should push only the module settings; A secure publishing function which allows users to easily push their site from staging to production. All Editions of DotNetNuke including the Enterprise, Professional and Community Editions, now feature a new Content Localization capability that helps users manage translated versions of their web pages. This feature includes management and configuration-mapping tools to keep translated pages synchronized across a web site. With the introduction of the Enterprise Edition, DotNetNuke will no longer offer the Elite Edition, which will now comprise the Professional Edition plus Elite Support. The new Elite Support option – available for the Professional and Enterprise Editions – features extended support hours, faster guaranteed support, priority management of support tickets, installation upgrade assistance, and source code access to the proprietary Professional or Enterprise Edition modules.