Revisiting the Content Management Frontier


Scene from the movie Alive, dead bodies in the snowTwo years ago, a journal was discovered while excavating in the Trough of Disillusionment of Gartner’s Hype Cycle for Enterprise Content Management (ECM) technologies. The journal told a story of fear, distrust, and desperation.

Today another tome was discovered. Written hastily in the margins of an IDOL manual was the following text. It is estimated that this was written two days after the conclusion of the previously discovered journal (which you should read 1st). The author is unknown.

The Aftermath

I am writing this huddled under the equipment of those who have gone missing. The last few days had been tense but calm. This did not prepare any of us for what was to happen this morning.

Yesterday had been fairly peaceful. IBM was finally climbing up the slope to freedom using a rope that appeared to be tied to Box. I’m not sure if Box has captured IBM or IBM has captured Box. Both seem determined to reach the upper plateau and were working together to escape.

Today that plan looks better than ever. We all woke-up to discover that OpenText had taken down Recommind. At first we were relieved it wasn’t us that had become next . It had been a few days since OpenText had last fed and we were all becoming worried. Little did we know.

Before we knew it, OpenText was consuming the few parts of Autonomy with meat on its bones. HP was clearly trying to escape the trough by discarding the last remaining shreds of ECM. HP was last seen fleeing down the valley, throwing the ECM scraps that OpenText didn’t claim to MicroFocus.

Why MicroFocus wants to join this hellish landscape is anyone’s guess.

EMC was just rescued. Dell swooped in to scoop them to safety. This had been apparent since yesterday but everyone was interested how it was going to work with Documentum still firmly attached to EMC. Then, out of nowhere, EMC kicked Documentum towards OpenText, who without pausing to finish consuming Autonomy, leapt and took down Documentum with one gigantic bite.

At that moment, everyone scattered. I managed to grab a few supplies from Autonomy while OpenText was distracted by the death throws of Documentum. I’m not sure how much longer any of us have got before we either starve to death or are consumed.

Alfresco and Nuxeo both look like they are making a move to climb up the slope but I’m not sure they have time. Documentum had been working on a plan to escape for years. It finally looked like they had the needed equipment but then OpenText happened.

OpenText always happens.

I am writing this so future generations can learn from our mistakes. Do whatever it takes to escape up the slope and find productivity. They say it’s on the plateau but I suspect I’ll never know as it is hidden by the clouds.

I have to go now. Night is falling and I’m afraid that come sunrise, OpenText will be ready to feed again. What OpenText will do to survive once we are all either dead or escaped up to the plateau is anyone’s guess.

Pray for us.

Saying Goodbye to Documentum


One year ago, when Dell announced it was buying EMC, I wrote,

If you see Open Text or CA buy the ECD, start lighting the funeral pyres because Documentum would be officially brain dead and waiting for the machines to be turned off.

Well, it happened. OpenText acquired Documentum. This brings to end the Enterprise Content Management (ECM) wars that began almost 20 years ago. Back then, the leaders were FileNet, Documentum, Oracle, and OpenText. FileNet is buried at IBM who is flirting with Box. Oracle is struggling to reestablish itself after bringing on former Documentum leaders but they are fading away.

This morning, OpenText announced their acquisition of Documentum. I was hesitant to predict that OpenText was going to buy Documentum. It was the obvious prediction and I knew that it would be a chunk of change. $1.62 billion was the final price which covers the $600 million OpenText raised in May and another billion of debt commitment provided by Barclays for this transaction.

I suspect that nobody else was willing to pay EMC that much.

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Services, The Open Source Hedge Against the Cloud


I’ve spent a lot of time talking about how the traditional vendors are being disrupted and are going to face an increasing number of challenges from the new cloud vendors. I want to take a minute to talk about why the Open Source vendors, like Alfresco and Nuxeo, are likely to not be disrupted.

Don’t get me wrong, the question of usability that hurt the likes of EMC, IBM, and Oracle still applies to the Open Source vendors. The key difference is that usability is the open door, not the actual disruption.

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Debating the Future of Content Management at AIIM 2012


imageBack before either Cheryl McKinnon or I were considering bringing our skills to AIIM, we submitted a proposal to this year’s AIIM Conference to moderate a panel on the Future of Content Management. For this discussion, we decided to bring representatives from the traditional, open source, and cloud-based Content Management worlds onto the same stage.

As a result, we have the following on the stage:

Pretty exciting group there. I have laid out some rules that we’ll be enforcing in the debate.

  1. No Selling: This is vendor solution approach versus vendor solution approach. Each speaker represents their entire Content Management vendor area, not just their own companies.
  2. Speak Ill of No Vendor: To be honest, if they want to say something negative about themselves, they can. If they want to say something bad about one of the other vendor groupings, that works as long as it is generic.
  3. No Speeches: Hoping for a discussion, not a few rehearsed viewpoints.
  4. No Selling: Or did I mention that already?

To warm things up, I asked them some questions to set the stage for next week. In addition, if you have any questions you’d like to submit to be put to the panel, add them to the comments below. I will be writing a follow-up afterwards to capture the debate.

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Looking Back on Pie’s 2011 Predictions


image I have been busy these past few months. How busy? Just look at my post rate. It hasn’t been for lack of topics, I’ve just been burning the candle at both ends.

Well, I’ve been on “vacation” for the past week and feel rested enough to take some time to write. Coincidently enough, I have two posts to write quickly, the first being this post evaluating the predictions for 2011.

As I did for the 2010 predictions, I am going to score them as either correct, incorrect, or partial (50%).  The partial is for predictions that were correct in the causes, but the effects were off.

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Nuxeo World 2011, A Healthy Start


I had the pleasure of flying to France to speak at the second Nuxeo World last week. While my primary purpose was to deliver a quick little keynote on Content Management Trends (slides and CMS Wire article), I had ulterior motives:

  • Where are they going?
  • Do they know Records Management?
  • Are they capable?

I had enough of an answer on each question to enter into a partnership with Nuxeo, but this was all about long-term planning and strategy. I thought I’d share what I learned while letting them learn that there are pros and cons to the publicity that they get by working with me, just ask EMC (who has accepted the balance).

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Nuxeo World 2011: Roadmap, Technical Strategy and Vision


Why would you not attend a roadmap session? Roland Benedetti, VP of Products and Marketing, and Thierry Delprat, the CTO, are going to get us all up to date.

  • Use a Scrum based development approach, 4 key disciplines
  • Roadmap Management
  • Modern Development Method and Tooling
  • Heartbeat and Iterative Development Method
  • Continuous QA and Release Method
  • Stressing the constant QA of the product
  • Opening the “roadmap” through Jira in the next week
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