Six Years of Pie

You may not know it looking at my last two months of activity, or lack of it, but I’ve been writing, tweeting, and generally being loudly opinionated for the past six years. What started as just a way to vent my opinion over the direction of EMC/Documentum has become a platform for trying to push for change in the industry.

Thing is, the change is here. This June I’m going to pull my best Howard Beale and I’m going lay out why things are changing and why we can’t act as if it isn’t or that we have control.

But before all that, let’s review what has come before.

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Content, Security, and Standards

imageI am about to do what I stopped doing several years ago, start paying attention to James McGovern. Why? Because he is talking about several important issues that need to be dealt with in the industry.

Years ago, James and I discussed Security standards around Identity Management, primarily SAML. While my focus on the time was on Documentum, the issues were universal. Since we last interacted online, James has moved on to HP in an advisory role for clients.

Sadly, the issues we discussed are still prevalent in the industry. In fact, these issues are becoming more important with the advent of new players in the cloud space.

Sure, the new vendors support integrations and work with existing Active Directory installations. That’s nice. So did the established vendors. The problem remains, there is no standard way to pass both Authentication and Authorization.

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Preaching to the Content Management Choir

image Been doing some thinking and I’ve decided that my blog is worthless. I have been talking about things that I’ve covered before and things that practitioners in the industry pretty much take as a given. I occasionally manage to string things together in a new way, but very little is truly new at this point.

The reason why is fairly simple. As an industry, we are facing the same technical challenges that we faced when I started this blog. There are still no vendors that can readily solve those challenges today. There is a lot of promise out there, but promise isn’t something that I can take and implement for clients.

So what is the point of talking about all of this?

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Take a Break from ECM

I have been trying to shift the topic away from “Enterprise” Content Management for a while now. I’ve said that it isn’t something you can buy because it is a strategy. I’ve said that you don’t need a single Content Management System (CMS) platform to implement your strategy. I even gave a presentation at AIIM where I said that the tech gets in the way.

I just read a great post by Lane Severson on the term ECM and the ongoing debates. In some ways he wants to get rid of the term and completely remove it from the dialog. He essentially calls ECM a vestigial term that no longer serves a purpose but is still around.

Well, I’m done. I’m not debating the term any more. It is what it is. What people are missing isn’t that the term is invalid. The problem is that there is a gap between our ability to execute and the “ideal” of ECM.

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Looking to the Future of Content Management

Last week, I had the privilege of presenting at the info360 Conference. My topic was The Future of Content Management, with the cheesy tagline of Cloudy with a Chance of Innovation. [I’m going to ramble a bit, the the slides are below].

This presentation was originally conceived when I was tired of not seeing a solid keynote/vision for the Content Management industry. The Web folk have a vision, even if they can’t agree upon a name for that vision. Wanting one, I wrote An ECM Keynote for 2010 last summer. I took that post and presented, Revisiting “Enterprise” Content Management in a 2.0 World at Gilbane this past fall. My presentation at AIIM was an updated version of that presentation.

What changed? A realization that began when I updated the presentation and crystallized at the conference. The thought was inspired by, of all people, Andrew Chapman and his posts on ECM as a Commodity. The question he asks is this…

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Thinking on the Future of Content Management

I’m sitting here reflecting upon a very productive Gilbane Conference in Boston this week.  It was good to talk to people and see what people were thinking about in the Content Management industry. Engagement, Search, and Social were big, overlapping themes in the conference.

I was at Gilbane in order present my view on the future of Content Management.  I thought I would share the slides here and talk a little about the recent research on the same topic from AIIM.

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An ECM Keynote for 2010

I’ve been talking about a lack of leadership and vision in the ECM industry.  This is evident when you attend keynotes at various conferences.  Most keynotes at industry conferences are focused on what has been happening and what is happening now.  John Mancini’s keynote at the AIIM conference was as close as it gets these days.

Of course, AIIM can’t deliver the future, they can only point to it, so what do we do? We wait. What are we waiting for? Well, I’m not waiting right now.  For your consideration, I present to you a keynote on the future of ECM…..

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"Cloud Content Management" Hype

headdesk Every now and then, I read a post/article/tweet that makes me slam my head against the nearest hard surface.  The culprit this time was an article titled Cloud Content Management to Challenge ECM?

I saw the title and was intrigued.  I then read it and realized that the author had started falling for some market speak.  I quickly determined that the fault was not completely with the author.  Yes, they had fallen under the spell of some marketing and should have been strong enough to resist.  The real villian here? Box.

Remove the Cloud

Okay, lets think this through, logically.  First, let’s look at Box’s definition of Cloud Content Management.  When you look at it, you see them describing a SaaS offering.  More importantly, you are seeing them talk about the advantages of hosting it on the internet as opposed to your server room.

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JM Pascal Asks Pie the Hard ECM Questions

You may have missed it, but last week, Jean Marie Pascal posted an interview with me on his blog.  It was a fun exercise, though it took a while as our schedules precluded quick email responses (my delay being the longer of the two).  JM hung in there with me and the interview was finally completed.

If you have been missing the joy of reading fresh posts by me, then the interview will be a nice read.  It covers ECM, Documentum, Open Source and a little about me.  Share and Enjoy.

This Little ECM Definition Comment

If you went and read the interview, you may have seen my comment on the definition of ECM.  I criticized AIIM’s ECM definition as being tool centric. Bryant Duhon, the Infonomics editor, challenged me on this, saying that Strategy was definitely in the definition. I hadn’t responded previously because I knew this was a response.  Well, here it is…

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