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ECM and Open Source Software: A Disruptive Force in ECM Solutions


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Open source software is finally getting the recognition it deserves from analysts like Forrester and Gartner as a disruptive force in IT. Over the years, open source has “climbed up the stack” from operating systems to databases and now to business applications where it has established a firm foothold in the content management space.What should enterprises know about open source content management? Is it really just for Web Content Management (WCM) or does it meet the needs of broader Enterprise Content Management (ECM) deployments? Arelarge enterprises doing big, meaningful content management projects with open source or is its appeal limited to subsets of the market? What about Enterprise 2.0 initiatives? Can you assemble an Enterprise 2.0 solution from open source components? How does it compare with something like Sharepoint?

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ECM and Open Source Software: A Disruptive Force in ECM Solutions

  1. 1. ECM and Open Source Software: A Disruptive Force in ECM Solutions Jeff Potts Practice Director, ECM Optaros: Blog:
  2. 2. Background 1994 1997 2002 2006 Groupware KM/ECM Open Source ECM 2007 2008 Focus Tech Firm 2007 Alfresco Community Contributor of the Year
  3. 3. Agenda <ul><li>The Rise of Open Source </li></ul><ul><li>Open Source & ECM </li></ul><ul><li>Significant Players At-a-Glance </li></ul><ul><li>Who's Already Using Open Source ECM? </li></ul><ul><li>Getting Started </li></ul>
  4. 4. The Rise of Open Source Photo Credit: SouthernView
  5. 5. Audience Poll How many of you use open source in production systems today?
  6. 6. Answer: All of you do <ul><ul><li>2005 study by Information Week and Optaros showed 85% of respondents acknowledged their use of open source </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Over 50% of enterprises with Oracle users have deployed Linux in production (Burton Group quoting a 2007 survey by the Independent Oracle users group)‏ </li></ul></ul>Photo Credit: YouTube
  7. 7. Open source trends <ul><li>More than half of all web servers (>91 million) run Apache (Netcraft, September, 2008)‏ </li></ul><ul><li>~2.0 million total Alfresco downloads (Alfresco, October, 2008)‏ </li></ul><ul><li>1.4 million Drupal downloads last year (July 2007 – June 2008)‏ </li></ul><ul><li>2.5 million articles (in English alone) on wikipedia, the world's 8 th busiest web site according to Alexa (October, 2008)‏ </li></ul><ul><li>4 million blogs hosted on which Alexa ranks as #28 (October, 2008)‏ </li></ul><ul><li>Drupal and Joomla web sites handle more traffic than 17 of the Fortune 20 corporate sites (Burton Group, 2008)‏ </li></ul>OS Database Web/App Server Developer Tools Applications Cloud/SAAS Open Source
  8. 8. “ Open Source is worth $60 billion” <ul><li>John Powell, CEO, Alfresco (a commercial Open Source company)‏ </li></ul><ul><li>Measure of the cost savings by customers who have chosen open source over commercial </li></ul><ul><li>ComputerworldUK, May 15, 2008 </li></ul>“ Open source is now the world's largest software industry....You measure it in the savings people are making in licence fees....Licence fees don't add any value to the product and are purely a transfer of wealth from consumers to software vendors.”
  9. 9. Open Source Acquisitions <ul><li>RedHat acquired JBoss in June, 2006 for $350 million </li></ul><ul><li>Citrix acquired XenSource in August of 2007 for $500 million </li></ul><ul><li>Yahoo acquired Zimbra in September of 2007 for $350 million </li></ul><ul><li>Sun acquired MySQL in January of 2008 for $1 billion </li></ul>See also “Open Source Gold Rush” blog post by Matt Asay on cnet and “Open Source For Sale” at InformationWeek
  10. 10. Why our clients choose open source <ul><li>Better fit </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Get what's common “for free”, customize for fit </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Standards-based </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Skills availability/desirability </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interoperability </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Transparency </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Source code </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Issue tracking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Direction </li></ul></ul>See also “Why Open Source?” on ECM Architect.
  11. 11. Don't Build or Buy... <ul><li>Building custom applications from scratch </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Custom solutions that address requirements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lengthy time-to-market </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Maintenance and support difficulties </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Buying large packaged applications from large vendors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bloated applications </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Over-serving the market – only 10% of the functionality in use </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Software doesn’t meet specific enterprise needs and must be customized significantly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Vendors are difficult to influence and customers are “locked in” </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. ...Instead, Assemble <ul><li>Open source facilitates application assembly </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Standards based </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Widely used, tested, scalable components </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Highly modular </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Internationalized </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Open Source & ECM Photo Credit: flyfshrmn98
  14. 14. Innovation waves - ECM and related Technologies Archiving Document Management Knowledge Mgmt Portal Smart Enterprise Suites Workflow / BPM Open Standards Open Source Innovation 1990 2010 Industry consolidation
  15. 15. Open Source Content Management <ul><li>There are hundreds of thousands of open source projects available today </li></ul><ul><li>Of those, hundreds are open source content management packages </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Narrow the list to those “enterprise ready” offerings with commercial support </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Segment by language (Java, PHP, Python, Perl)‏ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Segment by primary use (Community/Portal vs. Repository)‏ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Many open source content management projects focus on WCM </li></ul>
  16. 16. Significant ECM Players Photo Credit: crowt59
  17. 17. Open Source Document Management Players 0 1 2 3 4 5 0 1 2 3 4 5 Application capabilities (Large) enterprise readiness Alfresco sTeam Contineo Plone Nuxeo KnowledgeTree Owl Community Legend
  18. 18. Open Source Enterprise 2.0 Components Content Repository Blogging Wiki Search Collaborative Filtering Social Networking Forums / Real-time COFI Portal/Presentation
  19. 19. Alfresco at-a-glance <ul><li>Founded in 2005 by John Newton </li></ul><ul><ul><li>First production release was at the end of June, 2005 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Management </li></ul><ul><ul><li>John Newton (Co-founder & CTO) – Founder of Documentum; founding developer of Ingres; 25 years in enterprise software </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>John Powell (Co-founder & CEO) – COO of Business Objects; President, Oracle UK; 25 years selling enterprise software </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Kevin Cochrane (VP, Engineering) - Employee #4 at Interwoven, then VP of Product Management (built TeamSite)‏ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Matt Asay (VP, Business Development) - Founder, Open Source Business Conference; co-founder, Novell’s Linux Business Office; board member, OSI </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Engineering </li></ul><ul><ul><li>All 11 original engineers came from Documentum </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Alfresco at-a-glance: Functionality <ul><li>Solid ECM platform </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Core content services (Search, Metadata, Security, CIAO)‏ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advanced workflow engine (JBoss jBPM)‏ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to access repository as a file share through CIFS (as well as FTP, WebDAV, SMTP)‏ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>LDAP authentication </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Many API options (Java, JavaScript, FreeMarker, REST, SOAP)‏ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Maturing WCM platform </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Technology agnostic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Snapshots, rollback, sandboxes/virtualization </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Web forms, multiple renditions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deployment to test servers, production servers, other instances </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Emerging collaboration platform </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Supports the Sharepoint Protocol for Office integration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Embedded wiki </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Share” client is aimed at team collaboration </li></ul></ul>
  21. 21. Alfresco Share Screenshot
  22. 22. Alfresco as SharePoint Killer? <ul><li>Alfresco's ability to support the SharePoint Protocol is huge </li></ul><ul><li>Alfresco Share currently lacks a couple of features popular with SharePoint users </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Custom lists/views </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>User-defined web forms </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Alfresco offers: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Much better scalability (No hard limits in number of documents or search index, unlike SharePoint)‏ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Choice at all points in the stack </li></ul></ul>
  23. 23. Acquia at-a-glance <ul><li>Founded in 2008 by Dries Buytaert and Jay Batson </li></ul><ul><li>Commercial company behind Drupal </li></ul><ul><li>Dries started Drupal in 1999 while in college as a “Message Board” </li></ul><ul><li>Acquia Drupal is a certified, commercially supported Drupal distribution </li></ul><ul><li>Acquia provides commercial support for Acquia Drupal </li></ul>
  24. 24. Acquia at-a-glance: Functionality <ul><li>Primarily a “Community” platform </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social networking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Collaborative sites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Intranet applications </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Runs best on LAMP </li></ul><ul><li>Thousands of modules available </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Five star ratings, Content Construction Kit (CCK), Podcast, Blogs, Forums, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Acquia Network automatically checks for software updates </li></ul>
  25. 25. Drupal Screenshot
  26. 26. Liferay at-a-glance <ul><li>Created in 2000 for the non-profit sector by Brian Chan </li></ul><ul><li>Liferay, Inc. is the commercial company behind Liferay </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Commercial support </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Professional services </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Sun recently made a major investment in Liferay </li></ul>
  27. 27. Liferay at-a-glance: Functionality <ul><li>Java-based portal server </li></ul><ul><ul><li>JSR-168, JSR-286 compliance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Runs in an application server </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Includes basic content management repository </li></ul><ul><li>Drag-and-drop portlet arrangement </li></ul><ul><li>60+ portlets available OOTB </li></ul><ul><ul><li>RSS, Forums, Blogs, Wikis, Polls, Content Management, Social Networking, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>User profiles, SSO, LDAP integration </li></ul><ul><li>Infinite number of sub-sites </li></ul>
  28. 28. Liferay Screenshot
  29. 29. Who's Using Open Source ECM Today? Photo Credit: tribalicious
  30. 30. Who's Already There? (Selected Optaros ECM Clients)‏ <ul><li>McKesson </li></ul><ul><li>Procter & Gamble </li></ul><ul><li>Activision </li></ul><ul><li>Electronic Arts </li></ul><ul><li>Sony Pictures </li></ul><ul><li>Endeca </li></ul><ul><li>EMD Serono </li></ul><ul><li>Rodale </li></ul><ul><li>Fox Broadcasting </li></ul><ul><li>Neiman Marcus </li></ul><ul><li>Travelocity </li></ul><ul><li>Ackerman & McQueen </li></ul><ul><li>Swisscom Mobile </li></ul><ul><li>NXP Semiconductor </li></ul><ul><li>Lifetime </li></ul><ul><li>Cisco </li></ul><ul><li>New York Times </li></ul>
  31. 31. What are they doing? <ul><li>A lot of: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Intranet 2.0 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Document management </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Business Process Management </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Portals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Team Collaboration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WCM </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Community/Web 2.0 sites </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Vignette/Stellent/etc. replacements </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Some: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Digital Asset Management </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Records Management </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Not Much: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Imaging </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fixed storage </li></ul></ul>
  32. 32. Client Case Study: Endeca The Company: Building a partner community for innovation The Challenge: Assembly Highlights: <ul><li>180 users the first day, 360 the first week, more than 1000 the first month </li></ul><ul><li>Site integrates portal, content, and blog servers with a seamless user interface </li></ul><ul><li>Content is personalized to match user preferences </li></ul><ul><li>Content approval rules can be adjusted for each department </li></ul><ul><li>Reusable assembly for internal Endeca community (e.g. blogging, Wiki)‏ </li></ul><ul><li>Endeca Technologies, a next-generation information access company </li></ul><ul><li>Information access platform is used by many leading companies and government agencies </li></ul><ul><li>Headquarters in Cambridge, MA, USA and operations worldwide </li></ul><ul><li>Create an online knowledge-sharing and collaboration community for employees, customers, and partners </li></ul><ul><li>Provide controlled access to thousands of technical documents, best practices, code samples, case studies, and other content </li></ul><ul><li>Address department-specific requirements for metadata and content approval </li></ul><ul><li>Support future initiatives for interaction and participation </li></ul><ul><li>Meet a 13-week deadline </li></ul>“ The solution that Optaros assembled for us lets us interact with our audiences with speed, flexibility and differentiation.” <ul><li>Colby Dyess </li></ul><ul><li>Product Manager </li></ul><ul><li>Endeca </li></ul>
  33. 33. Client Case Study: Endeca Building a partner community for innovation (Cont’d)‏ Key Components: <ul><li>Liferay Portal [JSR-168] </li></ul><ul><li>Forums: Liferay Forums </li></ul><ul><li>Alfresco: Content Presentation [JSR- 170] </li></ul><ul><li>Additional AJAX integration with, prototype </li></ul><ul><li>DWR (Direct Web Remoting) toolkit for javascript </li></ul><ul><li>Blogs: Apache Roller </li></ul>Open Source Software Web Presentation: <ul><li>Used to integrate Liferay with Alfresco </li></ul>Web Services: <ul><li>Alfresco content repository </li></ul><ul><li>JBoss Application Server </li></ul><ul><li>Red Hat Directory Server (LDAP) for user and group management </li></ul>Back-end Components: Differentiators: <ul><li>Enterprise 2.0 open source assembly designed for Endeca’s needs and preferences </li></ul><ul><li>Content approval rules are adjustable for individual departments using Alfresco's embedded JBPM workflow engine </li></ul><ul><li>Enterprise 2.0 stack can be leveraged and reused for Endeca’s internal community site </li></ul><ul><li>Loose assembly architecture allows easy replacement of pluggable modules and the ability to experiment </li></ul>“ By offering our customers and partners a seamless way to educate themselves and interact with peers we are creating loyalty to the site and to Endeca.” - Colby Dyess Product Manager Endeca <ul><li>Colby Dyess </li></ul><ul><li>Product Manager </li></ul><ul><li>Endeca </li></ul>“ Endeca customers and partners have been the driving force behind our initiatives to encourage relationship building and the open exchange of ideas and best practices. EDeN is the culmination of these efforts…” <ul><li>Vibrant online community builds stronger relationships with customers and partners </li></ul><ul><li>Users can access thousands of technical documents, tools and utilities, code samples, case studies and other content </li></ul><ul><li>Metadata tags identify relevant search content to match user profile </li></ul><ul><li>Social networking and knowledge-sharing for e-business (blogs for executives and technical staff, feedback, forums)‏ </li></ul><ul><li>New participation and collaboration features coming soon </li></ul><ul><li>Endeca Search Engine </li></ul>Client Preferred Component Flexibility: Differentiation:
  34. 34. Endeca EDeN Architecture Batch Job SOAP WS JDBC JDBC <ul><li>User Profiles </li></ul><ul><li>Preferences </li></ul><ul><li>Presentation Services </li></ul><ul><li>RSS Portlet </li></ul><ul><li>Forums Portlet </li></ul><ul><li>Custom Search Portlets </li></ul><ul><li>Custom Alfresco Portlets </li></ul><ul><li>Site-wide Search </li></ul><ul><li>Guided Navigation </li></ul><ul><li>Content Spotlighting </li></ul>SOAP WS LDAP <ul><li>Custom Content Model </li></ul><ul><li>Advanced Workflow </li></ul><ul><li>Custom Actions </li></ul><ul><li>Minor Web Client Cust. </li></ul><ul><li>All File-based Content </li></ul><ul><li>CTO Blog </li></ul><ul><li>Engineer Blogs </li></ul>
  35. 35. Early wireframe
  36. 38. Screen Shots
  37. 41. Getting Started Photo Credit: jdtornow
  38. 42. Open Source Challenges <ul><li>Support </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Look for strong communities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Prefer projects with commercial support </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bright side: Choice </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Documentation </li></ul><ul><li>Nebulous road map </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Tends to be much more democratic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Need-driven, developer-driven, not vendor-driven </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Non-traditional sales cycle </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Usually minimal marketing and sales budgets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bright side: Zero acquisition cost means cost of failure is low </li></ul></ul>
  39. 43. Evaluating Open Source <ul><li>Evaluate like you would a commercial vendor </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Features </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Architectural fit </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Support </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>References </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Proof-of-concept/Bake-off </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don't just check boxes: Most of the time, Open source ECM is on par with commercial offerings </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Cost savings should not be your number one driver </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Up-front license outlay will likely be redirected to services </li></ul></ul>
  40. 44. Measuring “community” strength <ul><li>Activity </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Releases, minor & major </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Downloads </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bug/issue log </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Posts, responses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Helpfulness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Breadth (code commits, forum activity, wiki/documentation edits)‏ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Project leadership </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Visible, vocal leadership </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Committed partners </li></ul>
  41. 45. Open Source Resources <ul><li>Blogs </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Matt Asay cnet </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>451 Group CAOS </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Redmonk </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ECM Architect </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Open Parenthesis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Enter Content Here </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>John Newton </li></ul></ul><ul><li>EOS Directory </li></ul><ul><li>Ostatic </li></ul><ul><li>Ohloh </li></ul><ul><li>JumpBox </li></ul><ul><li>RedHat Exchange </li></ul>Don't write these down. Instead, go to:
  42. 46. Parting Thoughts <ul><ul><li>“ Selectively seed development with RIA, dynamic language, and open source expertise...If you don’t have a strategy that takes advantage of external services and open source frameworks, then it may be hard to compete with nimbler competitors.” (Forrester, July 26, 2007)‏ </li></ul></ul>
  43. 47. About Optaros We design, assemble & support next-generation Internet solutions for ecommerce and media & publishing clients We help our clients become more agile and deliver better user experiences to their customers, employees, and suppliers We do great work 100% reference-able 98% on-time/on-budget We‘re growing $0  $21 million since 2005 Over 200 employees across offices in North America, Bucharest, Geneva, London, Munich, Zurich We have a rich history Leadership since 1990 through the client-server, web browser, and “assembly” eras We’re well capitalized $20 million capitalization