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Subject: RE: UKNM: who's updating what and how ??
From: Robin Grant
Date: Thu, 13 May 1999 12:33:13 +0100

Tarnya wrote:
>how many agencies are still developing and building
>bespoke 'web publishing' systems for clients - as
>opposed to working with content management, personalisation
>and ecommerce software vendors to implement???

wouldn't you like to know!

I would "imagine" (hypothetically, of course) there are several factors
behind agencies not (or persuading their clients to) buying off the shelf
content management solutions.

1. Price
Most of these products are fairly expensive, and it can be hard to gauge the
real ROI pre-purchase. In SOME CASES it may be cheaper to pay someone to
update the site by hand using a text editor.

2. Immature marketplace
There are a lot of players in this marketplace, of whom only a proportion
will survive. In fact, maybe marketplace is too strong a word - there seem
to be a spectrum of solutions promising very different things. Some common
self-applied labels include: Content Management, Content Publishing,
Application Server, Personalisation Server, Enterprise Web Production... I
could go on. Whatever the label there is no complete solution and massive

http://www.perfect.co.uk/do/develop/contentpublishing/ and
for all the significant players I'm aware of

3. Support
Very few of these vendors have a UK presence (Mediasurface being one of the
notable exceptions), and therefore people *might* be nervous about training
and support options.

4. Model
This relates to point 2., but there are a multitude of different approaches
out there, none of which strike me as the right one (OK, I do like the
http://java.apache.org/cocoon/ model, but that's a while away from being
usable in a commercial context - and Dynamo is nice too, but that is more of
an Application Server and it doesn't do collaborative filtering either - see
http://www.atg.com/). The right approach will emerge over time - but it is
not here yet.

5. Legacy
Many agencies will have started developing their own in house systems years
ago, and may be (justifiably) reluctant to throw that investment away.
Besides, I know of one UK agency's "bespoke 'web publishing' system" which
would wipe the floor with any of the commercially available products...

Both Jupiter and Forrester have produced some reasonable reports which cover
some of these issues - their opinion is probably worth more than mine -
check them out if you have access, and there is a mailing list dedicated to
this topic which can be found at:



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