Thursday, 11 September 2008

CMIS - will it be 'real' ?

One of the links in my previous post was to the CMS Watch take on the release of CMIS by their analyst Kas Thomas. His final paragraph is:

"Here's hoping IBM, EMC, Microsoft, and the others will follow Alfresco's early lead and actually implement CMIS rather than (as they did with JCR) just issue press releases about it."

Well a big 'amen' to that one !

When I was at the Open University we were using EMC Documentum as our heavy duty back end for the 'eProduction System' in other words digital asset management, collaborative team working and workflow for producing all the universities learning materials, be they destined for presentation in print, on the web, as an ebook or as multimedia.

One of the 'front ends' for presentation is the Moodle open source Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). However getting Documentum to talk to Moodle required some development work ("no, you don't say.....") . The developers decided to lever the architecture of JSR170, the Java Content Repository standard, which as Kas notes above, might have generated some press releases from EMC, but never actually made it as far as Documentum Content Server becoming JCR compliant. Moodle meanwhile is PHP, so there was a PHP to Documentum connector built, using JCR as a 'framework' (basically replicating calls etc). It was 'sort of' successful (?).

Now imagine if both Documentum Content Server and Moodle had been CMIS compliant or had CMIS comliant 'modules' - it would have been sooooo easy.

So this is my 'wide eyed enthusiam' posting, I truly hope all the vendors put their money where their standard is, so to speak, and actually follow Alfresco's lead by getting this into their product sets ASAP (or at least help OASIS to get a version 1.0 ratified as soon as it can).


Edouard Fleuriau-Chateau said...

Hi Jed,
I am part of the press agency of Nuxeo and I wanted to know if you were interested in the reaction of Eric Barroca,Nuxeo Executive VP , Operations regarding this topic:

We are warmly welcoming the inception of this future standard and the early feedbacks we are getting from our customers are also very positive. The perspectives are exciting. This is offering a practical solution to real-world and to the endemic Babel-Tower syndroma of heterogeneous information systems... which they all are !
With the growing spread of ECM platforms and related software (search, ERP integration, etc.) in organisations, the interoperability problem and the isolation of content has become a critical issue that our customers are facing. CMIS might be a good answer to this.
Technically, CMIS leverages proven and state-of-the-art standards (ATOMPub, HTTP, etc.) and patterns (REST, SOA), already adopted and heavily leveraged in Nuxeo's open source ECM platform.

Our experience of REST pattern for ECM services (through our Nuxeo WebEngine component) and service orientation (Nuxeo Platform has been using OSGi since 3 years as its core) could bring some nice hints to the creation of version 1.0 of this specifications and therefore we see the choice of the OASIS Group as an umbrella as a good news, given that the work group opens up to other actors. Moreover, Nuxeo could also work and contribute its significant experience to the yet out-of- scope fields such as RM and DAM.

Our R&D squad is already studying the draft and will add the implementation of CMIS into the roadmap our Nuxeo Platform. Beta support should be able before the end of october. Thanks to the power of Nuxeo WebEngine to implement REST-based protocols, the implementation will be straightforward and will also deliver a working UI on top of it.

"As an open source software vendor, Nuxeo's value proposition relies on the widest possible integration of open standards. This lies at the heart of our vision for an ECM platform, designed to fuel the development of an ecosystem (partners, OEM, resellers,...). This is also key in the decision process of our customers. That's why we're very keen to adopt the CMIS standard : the interoperability path it provides will allow customers to base their technology and solutions choice on their users needs and expectations", adds Stefane Fermigier.

In the future if you could be kind enough to send me your email address I could keep you updated on their news.

Ed -

Craig said...

Good integration example for CMIS, Jed. I see that you've captured a significant amount of coverage already. You can also visit my post as follows, which will point you to the OASIS TC proposal among other things:

Nuxeo should consider joining the OASIS CMIS TC, since they haven't been formally involved in CMIS thus far.

Anonymous said...

Hi there. I don't want to post an entire press release here, but we have tried to implement the basics of CMIS, and it went really well. See my blog for details, there is a link for a live demo. Source downloadable tomorrow.