2017-11-30

Digital Asset Management Reading List Nov. 2017

Here’s the last month’s Digital Asset Management articles which had a lasting impression on me – picked from the constant stream of blog posts you can see float by on Planet DAM. For more curated DAM links, see the weekly Digital Asset Management.com Links and Tracy Wolfe’s 10 things on the 10th.

Sadly, I currently don’t have much time to read about DAM. If you do, here’s lots of links from October:

Industry and product news: Ralph Windsor reviews the Elvis-based Swivle “DAM Lite” system. Acquia creates its own DAM system for Drupal. Northplains licenses CHALEX SmartFlo. Razuna 2.0 is delayed. Extensis Portfolio is named “Leader” and “Trend Setter” by G2 Crowd and KMWorld. Bynder is working on GDPR compliance. Webdam has a new Salesforce connector. Active Logistics partners with Picturepark.

Read the full article…

Thu, 30 Nov 2017 22:52:00 +0000
2017-11-01

W3C DAM Group kick-off today! Why I’m interested in schema.org for DAM

Today’s the first telco of the new W3C DAM Group (official name: Digital Asset Management Industry Business Ontology Community Group). A big thank you to Emily Kolvitz for starting it! There’s still time to join in…

The group currently has 31 participants, including several experts well known in the DAM community.

Its mission statement is “to extend schema.org to increase the expressiveness, utility and interoperability of digital media assets.”

I’m participating because DAM interoperability and Linked Data are among my pet topics – but also because I’m now working for an organization that runs maybe a dozen content focused systems: DAM, WCMS, content production, workflow systems etc., each of which need to be able to exchange and/or link content items. Having a simple standard for core DAM metadata exchange should help us identify and link assets, migrate them, and build an “enterprise search engine” and “content picker” (think “File/Open” dialog or the “Dropbox Chooser”) on top of all those content stores.

I wrote about schema.org for DAM here:

See also:

Wed, 01 Nov 2017 12:20:00 +0000
2017-10-29

Digital Asset Management Reading List Oct. 2017: Pivots and Blockchains

Here’s the last month’s Digital Asset Management articles which had a lasting impression on me – picked from the constant stream of blog posts you can see float by on Planet DAM. For more curated DAM links, see the weekly Digital Asset Management.com Links and Tracy Wolfe’s 10 things on the 10th.

My reading list arrives pretty late this month – the links below are all from September, and it’s almost November already…

Two of my favorite articles deal with vendors “pivoting”: In Knowing when It’s Time to Start Over, David Diamond interviews Ramon Forster about the change of direction they’re taking with the upcoming Picturepark Content Platform. And Max Dunn tells the story of how their “Silicon Connector” product name keeps redefining the product.

I’m still unsure how much of an impact blockchains will have on DAM, but I’m happy I finally understand their potential thanks to Ralph Windsor’s two-part series called Blockchains: Catalysts For Innovation In Content DAM and his CMSWire article From Value Chains To Blockchains. Ralph is not the only one looking at blockchains, see Alexandra Lilienthal’s Will Blockchain Disrupt ECM or Is it Just a Lot of Hype?.

Speaking of ECM, I think there’s a lot to learn from DAM related disciplines – check out Jack Saville’s definition of Enterprise Content Management and Martin White’s look at the next generation of Enterprise Search. Miles Kehoe advises us to improve Enterprise Search by putting your metadata to work. Which brings us to…

Read the full article…

Sun, 29 Oct 2017 22:00:00 +0000
2017-09-19

Digital Asset Management Reading List Sep. 2017: Content Management, W3C schema.org group

Here’s the last month’s Digital Asset Management articles which had a lasting impression on me – picked from the constant stream of blog posts you can see float by on Planet DAM. For more curated DAM links, see the weekly Digital Asset Management.com Links and Tracy Wolfe’s 10 things on the 10th.

In August, one of the hottest DAM debates ever (60+ comments) takes place: On LinkedIn, David Diamond proposes calling our subject “Content Management” instead of “Digital Asset Management”. Ralph Windsor responds with Digital Asset Management is not Content Management, coining the term “Content DAM”, and he defines Digital Assets on his newly-launched Digital Asset News site. See also the trend to rebrand DAM products: David’s Picturepark article about Content Management 2.0, censhare’s Ian Truscott on Things, Stuff and Content, and Northplains’ Jason Arena on Content Lifecycle Management.

A glimmer of hope for better DAM interoperability is Emily Kolvitz initiating a W3C DAM Industry Business Ontology Community Group whose mission is “to propose, discuss, create and maintain extensions to schema.org related to the DAM industry”. She writes about it in Can we get some DAM Findability on the Web? Everyone, please participate! – “Standards-based” is one of ADAM’s four key attributes of interoperability, and Anna Cotton lists flexibility and integrations in her 5 questions to ask your DAM vendor.

Read the full article…

Tue, 19 Sep 2017 20:27:00 +0000
2017-09-10

Web frontend integration: Just drop me a link

For two reasons, I think about software interoperability a lot (see Improving DAM Interoperability in 2017): First, software – especially “content hub”-style DAM systems – must work well with other software to help people do their jobs. The second reason is that when we consider splitting a monolithic (DAM) system into multiple smaller Self-Contained Systems, these parts need to interoperate with each other, too.

A very interesting aspect of interoperability is frontend integration: When in application A, people need access to information living in application B. How do they navigate from A to B? Can they see both application’s interrelated data on the same screen? I wrote about this in Web app interoperability – the missing link. Now it’s time for a few experiments.

Read the full article…

Sun, 10 Sep 2017 20:41:00 +0000
2017-08-15

Digital Asset Management Reading List Aug. 2017: Enterprise discontent, Orbit

Here’s the last month’s Digital Asset Management articles which had a lasting impression on me – picked from the constant stream of blog posts you can see float by on Planet DAM. For more curated DAM links, see the weekly Digital Asset Management.com Links and Tracy Wolfe’s 10 things on the 10th.

(The list is a bit shorter this month because my new job keeps me busy.)

Favorites: Every enterprise DAM customer and vendor should read Ralph Windsor’s excellent piece on enterprise discontent with current DAM solutions. A sample quote: “DAM users want to be able to drill down through the digital asset supply chain and gain greater control over their digital asset operations. […] The role of the software vendor as provider of a self-contained product which they exclusively control and make decisions about is likely to end.”

Also highly recommended is Nora Gehin’s article Listening and message repetition are key to user adoption which contains tons of useful advice for DAM practitioners.

Industry news: The big news this month is that Bynder is launching a free DAM tool called Orbit – Emily Kolvitz is happy that everyone can now “touch and understand” DAM. CEO Chris Hall’s take on this is DAM for everyone! On DAM News, Ralph Windsor comments on the possible implications for Bynder and the DAM market.

Read the full article…

Tue, 15 Aug 2017 18:34:00 +0000
2017-07-31

I’m leaving Digital Collections to join the SPIEGEL Verlag

After almost 19 years as developer and product manager at Digital Asset Management (DAM) vendor Digital Collections, I’m moving on, joining the IT department of magazine publisher SPIEGEL Verlag on August 1st.

It’s hard to say good-bye to my wonderful colleagues and customers. Almost everything I learned, I learned from them – here’s my summary of those 19 years.

Digital Collections’ warm-hearted and generous farewell leaves me speechless. They even publish their good-byes on the company blog. Thanks so much!

At DER SPIEGEL, I’ll help take care of their DAM systems, moving into more of a project management role. (Sounds like fun, but I’ll miss software development.) I’m looking forward to working with amazing people, for a great magazine, and getting to know one of Europe’s largest press archives. Wish me luck :)

P.S.: I’ll keep running Planet DAM, and writing about DAM on this blog. (These were personal projects anyway, not a company activity.)

Mon, 31 Jul 2017 15:10:00 +0000
2017-07-18

Digital Asset Management Reading List July 2017: ECM, findability, Northplains

Here’s the last month’s Digital Asset Management articles which had a lasting impression on me – picked from the constant stream of blog posts you can see float by on Planet DAM. For more curated DAM links, see the weekly Digital Asset Management.com Links and Tracy Wolfe’s 10 things on the 10th.

Theresa Regli states that ECM is the new black, and DAM is but one part of the fabric – an interesting observation given the current trend to rebrand DAM as a “content platform” (see the May 2017 reading list and Ralph Windsor’s article from July 11).

I love Nora Gehin’s 10 librarian principles to embrace to help manage your content – it seems my LIS education from two decades ago is still relevant! Emily Kolvitz has a nice, consise list of 10 reasons why digital assets rule the world.

Read the full article…

Tue, 18 Jul 2017 21:24:00 +0000
2017-07-09

My DAM developer chronicles: 19 years at Digital Collections

To help me remember what I’ve been doing all these years at work, here’s some stories from my almost two decades of Digital Asset Management and Web development at vendor Digital Collections which are ending this month. Sorry for the lengthy post…

Before Digital Collections

1994

As part of my Library and Information Sciences (LIS) education, I did a six-month internship at the text archives department of magazine publisher Gruner+Jahr. It was amazing to experience the librarian side of sophisticated, large-scale Digital Asset Management – see my blog post “Where have all the librarians gone?”.

1995

I enjoyed our curriculum’s dBase and Turbo Pascal courses. But what I loved the most was the Microsoft Access 2.0 database programming we did for an architectural bureau – learning Access from scratch, over the course of several months, two fellow students and I wrote a real-world application for a real client and even got paid for it. During the following years, I kept doing MS Access work for that client.

1996

Still a student (busy writing my diploma thesis [PDF]), I set up my first personal homepage on the Web (in handwritten HTML). Even though it consisted of nothing but a few links and some travel photos, it helped me land my first job the next year.

Read the full article…

Sun, 09 Jul 2017 22:19:00 +0000
2017-07-07

Michel Biezunski: Topic Maps Now

Despite my claim that Topic Maps (as a standard) are dead, I’m a huge fan and continue to work with Topic Maps (with the goal of building Knowledge Graphs).

That’s why I love Michel Biezunski’s excellent blog post Topic Maps Now. Some quotes:

“In this paper, I will […] advocate that the notions of topic mapping are still useful, even if they need to be adapted to new methods and systems.

[…] I took part in the design of the initial topic maps model, I started the process to transform the conceptual model into an international standard. […] During the last 15 years, I have helped clients create and manage topic map applications, and I am still doing it.

[…] The success [of Topic Maps standards and tools] was somewhat limited, and use of Topic Maps seems to be declining, which seems surprising given the fact that many web sites are organized around topics. Most of these tools are no longer maintained, and the activity in the ISO standard working group has decreased accordingly.

[…] The trend towards smaller content pages, compared to the book, accentuates topic-centric content publishing units. In a way, this is a fulfillment of the Topic Maps promise. […] The openness of Topic Maps enables more flexibility and variations than DITA, but it imposes more modular work upfront with tools that are less focused on the specificities of technical documentation.

[…] “The "Google Knowledge Graph" was added to Google Search after Google acquired a company called Metaweb in 2010. Metaweb developed "Freebase", an "open, shared database of the world knowledge", which was explicitly constructed using the concepts of the Topic Maps standard. Freebase was absorbed a couple of years ago into Wikidata.

[…] The main value of the topic maps paradigm seems therefore not in be the interchangeability of topic maps, but rather in the independence between the sources and the knowledge layer.”

See also Patrick Durusau’s response, If Silo Owners Love Their Children Too.

Fri, 07 Jul 2017 06:32:00 +0000