Tim’s Weblog Tim's Weblog
Tim Strehle’s links and thoughts on Web apps, managing software development and Digital Asset Management, since 2002.

Rick Yagodich: The Author Comes First

Rick Yagodich (@think_info) on the Contentful blog – The Author Comes First:

“Any time a big company buys an enterprise CMS, they are easily spending seven figures on the licenses and then another six on subscription fees. To customize this CMS to do something even vaguely resembling what the buyer wants is another seven figure project. It’s not uncommon to spend five-to-seven million dollars to get a mediocre publishing platform.

[…] When we’ve got a CMS that is configurable on a deeper level, we will see a paradigm shift. Organizations that currently spend millions of dollars on customising enterprise platforms, will go for natively configurable publishing tools.

[…] People recognise the value of this approach. There are challenges. And it will take investment. It’s a big step that doesn’t fit in with most vendors’ five-year roadmaps.

[…] At some point, a vendor will take that leap. They will develop a platform that defines a new generation in content management; a true game-changer.

[…] The other vendors would have no choice but to change course, to abandon their precious roadmaps and catch up as fast as they could. I think that would happen within a year of the first serious (enterprise-hardened) platform that provided that level of configurability hitting the market.”

I’d love this to happen in the DAM market as well – see my previous post on System architecture: Splitting a DAM into Self-Contained Systems.

Fri, 22 Jan 2016 07:55:00 +0000

System architecture: Splitting a DAM into Self-Contained Systems

While we’re gathering ideas for the next generation of our DAM product’s user interface, we’re taking the opportunity to reflect on the system architecture of our DAM software. It’s currently a monolithic architecture: All of the user interface and back-end features are implemented within a single software system, and based on one large database. This traditional approach to software development has been criticized for a while, starting with SOA (service-oriented architecture), and more recently microservices and Self-Contained Systems as the proposed alternative. That’s because with multiple smaller systems, each one should be simpler, have less bugs and be easier to extend. (Of course, there’s added complexity in making these systems interoperable, and maintaining multiple systems.) Stefan Tilkov’s Breaking the Monolith analyzes the problem well.

Coming from a different angle, Ralph Windsor and Naresh Sarwan – back in 2013 – wrote in depth about Digital Asset Management Value Chains on DAM News. Their idea was to move DAM systems to a component-based architecture where “operators will review, select and assemble custom applications using a variety of component choices available”.

Read the full article…

Wed, 20 Jan 2016 21:48:00 +0000

schema.org RDFa markup for a DAM hypermedia API

Just a quick update to my previous schema.org DAM markup example. That example was in RDF/XML, but RDFa – RDF markup embedded in HTML – is pretty interesting as well, so here’s the same record in HTML+RDFa.

Click here to see that markup rendered by your browser. The benefit of RDFa is that it’s human readable by everyone with a Web browser, and at the same time machine-readable structured data. See Publish your data, don’t build APIs for more on hypermedia APIs.

Here’s the RDFa source:

Read the full article…

Wed, 13 Jan 2016 20:31:00 +0000

Dave Camp: Three Pillars (“Great or Dead”)

Dave Camp’s e-mail about the future direction of Mozilla Firefox – Three Pillars:

Uncompromised Quality

We’ve started putting together a program inartfully named “Great or Dead”. Every feature in the browser should be polished, functional, and a joy to use.  Where we can’t get it to that state, we shouldn’t do it at all.  In some cases that will mean spending time to make it great.  In other cases that will mean removing code that we don’t see ourselves improving any time soon.  In other cases it will mean finding third party services or addons that can do the job better than we can.

[…] There’s no shortcut to this.  It means significant, sustained work.  Expect to see some of the effort spent on new feature development shift to bringing existing features up to our standards.”

Makes a great new year’s resolution for us software developers, doesn’t it?

Wed, 13 Jan 2016 14:00:00 +0000

My side projects in 2015

Like many other programmers, I always have a couple of side projects going on. My main motivation is learning. While I do learn a lot during work hours, I have ideas and questions I want to follow up on regardless of business priorities. And sometimes I want to take off my programmer hat and do stuff that’s not in my job description.

My main side project in 2015 was Planet DAM, the aggregator of Web articles on Digital Asset Management – an idea I had discussed with Ralph Windsor (of DAM News) a year earlier. (A great thing about personal projects is that most of them don’t have deadlines.)

Read the full article…

Sun, 03 Jan 2016 00:00:00 +0000