UGC, 2.0, and Commenting Services

Perhaps you’re thinking about adding some “2.0” to your site or intranet, to obtain that great user generated content (UGC) — but where do you start?

You start with commenting, of course. No blog would be a real blog without it. And most kinds of social & collaboration software wouldn’t be considered very social (or collaborative) without the option to comment on content, either. And the best thing about commenting: how hard can it be, really? Continue reading “UGC, 2.0, and Commenting Services”

photo by: mdid

Do you need a simple or a complex CMS?

I sometimes warn that a vendor’s content management system is well suited to “simple” scenarios, but not necessarily a good fit for “more complex” cases. That’s a bit problematic: “simple” and “complex” are very subjective. So let me elaborate. Continue reading “Do you need a simple or a complex CMS?”

photo by: fdecomite

Decoding Content Management jargon

Now that we’ve built content management to reach into the clouds, have we been punished by a confusion of tongues? Sure, there are tangible differences between, say, a page-based or a component-based system. And some labels are rooted in their underlying technology. Still, there’s a couple of archetypes we could at least attempt to label similarly. But while the lingua franca of content technologies is English, vendors aren’t exactly using the same dictionaries. Continue reading “Decoding Content Management jargon”

photo by: Ryan Somma

Tagging your web content

It’s one of those elusive dreams of web content management: a completely metadata-driven publishing model. Especially when there’s lots of content, and a variety of sites or channels targeting different audiences. Wouldn’t it be great if content more or less automatically found its way to the right places? The same items appearing in all the right spots, without laboriously having to copy it or even attach it to a specific point in your website tree? Continue reading “Tagging your web content”

photo by: vonguard

Why you’ll throw away your CMS in 3 years

Over the years, I’ve seen a large number of web site functional designs, technical designs, requirements, wireframes and mock-ups. But usually, the one thing missing from the planning of a WCM-driven web site is what’s most likely to shoot the implementation in the foot: the functional design of the CMS back-end. The form & function of how the CMS will work, look and feel for the end-user of the system, not the visitor to the web site, is too often overlooked. Continue reading “Why you’ll throw away your CMS in 3 years”

photo by: zayzayem

Users don’t know what a browser is (or anything else)

In a clip on YouTube, an interviewer asks passersby in Times Square what a browser is. The surprising result: many think it’s a search engine. Continue reading “Users don’t know what a browser is (or anything else)”

photo by: yimmy149

CM, IA, UX and other alphabet soup

I suppose this must have come up before – most notably, at the inception of CM Pros (sorry – I wasn’t there). But what exactly would we define as the difference between content management and information architecture? Is CM part of IA, parallel, overlapping or something altogether different? Not to mention the further confusion that user experience (UX) is adding to the soup. Continue reading “CM, IA, UX and other alphabet soup”

photo by: Nick Harris1

What’s the use of Dublin Core?

While designing a new CMS implementation we wanted to really get it right. That meant outputting strict xhtml, css formatting, trying to adhere to accessibility guidelines, etcetera. Of course, the issue of metadata came up. What metadata would we render to the web pages? And in what format? Which is what got me looking at Dublin Core. Continue reading “What’s the use of Dublin Core?”

photo by: koalazymonkey

A-Z Indexes: Bane or Boon?

In his EContent column of July 2005, Bob Doyle wrote about A-Z indexes (“Your Site–from A to Z“). He suggests using such an index as a less expensive, pragmatic alternative to taxonomies and thesauri. Building and implementing classification systems takes a lot of resources while the payback for the investment is unclear. A well-done index, on the other hand, is a modest investment with clear findability benefits. Continue reading “A-Z Indexes: Bane or Boon?”

photo by: kvanhorn