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"How should IST best coordinate and consolidate the content management services it delivers to the campus?"

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Project


Panel

Team

Sponsors: Michael Mundrane, David Greenbaum

Data Services: Patrick McGrath (lead), Noah Wittman

Client Services:  Susan Tobes (Customer Lead)

Application Services: Tom Tsai (supported by Vahid and Wendy).  Bill Allison overseeing.

Infrastructure Services: Michael Leefers,  Jack Shnell

COIS: Brian Wood

Office of CIO, Operational Excellence: Liz Marsh

Panel

Project Kickoff - February 4

Preparation materials and meeting notes from the project kickoff meeting, Thursday February 4th 2010.

Panel

Project Schedule

5-6 weeks.  Suggest the following:

Week

Tasks

End Date

Week 1

Finalize deliverable and interview framework based on confirmation of outcomes from sponsors

February 12

Week 2-4

Interviews of service providers

March 5

Week 2-3

Interviews of SAC, Customer reps

February 26

week 4-5

Draft of report. Review by participants.

March - April

Week 5-6

Presentation of recommendations to IST Directors

April 7 

If there are opportunities to pull this in, we will do what we can.

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Key Deliverables

  • Description, status and comparison of IST offerings
  • Description of campus need, and alignment with IST offerings
  • Analysis and observations
  • Recommendations
    • Products/services
    • Organizational approach for platform, service, support
    • Next steps

Context

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Data Gathering Framework

Analysis will be performed at a very high level, largely derived from interviews with our team members and a small amount of followup. Sample questions here :

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Common Content Management Functions

By way of starting to define Content Management domains, here is a general summary of the wider “Content Management” domain. This covers a fairly wide arena of overlapping functions that allow

  • File Serving, File Sharing – authenticated, secure sharing of files
  • Web Content Management – website publishing
  • Collaboration - posting of content in the form of structured web documents (e.g. wikis), annotation and comments (blogs). Activity feeds, etc.
  • Document Management – versioning, checkin/checkout, tracking of documents (which could be in many formats including word files, spreadsheets, pictures, video, pdf’s, scanned images)
  • Digital Asset Management - often centered around the management of rich media (pictures, video, audio), these tools usually present a rich graphical user interface for content annotation and manipulation of assets and their associated metadata.
  • Document imaging - processing techniques are used to capture, improve the quality of and to view images.
  • Records Management - help organizations capture, classify, control and dispose of a wide range of corporate records.
  • Workflow/Process Management – allows business rules to be applied to content, for example approvals, automated transformations, monitoring of processes, reminders, etc.
  • Development Platforms – the ability to develop applications leveraging the underlying services of a content management platform. An example of this is the CollectionSpace application, developed to provide management of curated physical and digital collections. This particular application utilizes many of the underlying document repository, metadata and media management functions of an enterprise content management platform.

In an organization such as ours, it is unreasonable to expect a single tool or platform to accommodate everyone’s needs or technical environment. On the contrary, we expect to see a number of the content-related platforms increasing their influence and role for the campus (e.g. bSpace, archives, etc.). Many departments have heavily invested in their own solutions to support unique needs.

SAC & Customer Analysis

Panel

Refer to SAC & Customer Survey Questions and Responses page for a survey of questions sent to key customers from the IST Service Advisory Council.

Summary of Customer Feedback

  1. The largest and most immediate need for the campus is the ability to publish departmental websites.  These should have UCB branding, with the ability to tailor to the specific department, perhaps with a selection of standard templates to be available. Sites should be CalNet enabled and should be viewable to the public.
  2. The second largest need is the ability to share documents and other files, based on self maintained authorization rules.  Internal campus and external entities (those not defined in CalNet) should have the ability to upload or download files based on the needs of some departments. This is one key area where content management and collaborative work meet.
  3. Workflow rules would be very beneficial also for a number of departments, especially tied to the documents/files described above.
  4. Services need to be priced comparably to externally available services that have similar functions.  In fact, there is little incentive to have website services delivered from within the campus unless restricted or sensitive data is involved. It is important however that every department should not incur the burden of identifying providers, negotiating and managing contracts.
  5. It should be relatively painless and quick to provision new sites and services.  Current experience is the opposite, with a number of barriers that exist for access to external hosting services.
  6. Incentives need to exist for the centralization of content services

There is also an expectation that

  • Services will be provided with quality and levels of support provided by external suppliers
  • IST will participate and perhaps facilitate technical-user groups for services offered (such as the Drupal Users Group)

Meeting Notes

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IST Content Management Service / Solution Profiles

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Data Services - Media Vault Program - Alfresco

Open Source Enterprise Content Management (ECM) product suite selected by the Media Vault Program team. Largest open-source ECM market share.

  • Primary target was to support collaboration and document-centric functions (images, recordings, word documents, etc.) to campus scholars. These customers have an orientation towards open-source, cross platform offerings since the faculty and students have very heterogeneous computing environments.
  • The project recognized that a more general content management toolset would allow integration with other services such as library archiving and digital preservation services already offered by the campus and system.
  • the project also recognized that a more general content management toolset would address a number of wider functions within the departments, both academic and administrative.

Not in production, targeting release August. Will require continued IT Bank funding to release as a service. Interesting partnership opportunities with groups like RA&C (SPO), focused around document management and repository functions.
Overlaps exist with Calshare, which is already in production with low cost DM functions.

A full suite of content management functions with major strengths around Document Management.  Collaboration, wiki, blog, etc. 

Chosen over Nuxeo based on out-of-the-box functions available for deployment with limited technical team (closer fit to deployment scenarios).

Data Services - Nuxeo

Open Source Enterprise Content Management (ECM) product suite used as the back-end content repository for the CollectionSpace product.    This was selected well before Alfresco, as a content-enabled development platform for our Museum Collections, and will be deployed almost as a black-box at UCB for 10 museums / collections within the next few years. At this stage, there is no intention of providing direct services from the Nuxeo product stack.

Application Services - Confluence

Open-source tool from Atlassian. Supported as a pilot service by the Web Apps team in Application Services. In production, customers being charged.

Strengths: Particularly liked by IT developers as a collaborative space that is integrated with other development tools including Jira and SubVersion. Specializes in wiki, some blogging and document sharing.

Need to determine how much effort goes to support this offering and what the longer term economics of the offering is.

Update: Apr 14 - Application Services is now looking to provide the confluence service (in conjunction with JIRA and Subversion) free to groups who develop enterprise IT solutions, esp in partnership with IST. Extension of confluence as a collaboration tool for more general use (and the cost recovery of such) needs to be more fully explored.

Application Services - CalWeb-in-a-box

Externally hosted Drupal, Joomla, Wordpress sites. Focus on web content management, collaboration, blogging. $100 monthly for external (Pair Networks) hosting with an hour of site management / patching a month. Service no longer being actively promoted, in favor of new Drupal offerings in development. Very costly compared with fully outsourced offerings.

Application Services Drupal

See above (Calweb-in-a-box)

Application Services - Joomla

Was leveraged historically to provision some one-off sites.  this is no longer something that AS will offer, though legacy sites are still managed.

COIS - Drupal

New service in development. functional focus on web content management, website publishing, collaboration, light document management. excellent departmental solutions.

One of the largest open-source communities internationally, with many related community projects providing specialized plug-ins. (http://Whitehouse.gov relaunched on Drupal in 2009, demonstrating security/stability potential.) Large campus community and demand. Excellent rich user experience, developed in PHP. Suited towards environment where customers have access to technical resources to provision. Technician heavy to implement/configure, unless we move towards dashboard-like provisioning and management which is the focus of COIS efforts. Lends well to consulting services and traning recharge services.

Townsend center spent 40-100K on getting their site going, hosted externally with consulting help. ongoing costs of support unknown though they have developed competencirs in house for managing the app. TC likely to be offering basic websites and content sharing for free to anyone in their domain who want service.

Brian Wood is working on a toolset and environment which will enable virtualized provisioning and management. Multiple phases:

  1. Targeting beta release June - one drupal site/one VM. Think this will be expensive, and a few in IST have expressed concern with the scalability of this model. Service model and pricing need to be further developed by Tom Tsai.
  2. Multiple Drupal instances on one VM. Proves to be more scalable with a template driven approach, based on a localized distribution of the product.
  3. Multiple Drupal instances on VM webserver clusters.
  4. Service approved for restricted data.

Pricing and support models TBD. Brian working with Tom Tsai and Bill Allison to establish pricing. Service will be supported by AS and other applicable campus groups. AS is trying to engage the Unix Team in a discussion about supporting IST Drupal.  IST Drupal does not fix into the currently defined model of what the Unix Team is prepared to support.

IST Drupal leverages (or will leverage) existing services for it's infrastructure:

  • UCB MySQL service
  • UCB VM service
    • UCB standard Red Hat Enterprise Linux (not well suited to LAMP)
    • SAN storage
  • UC Backup

Leveraging the UCB products above is a good organizational efficiency move (services are not duplicated), however the resulting recharges dramatically increase the overall price to the client.

Technically promising with a significant potential market on campus.

Infrastructure Services - CalWebPro

General IST web Hosting on Unix boxes. this offering used by about 33% content management systems, 33% PHP apps, 33% Dreamweaver/HTML  publishing.
Major performance issues, unknown real roadmap. Indications are this is not a strategic direction.  Patrick to followup and confirm with Unix Team.

Infrastructure Services - Sharepoint (Calshare)

Suite of  content management functions, especially suited for collaboration projects.

Microsoft, Activex oriented environment for many of the features, which creates cross-platform challenges. UI and UX not popular with many on the campus.  However, many powerful features, considered in the ECM space.  A number of campus departments building their own apps /  workflows using tools like Infopath.   High potential /need for consulting services.  General feeling that if we invested in training and consulting services, this would drive the use of the platform much more.  However, the bias against microsoft and .net is high on campus, especially based on the platform independence issues.

Many downsides of the current platform could be changed within sharepoint 2010 currently being worked on by the Sharepoint team, ready for release to the campus in 10-16 months.

Infrastructure Services - Storage Team

Storage group looking to release new NAS-based offerings to the campus.  Suit larger chunks of storage allocations, generally not oriented towards personal spaces.  Jack also talked about moving towards storage offerings that could be presented as secure, authenticated/authorized.  Possible overlap roadmaps with AFS.

Infrastructure Services - Windows Storage

Windows also offers fileserver / document sharing services.  These are presented as generally larger chunks and are authenticated and authorized with active directory.  Supports delegation, etc.    Overlap with AFS, though generally not as platform independent, and is restricted to Calnet users.

Infrastructure Services - AFS

Opensource file system, low cost environment for file sharing for desktop/web mountable storage. Allows access controls to collaborative file sharing at the most basic levels.   IST already subsidizing this for (4?) beta customers such as Law. 

Good  basic file system, good performance, though some questions at scalability.    At the file system level, this overlaps with some of the plans by the storage group and existing services from the Windows group, which we should seek to clarify.  Many of the other content-management platforms also offer the ability to do the mounting on folders at the desktop and authorization level, with many additional functions on top.  However these come with a performance overhead.

AFS has been configured to allow for external authentication and authorization, which is an issue for other platforms that restrict to Calnet auth.

Patrick to followup and confirm with AFS Team.

Other - UC San Diego Hannon Hill Services

Interesting alternative.  UCSD developed a web publishing service (high availability, and with a disaster hotsite at UCOP).  Multi-tenant solution they are looking to offer to other UC's as appropriate.  Their platform is oriented to template-driven, quickly deployable sites providing departmental content publishing to UCB web-servers.   Not a development platform, but could provide much needed solutions to campus departments at a low price.  UCSD team have established technical skills and site deployment methodologies.  Would require us to work on authentication,  development of UCB UI templates provisioning of web content hosting sites.  Now looking at possible POC customers to assess real opportunities to partner.

Recommendation Summary

Panel

Refer to the final slides presented to IST Directors 4-20-2010 .

Recommendations

1) Data Services becomes Service Owner of Content Management NOW

  • Strategic and functional leadership. Roadmap owner & decision maker
  • Perform more analysis within IST/ OE / SAC to better describe needs, capabilities, opportunities. Make additional recommendations & proposals as appropriate.

2) Technical platform delivery remains where it is … for NOW

  • AS leads implementation delivery of Drupal, and IST focused Confluence bundle
  • DS leads implementation delivery of Media Hub (Alfresco)
  • (TBD) DS leads exploration / POC of UCSD WCMS (Hannon Hill)
  • IS leads implementation delivery of CalShare (SharePoint)
    … but moves to Data Services over timeframe TBD

3) Professional services / consulting approaches to be determined and clarified over the next few months


Proposed Roles

To be confirmed over the next 2 months

TAM
  • Sales, Consultative Sales
  • Marketing
  • Broad Portfolio Integration and Communications

Service Owner
  • Understand / document / prioritize CM goals
  • Own definition, attributes and performance evaluation of services
  • Decision making, selection and sourcing of products, platforms, suppliers
  • Oversight of investment/returns
  • Coordination of domain specific community and governance

Technical Platform Delivery Owner
  • Technical product leadership
  • Product Implementation, Upgrades
  • Operations

Now

  • AS – Drupal, Confluence, etc.
  • DS – Media Hub (Alfresco)
  • IS – CalShare (Sharepoint)

MOVES TO DATA SERVICES or External as/when appropriate

Accociated Services

For example...

  • Provisioning
  • Training
  • Consulting
    • Configuration
    • Customization
    • Applications with bus. processes
    • Branding
    • Templates

Move to AS & DS

  • TBD
  • Outsourced / Subcontracted

Short Term Timeline


Parking Lot Issues mentioned by CM Team

  • What will be our internal governance / accountability mechanism to bridge the service (DS) and technical delivery owners
  • How will we fund/resource research projects (e.g. UCSD Hannon Hill), or additional community engagement/training for existing services?
  • How to fund/resource the outreach (including additional communications, training, support, consulting, etc.) that will drive understanding and increased adoption of CM services. Many of the service areas are purely recharge based (e.g. Sharepoint)
  • Middleware support group?
  • Internal turnaround times (perceptions) for provisioning of service?
  • What relationship to campus services such as BTS “Imagine” service and others like it?

Attachments

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Attachments