On Monday 25th May I attended the Brisbane
RedDot OpenText Web Solutions User Group meeting. There was a good mix of partners, customers, freelancers. On the APAC OpenText Web Solutions team side there was a balanced combination of technical and sales staff ready to put on a good presentation and answer any questions that came up. The day consisted of the following topics:
I’m going to focus this article on the new version 10 of the web solutions product suite (please comment below on what you’d like to see more info on). The version of management server on display was 10.0.0.15, according to the login header, and was described in QA and scheduled for release in late June. The improvement and changes highlighted today were:
It appears that the incremental refactoring of the RedDot cms product from classic asp across to .net is still in progress. From memory the product roadmap indicated that the .net refactoring will be continuing until at least until version 11 tentatively to be released in april next year. (Unfortunately my 3 megapixel HTC Dream mobile photo of the roadmap from the back of the room didn’t cut the mustard in picking up the detail). Getting back to the .page builder the migration to .net is being touted as improving publication and scalability via parallel tasks and optimised memory management. According to Opentext their internal benchmarks have led to publication and response rates in the user editing environment increasing as follows:
The figures look good on paper and I look forward to running it up on existing clients with publication and response time issues. What I failed to ask but am hopeful of is that with the refactored pagebuilder is that we will having a more granular ability to benchmark, debug and test performance for problematic pages within projects.
The end user environment for version 10 has been completely redesigned from the pre-version 10 smartedit environment. The authoring environment focuses around a new “widget” based start page and a standard outlook style 3 panel layout. Overall it is a more streamlined and thankfully removes the permanent left hand module menu that has been there since i’ve been working with the product. Expect a more modern look and feel more consistent with Web 2.0y type applications..
End user configurable “widgets” included in our demo were:
It appears that the end user can change the properties of these “widgets” (such as what is returned by the saved search) as well as reposition them as required (similar to igoogle, facebook et. al.). Something I forgot to ask in the demo but am hopeful is the ability to create 3rd party “widgets” an example of this could be server status information for RedDot administrators such as current publication tasks, active user lists, page in draft/waiting for release summary info and/or cpu load/memory usages etc.
The new editing environment is now a two pane web page with resizable frames ( I hope it remembers those resize settings when you click away). The left pane is a navigation manager based navigation structure tree. (I’m not sure what this is going to do for target container based projects but I guess we’ll have to wait for the documentation) with the right hand side dedicated to the web site.
There’s also lots of right click enabled context based action menus (ajax driven) and drag and drop content classes selection from right hand side pane. The pop-out right hand panel for selecting the content classes didn’t seem to match the new interface but as long as it works I don’t think anyone will be complaining as it’s a big improvement over the old multi pop-up menu.
The telerik editor, which was introduced in version 9 and whos quirks discussed earlier here has had a new darker skin applied as well as an enhanced table creation wizard with improved accessibility options. I’m not sure if this is a reddot customisation or just a new version of telerik.
The outstanding tasks as well as the search options have now been given there own dedicated pages similar in style to the three pane verion of the new smartedit environment with a Microsoft Outlook like appeararce. The tasks page also includes a status bar pop-up for outstanding tasks (similar to the gmail chat or facebook chat popups).
With all this new ajaxy jscript being thrown around OpenText indicated the there will be new reserved fucntion names and id’s for jscript and css which will be contained in a dedicated version 10 upgrade guide..
What was missing though was any demonstration of the new delivery server (LiveServer) functionality indicated in the product roadmap as follows:
We’ll just have to wait for the release notes to get more detail on the above.
The APAC OpenText Web Solutions team put on a great day and i’m certain that the Sydney, Melbourne and Perth guys can look forward to there Customer Days (and the lunches!). The technical preview of version 10 of the RedDot OpenText Management Server was refreshing and I was very happy to see a vm driven demonstration of the new features on an instance of the software and not a powerpoint presentation of photoshop mock-ups. Now it’s just a matter of twiddling our thumbs until the end of June when Version 10 hopefully escapes QA and we can all sink our teeth in to some ajaxy cms goodness.
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