Alfresco 2013 Summit – Recap

TSG attended the Alfresco Summit on November 12-15 as a Silver Sponsor.  This event was formerly known as Alfresco DevCon but has evolved to focus on not just development, but also the experience for end users as well as solutions built on Alfresco. This post will present some of our thoughts on the conference and other Alfresco announcements.

Overall Thoughts

For those of us that have attended DevCon in the past, everyone was pleasantly surprised by the rapid switch from an open source community event that was DevCon to a much more user focused event that still included deep-dives into technical areas.

2013 has brought a lot of new faces to Alfresco, and it was great to get a vision of what the next few years will bring.  Alfresco recognizes its roots as an on-premise content repository provider, but will continue to grow and invest in its hybrid cloud architecture and solutions in the years ahead.  Simple and Smart was a major theme, and repeated throughout the conference.

Keynote – Doug Dennerline – Alfresco CEO

The event also was the coming out party for Doug Dennerline,  new Alfresco CEO, to the Alfresco user community.  Doug introduced other new members of his team including:

  • Carlton Baab, CFO (Lithium, TigerLogic)
  • Paul St. John, VP Worldwide Sales (EMC / Documentum, Riverbed)
  • Andrea Lagan, VP of Customer Success (Oracle RightNow, NetScout)
  • Paul Warenski, General Counsel (ServiceSource, Intraware)
  • Ray Martinelli, Chief People Officer (ServiceSource, Juniper, Apple)

Doug’s vision is to lead Alfresco and embrace the cloud with a 20% – 60% – 20% model as presented below.

206020

Combined with Simple and Smart, the approach is to acknowledge that some things (20%) will always live on-premise, some things (20%) will live in the cloud, and 60% are somewhere in between, hence the hybrid cloud.  From a TSG perspective, we like the approach that Alfresco has chosen in regards to giving our customers the choice of a variety of deployments, particularly in a private cloud with AWS.  While Alfresco is preparing for more cloud, the recognition that on-premise and a “Hybrid” cloud is a significant differentiator between their competitors.

Doug’s kick-off presentation with vision is located here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xXV2lkJr3Ho

Roadmap – Alfresco

With the recent release of Alfresco 4.2 and Records Manager 2.1 behind us, Alfresco is already beginning talk of upcoming features and functionality.  Highlights include the following:

  • Enhanced Office Integration
  • Desktop Sync / Hybrid Functionality
  • Better Hybrid Architecture
  • Accessibility – 508 Compliance
  • Reporting / Analytics
  • Remote Video Transformation
  • Search Enhancements, including facets
  • Enhanced Digital Media Management, including remote video transformation
  • Simple Cloud deployment and scaling
  • Salesforce Integration

Look for future announcements as this will be finalized by end of year.

Other Thoughts on Summit

From a networking perspective, the event was great for catching up with the Alfresco Community – Alfresco Engineers, Partners, and Customers.  We had an opportunity to participate in a number of sessions, forums, and lightning talks throughout the conference.    Presentations TSG participated in include:

Controlled Docs Solution for Life Sciences Manufacturing – http://summit.alfresco.com/boston/sessions/controlled-docs-solution-pharmaceutical-manufacturing

This was a great session where we got to show off how our TSG compliance solution is being used (and validated) by other companies with Alfresco.

Centralizing and Optimizing All Kinds of Content:  Panel on Digital Asset Management – http://summit.alfresco.com/boston/sessions/centralizing-and-optimizing-all-kinds-content-panel-digital-asset-management

This session highlighted our Alfresco Practice Lead – Ray Wijangco as well as two of our most innovative customers Mitch Brodsky from New York Philharmonic as well as Scott Gillam from the Canadian Museum for Human Rights.

What you Need to Know: Running a Successful Content Management Project http://summit.alfresco.com/boston/sessions/what-you-need-know-running-successful-content-management-project

Ray was again called upon as part of a panel discussion on how to successfully run a content management project.

Lightning Talks

Tony Parzgnat presented in all of the Lightning Talks.

Open Annotate – http://summit.alfresco.com/boston/sessions/lightning-talks-1

Dynamic Datalist Driven Constraints in Share – http://summit.alfresco.com/boston/sessions/lightning-talks-2

Advanced Versioning and Security Management – http://summit.alfresco.com/boston/sessions/lightning-talks-3

We received a lot of good feedback on this format of well-attended events on how to enhance Alfresco.

Summary

The Alfresco Summit 2013 was a great event from Alfresco.  It reminded Ray and I of the earlier Documentum Momentum conferences (before the EMC purchase), where there was an intimate focus on customers and partners.  Our clients loved the opportunity to network with each other as well as all of the Alfresco engineers in a collaborative (non-sales) environment.

We are looking forward to next year’s event.  Our money is either in the San Fran area or Philly.