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Atomz Upgrades Web Content Suite

Enterprise Web site management ASP Atomz on Monday enhanced its Web-native software suite with several new features and improved functionality.

Nearly a dozen new enhancements aim to improve the ease-of-use, security, customization and reliability of the Atomz suite of products, including Atomz Publish, the company's Web content management solution, Atomz Search, its site search engine, and Atomz Promote, an application that enables customers to keyword-target content directly into their site's search results.

All of the enhancements were rolled out to customers seamlessly, Seth Brenzel, Atomz director of Marketing, told ASPnews. "Being an ASP, we can really keep the customer downtime to an absolute minimum when we upgrade. Most customers will never have a clue that it happened until the next time they log in, when they'll see the new features installed," Brenzel said. "As the software as a service model continues to grow, more customers are going to demand it. Customers are going to start to get used to the idea that upgrades will be a transparent process."

These enhancements represent part of an ongoing process in which the company continually adds, upgrades and improves its software, often in direct response to specific customer needs and requests. Enhancements and upgrades are implemented about every 2 weeks, with major product releases made every quarter, he said.

Some of the key new features include more control over file format generation in Atomz Publish, an improved Rich Text editor in Atomz Publish and Atomz Promote, increased security via search restrictions in Atomz Search, and search personalization in Atomz Search and Atomz Promote.

Administrators using Atomz Publish now have a greater ability to control the format of automatically generated file names. For instance, an automatically generated file name can be rendered as either august28_new_press.html or newpress082803.html. This enables Atomz Publish to be easily integrated with existing customer Web sites with varying file-naming conventions.

The Rich Text Editor within Atomz Publish, which underwent a major upgrade in June, has been further improved. Context menu support allows right-click access to common functions, and the new controls enable administrators to customize the precise levels of content publish settings, styles, and options that contributors and authors have access to during the editing process. Context menus of the content management solution's Rich Text Editor now allow users to right-click their mouse to Undo, Cut, Copy, Paste, Delete and Select All.

"That's a very familiar idea to Windows users," Brenzel said. "We're taking that and pulling it out to the Web so that right-clicking is as easy in Atomz Publish and Atomz Promote as it is in Microsoft Office."

Search Restrictions is a new feature in Atomz Search for sites that wish to limit the viewing of search result content in some manner. Examples include a Web site that charges a fee to access content, or one that password protects private information via an Intranet or Extranet. With Search Restrictions, customers can limit which users are able to see search results based on their IP address or domain name.

Search Personalization has been added to Atomz Search. This gives site managers the ability to personalize or localize the search form on a customer Web site to meet custom site needs. For instance, customers could set up a geographical or departmental search where visitors would enter a zip code or department prior to performing a search query. As a result, returned search results will be tailored to that parameter. A cookie will have been set so that the user's geography or department is recalled and the visitor is not required to re-type the information in future visits.

Brenzel points out that it's definitely a customization feature, not something every customer will be interested in. "It's something that maybe 20 or 30 percent of sites will be interested in right away. It can give a web store a similar feel to looking through a local yellow pages, or a search experience similar to getting different coupons in your local newspaper based on where you live."

In addition to these changes, Atomz has upgraded their network to improve the performance of Atomz Search. Enhanced Redundancy ensures maximum uptime for Atomz Search customers during routine system-wide upgrades and maintenance.

"In the case of search, it's a product that's out there for our customer's customers to be using. It needs to be available to those visitors 100-percent of the time, and our customers expect that. So we've made some upgrades to the network so that we're able to mirror and hot-sync the search accounts, so even when we're doing a Search upgrade, those customers won't notice it. They weren't really noticing it before, but now it's really industrial-strength," Brenzel said.

Atomz also announced this week that it is one of eight founding partners in a content technology industry initiative to be known as The Gilbane Content Technology Works Program. Under the program, best practices and success stories will be documented, assessed and published by an independent publisher, The Gilbane Report. Founding partners include Software AG (TECdax:SOW), Sun Microsystems (NASDAQ:SUNW), Artesia Technologies, Atomz, Context Media, Convera (NASDAQ:CNVR), Vignette (NASDAQ:VIGN), and WebWare. These companies represent technologies including enterprise infrastructure, content management, portal, XML databases, search and categorization, digital asset management and content integration.

"This program is really about raising the level of awareness around how content technology can be a strategic IT/corporate initiative, and that there are real-life successes out there of people making business change and getting business value from it," Brenzel said.

Atomz has been recognized as a Top 20 Provider on the ASPnews.com Top 50.