RealTime IT News

EMC Documentum Embraces SOA, Eclipse

EMC brushed the dust off its Documentum software, issuing the company's first major upgrade of the enterprise content management (ECM) platform in more than two years.

EMC Documentum 6 has been crafted to better handle Web services, whereas the March 2005 release of Documentum 5.3 was rewritten significantly to share the same code base, security model, repository, object model and programming interfaces.

Karin Ondricek, who works in Documentum platform marketing for EMC's content management and archiving unit, said the main thrust of Documentum 6 is on building, configuring and deploying applications for service-oriented architecture (SOA) systems.

"We're seeing a lot of customers look around their IT environments and see that they have systems from three, four or five different vendors," Ondricek said. "That's incredibly expensive from a maintenance perspective, so they're starting to move toward a standardization model, which means using fewer vendors to deploy more applications on a common back-end."

To address the challenges associated with disparate platforms, Documentum 6 includes a Web services-based API that helps enterprise content services work with other business applications within a SOA.

This API is a departure from the proprietary Documentum API, because it offers a vendor-neutral framework for developers working with content-management tools.

In essence, services built with the API were designed to allow developers with no Documentum experience to build ECM applications quickly and easily.

EMC hasn't stopped there with regard to standardization; its Documentum Composer is now based on the Eclipse integrated development environment (IDE), which reduces the need for manual coding and reuses assets in classic SOA fashion.

Like the new content services API, Composer is an alternative to proprietary tools that existed independently and served specific functions.

Finally, Documentum 6 features branch office caching to help local business users view, create, edit and search content from the platform at a high level of performance, regardless of where they are.

To prove that Documentum 6 is Web services-friendly for developers, EMC is challenging individuals or teams to develop and submit an ECM application based on the Documentum 6 platform by September 30 for the chance to win up to $100,000 in cash.

Submissions will be judged by a panel of EMC experts and external representatives, including a recognized industry analyst, technology media, and a recognized SOA and Web services expert. The top submission will be recognized at the EMC Developer Conference in Monaco.

EMC's attempt to make its Documentum platform SOA friendly comes on the heels of upgrades to IBM's FileNet platform and prior to an integration/upgrade to Oracle's Enterprise Content Management Suite.