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A tale of two conferences: what it has to do with your career future

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It was the best of times, it was the worst of times ...

I’d like to share an observation having just attended SLA 2009 in Washington, D.C. earlier this month and the Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston last week. The contrast between the two conferences could not be more stark.

But let’s start with what the conferences seem to agree on: the information glut is accelerating, and users can not find the information they need to perform their jobs effectively. However, the approach to the two conferences propose to solving this problem could not be more different.

SLA continues to be dominated by large content publishers. When you walk into the conference hall, you know who the 800-pound gorillas are, and these companies have been the gorillas for a long time. The general consensus among content providers, practitioners, and vendors is more advanced products to control and organize the flow of information from the content providers.

At Enterprise 2.0, the exhibit hall is mostly filled with companies that did not exist five years ago. The consensus here was at the opposite end of the spectrum. Your employees know the answers, but they do not have the tools to organize and publish this knowledge. Luckily, enterprise 2.0 tools solve this problem, and empower the users with the ability to help each other and learn from each other, in ways that you could not imagine even a short time ago.

It’s as if the two groups are talking past each other. SLA still seems very uncomfortable with the wisdom of the community, and the notion that users represent 100 percent of tactic knowledge, and that tapping this knowledge store is critical for an organization to perform in an optimal manner. On the other hand, the Enterprise 2.0 folks seem amazingly naive to overlook the mountains of explicit knowledge that organizations already have and that must be further leveraged to enable optimal organizational productivity.

As a person and a vendor that believes we need to find the intersection of these two philosophies (with Inmagic Presto we call this a social knowledge network, where explicit knowledge is informed and enriched by the wisdom of the community), I must admit I vacillate between joy and despair.

Joy in that the melding of these two philosophies seems so logical and needed, and despair in that I can’t understand how all these really smart people do not see the same thing. And most important, I believe this is a huge opportunity for librarians to help bring these two philosophies together, and I hope that we don’t all look back in five years and say this was another missed opportunity.

So please, get involved in enterprise 2.0! Embrace the new technologies that enable users to collaborate more rigorously. Become a champion of socializing your content, and not just of using social media in the library. I think you will find that empowered users do not need less vetted content, but more.

The next generation of librarians needs to learn and master how to supply vetted information not via the standard library OPAC, but into the messy and often chaotic enterprise 2.0 slipstream.

Just remember, your users are finding information via a pop-gun (their favorite tool, Google). But you are armed and dangerous. You are equipped with the knowledge and expertise to find the right information from the right source(s), and know that the information you find has veracity and will stand up to intense scrutiny.

As you establish your enterprise 2.0 credentials (sorry, yes, you will have to prove your value -- add all over again. The diploma won’t do the trick), you will become very popular indeed, and your position within your organization will be secure.

In summary, the revolution is happening right now and the choice is yours. Get involved and master your library 2.0 destiny, or let the fate of your library 1.0 be determined by others.

New DB/TextWorks v12 now available with maintenance and workflow improvements

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Our developers have emerged from the Inmagic "bat cave" with a new version of DB/TextWorks in hand. We made several key enhancements to batch modify, search, reporting, and imaging, which will improve database maintenance and workflow. For our customers on maintenance, you'll automatically receive the updates for free. We detailed more info on the new version of DB/TextWorks in the press release below.

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Inmagic Introduces Latest Version of DB/TextWorks

Key benefits of latest release streamline workflow and simplify database maintenance for library and information professionals

WOBURN, Mass.—June 30, 2009—Inmagic today introduced Inmagic® DB/TextWorks® v12, a foundational component of the Inmagic® DB/Text® Library Suite. Several key enhancements to DB/TextWorks, including improvements to batch modify, search, reporting, and imaging, have been added to improve database maintenance and workflow. With this additional functionality, special library and information professionals are freed-up to focus on providing high-quality access to information and research to their organizations.

DB/TextWorks is a specialized database and text retrieval system used by more than 5,000 organizations to manage special library collections and content. DB/TextWorks can efficiently organize nearly any type of digital information—including documents, images, and multimedia—resulting in a centralized knowledge repository that is accessible to all constituents.

“Inmagic continues to develop products that keep users coming back for the latest advancements in knowledge management technology,” says Phil Green, CTO of Inmagic. “This release of DB/TextWorks demonstrates Inmagic’s commitment to a broad scope of loyal customers that rely on the DB/Text family of products for cost-effective and flexible information management across their knowledge repositories.”

The latest benefits to DB/TextWorks v12 include:

Improvements to batch modify, validation lists, and import functionality. Save significant time when maintaining the textbase, with the ability to:

• Batch modify multiple fields: Change more than one field at a time.
• Batch modify field-to-field: Copy or move the contents of one field to another.
• Update records to match validation list changes: When terms on a validation list are changed or
deleted, corresponding changes can be made in affected textbase records.
• Import matching multiple records: Option to update multiple matching records.

Enhanced search capabilities. Allows for more accurate information discovery, through:

• Thesaurus expansion when searching: Optional retrieval of preferred and related terms when
searching fields connected to a thesaurus.
• Easier textbase recognition: Moving the cursor over a textbase on the file menu causes the full
path of that textbase to appear in the status bar.

Enhanced E-mail. Improvements allow for more professional e-mails that can easily target larger groups, with:

• E-mail reports in HTML: Send Report as Mail now supports HTML format in the e-mail body.
• E-mail reports grouped by recipient: E-mail reports sent to recipients identified in textbase records
can optionally have all messages to a given recipient grouped into one e-mail message.

Advanced imaging. Capabilities support newer image formats, with:

• Support for the newer versions of PDF formats from Adobe® Acrobat®.

Inmagic product updates continue to address the needs of the company’s evolving customer base. As always, Inmagic wants to hear from you. Please send your product enhancement requests to wishlist@inmagic.com.

Customers on maintenance automatically receive this release as part of an annual maintenance contract, and thus can take advantage of these enhanced features and functionality at no additional cost. For more information about DB/TextWorks and Inmagic’s DB/Text Library Suite, please visit www.Inmagic.com. Certified Inmagic resellers and implementation partners can be found at http://www.inmagic.com/partners/directory.html.

Inmagic also offers the Presto family of knowledge management products, including Inmagic® Presto for Social Libraries, for organizations interested in integrating the power of Social Knowledge Networks with their information management needs.

ABOUT INMAGIC, INC.

Inmagic, Inc. has been the industry leader in knowledge management and library automation applications for over 25 years. Today, Inmagic is at the forefront of the move to new generation knowledge management, creating Social Knowledge Networks that combine top-down, vetted information with bottom-up, social “wisdom of the community” to address critical research and business objectives. Over 5,000 companies in 100 countries use Inmagic solutions, including Inmagic© Presto, Inmagic© Presto for Social Libraries, and the DB/Text product family, to gain unprecedented insight into customers, markets, competitors, research, intellectual properties, and more. Find out how much your organization really knows. Visit Inmagic at www.Inmagic.com.

###

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

For more information, press only:

Kate Ritchie, Gregory FCA, 610-642-8253 x162, kater@gregoryfca.com
Or
Carolyn MacNeill, Inmagic, Inc., 781-287-6277, cmacneill@inmagic.com

PRESS RESOURCES

Press contacts: Kate Ritchie, kater@gregoryfca.com, Carolyn MacNeill, cmacneill@inmagic.com

Inmagic: http://www.inmagic.com/

Inmagic press room: http://www.inmagic.com/news/press_room.html

Inmagic RSS feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/inmagic

Inmagic blog: http://blog.inmagic.com

Inmagic company fact sheet: http://www.inmagic.com/company/Inmagic-At-A-Glance.pdf

###

Plot thickens in Librarians vs. Google

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You might recall Google's book-searching agreement with publishers and authors, Google Book Search, which would give it control of digitizing virtually all copyrighted books in America. The deal must still get federal court approval. But now, many librarians and other critics are increasingly against it.

Janet Morrissey covers the latest developments in Time, citing opposition to the deal's unfair revenue model. Under the terms, Google would have an exclusive license to publish and profit from orphan books (books that are out-of-print, and whose authors and publishers are unknown). Critics say this would create a sort of digital library monopoly, and give Google the ability to charge exorbitant fees to academic libraries and others who want full access to its library.

I think in our haste to further knowledge and information discovery -- a virtuous goal indeed -- we should not be blind to what could be a wolf in sheep's clothing. Google is by no means an evil empire, and I personally rely on it daily. But it is a business like any other that must make its numbers and keep its board and shareholders happy.

As the "Librarians vs. Google" scenario plays out, we see that things can get sticky when it comes to mixing content and control. Having content that's digitized and accessible will be a huge step for the facilitation of knowledge. However, not if those materials are so costly and controlled that only a minority will benefit.

In short, it would be naive to think we shouldn’t move ahead with the digitization of books and other materials. It would be like swimming against a riptide. It’s going to happen. But we better be pretty darn clear about pricing, availability, and accessibility of information now and in the future.

As Janet writes in her Time article, "Opposition to the deal has been escalating, with librarians, academics, consumer advocates and even a few authors urging the federal court to either scuttle the deal or at least amend it." Let’s be thankful we live in a democracy, and let's continue to make our voices heard.

SLA 2009 video: We have a Kindle winner from the customer reception

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Back to some SLA 2009 coverage! The show was mostly business, but we also had the chance to relax and chat it up at our customer reception on Tuesday night. Phil took the podium to thank everyone for joining us, and Ron and our magician, Josh had the audience in suspense while they drew the winner of a Kindle 2 from a fish bowl. Play the video to find out who wins! (P.S. -- Apologies for the darkness. The room was dim!)



Congrats, Laurie, and everyone who won a Kindle! Enjoy!

Thanks again to everyone who turned out for the reception. Hope you all had a good time! Anything you think we should do differently or keep the same?

Pave your own enterprise 2.0 way

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While we're on the topic of the Enterprise 2.0 Conference, I wanted to share another thought as people mull over technologies and exhibits they saw and try to determine what's actually useful to them. Alexander Wolfe brought the subject up on his blog, the Wolfe's Den (part of InformationWeek), this week too.

The truth is, everyone must find their own 2.0 way. There is no "right way" to use enterprise social networking tools, as they have wide and varied applications across the organization: internal collaboration, external marketing, CI research, customer communications, etc. And no one department, group or individual is going to use it in the same way. That is the beauty of enterprise 2.0, and unfortunately what stumps a lot of people that want to tame it, or at least put it into a recognizable bucket.

If we to stop trying to put a round peg in a square hole and let enterprise 2.0 develop as it should –- both virally and with controls –- then we’ll likely see the collaboration and information sharing we’ve all been striving for all along, and possibly realize benefits we haven’t even conceived of yet.

Enterprise 2.0 Darwinism on the horizon

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G. Oliver Young wrote a supplement to C.G. Lynch's piece on the day of reckoning between enterprise 2.0 start-ups and Microsoft SharePoint. He presents additional perspective, and I encourage you check it out on his blog, Strategic Heading.

If competition between enterprise 2.0 start-ups and Microsoft SharePoint is about to heat up, then I think we might see what I like to call "enterprise 2.0 Darwinsim." Natural selection, where the best succeed naturally, while the weaker companies are weeded out. I left a couple more thoughts on that in my comment, so rather than rehash them, click over to Oliver's blog!

Post-conference dinner for Oregon Chapter of SLA

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We're helping to sponsor a special dinner next week for the Oregon Chapter of SLA, and I wanted to send the invitation to all our blog readers if you're interested in attending. If you're in the Portland area, it'll be a good opportunity to network and talk SLA. However, the deadline to RSVP is TOMORROW, June 26, so make sure you register quickly if you would like to attend. You don't have to be an SLA member. The invitation is below with more details.

The Oregon Chapter of SLA (ORSLA) invites you to join us for an upcoming professional development opportunity. As many of you know, SLA held its Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. from June 14th - 17th.

Several ORSLA members attended, as the conference offered opportunities for networking, communication, learning, and other professional development programs. They are eager to share their experiences with those of us who were unable to attend.

Come join us on Tuesday, June 30th at 6 p.m. to hear about conference highlights, sessions particularly relevant to our chapter, as well as a chance to discuss industry trends and key topics of interest to information professionals.

Location: Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt (map), 19th Floor.

Pizza and refreshments will be served.

The cost will be as follows:

$10 for SLA student members
$15 for SLA members
$20 for non-members

You may pay at the door either with cash or a check payable to ORSLA.

Please be aware that space is limited, so it is important for you to RSVP by TOMORROW, Friday, June 26th. If you have any questions regarding this event, feel free to contact Joan Truncali at bjtruncali@aol.com. We hope you will be able to attend, and look forward to seeing you there.

RSVP using the online registration form.

Enterprise 2.0 companies sharing SharePoint positioning

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(We're digressing from our SLA coverage today -- but fear not, more to come!)

Phil brought up the SharePoint-enterprise 2.0 topic today, and I wanted to add to the discussion. I attended a SharePoint session on Tuesday at the Enterprise 2.0 conference, and picked up some interesting tidbits. And as a marketer, one of the biggest takeaways that caught my attention is that almost all vendors are using the same arguments, pros and cons, relative to SharePoint positioning.

It seems successful companies will differentiate on how their applications not only add value to/leverage the SharePoint infrastructure, but also how they leverage business activities like:

- Communications and branding.

- Collaboration and the ability to collaborate seamlessly with other people and content.

- Findability of content and people. Taxonomy and meta data strategy is critical.

- Crowdsourcing to find helpful information and ideas.

- Knowledge networks, and the ability to capture fleeting and tacit knowledge and connect it within systems.

I think any deep functionality to address these business activities requires a specialized application or platform, priming the market for the entrance of other enterprise 2.0 providers, which Phil talked about.

Frenemies among us: Microsoft SharePoint vs. enterprise 2.0 start-ups

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When it comes to the enterprise 2.0 market, Microsoft SharePoint is the elephant in the room, as we've said before. And there’s no denying SharePoint’s footprint across the enterprise. The recent webinar poll we conducted with KMWorld Magazine alone revealed that 68 percent of respondents are SharePoint houses (although not all of those are enterprise-wide).

There are of course other players in the enterprise 2.0 market. And as C.G. Lynch puts forth in his recent CIO article, "a day of reckoning" might have arrived. He discusses how we've perhaps reached a point where enterprise 2.0 start-ups have the opportunity to stake a new claim, and seize some of Microsoft's market share. Click over to get the scoop.

However, a driving factor behind the SharePoint vs. enterprise 2.0 start-up land-grab is, as it always seems to be these days, the economy. Why? Because SharePoint development is shown to be more costly than other types of development and can create many SharePoint sites, which can equate to even more disconnected information silos.

This makes me think that SharePoint and enterprise 2.0 start-ups will maintain a "frenemy" status -- a wary acceptance and reluctant willingness to work together in the enterprise social software space.

SharePoint is already too entrenched to be ousted. But at a time when budgets are tight and workforce resources are reduced, decisions will lean towards cost-effective, out-of-the-box, easy-to-deploy and maintain solutions that complement, rather than compete with SharePoint. Prime example is Presto 3.1, and the new features we've added to increase Presto's compatibility with SharePoint.

The upside for start-ups is that the economy presents an opportunity to entrench themselves in areas that might not otherwise be penetrated, and prove themselves irreplaceable when things turn around.

SLA 2009 podcast: Michael Panzer boosts Philadelphia Inquirer's research prowess

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For journalists at the Philadelphia Inquirer, researching and reporting is a faster and easier job, thanks to the work of Michael Panzer. He's the Library Supervisor for the newspaper, and makes sure journalists know the best places to go for information to report their stories. He's also a member of SLA, so it was no surprise to find him at the conference this year.

We crossed paths on the show floor, and briefly talked about what sessions he was seeing, and what he was hoping to gain from the conference. He also gave us some insight into how the research library operates over at the Philly Inquirer and its sister publication, the Philadelphia Daily News.

Click play to listen in.

SLA 2009 video: Inmagic magician pulls money from a lemon

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It's true -- money doesn't grow on trees. It grows in lemons! Hey, it could happen. Especially at SLA 2009. Our honorary magician, Josh Norris, was at our booth for the show, and showed us a great trick using a cup, a lemon, a dollar bill on loan from moi, and of course, a magic wand. Check out the video above.

SLA 2009 podcast: Music librarian Kimmy Szeto's quest for a database tool

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SLA attendees all had different objectives in mind when they signed up for the show and entered the INFO-EXPO floor. They came from around the country to learn about the latest technologies in the special libraries industry, get updated on trends driving the market, and more.

For one attendee we met, Kimmy Szeto, you could say SLA "struck a chord." Kimmy is General Manager of Argento, a New-York based non-profit that produces concerts, music festivals, recordings, educational events, and instructional materials for music lovers around the globe. His team has put concerts on at Carnegie Hall, and organized music classes for students as far as Turkey and China.

Our podcasting team bumped into Kimmy shortly after he arrived at the show floor, and talked to him about what he was interested in gaining from SLA. We learned Argento is embarking on a new music project to create videos and other multimedia content of concerts. Kimmy, also being a music librarian, was at the show looking for ways to publish and manage the videos online. Well, we found him in just right spot: where most the database vendors were stationed.

Take a listen to our podcast above to learn more about Kimmy's project, and what he's looking for to help bring it to life.

SLA 2009 podcast: Rick Kowalski on why Consumer Electronics Association uses DB/Text Works

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We had the opportunity to met and mingle with customers while enjoying the delicious appetizers and libations at our customer reception at SLA 2009 last week. Our podcasting team was making rounds as well, and took a few minutes to catch up with customers on how they're doing with their Inmagic tool and what they've seen at the show so far.

One customer that our podcasters chatted with was Rick Kowalski. He's a Reference Librarian for Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). The company has been using DB/TextWorks for some time, and Rick told us why the tool is almost always open on employees' desktops. We also learned what sessions had Rick's attention this year, and his biggest take away from the show.

Click play above to catch our convo.

SLA 2009 video: Inside the Washington Convention Center and INFO-EXPO

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We had our camera rolling as we approached the entrance to the INFO-EXPO show floor of SLA 2009. Turn your eyes to the video to see how the convention center was decked out for the show, and the bustling crowd gathering late morning on the third day, June 16.

Thanks to CMSWire for sharing Presto 3.1 news

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Geoff Spick of CMSWire covered the release of Presto 3.1 today, and I wanted to thank him for sharing our news. His piece gives a good overview of the new features, so click over to check it out.

Slideshow from SLA 2009

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For those who couldn't make SLA 2009, we have some pics that can be your eyes into the show. We took photos from the INFO-EXPO floor, customer reception, around the Washington Convention Center, and more. Check out our SLA 2009 Flickr slideshow here, or click play above.

Positive impressions from SLA 2009, despite economy

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Wanted to take a minute to reflect on SLA, as we get busy posting our multimedia coverage. All in all, I think it was a good conference for us this year. Traffic at our booth was steady for most of the show, which is always great to see.

We had a range of people come visit us, from those simply wanting us to stamp their passports for a chance to win the Smart Car (I want one ... very cool), to those looking to win one of the four Kindle 2's we were giving away. And of course, there were way cool magic tricks by our magician, Josh Norris (video to come).

Our many long-time customers stopped by, wanting to take a checkpoint and learn about our new products, or just simply say hello and catch up. And then there were people wanting to learn and hear more about Presto and social knowledge networks.

We haven't counted all the cards and scanned badges yet, but it looks like we’ll easily top last year’s record interest. I think Paula Hane from Information Today did a great job summarizing in her blog why we’ve fared well in this very challenging economic climate, and I left SLA feeling bullish about our prospects for the remainder of the year.

Although it seemed like everyone we spoke to was tightening their belts, or in some cases, worried about maintaining continued funding for their library or info center, there was also an upbeat feeling at the conference and among our customers. It was great to be a part of SLA’s 100th anniversary celebration, and exciting to see the future of social media in our market looks very promising.

Company video from our SLA 2009 booth

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SLA 2009 has come to a close, and now that we're back at our desks, we'll be sharing our thoughts on how the show went, and rolling out our SLA coverage on the blog. We have podcast interviews with attendees, customers, and partners; pics from around the show; and video of the goings on.

I wanted to start by sharing something from our booth. Maybe you saw it if you stopped by. We had a computer set up with a looping video about our company. You can watch it here or click the image above. It gives you a brief overview of our background, who are customers are, and screencaps of our products -- Presto, Presto for Social Libraries, and DB/Text Library Suite. It's just a few minutes. Enjoy!

(P.S. -- Since we're focusing on SLA coverage right now, we're pausing our Social Libraries 101 series. We'll pick it back up once the bulk of our SLA coverage is posted.)

Information Today checks in with Inmagic at SLA 2009

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As Janelle already reported, things are popping here at the SLA Conference. We've had plenty of visitors to the Inmagic booth so far from customers, potential customers, and other SLA attendees. One of those special visitors was Paula J. Hane, the News Bureau Chief of Information Today, who stopped by to get the full scoop on what's hot at Inmagic and how we're fairing in today's rough economy.

Paula wrote about her conversation with me on the Infotoday blog, so be sure to have a look. Thanks, Paula!

Reporting live from SLA 2009

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Janelle and Kate here checking in live from SLA. Sessions have just let out, and attendees are milling about, grabbing lunch, perusing the various brochures and papers they've collected, and resting their feet. We've interviewed a few attendees about why they here and what they've seen, and we'll be sharing those podcasts with you when we get back to the office!

There are a lot of interesting exhibits at the INFO-EXPO. Hoovers has their very own robot. He's quite friendly and even asked me for a dance. Video of that to come!

We're finishing lunch now, and snapped a shot of our view from our table in the session hall. Ta-da:

Shout out to SLA INFO-EXPO Newswire

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The folks at SLA INFO-EXPO Newswire have opened their blog to conference exhibitors to share their news, announcements, and events with readers. We posted our SLA 2009 press releases on their blog, and I wanted to say thanks for letting us share our news with your readers. Thank you!

You can read our Presto-SharePoint compatibility announcement and customer win announcement at their blog, as well as news from many other SLA exhibitors.

Despite recession, things abuzz at SLA 2009

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So far SLA 2009 has been a great conference. There’s a lot of energy in celebration of SLA’s 100th anniversary, and despite the backdrop of a challenging economy, attendees are very bullish about their roles as information professionals.

It's encouraging to see. Many attendees are optimistic about the important part they play in helping their organizations extract value from information assets, improving research and business insight, and increasing overall productivity of their customers -- whether that be their constituents, patrons, or management and research staff they support.

Our social knowledge networking story and Presto continues to attract people to our booth (#1151). We’ve been five to six people deep most of the show. As much as I like to think it's because of our great marketing ;-), I'd say it has more to do with our message.

The notion of informing content though the input and wisdom of the community seems to play very well. And unlike traditional publishing or content management tools, we seem to be one of the few vendors that “gets it” when it comes to integrating social media within the knowledge repository. I say that just after walking the show floor, checking out the technologies on exhibit, and talking to attendees.

It’s also interesting that the pure play social networking vendors are nowhere to be found at the conference. To me, that illustrates they still don’t understand their role inside an enterprise or how they relate to content.

What’s made this conference special for me personally are our customers. Many have been using Inmagic products like DB/Text and Genie for years, and are continuing to get value from their investments. There's a neat personal relationship between Inmagic and our customers that is very rewarding. I’m looking forward to our customer appreciation reception tomorrow night so that we can thank them all for their continued support and business.

And you know what? So much for the challenges of our economy. You wouldn’t know that we’re in the middle of one of the worst recessions in years if you were at our booth!

More to come tomorrow!

New SharePoint compatibility comes to Presto

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If you've been waiting to here more about Presto's compatibility with Microsoft SharePoint, this announcement from SLA 2009 deserves a drum roll. Bruuuuuuuuumppppp!

While Presto 3.0 has always been compatible with SharePoint, we've introduced a new version of Presto today (version 3.1) that's even more interoperable with SharePoint. We've also put together a couple documents (an integration paper and positioning paper) you can read which flesh out these compatibility features. They explain how companies can use the tools together to leverage both investments, and gain a highly cost-effective knowledge repository.

Because after all, many, if not most, companies are already using SharePoint for their knowledge management strategy. We've made Presto 3.1 so you don't have to necessarily throw away SharePoint, but rather, enhance it by adding features and capabilities of Presto that aren't available in Microsoft's platform. Of course, you can also use Presto as a stand-alone social knowledge network solution.

More on this can be found in the release we issued today. Check it out below to learn about the new bells and whistles.

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Inmagic Launches Presto 3.1 with Microsoft SharePoint Compatibility

Latest release is the first Social Knowledge Management platform to integrate SharePoint capabilities -- cost-effectively leveraging enterprise knowledge repositories and resources

WOBURN, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Inmagic today introduced Inmagic® Presto 3.1, the latest version of the company’s Social Knowledge Management platform with new Microsoft® SharePoint® interoperability capabilities. The compatibility allows users to augment and leverage existing infrastructure and technology investments -- extracting additional value from systems already in place, without compromising access to content or straining time, budget, or human resources. Other new benefits in Presto 3.1 include improved collaboration, information discovery, and content management functionalities driven by customer and market demand.

"At MRA -- The Management Association -- we are focused on delivering outstanding and cost-effective services to our members," says George Blomgren, Director of Business Systems for MRA. "We chose Presto as the platform on which to make available tools, templates, and information to our members because of its robustness and ease-of-use. The Inmagic team is as attuned to customer service as we are, and truly served as a partner in this project. Members indicate that the tool is providing the value we had envisioned, thus helping us to fulfill our mission of member success."

As organizations increasingly turn to SharePoint for content management infrastructure needs, they are faced with the question of how to extract the most value from their investments. The new interoperability capabilities of Presto 3.1, which include SharePoint-compatible Web Parts and a new Web Services API, allow Presto 3.1 to easily integrate into an existing SharePoint environment or other ASP.NET infrastructure.

“Customers are looking for synergies between widespread infrastructural technology and solutions focused on solving specific business problems, without large internal development costs,” says Phil Green, CTO of Inmagic. “With Inmagic Presto 3.1, companies can enhance their SharePoint environment with a cost-effective, off-the-shelf solution suited to their needs. They can create internal, secure knowledge communities around enterprise content, with sophisticated social, search, security, and library workflow capabilities not found in SharePoint. The use of Web Parts, Presto, and SharePoint together can deliver tremendous value to an organization’s bottom line.”

Presto 3.1 uses Web Parts technology that allows the search parts on the Presto homepage to be embedded and used in a SharePoint deployment. A new Web Services API lets SharePoint communicate with Presto to create, replace, update, and delete records seamlessly. SharePoint often contributes to the creation of disconnected information silos. Now, Presto can be used to bring these silos together, in one location, with a single access portal and search. Presto also complements SharePoint’s social functionality with “content centric” social capabilities that are fully searchable and indexable, with built-in controls that can both enable and disable social features for specific user groups.

“We are looking forward to Presto 3.1 with great anticipation,” says Michael Payne, City Archivist at the City of Edmonton. “Its enhanced search capabilities; simplified log-on; and advanced authentication, security, and networking features will make it simpler to post new material to the Web, interact with our archives users, and manage our catalog database and Web site even more effectively.”

Other major new benefits of Presto 3.1 include:
  • Enhanced interoperability with existing IT investments
  • Improved collaboration through enhanced social capabilities
  • Faster information discovery for improved individual and organizational productivity
  • Improved content quality and access
These updates improve information richness, quality, and discoverability across the enterprise. Presto adds significant value to any organization, either as an augmentation to an existing SharePoint implementation or as a stand-alone solution. More information on how Presto 3.1 complements SharePoint technology, as well as details on the new feature set, can be found at:
Inmagic Presto 3.1 will be generally available in Q3 of 2009.

ABOUT INMAGIC, INC.

Inmagic, Inc. has been the industry leader in knowledge management and library automation applications for over 25 years. Today, Inmagic is at the forefront of the move to new generation knowledge management, creating Social Knowledge Networks that combine top-down, vetted information with bottom-up, social “wisdom of the community” to address critical research and business objectives. Over 5,000 companies in 100 countries use Inmagic solutions, including Inmagic© Presto, Inmagic© Presto for Social Libraries, and the DB/Text product family, to gain unprecedented insight into customers, markets, competitors, research, intellectual properties, and more. Find out how much your organization really knows. Visit Inmagic at www.Inmagic.com.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

PRESS RESOURCES

Press contacts: Kate Ritchie, kater@gregoryfca.com, Carolyn MacNeill, cmacneill@inmagic.com

Inmagic: http://www.inmagic.com/

Inmagic press room: http://www.inmagic.com/news/press_room.html

Inmagic RSS feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/inmagic

Inmagic blog: http://blog.inmagic.com

Inmagic Presto 3.1: http://www.inmagic.com/products/Presto/index.html

Inmagic Presto/SharePoint position paper: http://www.inmagic.com/products/Presto/Presto_Sharepoint_Integration_paper.pdf

Inmagic Presto Microsoft SharePoint Integration: http://www.inmagic.com/products/Presto/Inmagic-Sharepoint.pdf

Inmagic company fact sheet: http://www.inmagic.com/company/Inmagic-At-A-Glance.pdf

Microsoft SharePoint: http://sharepoint.microsoft.com/Pages/Default.aspx

Contacts

For more information, press only:
Gregory FCA
Kate Ritchie, 610-642-8253 x162
kater@gregoryfca.com
or
Inmagic, Inc.
Carolyn MacNeill, 781-287-6277
cmacneill@inmagic.com

Maple Leaf Foods, Laureate, MRA, and City of Edmonton latest Inmagic users

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Our first news item from SLA 2009 has crossed the wire. Four organizations -- Maple Leaf Foods, Laureate, MRA, and the City of Edmonton -- are the latest to take social inside the enterprise. They are Inmagic's newest customers, and are now implementing Presto and their own social knowledge networks. We issued a press release today to announce the news, and you can give it a read below to learn more about these organizations, and the growing adoption of Presto and social knowledge network technology.

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Inmagic Announces New Customer Wins and Growing Presto Adoption

Maple Leaf Foods, Laureate, MRA, and the City of Edmonton join the ranks of organizations using Social Knowledge Networks

WOBURN, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Inmagic today announced an expanding customer base with new customer wins including Laureate, Maple Leaf Foods, MRA, and the City of Edmonton. More than 5,000 organizations in 100 countries rely on Inmagic solutions. Adoption of Inmagic® Presto further validates the need for Social Knowledge Networks to both organize and socialize content to drive innovation and foster growth from one secure location.

"Within business environments, content is the driver for communication and knowledge collaboration,” says Larry Hawes, Lead Analyst, Collaboration & Enterprise Social Media at The Gilbane Group. “Organizations seeking to harness the power of their (often hidden) knowledge networks need processes and tools that help employees, partners, and customers leverage the content that is the lifeblood of every organization. Inmagic is a forward-thinking vendor that helps information professionals discover and share diverse sources of information and knowledge."

Customers continue to adopt Inmagic solutions at a rapid rate over competing technologies in the special libraries and knowledge management markets. Due to its robust technology, ease of use and deployment, and attractive price point, Inmagic Presto has fast become the system of choice for organizations looking to combine top-down, vetted information with bottom-up, social “wisdom of the community” to address critical research and business objectives.

“Each prospective customer comes to the table with its own unique set of information and Social Knowledge Management challenges, business objectives, and ROI expectations,” says Ron Matros, President and CEO of Inmagic. “Customers turn to Inmagic time and again because our solutions cost-effectively harness the power of existing human assets, content, and infrastructure. As such, we value every new customer, and each is a credit to the solutions we provide.”

Inmagic recently hosted a joint webinar with KMWorld Magazine, entitled “Five Steps to Socializing Your Knowledge Repository.” The event elicited an unprecedented response, bringing in more than 1,100 registrants, including hundreds of customers, indicating a strong level of interest and engagement in Social Knowledge Management, and demand for information about applying Social Knowledge Networks to the enterprise.

Some insightful polling questions revealed that:

* Two-thirds of organizations are using SharePoint for knowledge management.
* Most companies currently have social technology under evaluation.
* Nearly all companies agree that Social Knowledge Networks would increase productivity.

Organizations of all sizes and sectors have adopted Inmagic solutions, and benefit from integrating the wisdom of the community with managed and federated content, library assets, collections, and digital assets into “KnowledgeNet Portals” to align social strategies with broader content and knowledge management initiatives.

Loyal Inmagic customers also include:
  • 60 of the Fortune 100 companies
  • 18 of the top 20 pharmaceutical companies
  • 87 of the top 100 legal firms
  • 7 of the top 10 financial services firms
Visit our Web site for a complete list of Inmagic customers.

ABOUT INMAGIC, INC.

Inmagic, Inc. has been the industry leader in knowledge management and library automation applications for over 25 years. Today, Inmagic is at the forefront of the move to new generation knowledge management, creating Social Knowledge Networks that combine top-down, vetted information with bottom-up, social “wisdom of the community” to address critical research and business objectives. Over 5,000 companies in 100 countries use Inmagic solutions, including Inmagic© Presto, Inmagic© Presto for Social Libraries, and the DB/Text product family, to gain unprecedented insight into customers, markets, competitors, research, intellectual properties, and more. Find out how much your organization really knows. Visit Inmagic at www.Inmagic.com.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

PRESS RESOURCES

Press contacts: Kate Ritchie, kater@gregoryfca.com, Carolyn MacNeill, cmacneill@inmagic.com

Inmagic press room: http://www.inmagic.com/news/press_room.html

RSS feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/inmagic

Inmagic blog: http://blog.inmagic.com

Company fact sheet: http://www.inmagic.com/company/Inmagic-At-A-Glance.pdf

Contacts

For more information, press only:
Gregory FCA
Kate Ritchie, 610-642-8253
kater@gregoryfca.com
Or
Inmagic, Inc.
Carolyn MacNeill, 781-287-6277
cmacneill@inmagic.com

News, interviews, and other coverage from SLA 2009 to come

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Greetings from Washington, D.C.! Our team has made its way down from Massachusetts for SLA 2009, and things are abuzz on the show floor. Now that we're here, our blog will be SLA coverage headquarters. We'll be covering the show right here, so keep your eyes peeled for news items, podcast interviews with attendees, video footage from the show floor, and more goings on!

Special interactive course before SLA tomorrow: new KM techniques

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If you feel like you're hitting a wall when it comes to your KM strategy, like you have challenges you just don't know how to overcome, then tomorrow's pre-SLA course from Nerida Hart and Karen Huffman is a must-attend. You can attend whether you are going to the SLA conference or not.

You might recall Nerida from our podcast with her a few months back. She's Chair of SLA's KM division for 2009. And Karen Huffman is the Chair Elect of the KM Division this year.

The ladies have put together a special interactive course called "The Heart of the Story: Qualitative Evaluation of Library Services Using Narrative Techniques." They'll introduce a new way of thinking about the services that libraries and librarians provide, and how they can add more value to their organizations. It takes place at the Washington Convention Center.

We wanted to learn more about the course, so we did an e-mail interview with Nerida and Karen to get the scoop. Read on below for their responses to find out if you should be attending and what you can gain from it.

*** NOTE: If you want to attend, it's important to act quickly. Registration ends today at the close of business. You can sign up on SLA's Web site or in person at the Washington Convention Center's SLA registration desk. ***

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Who should attend your course?


Anyone who is interested in how you can both evaluate the information service as well as tangibly demonstrate ROI for the service.

What will you be covering in your course? What are some of the particularly interesting points you'll touch upon, or issues you'll provide insight into?

It will cover the issues of information management vs. knowledge management, how to demonstrate ROI for management of the services provided, how to harness management support for the services, and how to use narrative for evaluation, as well as some traditional evaluation techniques, such as surveys.

What type of course will it be?

The course is a combination of lecture style, iterative, and experiential learning. Course participants will not only learn new techniques, but also take part in them, so they get a more effective learning experience.

What do you hope attendees will gain/learn from taking your course?

They will learn new techniques for evaluation and strategy development, as well as tangible experiences which cannot be gained from lecture style learning.

What unique information will you be providing that show attendees won't be able to get from other presentations/events at SLA this year?

How to conduct evaluations using narrative, plus access to the training support materials which could not be delivered using traditional techniques.

How did you pull together the information you'll be presenting? Will you be presenting research you've been doing?

Much of the material has been developed as part of an Australian knowledge management project, which has been delivered across the natural resource management sector in Australia and combined with a series of evaluations conducted in the Australian Government library sector. It won a series of knowledge management awards in 2003 and 2005.

Why did you decide to put this course together?

Because of our commitment to KM and the need for information professionals to look outside their traditional roles and implement new and innovative techniques which can be used right across organizations, not just information services.

What is the date, time, and location of your course?

Saturday, June 13 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Washington Convention Center, room 204B.

How can people register? Is there a cap on attendance?

There is a cap of 50 attendees and registration would need to be completed by COB Friday the 12th. It is $299 for SLA members and $399 for non-members, and they can register on the SLA Web site or in person at the DC Convention Center's SLA registration desk.

Why now is a good time to socialize your library

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We've talked about how social knowledge networks can increase productivity, particularly in our How to Cost Justify Your Social Knowledge Network Needs series. Those benefits apply directly to social libraries too, because social libraries are essentially an application of social knowledge networks.

And with the economy in the you-know-what, that's all companies want. More productivity, for less cost. This makes now a good time to implement a social library, which I'll unfold more today in Social Libraries 101.

The notion of a social library is much more profound than simply meshing library workflow, content, access, publishing, and social media. In today’s challenging economic climate, it is more crucial than ever for the library to be viewed not as a cost center, but a productivity center.

The library needs to be justified not only in terms of the research it supports or the collections and assets it manages, but the power it provides to the organization.

That's where the social library comes in. It transforms the traditional library into an indispensable organizational asset when both vetted and community knowledge is managed and leveraged. The integration of social media capabilities, library workflow, information management, and publishing extends the value, and fundamentally changes the significance, relevancy, and usefulness of, the library.

When these components are integrated, you can begin to transform the library from a cost center to a productivity center. You can create knowledge hubs or “knowledge nets,” and extend, preserve, and protect the integrity of the knowledgebase. Social libraries unlock the benefits of social technologies, without the risks associated with unconstrained and unmanaged social networks, where users freely post and edit content.

By adopting this “content-centric” approach to social computing, social libraries leverage social technologies to add value to business activities and drive organizational effectiveness. Socialization of content allows individuals to access content that is more relevant, more targeted, more valuable, and more specific.

In the chart below, you can see how these attributes differentiate a social library from a traditional library. You can see how a social library is built with productivity as the end game in mind, while their traditional counterparts are designed for just research support.


There's more to these benefits when we specifically look at SOPACs. I'll have that for you next week!

SLA 2009 fever: Tying up loose ends for the show

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This Sunday brings the first day of the SLA 2009 conference, and we've been busy this week finalizing our materials and presentations for the show. The final shipment of materials is heading out the door this afternoon, in fact. And the team just finished a final pre-show prep session. Imagine what it's like for actors right before they go on stage to do a big performance. That pretty much sums up the excitement level here.

Everyone's looking forward to SLA 2009 -- sales, management, marketing, and development. All of their hard work is contributing the success of the show (well, fingers crossed, of course!). And we're thrilled to hear about the strong attendance numbers for this years' event.

A number of our customers have let us know they're planning on stopping by our booth (#1151), where they will get the first glimpse of our updated Presto platform, version 3.1. Our new CEO, Ron Matros, will make his first public debut as an Inmagic'er at the show. And don't forget we'll have magician Josh Norris at our booth, and we'll be giving away three Kindle 2s!

Once the show comes to pause on Sunday evening, we'll be hosting the SLA KM Division Reception, free to all SLA attendees. More details on that can be found in our previous post. And on Tuesday, we'll be throwing our customer reception party, for all Inmagic customers. It's also a free event. More info on the reception can found in our prior post.

The SLA conference continues to be a major initiative for Inmagic, and we're proud to be exhibiting and sponsoring events there. If you haven't registered yet, you can still do so on SLA's Web site.

When libraries go social, role of librarians becomes more important than ever

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When we talk about the trend towards social libraries, one of the next major questions on librarians' minds is, What's going to happen to me? How is my role affected? The answer has a bright outlook, because with social libraries comes the need for social librarians.

It's a role that calls upon core skills of content management, organization, and tech savvy, and asks librarians to take them to a new level, making the role more important than ever. We'll explore it more below in our latest Social Libraries 101 course.

In a social library, librarians continue to manage diverse information provided by content publishers, including business, scientific, technical, and community information (traditional, vetted content). But patrons are allowed to add tags, comments, and ratings (social content), which increases content quality, as we discussed last week.

A librarian is needed to oversee content development, maintain structure, and manage this content community. The social librarian assumes the crucial role of information organizer and moderator, managing both vetted and social information. Social librarians monitor and modify taxonomies as patrons browse and categorize information on their own. They sit at the center of the knowledge repository, and manage the knowledge community and its assets, such as by "weeding and feeding."

You can see this dynamic below. At the heart is the librarian, managing published content, and making it available to patrons. Select patrons (usually domain experts) provide social intelligence that librarians incorporate into the published content to enhance it. Librarians in turn provide this enhanced information back to the patron community.



Managing this interaction between vetted content and community input allows the social librarian to control the relevance and quality of the collection's content. As a result, productivity, collaboration, and organizational efficiency can be improved, which we detailed in our How to Cost Justify Your Social Knowledge Network Needs series.

Social libraries make sense in a variety of domain-specific environments where vetted and social information exist in concert. Librarians continue to play a critical role in managing the research center, while also managing and moderating the value-added interaction between library assets and the community they serve. They continue to be the heart of a thriving social library.

Your questions answered: Q&A from Socializing Knowledge Repository webinar

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We had a great Q&A session following our webinar Five Steps to Socializing Your Knowledge Repository. We've gathered those questions and responses in this document for anyone who needs a refresher on a question they asked, or wants to see what others asked.

You'll find answers and links to topics including social knowledge networks, changing internal culture when socializing data, SharePoint integration, and more.

Whether you attended the webinar or not, this Q&A is also a good general resource for common questions about these subjects. As always, if there's anything you want to learn more about it, you know how to contact us or leave a comment.

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