In December we ran through a list of things happening with enterprise open source content management provider Nuxeo, including the work they have been doing on the upcoming version 5.2 of their content management platform. Good news has come from the vendor as the make their way into the final stretch of that 5.2 release. Today you can get your hands on Nuxeo 5.2 M4 with over 30 new features and a number of tech improvements.
Nuxeo 5.2 M4
With work still actively happening on the final version of Nuxeo EP 5.2, the latest and final milestone release -- M4 -- has been opened up for downloading.
There are over 30 functional enhancements in this new version of Nuxeo and a number of technical improvements to go along with it.
Most of these we mentioned back in December, so here they are as a refresher:
- Content Store: A new visible storage engine for the repository (but they haven't forgotten about Jackrabbit)
- WebEngine: Now fully-based on JAX-RS and integrated with Eclipse IDE
- Document Conversion: Improved caching and OpenOffice instances Management
- Monitoring Services: Accessible through HTTP and JMX, you can now access and expose the monitoring data of components
- Workflow: Better integrated with the repository and leverages jBPM properly
- Event Model: Cleaner and compatible with JMS
- Auditing: Easier to customize and integrate with the Monitoring services
One of the technical improvements that Nuxeo CEO Eric Barroca is particularly excited about is the new visible content store. The new content store is a native and natural SQL-based storage engine. This is good because it allows for integration of tools at the SQL level for Business Intelligence and ETL(extract, transform, load) -- things that most enterprises demand.
New Features and Functionality
While the technical improvements are definitely nice to see, it's the functional enhancements that are likely to catch your attention the most. With the sheer number included, we aren't going to run through them all here. You can get a closer look yourself on Nuxeo's website.
Some of these enhancements include: Virtual Navigation, Preview Support and Picture Support, Themes, Index and Search. But here are a few worth mentioning in a little more detail:
This one is likely to get the most attention. Nuxeo has included an annotation server that can be accessed via the Preview tab in the Web user interface. The Preview tab is a feature that reads the document and creates an HTML version of it for viewing (so you don't have to download the actual document). It allows you to annotate words or paragraphs of documents without modifying the document itself.
The implementation is compliant with the Annotea W3C standard (RDF based and Rest API) and includes extensions such as the ability to annotate images and associate annotations with actual documents (not just the URL) and document versions.
There's a detailed review on the Nuxeo blog that demonstrates how the annotation service works. According to the blog post "Don't worry, it's all totally down with the document model so it can understand documents that have multiple underlying files, documents that supply their own previews inside the document itself, etc.". Which is pretty cool.
Here are a couple of examples:
Figure1: Nuxeo Annotations - Annotating Images
Figure 2: Nuxeo Annotations - Reading Annotations on images
Figure 3: Nuxeo Annotations - Annotating Text
What's really nice about this feature is that you can download the file and get all those annotations and associations. You aren't limited to working completely online.
You can get more information on this service in their documentation here.
SharePoint Services (WSS)
In this release, Nuxeo has started implementing the SharePoint protocols (like WebDAV file upload and download) and some of their web services so that their repository is seen as another SharePoint server.
This functionality provides a tighter integration with MS Explorer and MS Office as users will be able to list the contents of their workspace in Office.
Although it's not currently included, Nuxeo says workflow and task management will be implemented in later releases.
The WebWorkspace enables you to easily create websites based on content residing in Nuxeo's repository. Currently in beta, it is built on the WebEngine and JSF. They say that you can enable the workspace just by checking a box. Functionality includes letting you define a URL and the template to be used. They also indicate that it will be supported with the Theme Editor in a later edition.
This "mini-site" that you create can also include blogs and wikis, opening the door to collaboration.
Nuxeo 5.2 is Almost Here
Watch the Nuxeo blog for more details on some of the new features and functionality in the coming weeks.
Expect to see Nuxeo EP 5.2 released sometime the end of this month. Until then, they advise to remain with v5.1.6 for production purposes. The work now is focused on polishing the UI and user experience. Get the download links and all the details on this M4 release on their website.
Oh and by the way. That new office we mentioned that would be opened in Boston -- it's open for business.