vgndpr_logo.png Programming and software development is a thankless task, and you need all the help you can get, right? Rubbish. You get paid a fortune and can stroll in at midday in a ZZ Top beard and pyjamas, and nobody in a suit ever talks to you because they have no idea what you actually do. What the suits should do, of course, is ship you all off to a military barber for a #1, and then off to Qatar for six weeks of basic military training. That'd take the wind out of your sails. And while you're at it, stop off in Hong Kong on the way back for some tailored suits. It wouldn't kill you to look respectable once in a while. Life is far too easy for you developers. Unfortunately, if you are in the business of coding for the Vignette suite of Enterprise CMS (and other) products, it's just gotten even has just launched (in Beta), and offers all kinds of support for Vignette devs, including a forum where you can discuss particularly tricky problems with other Vignette artisans; relevant news, a blog featuring How-To's and the like, jobs, and links to other helpful resources. César Caamaño is the brains behind the website, and he took time to talk to CMSWire about, Vignette, and the world of content management systems generally. CMSWire: Let's say I'm a Vignette developer. What does have for me? César: Clicking on means information and collaboration, a global open community about the Vignette world, especially focused on developers and administrators, but that's also relevant to every person interested in this platform. In a few days a job offers' section will be opened, where the companies interested will be able to include their job offers, and registered users to enroll them. tries to fill up those gaps left over Vignette community, we think this is what every person working with it needs. CMSWire: Let's say I'm a CEO or a CTO, or something along those lines. I'm researching different Enterprise CMS products because I'm about to undergo a major content management implementation process. Is your information relevant to me? César: Of course! Before choosing a technology or a product, you need to know, in general terms, what does it offer and which are its weaknesses and strengths. This is another objective of this site, to show non-specialist users advantages and disadvantages of this platform; what they are able to do with it. means information and collaboration to all levels, from a more technical approach of information exchange between developers and administrators, to a more functional one, aimed to non-experts. Whether it is a project manager who needs to know more about Vignette to tackle new projects or a human resources employee who needs to recruit Vignette specialists, we provide relevant information to these kinds of people. We've recently opened an active forum where users share information and knowledge, and a section of documents about Vignette platform, and all this will also be useful for the non-developer. CMSWire: You mentioned briefly the strengths of the Vignette suite. What are those strengths? Why are you in the Vignette business instead of working with other Ent CMS, and where does the platform stand in the overall enterprise software/enterprise CMS heirarchy? César: As you know, Vignette offers overall solutions for content management. Among this stands out VCM (Vignette Content Management), which, although its graphical interface could be improved (next version 7.5 promises to include AJAX for better user experience), it sets up a competitive content management environment. Characteristics like: multi-site, ACL's, advanced workflows, taxonomies, widgets, and the channel structure, allows organizing content in a very intuitive way, even for newbies. There are products like Vignette Application Portal (VAP) or Dynamic Portal Module (DPM) all around VCM, which makes content available on the web. Nowadays, there are hundreds of CMS and the global market is very competitive. So I'm not even going to say that Vignette is a reference. A qualified developer has to analyze when a product, by its characteristics, applied to a project, is likely to fail or likely to be successful. Therefore, there should exist a previous knowledge about products to be used before choosing them as a valid solution. And it's just here where tries to help. For example, in we don't choose Vignette as our CMS solution, since our needs don't match with Vignette products. CMSWire: Where is enterprise CMS going? Any insight on the way the industry is headed? César: As I said before, there is a great variety of CMS solutions now, each one of them with a different approach. This makes it hard to figure out where the products will be in the years to come. However it's clear that active users have reawakened in the last couple of years on the Internet. These users demand useful and quality online services where, apart from obtaining information, they can collaborate, enriching their knowledge and meeting other users. By quality, I mean a good design, usability, speed, scalability and standardization. Actually,a large proportion of sites on the Internet don't fulfill those requirements. I think enterprise CMS should make the creation of these services as easier as possible. CMSWire: Will the proprietary industry giants be able to fend off the challenge from the open source CMS platforms? César: Open source initiatives should never be seen as a "shut-down enemy." Companies that battle against them foul their own nest, and Vignette should start understanding it. Hiding information has never contributed to human progress. In fact, merging business models based on these initiatives do work, and big companies should learn and start investing in them. I'm not saying they should tell all of their "technological secrets" which, in a way, makes the difference between them [the big software companies] and the others generating added value. Instead, they should share knowledge in an open way, always searching for quality and final user benefit. In the concrete case of Vignette, I think they should offer basic open source products, and complement it with paid ones, just like a quality support. CMSWire: Never mind all of that. Who's going to win the Primera Liga this year? César: ha! Of course F.C. Barcelona is going to win the Liga. Real Madrid is winning some matches so at the moment is number one but I think they don't have a real team as Barcelona has! -- Refreshing response there, César. If you are developer for Vignette, or just want to learn more about such products as the Vignette V7 content management system, hop on over to