The first day of the 5th annual eZ Conference, the biggest Content Management conference in Europe, occurred on June 7 in Skien, Norway. The conference opened with a keynote presentation by two of the founders of eZ Systems, Aleksander Farstad, CEO, and Bård Farstad, Director of Strategic Relations.
Aleksander and Bård outlined nine CMS trends, including the move towards consolidation and standardization of CMS platforms and the crucial concept that content management is the core of every business.Paul Borgermans, long-time contributor to the eZ ecosystem and manager of the new eZ Systems Research Office in Belgium, spoke about enterprise knowledge management, including mechanisms for dealing with information islands within organizations. He demonstrated project management solutions (such as Gantt charts, graphs, online reporting, and document generation) integrated into eZ Publish.
Pierre-Yves Policella, from the French media company Lagardère, described the implementation of a content management system for Elle magazine in France, the United Kingdom, and Belgium (as well as Premiere.fr).
The challenge for publishing houses is to use print and web channels together. With web CMSs serving as the main storage for content, material can be re-purposed for delivery to mobile, print and various online channels.
On the topic of writing effective content for websites, Jennifer Zickerman, Manager of Knowledge Products at eZ Systems, described the differences between writing for print and the web (such as shorter attention spans among readers, a lack of contextual information, and the inability of writers to know the level of knowledge among readers).
She then described style and structural techniques that improve the effectiveness of written content, such as defining reader and document types, using a hybrid of the academic pyramid and the journalistic inverted pyramid styles to structure documents, and applying quality control techniques to the content life-cycle.
Other case studies presented at eZ Conference included iolab and all2e's collaboration on the music and lifestyle website electronicbeats.com, with features such as Flash animations pulling content from eZ Publish XML.
Didier Orel from Edipresse Suisse discussed the evolution of news sites, which begin as store-front sites, evolve to become secondary supporters of print publications and finally end up as the core business model for news organizations.
In the evening, with an audience of approximately 800 people made up of eZ Conference delegates, members of the Norwegian IT community and members of the local community, Heidi Grande Røys, the Norwegian Minister of Information Technology, opened eZ Awards night with a speech that explained Norway’s commitment to Open Source software and open standards.
Following the eZ Awards, which recognized the achievements of members of the eZ ecosystem in areas such as the Site of the Year and Project of the Year, there was an after-party to inaugurate and celebrate Klosterøya, a former industrial site in Skien that is being renovated to become a new high-tech hub. eZ Systems will be an anchor tenant in the new Klosterøya development.
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