The promise of a March delivery from Magnolia was kept this week as the Miami based company announced the latest release of the web content management system Magnolia CMS 4.5, bringing us a little further down the highway to the full v.5.0 upgrade.

The company calls it the largest upgrade to date, with a host of new services from Instant mobile websites and content previews, to interoperability with Microsoft Sharepoint, Alfresco, Photoshop, SAP, Oracle and others, as the company works to deliver on its vision of an "evolving virtual presence."

As promised, top on the list of new features this time include instant mobile websites and multichannel content plus beefed up standards support, interoperability and UI improvements. 

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Magnolia CMS v.4.5 available for download

Top of the list is Mobile Publishing, and Magnolia said the CMS 4.5 upgrade produces instant enterprise-grade mobile websites from existing data. Also delivered as promised, all conventional websites built with Magnolia’s latest Standard Templating Kit (STK) can be used to create mobile websites optimized to both smartphone and tablet display formats. The look and feel of mobile sites can then be fine-tuned as needed.

Mobile Sites and Multichannel Publishing Tied at the Hip

Calling the new mobile functionality "the most visible change," Magnolia Co-Founder and CTO Boris Kraft said,

...this is just the first of many applications for our new multichannel content architecture. Magnolia’s new mobile functionality is really just the initial implementation of our multichannel framework. With no limit to the levels of granularity and the number of channels, this new multichannel architecture opens up truly immense possibilities.”

Kraft said they envision channel detectors using CRM and social media data "...to identify visitors’ interests. The multichannel framework then provides an enterprise scale delivery mechanism to serve optimized content.” This capability gives enterprises the chance to directly focus content in relation to a customer's previous viewing habits. For example, as the way people use and access the web changes, new channels can be created to focus on these new markets.

The v.4.5 upgrade offers an open, flexible and standards-based platform for building these channels, delivering content that's optimized for any segmentation: target groups, locations, devices or whatever. This is the "agile virtual presence" part of the vision, giving the enterprise the ability to discern and capture new groups of audiences on the web.

Using device detection, the technology can categorize web visits by device or location, directing them to specific content channels. Magnolia said its device detection works out-of-the-box and works for channels based on location, language or any custom attribute. 

Interoperability

Magnolia is big on openness, claiming it core to product development, with support for new enterprise standards like the CMIS (Content Management Interoperability Services.) JCR20 (Java Content Repository), HTML5 and Java6.  

This, plus user upgrades for editors, admin and developers including inline page editing in the main web site, sans the admin interface. There are also new templating APIs based on standard Java classes that reduce time to delivery for developers by allowing re-use of components built in other standardized templating languages, including Cold Fusion.