Sitecore Web Content Management System 6.0In the very Danish early evening here at the jboye08 conference your sometimes faithful correspondent was present to witness the ever faithfully entertaining Web Idol competition. For those unfamiliar with the concept, Web Idol is a semi-serious but mostly humorous event loosely based on the extremely popular (with people we don't know) American Idol TV show. The Web Idol version is a bit of a hoot but at the same time provides a line-up of Web CMS vendors with a chance to strut their latest stuff in front of a crowd of leading web practitioners.

Web Idol Contestants

Last night's event pitted the following vendors against each other in a riveting set of seven minute demonstrations. * eZ Systems' eZ Publish -- An open source Norwegian Web CMS product built in PHP. * e-Spirit's FirstSpirit -- A closed source German Web CMS product built in Java * Hippo CMS -- An open source Dutch Web CMS product built in Java. * SDL Tridion -- A closed source Dutch Web CMS product built in .NET and other technologies. * Sitecore -- A closed source Danish Web CMS product built in .NET.

Web Idol Judges

The judges, each dawning one or more alter personalities bantered with the contestants and woo'ed the fact-weary audience with a mix of questions, jests and insults. The panel included: * Claudia Urschbach a Sr. Information Architect at the BBC * Erik Hartman of Hartman Communicatie * Tony Byrne of CMS Watch

The Winner

We already gave it away in the title. But yes, it was Sitecore version 6 who was belle of the ball. It's important to note that the the contest was close and as anyone present can tell you, perhaps not decided for any particularly good reason. But come to think of it there may have been a very good justification for displacing previous belle, eZ Publish. jboye08 web idol 2008
Sitecore Reps Accepting Huge Web Idol Trophy

You see it's estimated that the Web Idol trophy weighs in at a healthy 60 lbs, or for the rest of the world, roughly 27 kilos. The lucky winner has the privilege of carrying this trophy back home -- by car, train, foot or plane, as it may be -- and presenting it to the kids in the office (as well as customs officers and anyone else they might cross on the way). eZ Systems had succumbed to this honor the previous two years running. And there was speculation and rumors that if they'd been the esteemed ones again, we just might have had a touch of Nordic mayhem on our hands.

The Hartman Challenge

Not being an easy crowd in general nor being one easily seduced with salacious CMS features, the judges did heckle. But it was Erik Hartman who -- with an unlit cigarette dangling from a lip -- demanded to know when the vendors were going to stop managing web pages and start managing information. It was a fine question, and one we'll be looking forward to seeing answered at the next...Web Idol.