After a far too brief holiday, the DAM Lowdown returns with: SDL's acquisition of Calamares, FocusOPEN launches a developer network, Createasphere hosts an open source DAM seminar, NorthPlains extends TeleScope via partnership and Quick Hits.

SDL Acquires DAM Capabilities via Calamares

The most interesting news of the week comes from web content management vendor SDL (news, site) and the announcement of the acquisition of SaaS DAM provider, Calamares.

A former colleague of ours, and founder of this very column, Irina Guseva, writes at the Real Story Group blog about the deal and clears up some misconceptions about Calamares. The key takeaway from Guseva's piece is that, while the soon-to-be-rebranded-as SDL Media Manager gives SDL a much-needed DAM presence, one must remember that Calamares is, at its core, a Video Asset Management system.

While this move by SDL may not bring it the same breadth of DAM functionality as some of its competitors, the company is much better off than it was six months ago.

Furthermore, our friends at DAMNEWS go in a different direction and highlight this combination as another in a series of events leading to the convergence of WCM and DAM. It only makes sense that users 1) are incorporating more digital assets into their web content, and 2) they don't want to leave their WCM interface to incorporate said digital assets.

You can rest assured that the DAM Lowdown will be keeping an eye on more deals like this one in the future.

FocusOPEN Launches Developer Network

FocusOPEN, the .Net-based open source digital asset management system purveyed by European software shop Daydream, is following the blueprint created by other open source companies and investing in the developer network.

Targeted at developers and superusers, the network provides Subversion access to the source code, custom-made tools and job opportunities. According to Emma Tappenden, Marketing Director at Daydream:

The increasing number of software developers who have already started to work with FocusOPEN will be able to share information, liaise with our own engineering team and contribute to the direction of our open source digital asset management system with greater ease. We will also be posting jobs and other system resources via the FocusOPEN Developer Network, exclusively for members of our rapidly growing community."

Joining is as simple as heading to the website and registering.

Createasphere Hosts Open Source DAM Seminar

Not content to rest on the glamor of the upcoming DAMMY awards, Createasphere offers a free seminar this Thursday where the New York Public Library's Strategic Project Manager, Barbara Taranto, is speaking about the efforts to manage and digitize the Library's collections using open source DAM technologies.

In case you have doubts about the NYPL's system or Taranto, the NYPL's collections contain over 65 million items and over 700,000 images. Taranto holds degrees in philosophy, computer science and digital information science.

If you like hearing a smart person talk about important stuff, then this seminar is worth your time.

NorthPlains Extends TeleScope DAM Solution

A common strategy by software vendors is build a partner network and use it to spread the word about said vendor's offerings. NorthPlains is following this pattern with its TeleScope DAM platform. The partnerships include:

  • Aprimo: Integrating TeleScope with Aprimo's Marketing Studio supports media creation and delivery across multiple channels
  • Equilibrium: Equilibrium's MediaRich server coupled with TeleScope results in faster rendering and delivery of media, meaning lower costs
  • Front Porch Digital: Archival and storage is the selling point here along with improved lifecycle management and monetization of media
  • HP: North Plains becomes an HP AllianceONE partner and can brag that its software is certified on HP hardware

Quick Hits

This section is becoming evergreen. This week we have a product announcement, a new resource for the community and the awarding of a government contract.

Stipple Automates Photo Tagging, Monetization

San Francisco-based Stipple offers four tools to help connect photo buyers and sellers by automating the monetization process. The new tools are: Lens -- for photo rights holders, Pipeline -- for brands, Network -- for publishers and Want -- for consumers.

DAM Distribution Revealed

The guys at WebDAM have published a great piece that breaks digital asset management distribution into three distinct flavors: Self-Service, Requests and Fulfillment. It is worth a read to see where your organization falls on the spectrum.

VideoBank Earns a Department of Defense Contract

IceWEB, an infrastructure provider of cloud storage networks, has announced that its top federal partner, VideoBank, has sold an IceWEB Unified Data Storage solution to the United States Department of Defense. Our US-based readers will recognize the importance of this announcement for VideoBank's DAM solutions and IceWEB's infrastructure offerings.


First of all, thanks for the continued Twitter support. I can't tell you how cool it is see this column bouncing around the Twitterverse. Secondly, I am not going to ask for comments this week. You guys will start commenting when you are ready. Instead, how about a "Like" on Facebook? Just to be different.

Thanks for sticking with me this week and I will see you Monday!