Category Archives: Content Management

Metrics for knowledge management and content management

Metrics for knowledge management and content management — this is article is a great read for both project managers and sales people. Why?

Project managers will benefit because it should help them hone in on the goals of the project, and should give them measurable, definable targets to hit. (ie: the goal of this project is NOT to get a new website ‘designed’ that is warm and fuzzy but rather to a) standardize the production of web content across the enterprise, b) decrease the amount of time that managers and employees spend making web pages and c) sell more shoes online than last year.

Sales should like this because it gives them another angle to play in a sales pitch: How is your CMS helping you now? Has it reduced the number of phone calls your tech support staff takes? (ie: is it providing relevant timely information to your customers?) Does it decrease the amount of time that your staff needs to create content for the web? (ie: is it quicker and easier than creating content using Dreamweaver or FrontPage?)

Content Management System Feature List

A comprehensive list of features for anyone trying to develop a Content Management System.

“Paul Browning and Mike Lowndes gave an excellent expose of elements that might be found in a Content Management System, covering 41 features and listing over 80 products. There appeared to be a blurring between Virtual Learning Environments, Document Management Systems, Web-enabled databases, Web application servers and desktop Web publishing tools — all of which can lay claim to some elements of a CMS.”


Verity Spider tips & tricks

Thanks to Phil for sending me a link to the Verity Spider tips & tricks on Daemon is/was a big Spectra shop and probably used the spider to search Spectra sites on a regular basis. So why doesn’t that page show up in a google search for “verity spider” or “verity spider tips“? Maybe it’s because of the way their content management system works, where each page is denoted by a CF UUID appended to the URL. This method probably helps the developers, but in the long run, isn’t so good for getting ranked or even indexed by the larger search engines… which led me to todays’ research: mod_rewrite. I got my MCSE from Microsoft back a couple years ago, so my first exposure to web servers was IIS. IIS was then and for the most part, is now very pointy clicky (although I’ve heard that .NET IIS will have a text-based configuration file). Anyway, Apache wasn’t something I played with much until the last year, when I brought up a couple linux machines and thus Apache. So today I dove headfirst into mod_rewrite and came up a solution for making the next version (due out anyday now) of more search engine friendly. In short, to get to a recipe on the development site right now, you’d type in something like this:

Again, just like the link I mentioned above, this is not an example of how to impress the search engines. Some kung foo regular expressions and a dab of JKMount knowledge and we now get something like this:

and in your Apache httpd.conf:

RewriteEngine on
RewriteRule ^/recipes/([0-9]+)/.*$ /recipes/detail.jsp?r=$1 [PT]

which in English says something like “if the request starts with ‘/recipe/’ and then is followed by any number of digits and then is followed by a ‘/’ and any number of other characters, then rewrite the URL to this… (wanna know more about regular expressions? get this fabulous book!)

Pretty snazzy eh? It gives me warm feelings inside because my JSP/Servlet code doesn’t have any knowledge that funny stuff is being done to the URL in Apache, which means you can do all sorts of chicanery to your URL without having to change a lick of server side code.

Search Engine Safe Urls

Search Engine Safe Urls seem to be a talked about topic these days… mod_rewrite being the de-facto for Apache users… there are a couple out there for IIS:

urlrepl — this is my favorite, mostly because it’s free. You can configure it either from a web browser or an ini file. Downsides: no regular expressions, configuration applies to all virtual servers defined in IIS.

Spider Safe Url — this one is nice.. but in the little testing that I did with it, it killed pages that didn’t have url variables… so while this would work:


this will not:


which means that if you have single pages that don’t need url vars, you can’t use it.. Pete, am I wrong? Open source. Free.

IIS Rewrite — looks like the same thing as urlrepl mentioned above, ‘xcept you have to pay for this one… [on second look, this one is really full featured, moreso than urlrepl]. It supports regular expressions, check out the docs. $99 per server.

ISAPI_Rewrite — This one is really nice as well.. $63 per server, $453 per organization.

page spider

Instead of searching fields in a database, I think it would be really nice to be able to send a spider to index a site.. obviously complicated, but would be very very handy to have. Also makes a lot more sense to me to search pages than objects. Object searching could be sliced and diced easier but it’s slower and once you find an object, you have to find out where it should be displayed on a page… Create a mini google?