Documentum 6.5 with services in mind

You may have seen this week’s press release (PR) concerning the launch of the EMC Documentum 6.5 platform. Given that this blog is referenced in the PR’s sidebar, I thought it would be appropriate for me to offer my perspective on this release.

When the Documentum Foundation Services (DFS) team first embarked on its mission to better service-orient the Documentum platform, I suggested that, over time, the very focus of our daily work–services and common service infrastructure–would become less “talked about.” I suggested that services alone deliver less value than services in the context of processes and processes in the context of solutions.

So, ultimately EMC has to deliver relevant, robust solutions to market much more than just web services. This is exactly the focus of the EMC PR–and each solution discussed is built using Enterprise Content Services (ECS).

Take CenterStage (aka “Magellan”), Media WorkSpace, and My Documentum as D6.5 solution examples. One user experience differs fairly significantly from another user experience (e.g. CenterStage Essentials versus Media WorkSpace). Looking under the covers, one implementation (i.e. presentation layer and application behavior) also differs from another implementation. However, common business logic is provided to each solution via a consistent set of services (e.g. Object, Query, Schema, Access Control, etc.).

Each solution is worth its own coverage, but I will allow solution teams to accomplish this (e.g. content like this).

Instead, I’d like to focus on the progress achieved in the D6.5 release where services and common service infrastructure are concerned:

1. The number of out-the-box Enterprise Content Services (ECS) in DFS has more than doubled in 6.5, from the six to 13. The total number of ECS across D6.5 has grown nearly fourfold, from six to 23.

  • Six original services with DFS 6.0: Object (enhanced in 6SP1 to support external objects; enhanced again in 6.5 to support aspects), Query, Schema, Search (enhanced functionality in 6.5 for clusters), Version Control (enhanced in 6.5 to support aspects), Workflow
  • Seven new services with DFS 6.5: Access Control, Analytics, Comment, Lifecycle, Query Store, Task Management (WS-HumanTask), Virtual Document
  • Plus 10 additional, new services beyond (i.e. not packaged with) DFS 6.5:
    Content Delivery, Electronic Signature, ERP Integration (SAP), Federated Proxy, Formal Record, Physical Records Library, (Records Management) Policy, (Content Transformation) Profile, Retention Markup, (Content) Transformation

Bottom line #1: there are many more services with D6.5 from which to compose content-centric applications.

2. Common service infrastructure has been significantly enhanced at the same time. For example:

  • Contract first (or WSDL first) development of services is supported in addition to code first development.
  • Design time discovery of services is supported via a new service catalog or an existing UDDI v2 compliant service registry. Classification of service occurs via the concept of catalogs and categories, by default.
  • Modularity has increased at the binary (e.g. JAR file) level to promote better composition (i.e. only take what you need).
  • Single sign-on (SSO) support has been improved.

Bottom line #2: you have more options now to provide, discover and consume services.

Certainly there is a lot more to each bullet point above, and I plan to drill down into several points in future posts.

…and I didn’t even use the term “Web 2.0″…until now. :-)