CMIS could arrive by early 2010

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I was surprised to open J Boye's blog this week and find a post called "Don't Worry about CMIS." The post suggests that you shouldn't be thinking about CMIS for 18-24 months. I think Boye is being conservative here. All indications are that CMIS will be locked and loaded by the beginning of next year, and several vendors are preparing to hit the ground running as soon as it's ready.

Regular readers of this newsletter know that I consider the CMIS standard, which will allow vendors to share content across a variety of content repositories from a variety of vendors, to be a major initiative because it will remove any obstacles that prevent content from being moved around the enterprise. What's more, it has the backing of every major player including EMC, Microsoft and IBM along with Alfresco, Open Text, Oracle and SAP and others. While it's certainly not fully baked, all indications are that it could be in place as soon as the end of this year, certainly no later than some time in the early part of 2010 provided there aren't any set backs.

Although Boye says he doesn't expect vendors to have CMIS compliant products before 2011, from what I've been hearing, some vendors like Alfresco have already begun adding CMIS connectivity to its products. In a recent conversation in fact, when I asked Alfresco CTO John Newton if this were a risky approach, given it hadn't been approved, he indicated he would rather have to make some adjustments when OASIS approves the standard than wait for approval to get started.

When CMIS does finally arrive, it will make life infinitely easier for IT staff used to having to deal with expensive and sometimes clunky connectors to communicate across content repositories. There is a huge impetus from the major players to get this done, and the only thing that's holding it back at this point, is the standards approval process, which has to follow a proscribed protocol. But when it's ready, expect the vendors to be too.

For more information:
- see the J Boye blog post

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