IBM has unveiled technology that it hopes will help it dominate the emerging digital content management market.
Janet Perna, general manager of Big Blue's Data Management Solutions unit, said that managing e-business content was the supplier's next step in boosting its data management portfolio, which includes products for integrating all forms of content such as documents, emails, audio, video and images.
IBM's content management offerings, she claimed, enable companies to electronically manage, protect and share critical business information in any format, including XML, HTML, Java Beans and ActiveX Controls.
According to Armando Garcia, IBM's vice president of Content Management Solutions, while enabling customers to manage data is not new to IBM, the firm's new Content Manager provides an overarching architecture for managing digital data.
The software enables users to search multiple databases, applications and scanned photographs such as production imaging, and runs on AIX, OS/2, OS/390, OS/400, Windows 95, 98, 2000 and NT.
"When combined with IBM's Enterprise Information Portal, Content Manager provides a single point of access and integration for IBM and non-IBM data and content stores," Garcia claimed.
IBM has also released Library Server, which acts an object catalogue and controls data access and security, and Distributed Object Servers, which store rich media, images and information from applications such as SAP and Lotus Domino. The Servers can be accessed by a variety of clients, including browsers and Windows based PCs.
Andrew Warzecha, senior programme director at the Meta Group, said: "While smaller, niche software shops have begun to develop very focused offerings to manage data, IBM's offering stands apart with its wide array of products and services."
He added: "Our research indicates that the content management market is expected to exceed $10bn by 2004."
Big Blue has also signed a raft of partnership deals in the sector, including alliances with Adware, Aureus Solutions, ICO Limited, ICONN Computer Services, Image Architects, Magirus, Savoir Technology and Syscom.
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