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Acquia

Cloud Hosting to Augment Drupal Implementation [Jan. 17, 2014]

Submitted on
vendredi, le 17 janvier 2014h
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CIO Review

By Chuck Fishman, Media Entertainment and Publishing Director, Acquia

1. What significant changes did ‘Media & Entertainment’ segment witness in 2013? What did these changes mean to vendors and customers?

There was a wave of media industry consolidation in 2013. The most significant activity occurred in the local media ownership segment, where there was almost $7 billion in mergers and acquisitions among companies such as Sinclair Broadcasting, Gannett, and Tribune. These companies now face the challenge of standardizing their growing digital portfolios on to new platforms from their distinct and various legacy content management systems (CMSs). Such CMSs were designed for the specific needs of TV stations and do not address the complexity of what a consumer expects from a digital media experience that brings together social media, video and interactive content, mobile access, and more.

In 2013, we also saw the proliferation of new media brands. In cable, new channels launched -- including Fusion, El Rey, Pivot, and Revolt -- with a special focus on minority and millennial consumers. In order to grow and monetize the new audience for these networks, the brands must offer engaging digital media experiences, representing another opportunity for CMS vendors.

Finally, digitally focused media upstarts gained tremendous audiences in 2013. Upworthy, Vox, Gawker, and BuzzFeed developed socially oriented and viral content attracting huge audiences (55 million monthly uniques for Upworthy, 41 million monthly uniques for Vox, 97.5 million for Gawker and some 85 million for BuzzFeed). One of these new viral content types -- the “listicle,” an article presented as a top 10 list -- was pushed into the media landscape by Buzzfeed, while Upworthy’s key to success are videos that have social sharing integrations. Combined, the audience for these four sites have an audience northward of 250 million monthly unique visitors, while all U.S. newspaper websites pull in about 141 million online monthly uniques. The attention that these upstart sites attract has also drawn capital to these companies. Vice Media received a $70 million investment from News Corp, while Vox Media raised $34 million in investment dollars, and Buzzfeed raised an additional $19 million. These companies will use the capital to create new content offerings, which, in turn, will drive more digital development.

With all this in mind, it’s an exciting time for Acquia; there is tremendous opportunity to transform traditional media companies’ digital experiences as they consolidate, and enable the development of new media brands.

2.What are some of the changes you anticipated would happen in 2013 but did not happen?

While 2013 was the year of consolidation and new media offerings, new technologies did not seem to transform content delivery this past year.

How Bay Area Transit Survived a Site Launch in a Traffic Storm [Jan. 7, 2014]

Submitted on
mardi, le 7 janvier 2014h
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Government Technology

By Jason Shueh

The Bay Area Rapid Transit service launched website redesign in only five months while also battling a 20,000-visitor traffic spike. How did they do it?

It could have been a recipe perfect for disaster. Just five days after Northern California’s Bay Area Rapid Transit relaunched its new Web site, BART.gov, it was hit with its second largest traffic spike of 2013 — a daunting threat, considering the site was placed on an expedited four-month development timeline and was unveiled just as BART's two largest employee unions were embroiled in a pitched labor dispute.

Oddly, however, BART’s Web Services Manager Tim Moore remembers the day — at least from a Web standpoint — being fairly calm. Moore said records show that on Nov. 22, between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m., BART.gov handled more than 20,000 unique visitors due to a major service delay in transit operations. The number represented an impact to the site that was roughly 11 times greater than normal for the hour, a time that typically averages only 1,800 visitors.

This success, which Moore describes as a “trial by fire,” was a quiet celebration that day as the news media focused their attention on commuter delay updates and the ongoing union dispute. The website’s strong showing and the secret behind its speedy development strategy is noteworthy, not simply within the framework of organizational accolades, but also in the way of lessons learned — lessons that began on day one.

A Surprise Announcement
At the beginning of January 2013, Moore said BART received a startling notice from Adobe, the site’s content management system provider. BART’s Web team was told that by the end of 2013, Adobe Publish, the site’s former content management system, would be phased out entirely.

“That meant that we’d lose all of our Web site publishing capabilities, our editing capabilities and maintenance capabilities in less than a year,” Moore said. “So effectively, that’s when the stopwatch started.”

Top 5 Marketing Tech Predictions for 2014 [Jan. 6, 2014]

Submitted on
lundi, le 6 janvier 2014h
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CMSWire

By Tom Wentworth, Acquia CMO

Technology adoption has become a competitive differentiator for CMOs who strive to out-innovate their competitors. There is so much opportunity for brands to strengthen consumer engagement through their digital channels. So, with 2014 upon us, it’s time to look at how websites and digital experiences will change in the year to come. What is the future of the branded website? How will technology change customers’ online shopping experience?
Here are my top marketing tech predictions for 2014.

1. CMOs Will Take Back Control
Over the core components of the digital customer experience that is. Many of these digital customer channels, like websites, mobile devices and social networks, were offloaded to IT in the past. But in 2014, CMOs will take back the control over this content to ensure the brand image is accurately portrayed on the customer facing end.

2. Evolve or Die
Ok, this might be a bit of an overused statement, but it does hold some truth. Stemming from taking back control from the IT teams, CMOs will put a greater value on agility and integration over single vendor solutions in 2014. In today’s digital age, CMOs must embrace the shift to digital or risk being phased out in favor of digital natives who understand how business and technology meet.

An entirely new job title —Chief Digital Officer — has emerged because marketing leaders, to date, have not fully embraced the disruptive nature of digital. CMOs who don't evolve will face the harsh reality of marketing in a world where digital experiences are customer experiences.

3. Content Meets Commerce
Recent data from Forrester Research shows that Web Content Management and e-commerce are the top two priorities for digital executives. Next year, I believe the lines between these two priorities will blur. Customers want the opportunity to review great content while shopping online, and visa versa.

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Software, Web Firms May Dominate 2014’s IPOs [Jan. 2, 2014]

Submitted on
jeudi, le 2 janvier 2014h
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Boston Globe

By Michael Farrell

For the state’s tech workers who wear lab coats, 2013 was a big year. Ten Massachusetts biotech companies debuted on Wall Street. Now, it’s the tech workers in T-shirts’ turn.

At least a dozen Boston-area software and Web companies are poised to go public in 2014, taking advantage of a surging stock market where shares of major technology companies are climbing to new heights.

These won’t be wet-behind-the-ears startups, either. Last year’s IPO market featured many very young biotech companies, but the class of 2014 will probably include many seasoned tech companies, with established customer bases and profits, to boot.

Those getting ready for the public stage include some of the area’s fastest-growing and best-known Web companies, such as Wayfair LLC, a Boston-based seller of home goods, Care.com Inc., a Waltham company that has built a marketplace for dog walkers and home health care nurses, and Karmaloop Inc., an e-commerce company that sells urban streetware.

Lesser-known software companies also appear to be gearing up. There’s the software company Acquia Inc., which earlier this year hired the former top financial officer of Buddy Media Inc., a New York startup that fetched $736 million from Salesforce.com Inc. in 2012. And the cybersecurity firm Veracode Inc. brought on seasoned executive Ed Goldfinger, who helped take Zipcar public in 2011.

A View From The Catbird Seat [Dec. 27, 2013]

Submitted on
vendredi, le 27 decembre 2013h
,
BostInno

By Jay Batson

This year I switched from an active operating role as founder of Acquia to being a mentor and angel investor in early-stage startups. Between helping companies via Techstars, MassChallenge, and random introductions, I’ve tried to lend a helping hand to many, many dozens of companies this year. Which means I’ve gained a rare place among those who can see the local tech ecosystem from a high perch, and I have a couple of thoughts about our tech culture.

The growth in the number of startups in Boston since I founded Acquia in 2007 has increased phenomenally, and I see no end in sight. Credit what you wish – the emergence of AWS, the "Lean Startup," or the growth in angel capital – the result is that Boston is no longer only the birthplace of old mini-computer or networking companies. Rather, it has re-energized into a full startup ecosystem. These startups have created thousands of jobs in the city, and I’m really happy with where our tech community is at.

It’s particularly exciting to see the vast bulk of these companies locating themselves within half a mile of the Red Line, stretching from Davis Square to the Broadway stop in South Boston. Notably, unless they are in the Cambridge Innovation Center, most startups are no longer in Kendall Square, which has become the home of Big Companies. It’s great; I can bike from company to company in 10 minutes, making it the most geographically concentrated tech center in the country. (Thanks to the City of Boston’s Nicole Freedman for making Boston so bikeable!)

This extended “Red Line Tech Corridor” is what I think Boston will become known for, eclipsing the “128 Corridor." I don’t see this stopping in 2014, and predict most startups will rent office space in the Leather District, Downtown Crossing, Chinatown, or the A St. end of South Boston. (Rents in the Innovation District have quickly gotten too high for startups!) But this concentration in the historic downtown area will only happen if the buildings are updated with credible, fiber-based high-speed Internet. Amazingly, a ton of startup-priced vacant office space in these areas simply does not have fast network access. If the new Mayor wants a meaty, high-impact problem to tackle early in his new administration, here it is. This state of connectivity is embarrassing for the city.

Acquia's Dries Buytaert 'Not Interested in the Hype' [Dec. 26, 2013]

Submitted on
jeudi, le 26 decembre 2013h
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Boston Business Journal

In 1999, Dries Buytaert made the decision to spend "a couple nights" working on a message board for himself and other computer science students at the University of Antwerp to use.

“That ended up being 13 years of my life,” said Buytaert, whose project evolved into Drupal, an open-source content management system and site development platform now powering more than 2 percent of the world’s websites.

Drupal provides Web developers with a free set of tools and is particularly tailored to sites that have a lot of content that is continuously being updated, as well as sites that need to serve a large number of registered users.

Drupal now has more than 1 million users in 228 countries, and Buytaert continues to serve as the project lead for Drupal as well as president of the nonprofit Drupal Association.

“I very much feel like I’m an accidental leader,” Buytaert said. “I enjoy what I do and feel great about what I do, but I never planned to build software that would be so widely used.”

Acquia Won't Rush IPO [Dec. 19, 2013]

Submitted on
lundi, le 30 decembre 2013h
,
Computerworld

By Rohan Pearce

Boston-based Web technology company Acquia is heading towards an IPO but it's in no rush to go public according to Dries Buytaert, Acquia's co-founder and the creator of the open source CMS Drupal.

"For us [an IPO] is something that we're working on but it's not front and centre right now," Buytaert, the CTO of the Drupal services firm, said.

"We think it's a key milestone, but it's only just that as well: It's a milestone in a much longer path to building a significant independent company. So that's the reason I say we're not obsessed with it."

Earlier this year, the company hired Dennis Morgan as CFO, which is "obviously a key component for being able to do an IPO," the CTO added.

"In general we want to be an IPO-ready company such that we have the luxury to file for an IPO if we were to choose to," Buytaert said.

Growing A Mo: Lessons Learned From The Movember Project [Dec 19, 2013]

Submitted on
jeudi, le 19 decembre 2013h
,
MediaPost

By Bryan House

Were any of your colleagues or friends sporting awkward moustaches until recently? If so, it’s likely they were among the thousands of Mo-Bros taking part in the worldwide Movember movement committed to raising funds and awareness for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men. Those awkward moustaches were unavoidable at my office. My company has been an active and proud participant for the past four years; last month more than 80 participants and hundreds of contributors helped raise $38,000 as part of Acquia’s "Mo Drupal" team this year.

The success of Movember is no fluke. From its founding a decade ago in Melbourne, the Movember moustache has expanded to more than two dozen countries. In fact, it’s the simple act of growing a moustache that has encouraged several hundred thousand men around the world to become walking billboards for the — quite literal — face of men’s health, an extremely successful strategy that has helped the annual fundraiser gain momentum. These “Mo Bros” (and their ever-supportive and patient Mo Sistas) raise awareness by prompting private and public conversations about men’s health. They also raise an amazing amount of funds for programs that support men’s health initiatives; Movember donations this year surpassed $106 million worldwide.

According to Mark Hedstrom, the U.S. director for the effort, “Movember is about getting men to engage in a fun and somewhat irreverent campaign. By supporting a fun environment, men start engaging more in their personal health.”

So how has the Movember Foundation had so much success engaging such a vast group of men? Let’s take a look at the top three things: language, competition and keeping it fun.

Inside the Road to Acquia's Possible IPO [Dec. 11, 2013]

Submitted on
mercredi, le 11 decembre 2013h
,
CMSWire

By Scott Raynovich

The open-source model for software is shaking up the Web Content Management System (CMS) business. One company that has greatly benefited from this is Acquia, one of the Boston area's most successful startups. Co-founded by Drupal's creator in 2007, Acquia has doubled its revenues in each of the last two years and sparked chatter of a US initial public offering (IPO) in 2014.

The Burlington, Mass.-based startup's savvy move to pick Drupal, the open-source CMS development platform, takes a page out of the Red Hat Software book. That model leverages the speed and flexibility of an open-source community while providing the service and support infrastructure to reassure enterprise customers who want to make sure the software is mission-critical.

While in Boston last week, several sources in the startup and venture capital (VC) community identified Acquia as one of the leading IPO candidate for 2014. On the record, nobody affiliated with Acquia will confirm an IPO is in the works. Despite the chatter, VCs never want to talk about an IPO, but that's usually on an agenda — cash and liquidity for investors and insiders is always welcome when you can get it

Michael Skok, an Acquia investor and board member and a partner with North Bridge Venture Partners, wouldn't confirm any imminent IPO plans. But he did confirm the company's solid business model is linked hand-in-hand with Drupal's growth.

"We, as investors, Tom Erickson (the CEO of Acquia), and the team at Acquia are all committed to building an enduring business for the long-term," Skok wrote in an email in response to questions. "They continue to build a strong foundation for future growth fueled by massive digital disruption as organizations of all sizes scramble to keep up with the speed of the web."

Step Aside Coding, It's Time to Embrace the Assembled Web [Dec. 9, 2013]

Submitted on
lundi, le 9 decembre 2013h
,
Forbes

By Dries Buytaert

To "assemble" means to build. Assembling also means that we come together. Sometimes, both aspects are true. When that happens and we work together to build, we are better off for it.

The open source community is a perfect example of this. When Linux creator Linus Torvalds spoke about how it felt to get contributions from a worldwide network of people, he remarked "I had hoisted myself up on the shoulders of giants". I'm lucky enough to feel the same way.

The Internet has created a culture of sharing, letting people connect and collaborate on areas of common interest. When I started developing Drupal in 2000 from my university dormitory in Antwerp, I never imagined I'd build a network of people who were interested in building a content management system with me. Yet word of my project spread, and before I knew it, I was getting contributions to my project from around the world. Soon I also was standing on the shoulders of giants.

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