Magnolia CMS 4.5 has been released and this is their largest upgrade to date. What does this new version bring with it? A host of new features including:
This release is focused on delivering an open platform for enterprises to deliver an evolving virtual presence. New functionality includes instant mobile websites and multichannel content targeting, along with increased standards support, interoperability and new features to enhance user-friendliness.
“The most visible change for our users is the new mobile functionality that comes with Magnolia CMS 4.5. But this is just the first of many applications for our new multichannel content architecture,” comments Magnolia CTO and Co-Founder Boris Kraft. “Multichannel publishing provides enterprises with a highly adaptable online presence. As the way people use and access the web changes, new channels can be created to cater quickly and efficiently to these new markets.”
Multichannel Publishing: Agile Online Presence
Magnolia CMS 4.5 provides an open, flexible and standards-based platform from which users can present limitless channels. These channels deliver content that is optimised to specific target groups, locations, devices or any imaginable segmentation of website visitors. As such, multichannel publishing provides enterprises with an agile virtual presence, which enables them to be the first to capture new audiences on the web.
The system categorises web visitors, for example by device or location and directs them to the relevant content channel. Magnolia provides device detection functionality out-of-the-box. Developers can create their own detection functionality for channels based on location, language or any custom attributes.
“Magnolia’s new mobile functionality is really just the initial implementation of our multichannel framework. With no limit to the levels of granularity and the number of channels, this new multichannel architecture opens up truly immense possibilities,” explains Kraft. “We foresee the development of new channel detectors, which will use CRM and even social media information to identify visitors’ interests. The multichannel framework then provides an enterprise scale delivery mechanism to serve optimised content.”
Magnolia CMS 4.5 produces instant enterprise-grade mobile websites from existing content within the system. All conventional websites built with Magnolia’s latest Standard Templating Kit (STK)# can be used to create mobile websites, which are automatically optimised to smartphone and tablet formats. As with all websites built using Magnolia CMS, the look and feel of mobile sites can then be fine-tuned to the most exacting branding and end-user requirements.
Complementing the mobile website functionality, Magnolia CMS 4.5 also introduces an innovative ‘mobile preview’ function. Authors can instantly preview the look and feel of content on either a smartphone or tablet. Mobile preview creates an on-screen mock-up of the relevant mobile device on the user’s desktop, allowing them to immediately optimise their own content for mobile site visitors.
Magnolia CMS 4.5 continues to put openness at the core of the product, with support for new enterprise standards, including Content Management Interoperability Services (CMIS), the latest version of the Java Content Repository (JCR 2.0), HTML5 and Java 6.
CMIS: Having co-sponsored development of the standard, Magnolia CMS 4.5 now incorporates a standard CMIS application programming interface (API). CMIS now provides the accepted common data model for transferring content between content management systems and exchanging formatted content with broader enterprise applications. Its incorporation into Magnolia CMS 4.5 delivers interoperability with content-focused enterprise applications from vendors such as Microsoft (Sharepoint), Alfresco, Adobe (Photoshop), SAP, Oracle and a majority of the larger vendors in the space.
Second Generation JCR (2.0): With the move to JCR 2.0 for underlying content storage, Magnolia CMS has moved its API to the latest industry standard for content-focused Java applications. This provides secure interoperability with any tools adhering to the JSR-283 or JSR-170 standards, allowing bi-directional, privilege-based access and manipulation of data between applications. It also makes Magnolia CMS more familiar as a product for anyone in the Apache JackRabbit community.
Faster Development Times & Greater User-Friendliness
Magnolia CMS 4.5 also plays host to numerous usability upgrades for editors, administrators and developers:
Page editing has been made even simpler and more intuitive, empowering the users, whilst ensuring continuity through defined rules, corporate style and structures. Magnolia CMS delivers ‘inline editing’ in the main website with no need for content authors to use a confusing admin interface.
Once logged in as an editor, authorised users can simply click on the relevant section in the site to edit text and make changes. New content is created through clear placeholders in relevant sections, and content can also be moved quickly and easily using an intuitive user interface that guides the editor.
For developers, the new templating API changes the way Magnolia sites are written. The new API is not only more powerful but also faster, easier and more logical to learn. Primarily a technical change, for corporate users the API improvements also dramatically reduce the training, implementation and maintenance cost of Magnolia CMS.
Based on standard Java classes, the new API also allows the use/reuse of components built in other standardised templating languages such as Cold Fusion, in conjunction with, or even replacing, Magnolia’s own STK.
Screenshots from this release:
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