I have worked with Documentum way longer than with Alfresco. Couple of years ago I started dabbling with Alfresco and started using it as a personal content repository at home. It was ridiculously easy to set up and exceptionally stable on Linux even with that early version. At that time, most Documentum professionals I talked to wouldn’t give a serious thought about it.
How times have changed! I think that recession may also have helped Alfresco like it is helping organizations such as Walmart and Kroger. These stores near my home have renovated and look overstocked. And they are not dealing in just the traditional stuff. The Walmart store seems to be stocking all the stuff that I would usually go to Home Depot for! But this is not a post about recession so let me not digress.
Let me not take anything away from Alfresco. It is earning the reputation based on its virtues – the recession may just be hastening its arrival on the grand stage. Quite a few professionals still mention it with caveats about its suitability for non-critical systems. I feel that it is just a matter of time.
Within the last few months I have seen two Documentum vendors become Alfresco partners. There are probably more but these are the ones I have known well and worked with. With the discretionary spending drying up it seems that service providers are being forced to diversify. The Alfresco market should definitely help them get the sales pipeline filling up again, even if at lower rates.
Then there are respected Documentum professionals such as Laurence Hart (Pie) and Johnny Gee who have started exploring Alfresco and sharing their opinions. I am sure there are many others in the Documentum community in a similar situation. I haven’t gone out trying to identify any trends – these are just the thoughts triggering from the events in my usual environment. When Documentum professionals get seriously involved with Alfresco, I can envision cross-pollination of ideas and experiences resulting in creative and effective solutions for customers.