Social Content: Ingeniux’s Cartella Does Double Duty

May 05, 2009

Basic Content Management Systems (CMS) provide users with the ability to organize content, and find what they need when they need it. A standard social networking tool allows people to connect and share vital information. Put these two things together and you get Cartella, a social content management platform launched by Ingeniux on May 4, 2009. Cartella combines social networking tools, web analytics, and content management into one solution, providing users with a one-stop shop for their social content needs.

Founded in 1999, Ingeniux Corp. is a software firm focused on providing its customers with “smart” ways to manage websites, content, and collaboration. Over the last decade, Ingeniux noticed a few changes in the content management and social content fields, prompting the release of a new solution that would address emerging needs. “We realized that content management has really changed dramatically over the past few years. Content is moving in front of the firewall. Social content has evolved,” says David Hillis, director of marketing for Ingeniux. “We think that web content management [systems] are not architected to manage social content.” Enter Cartella.

Ingeniux’s new offering can function as a stand alone CMS, or be implemented on top of any website using a web services API. It provides standard CMS features such as the ability to upload documents and images, but also allows users to collaborate with social content features within the same solution. “We saw a gap in how the content management process fits with social management,” says Hillis, so Ingeniux injected its new solution with customizable modules like blog, wiki, social services, rich media, and video transcoding capabilities. These social services include the ability to set up social profiles, and add tags and comments to content. Now, a user with the proper administrative privileges can upload an important document to a website, and then enable other users to view and collaborate on the document.

Cartella offers three specialized solutions: Enterpise, Connect, and Community. The Enterprise solution focuses on internal collaboration and communication for enterprise business information, with features such as a single sign on, a SharePoint connector, and document management. The Connect solution provides external collaboration with customers, and business partners with granular permissions, and access control, team collaboration, online workspaces, and user notifications. Cartella Community is geared toward customer-facing collaboration, and social technologies with social networking features, such as user profiles.

Cartella is built on Microsoft ASP.NET MVC, which helps build flexible web applications. With this, Cartella developers can build new modules and applications on top of the platform, or they can customize existing modules. This means organizations can use Cartella in tandem with SharePoint and standardized on .NET. With millions of .NET developers worldwide, this enables partners and customers to extend and customize Cartella to address their specific needs.

As Geoffrey Bock, senior analyst for the Gilbane Group, explains, Cartella caters to “businesses and organizations that are initially in publishing that create relationships with their readers and people, and companies that are trying to build a brand, raise awareness, and do more than simply create buzz.” Bock continues to say, “I think it is a very interesting solution to how you manage social content. There is a complete environment for a company looking to create socially aware interactions, or wants to publish information and engage customers.”

The idea behind Cartella was a relatively simple one, which initially caused some worry among its developers. As Nathan Eggen, director of technology at Ingeniux, explains, “When we first came out with this we thought. ‘Is this too simple?’ But it really resonates with people.”

Hillis sees the same value in simplicity as Eggen. He explains that though Cartella has “lots of capabilities for the software, a lot of the time it is the most basic stuff that people are excited about.” Cartella’s combined features provide a solution designed to ease those burgeoning social content management woes in a world where multitasking isn’t just a word, it is a way of life. As Hillis says, “We have realized that people don't buy platforms, they buy solutions.”