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Digital Asset Management Round-Up, August 2015

Digital Clarity Group’s DAM round-up condenses and consolidates some of the most topical news and happenings from the digital asset management industry from the past month or so.  This month’s round-up covers , The Guardian’s home grown DAM, ADAM’s Microsoft Azure certification, and Canto updates to its enterprise suite.

The Guardian Releases Open Source ‘Grid’ DAM System

A small, dedicated, Agile-based internal team at the UK newspaper The Guardian has built and released “Grid” – its new in-house image management system – as an open source application.

Providing a fast and powerful search was paramount for the new DAM solution. Grid’s search is built on top of an Elasticsearch cluster allowing indexing of any image and its metadata. Horizontal scaling enables the system to support the ingestion of approximately 20,000 new images daily, along side supporting The Guardian’s more than 3 million (8 TB) of archived images.  Other features include:

  • Ingestion and indexing of images
  • User upload, metadata editing, cropping, publishing of optimized assets
  • Rights management, historical usage records
  • Collaboration workflows
  • In-browser experience from anywhere
  • Deployable to the AWS cloud

Driven by perceived unique needs and complicated integrations, The Guardian chose to build rather than buy a commercial or use another open source DAM solution – an interesting decision with so many available DAM systems/solutions to choose from. Grid was built based on user requirements over the course of a year. The team’s vision was to provide users a “universal and fast experience accessing media that is well organized and using it in an affordable way to produce high-quality content.” The new asset management service is currently used for almost half of the The Guardian’s digital content images, based on a voluntary opt-in adoption model. The Grid project is available for download on GitHub.

 Short demo of The Guardian’s Grid DAM solution


ADAM Software is Now Microsoft Azure Certified

ADAM Software recently announced that its software is now Microsoft Azure certified. This new designation will enable ADAM customers to purchase and deploy ADAM installations from the Azure Marketplace. The move to get certified was made primarily in response to their customers’ expanding customer experience management (CEM) focus. ADAM recognizes that successful CEM requires teams to build and deliver relevant experiences in an ever growing number of channels, and they believed that Azure would provide their customers with reliable control over the multiple variations of assets and content that their drive customers’ experiences.


 ADAM now Microsoft Azure certified

Canto Updates its Enterprise Solution: Cumulus X Digital Asset Management Suite

Canto is a long time player in the DAM world. Founded in 1990, the company seems to be playing a bit of catch up with the latest “X” features driven by a mobile-first approach that include REST APIs, responsive design, Cumulus portals, and iOS mobile app.

Cumulus X became available in July and, according to Canto, ramps up the solution to be more than just a digital asset filing cabinet. Like many other DAM solutions, the suite includes a list of image-editing tools, preview and editing options, a built-in search engine optimization (SEO) assistant, HTML5 video player tag support, and an assortment of deployment options for on-premises, cloud or hybrid deployments.

The new iOS application for iPad and iPhone enables users to review, upload, download and collaborate over content from anywhere, using any Apple device. No word from Canto when Android users can expect the same anywhere access.

None of these are notably innovative or unique, but for existing Canto subscribers they are good news, and for those looking for a DAM solution, may be what they need to put Canto on their list of considered solutions.

 Canto Cumulus X release highlights

DAM Spotlight

Starting next month we will spotlight a digital asset management solution as part of DCG’s monthly DAM round-up. If you are a DAM solution provider and would like to be profiled, or have a recommendation for whom to feature, please let us know.

Catch up with the key news from around the related industries with Digital Clarity Group’s CMS, e-commerce, and service provider round-ups. All can be found in the Blog section of our website.


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