Boris Mann

Open Source. Community. Decentralized Web. Building dev tools at Fission. Cooks & eats.


Document Management for Small Business

My call last week for ideas on document management solutions for small business yielded two suggestions, both from people I know and both saying, in essence, "Zope." I'm not surprised that Zope was suggested since it was one of my first thoughts when my friend asked me for advice, but I'm a little surprised that nothing else was suggested. Windley's Enterprise Computing Weblog: Document Management

Document management is a huge need for small businesses, even if they don't know it themselves yet. It includes aspects of content management, knowledge management, and personal publishing.

It seems like there still isn't an easy open-source or low-cost off the shelf solution. Zope (since it supports WebDAV/FTP) can function as a good tool for this, but this usually means having a (local) Zope consultant, and I don't think this meets the criteria for low-cost nor off the shelf.

MyDMS is the only solution I found that sort of worked, but it really wasn't that user friendly. Also, any of these web-only tools tend to get routed around -- people find it easier to send email or share things from their computers directly. Ideally, there is a web-based front-end to centralize information and capture some meta-data, but actually pushing files around is accomplished another way.

Groove purports to enable this more seamlessly (the last times I had access to a Windows system, Groove's UI was terrible, it was resource heavey, and it crashed all the time), and perhaps Clever Cactus' Share might be up to the task as well. Ideally, something that integrates into email would likely see the most usage.