In contrast to traditional content management models, known as CMS (Content Management System), in which the manager was linked to the channel in which the content was published and assumed the logic of presentation; a new paradigm called Content as a Service or in short form CaaS has recently emerged . It is a decoupled architecture in which the content manager exclusively has the function of storing and serving content lacking a presentation format to the channel, device or medium that demands it.
As a first approximation, we can list the three main actors that distinguish themselves in a CaaS architecture: the source, the new content management architecture and the receiver of the contents.
As far as the source is concerned, the source of the content can be extremely broad: a user or editor, a business process or other content managers in case we want to bring together various repositories in one.
The three actors that distinguish themselves in CaaS are the source, the new architecture of content management and the receiver of the contents
CaaS, which is the main object of our study and the core of the whole solution, would have as a function to receive, store and expose the contents. Some authors also include the functions of a Content as a Service management information access, billing in the case of payment content and personalization. But being purists all these functions can be carried out by specific modules such as API managers, pricing & billing modules or personalization modules, respectively.
And finally, the consumer of the content . The contents can be consumed by a variety of devices, from a mobile phone to an airport display, an ATM, a printer, a Smart TV or, why not … a refrigerator; and by an equally wide number of channels: web pages, mobile applications (hybrid or native) or social networks to name just a few. In fact, any system can be a potential consumer of content, not just a channel, also, for example, a BI tool or another Content Manager.
For integration with the other actors in architecture, a CaaS publishes a set of APIs that allow you to create and consume content, and exchange information using any of the most widespread structured formats: XML, or more often, JSON.
In fact, any system can be a potential consumer of content
One of the main functions of a CaaS is to model the content , that is, to define the structure that each type of content will have. This structure must be dynamic and flexible so that it can be modified at any point in the life of the system as the demands of the business evolve. This task is certainly fundamental, since it will condition the information that we can make available to our consumers and, therefore, the possibilities of presentation.
A CaaS should also organize the content into categories and add the semantic tags or attributes linked to each content so that they are easily reachable when a consumer requires them and to allow them to create relationships that facilitate the user to discover new content as he browses through they; as well as facilitate the creation of content through an appropriate interface, although as we have already mentioned, we can also use the APIs to create content from external sources. The creation of content via API is especially important in migration processes in which we face the decommissioning of old legacy systems that we must replace.
Finally, you must also manage the approval and translation flows of content, to verify that we are exposing content that has been verified and validated as well as to facilitate the location of the information.
In short, a CaaS should focus on the essence of its function, this is the management of the contents , contributing simplicity and eliminating all those functions related to the presentation. We could say that a CaaS does less, but it does it better.