Now, thanks to the power of OTN (@oracletechnet), you can kick the tires yourself.
Let’s back up and talk about what Sites is first. Sites is all about web experience management, specifically through your consumer-facing, dot-com web presence, which can be a tricky business, given that you could have tens of thousands of assets to surface online and hundreds of contributors, most of whom aren’t technical users. Or at least, they’re not paid to be technical.
Sites provides a simple interface that makes it easy for contributors to create, find, organize and deploy these assets without calling IT for help. Contributors can see the effect their changes will have on the overall site and edit and tweak them as necessary, all without actually changing the live site.
Sites also provides an architecture that makes deployment a snap, protecting the production environment from fat-finger mistakes and allowing for useful features like date-based publishing and look-ahead views of what your site will look like in the future, based on content you’ve scheduled for publishing.
Performance is a main feature of Sites, which includes caching in many different layers to ensure that visitors don’t experience any latency as they browse around your web presence.
Sites is also developer-friendly, supporting what you already know, like JSP tags and Java. If you’re like me and prefer easy stuff, JSP tags are a powerful way to extend content using a simple kinda-sorta like HTML way, or if you’re more like Noel (@noelportugal) and prefer the power of Java, you can embed it directly into your pages.
Noel and I have worked a lot with Sites team over the past few months; of course, we have a Sites maven on our team, Noël Jaffré (@noeljaffre), and we’ve also had the pleasure of working directly with the Sites PM and development teams. I want to congratulate them on the release, which represents a full overhaul of the previous version and has been in the works for quite some time.
If you attended Collaborate 12 last week and came by the WebCenter booth, you got a sneak peak at the new contributor interface as well as the new sports-themed demo site.
Since Sites is a relatively small install and can be carried on a 1 GB thumb drive, we’re planning to bring some along with us to future events. Although I’m not seeing it immediately in the OTN download, Sites does frequently include a Jump Start Kit (JSK), which includes Apache and Tomcat, preconfigured to run in a quick and dirty way, allowing for portability and providing a quick way for people to get hands on with the product as fast as possible.
If you find us at an event this year, we’ll probably have some drives with us for you to try. I know Friend of the ‘Lab Bex Huff (@bex) was hoping to do this for Collaborate, and I’m sure he’ll have some at future events too.
So, head over to OTN and get started learning WebCenter Sites.
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