It was my honor and privilege to be able to present the DotNetNuke State of the Union 2010 keynote address at the recent DotNetNuke OpenForce Europe conference in Zeist, The Netherlands and DotNetNuke Connections conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. For the benefit of those community members who could not attend these premiere conference events ( or watch the live streaming ), I think it is valuable to share some of the more memorable highlights from the presentation.
The theme of the keynote was “Accelerate” and my first slide contained an image of the Hadron Collider; the largest nuclear particle accelerator in the world. I chose this image for a couple of reasons – first because of the “nuclear” reference which plays well with our brand, and second because it represents modern technology which is rapidly evolving to solve complex problems.
The presentation was organized into four parts – Overview, Progress, Business, and Vision…
In the Overview I focused on presenting our key marketing and positioning messages which we have been sharing with industry analysts and media establishments for the past 12 months. Those messages being we are 3 things: a CMS, an Open Source project, and a commercial Platform.
For Progress I outlined all of the growth we have achieved as a project over the past year. This included metrics around downloads, user registrations on dotnetnuke.com, live websites running the platform, recognition and awards we have received in 2010, conferences and user events, new DNN books in publication, the launch of our new website ( which generated significant applause ), highlights of the four major releases we shipped, and finally details of the 5.6 major release which will be released on November 17.
Moving on to Company, I shared details of the tremendous business momentum which DotNetNuke Corporation has experienced in the past year and the benefit to the ecosystem. I covered our Mission and Vision statements, our Series B funding event by Pelion Venture Partners, new additions to our Board of Directors ( Chris Cooper and Frank Artale ), growth of the business from 18 FTEs in November 2009 to 45 FTEs in November 2010, our business model ( yes I still get questions about this – although a lot less frequently than in the past ), details related to our commercial products, the fact that we have 900 subscription customers in under 20 months, a “NASCAR” slide containing the logos of some of the larger users of the platform, improvements in the Snowcovered marketplace, and number of Fusion Partners signed up. I included a showcase on the State of Kentucky and how they had recently chosen DotNetNuke as the first Open Source Content Management System to be approved as a state-wide standard! I then invited Gavin Warrener, Program Manager Web Platform from Microsoft, to say a few words about the Microsoft Web Platform; highlighting the exciting new WebMatrix and Razor products which will be released in January of 2011 – and the fact that we will be ready with a robust DotNetNuke integration story!
Finally, I tackled the most exciting portion of the presentation – the Vision. First off I provided some background by explaining the history of the DNN 5.0 platform and how it has first been announced at the OpenForce conference in Las Vegas in 2007 with a codename of “Cambrian”. I went on to explain that the web landscape is rapidly changing and I visually attempted to describe the effects which Cloud, Mobile, and Social are having on the CMS world ( the CMS 2.0 slide is probably the most complicated slide I have ever created in PowerPoint ). At this point I declared that in order for us to remain a leader in web content management, we need to Accelerate our efforts.
Switching gears, I provided a bit of a physics education related to the Hadron Collider; and how we see similarities between its goals and what we need to do with the DotNetNuke platform. With that I announced that the next major version of DotNetNuke would have a codename of “Hadron” and would be version 6!
The goal for 6.0 is to be the world’s foremost web platform for creating modern, easily customizable, social & mobile enabled, feature rich websites. How we achieve that centers around 5 key themes: User Experience, “Instant On”, Performance, Social & Mobile, and Enterprise Integration. I outlined some of the detailed features for each of these themes, which we expect will take multiple major releases in the 6.x generation to achieve. I also announced that based on customer feedback we will be moving away from our more aggressive quarterly major release schedule and will adopt a policy of 2 major releases in 2011 – most likely one in Q2 and one in Q4 ( we will however continue to deliver regular Maintenance releases ).
Lastly, I outlined 3 new commercial products and services which we are planning to introduce to provide customers with more choice, flexibility, and value. The first is a Perpetual License which will provide the rights to use the product indefinitely; however, you will still need to have an active subscription to receive updates and technical support benefits. The second is Bundled Offerings which include the commercial product, webinar training, and installation/upgrade assistance. These will be available in a number of configurations and will enable organizations to get up to speed faster and lower their operating costs. Both of the items I just mentioned will be available at or near the launch of the 5.6 release. The third item is an Express Edition which is intended to be an entry level product for very small businesses who need a more affordable option than the current Professional Edition product. It will have limited features, limited support, and simple upgrade path to Professional or Enterprise. At this point it is not known when Express Edition will become available.
The PowerPoint 2007 version of the keynote presentation ( with animations ) can be downloaded here and a PDF version can be downloaded here. I look forward to another outstanding year for the DotNetNuke ecosystem.