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Interview with Francesco Corti

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Francesco Corti (Senior Consultant in Enterprise Content Management solutions, TAI Software Solutions) is the creator of the Alfresco Audit Analysis and Reporting system. He joined us on 16 May, for the Alfresco Global Virtual Hackathon.

Can you briefly explain to us the Alfresco Audit Analysis and Reporting system (A.A.A.R.)?

The A.A.A.R. system can extract audit data at a very detailed level and store the information in a Data Mart, in order to create reports in familiar formats (PDF, Microsoft Excel, CSV, etc.) making it possible to understand how Alfresco is used.

Together with other developers, you are concentrating today on finding new A.A.A.R. functionalities…

This system combines the major modern data analysis techniques for the world of Alfresco. My contribution incorporated Business Intelligence theories, that is those of the data analysis systems which, to some extent, are the weak link in Alfresco. We’re working on it. Today’s meeting is an invitation – for which I’d like to thank the BRIC, by the way – to work together on this project: to increase the capacity of A.A.A.R., so as to improve its analytical possibilities.

Who can benefit from this?

All developers wanting to explore a new area! The data analysis sector is well known in the field of IT research. But within Alfresco, it’s a sector that is still relatively unknown. Many people are surprised by my enthusiasm for the ‘data analysis – data management’ combination... It’s certainly a real discovery, both for data analysts and for data managers.

How do you see the A.A.A.R. developing, or how would you like to see it develop?

I’d like it to cover all the Alfresco fields of analysis... Could A.A.A.R. become an official Alfresco analysis system? That would be a dream come true, but let’s keep our feet on the ground for the time being!

Why did you choose to work with and on Alfresco?

For two main reasons: first of all, because at the moment Alfresco does not have a sound data analysis system, which it deserves. And secondly because it is possible, now even more so, to combine the requirements of Open Source with other Open Source Alfresco products. The solution I’m proposing means continuing along the Open Source path: this will not be a mix between free and proprietary software programs!

What do you think of the Alfresco community?

I appreciate the enthusiasm shown by the members of the Alfresco community. They undertake projects for the fun of it, and share the experience so that everyone can move forward, and not for other - sometimes less worthy - reasons.

What do you think of today’s meeting?

First of all, it’s a very stimulating context for new developments linked to our project. But it’s also an opportunity to discover so many new things: I’m very interested in finding out more about the projects my colleagues here are working on!
And then I think today provides something I’ve been lacking recently: confrontation.
In a totally positive sense, this is a chance to present our vision of things, and to receive feedback: “In my opinion, that’s fine”, or “In my opinion, that’s not right”, or “It would be better to do it this way:…”! All this dialogue began right from the start of the exchanges.

What’s your impression of Brussels, on your first visit?

It is a real pleasure to see Brussels in the sunshine, with lots of people outdoors (the fine weather is on our side!), talking together… In Italy, we tend to have a stereotype of people from northern countries: they are colder, more reserved… Everything I see is a great mixture of different cultures, of openness and good humour!
I’ll have to find time to come back as a tourist, and explore it more!


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