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Adobe Enters Document Management Market

LiveCycle is a server-based suite of apps designed to help enterprises create, control and manage scanned and XML documents. It is part of Adobe's Intelligent Document Platform, a three-tiered document-management strategy based on XML and PDF, administered using secure document-management services and anchored by a new J2EE application interface as well as the trusty Adobe Reader.

The challenge for Adobe, though, will be to penetrate a document-management and collaboration market crowded with affordable offerings from big-name vendors, such as IBM, Microsoft and Oracle, not to mention specialized applications from vendors like Documentum and FileNet.

Before considering Adobe's new tools--or any other document-management solution--make an inventory of the nature and quantity of your documents and ensure that your internal processes are in order. You must also understand the legal ramifications of document storage, handling and compliance that are specific to your business.