WashingtonPost.com - High-volume CMS

WashingtonPost.com - High-volume CMS

Quoin built a sophisticated and robust platform for content delivery for one of the most-visited news sites on the web. Our project team was responsible for architecture and implementation of a system that supported over 200 million page-views per month. We worked closely with operations staff for seamless deployment and operations of this critical component to manage the WashingtonPost.com's content.

WashingtonPost.com - High-volume CMS

Quoin built a sophisticated and robust platform for content delivery for one of the most-visited news sites on the web. Our project team was responsible for architecture and implementation of a system that supported over 200 million page-views per month. We worked closely with operations staff for seamless deployment and operations of this critical component to manage the WashingtonPost.com's content.

Quoin built a robust CMS delivery engine for WashingtonPost.com, a major 24/7 media site that serves more than 200 million page-views per month. Working in a complex operational environment, our team designed the system in just 12 months, delivering the system on time or early in both phases of the project. Our CMS delivery engine performed extremely well, with no operational defects during five years of extremely high use, and the system architecture has proven remarkably extensible—our team was able to add functionality to support personalization features for myWashingtonpost.com in just two weeks.

  • Quoin deployed a highly effective team of 8 professionals for the complete development lifecycle.
  • CMS Delivery Engine was deployed with no disruption to news delivery or operations.
  • System architecture demonstrated its flexibility by supporting changes for personalization done in two weeks.
  • Project was completed on-time and at a fixed-cost.
  • System had no operational defects in more than four years of continuous production use.

“Thank you for breaking the culture here and delivering a system that works as promised, one day ahead of schedule, and at a fixed cost.”

—Mark Steinwinter, Director of Application Development, WashingtonPost.com

Application Generator for Reader-Searchable Databases

Quoin built an application generator for use by WashingtonPost.com editorial and production staff. The toolkit is used to specify and generate functional J2EE applications for reader searches of online databases that could be quickly deployed to the CMS Delivery Engine. The project objective was to substantially reduce the time-to-market for database search applications. The client, constrained by developer resources, typically required several months to deploy a new reader service. After Quoin delivered the toolkit on-time and at its fixed cost, the client has used it to successfully build reader-searchable databases within a three-week development cycle - yielding more than a 4:1 reduction in development schedules. The editorial staff has used the toolkit to create databases on elections, schools, auto reviews, and other topics. These applications have proven remarkably successful at increasing readerships and advertising revenue. Shown in the figure below is the workflow for the application generator.

Content Management System Requirements Analysis

In 2002, WashingtonPost.com initiated a process to define the requirements and an implementation plan for a new editorial system. Quoin was engaged to lead the analysis, and to produce a validated functional and business requirements specification. Our project team worked with the editorial, business, and technology staff to identify these requirements. We produced a use case model, including detailed user stories and functional requirements. In addition, Quoin conducted an analysis of the current business processes related to content management, and defined a possible future state to improve business and technology alignment for the organization. The results of this project were key resources when WashingtonPost.com selected a commercial content management system in 2004.

  • Quoin defined a validated functional and business requirements specification.
  • We engaged editorial, business, and technology stakeholders in requirements analysis.
  • Requirements analysis enabled the client to select a commercial CMS.

Content Management System Performance Tuning

WashingtonPost.com implemented a new content management system in 2005. However, the editorial system exhibited a number of performance problems, including slow response for many key functions and limited scalability for the required number of users. Quoin was engaged to help diagnose and resolve these performance problems. As the principal consultant for this effort Eric Meyer collaborated with the technology staff to define a pragmatic approach for quickly improving performance of this critical system. He defined a strategy for benchmarks and metrics from the editorial system, WebLogic Content Server, and Oracle content repository. Eric also identified a number of potential causes, including the non-normalized database schema, custom object-relational mapping components, unnecessary remote method invocation, overhead container-managed Entity Beans, and other aspects of the system. WashingtonPost.com staff implemented his approach, and Eric provided continuing guidance. His performance analysis strategy was key to the eventual resolution of these performance problems.

  • Quoin defined a strategy for analysis of significant performance and scalability problems with the editorial system.
  • Our guidance enabled the WashingtonPost.com staff to diagnose and fix the problems.