Stop Being Surprised by Surprise...Anticipate it.

Oxcyon and it's technology Centralpoint might seem at first blush like just another Enterprise Content Management platform. It is in reality something much bigger. It is a Lifecycle Management Platform which considers all aspects of your Information management (including the information itself, otherwise known as content). Our company and technology is built upon a central tenet by the Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, who said "Change is the only Constant in Life.” Our commitment to change can be proven via our Evergreen Updates over 16 years, and our future enhancements prove that it never stops. 

I started by first business in 1992, a technology firm called Kelltech. It initially responded to the market demand of Mainframes (yes, Honeywell Bull, Wang and DEC mainframes...I'm dating myself). Kelltech enjoyed much success servicing hundreds of clients like The US Navy, Pella Windows, DeHavilland Aircraft, UFCW and many others. Kelltech provided hardware, software and maintenance for these mainframe systems supporting the operating systems they ran (GCOS, Ultimate, and PICK). By 1995, these clients quickly moved to newer, smaller minicomputers, and in 1994, we started learning about the benefits of Internet (At that time, it was just 'Internet'). We were quick learners, and soon were offering basic web based solutions for our clients. From 1995 to 1998, Kelltech rose to rank amongst the Top 50 Web Development firms in the US, and proudly built (the first enterprise solutions) for clients at that time like The Cleveland Clinic, BF Goodrich, TRW, and many others. The secret to Kelltech's success was our ability to change.....but there was something missing....each project developed was left behind in the sands of time. This change was moving so quickly, that circling back (even within a one or two year time frame) to update left behind projects proved daunting. It was clear to me that although this new market was exciting, it would eventually implode devoid of a method to tether the technology updates (retroactively) to the client's environment. Kelltech was sold to a private equity firm in Chicago, called GTCR in 1999, and a new company, Oxcyon was founded to respond to change.

                                                           
                                                                                                                                    Oxcyon's Evergreen Lifecycle 

Centralpoint became the Lifecycle Management Platform, designed to virtually update on premise clients after the fact. Our mission to "Provide Our Clients the Best Possible Digital Tools Available " (at all times). The growing menu of options available (Content Management, Documents, Forms, SSO, Email Alerts, Advertising, Reporting, etc) is based upon our Voice of Customer (VOC) and is interpreted by Gartner and others as what they call a 'Digital Experience Platform.' In all reality Centralpoint is larger than other vendors in this space, because of it's service oriented architecture. Centralpoint is a Lifecycle Management Platform, which happens to offer a full gallery of modules that many organizations need today. It anticipates change and responds to it when it happens. Visit our Updates to see why we are the only vendor in our space committed to this fluid and immediate response. 

Today, Oxcyon has enjoyed over 17 years of incremental (bi-weekly) updates, resulting in the most mature platform available (offering the most functionality out of the box in a modular construct). Our unique bi-weekly Evergreen updates are a lifecycle rooted in the humility that we do not know the future....we can only better prepare for the unknown. We anticipate surprise, do our best to educate ourselves to make educated guesses to reduce uncertainty, but we will never eliminate it. Nobody can. Our Evergreen updates prove our commitment to being able to respond to change, no matter what it might be. Oxcyon will also not work with any partner who does not share the same philosophy. .Our strategic alliance with Rackspace is due to their approach to dealing with security, incidents, and changes to the environment of our hosted clients. 
                                                         

So the short term postures that people assume make change a scary prospect for many. This is found all the time in technology, as so many 'experts' are putting their career behind the 'expertise' du jour that they bring to the party.. Some people fear change because it may mean that they lose their livelihood, and they will, if their expertise doesn't continue.  What they should be doing is changing their expertise (also referred to as learning) and constantly. Learning is hard work because it requires humility....the humility to know what you don't know, and to anticipate surprise. I am tired of people being constantly surprised by (the same) surprise, and is the mantra of our company culture. It is also the pre requisite for any partner that Oxcyon considers working with, like Xerox, Rackspace, or technologies that we use to run our business. Everything requires this humble approach, and a system in which to deal with these updates. Microsoft would not be the leading operating system if it wasn't for it's ability to remotely and automatically, udpate itself. Think about it, 'Windows Updates' are the secret to Microsoft's success, and the better the updates and more frequent the updates (so that they are almost invisible to the user), the better. There have been times where some Microsoft Updates, were not properly tested prior to release, representing major turbulence in its' client base and their satisfaction. 

Oxcyon, and it's partners follow a similar philosophy to their ability to remote update and often. Below is a diagram which outlines our approach to the unknown. It begins with identifying new requirements, and includes the many steps to design, quality control, and test for performance and security impacts on the totality of the application already in play (the current version of Centralpoint) to preserve backward compatibility. Centralpoint updates, as well as Security updates by Rackspace, which allow for them to respond to new vulnerabilities and security threats as we do with our client's market dmeands. Both are in a constant state of change, and as it relates to security, it tends to intensify. It also allows for us to (each and collectively) respond to market demands, and changes to regulatory requirements and compliance.                                                        

But our fears, whether rational or not, cannot stop the hands of time and as time marches forward it drags change along with it. So we all have to face the inevitable, inescapable and immutable fact that change is coming. We must also cease to fear change. Change is only traumatic if we try to resist it or if we position and entrench ourselves on the wrong side of history. So how can we navigate the inevitable change without fear? Here are some tips.

The first tip is from General Colin Powell, “Don’t let your ego get too close to your position, so that if your position gets shot down, your ego doesn’t go with it.” We all have to take positions on all manner of issues big and small. One has to find a way of ensuring that whatever position you take on any issue does not come to define who you are. Maintain a healthy multifaceted identity and do not become a single dimensional caricature. You can support your political party, be a consummate professional, an active community member, a sports fan, a parent and several other things. Do not tie your whole being to things that are bound to change.

The second tip comes from the Gospel of Saint Luke 12:2-3 (New International Version): “But there is nothing covered up that will not be revealed, and hidden that will not be known. Accordingly, whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in the inner rooms will be proclaimed upon the housetops.” If you do not want it proclaimed from the rooftops, do not whisper it to a man who may be secretly recording your conversation and not taking good care of the tapes.

The third tip is from General Dwight Eisenhower who said “Extremes to the right and to the left of any political dispute are always wrong.” At the end of the day, we all really want the same things for ourselves and our children. The only disagreements that we have are about how these noble objectives are to be achieved and by whom the task of achieving them is best executed. So instead of adopting extreme positions, always seek the middle inclusive ground.