Last night, we announced MindTouch Contextual Help – a new capability of MindTouch TCS that allows application vendors to instantly add a contextual help system to their Web apps. This “F1-style” addition creates a rich social help experience for end users, removes the need for expensive engineering resources in development and maintenance, and provides product managers and marketers with a wealth of data and insights about the needs and challenges of their end users and prospective buyers.

MindTouch Contextual Help for your Web Applications provides:

  • Out-of-the-box help system
  • Lowered dependency on engineering resources
  • Increased customer engagement
  • Single source sales and marketing automation rules
  • A way to reduce support costs by bringing your self-serve support docs straight to your users, right within your app
  • Easy setup and deployment in your apps
  • Lower support, happier customers
  • Pricing and Availability

With this announcement, MindTouch is revolutionizing in-product help for the cloud-computing era. Help content doesn’t have to live in PDF’s and paper-based manuals published to the Web – MindTouch is the best way to quickly implement a proven and effective help system right within your apps.

Read more…

This past week, MindTouch announced a co-developed product with the industry’s most innovative provider of web-based help desk and support ticketing: Zendesk. In case if you missed the announcement (ok, it’s time to come out from under that rock), this integration is a jointly developed solution which provides a seamless experience for support agents to search against their MindTouch TCS social knowledge base in the context of the support ticketing system. Also part of the integration, users can publish support tickets to MindTouch as knowledge base articles, in a single click. To learn more about features and capabilities of this integration visit our Zendesk integration overview.

Are you a Zendesk customer? Great news – we’re giving all Zendesk customers a FREE MindTouch TCS instance. Get your free MindTouch instance and setup your integration today!

Read more…

If you subscribe to the MindTouch e-newsletter you received this information via email earlier this week. Don’t forget to Follow us on Facebook to get updates on promotions, product releases, announcements and more! Become a Fan Now.

In This Issue

  • Letter from the CEO: Introducing MindTouch Technical Communications Suite
  • The Most Influential Technical Communicator Bloggers
  • Let’s Build the Future, Together
  • Stat of the Month: The Top 25 Technical Communicators in More Detail

Read more…

While I typically write an end of year wrap up in the new year, I couldn’t help writing about some recent awards MindTouch has been honored by. Beginning with, for the second year in a row, MindTouch was listed as a ReadWriteWeb Top 10 Enterprise Products. Other products honored included those from Microsoft, Salesforce, Jive Software, Cisco Systems and Apple. I am proud to note Microsoft and Cisco are both MindTouch customers too.

Two of the selected products that shared the spotlight this year with MindTouch are Microsoft Sharepoint and Jive Software SBS. MindTouch VP, Mark Fidelman recently highlighted these products in a blog post at CloudAve: SharePoint 2010 vs, MindTouch the Battle of the Platforms and Jive Software vs. MindTouch – a Guide for Decision Makers. Thanks for the recognition Alex, Marshall, Richard, et al.

In addition to the RWW honor, MindTouch has received many other accolades in recent months including:

Read more…

Credit: Mashget via Flickr
Credit: Mashget via Flickr

One of the often overlooked benefits of MindTouch Deki is the ability to create an organizational memory by capturing your company’s tacit and explicit knowledge. This is done in a manner that makes it expedient for others to later consume this memory, if done manually, and enables the programmatic processing of the data through a rich set of RESTful interfaces.

With the recent wave of layoffs MindTouch has been witnessing an increase in customers who have proactively begun to put in place processes for minimizing the costs and risks of layoffs. With MindTouch Deki, these processes are especially efficient and low cost. Jason Rothbart of RWW writes about the use of collaboration technologies to minimize knowledge bleed in a recent post.

The scale of layoffs over the past few weeks is unprecedented. The impact on these people who have been shown the door and on the companies that have let them go will linger for years to come. Besides the emotional damage that occurs when people are forced out, there is a tangible cost to companies when knowledge and experience walk out the door. Once that knowledge and experience are gone, no amount of TARP money will bring them back. It may be too late for some companies to prevent this now, but putting measures in place will lessen the blow in future.

rww.pngOne of the few ways to address the problem is to adopt collaborative tools and processes that capture the information companies need to be able to thrive.

Every company in the world relies on the bits of information that live in its employees’ heads. The accounts payable clerk may know a small nugget on how to negotiate the best price with an important vendor. A salesperson may repeat the same pitch when selling to a certain kind of customer that works every time. An engineer may be the only person who knows why software was originally built with ColdFusion. The branch manager may know the precise spot to kick the box compactor when it acts up.

All of these bits of knowledge add up to a vast amount of information that a healthy business requires. But the vast majority of companies do a poor job of gathering this information in a systematic way….

via Layoffs Send People and Knowledge Packing – ReadWriteWeb.

You don’t have to be Machiavellian to look to MindTouch Deki for ameliorating the impact of layoffs. Deploying MindTouch Deki is a common sense step that one can take to prevent knowledge bleed and improve productivity. How does a company achieve the capture of tacit and explicit knowledge? Simply by using MindTouch Deki as an alternative to your network file server and email will automatically achieve this end. Even richer benefits can be realized with improved and more efficient processes for collaboration, enterprise automation and integration. Contact us via chat or email and we’ll be happy to elaborate further.

dekigift1Looking at the year in review, MindTouch has a lot to be thankful for in 2008. We received dozens of accolades from the media and analysts, we added hundreds of new customers and have seen remarkable growth.

All of our success would never have been possible without you. The fact is, it is our amazing community that have tirelessly spread the word through blogging, twittering, and good old fashioned word of mouth. Without your support we could have never achieved these successes. Please continue to spread the news about MindTouch and how it benefits you.

Here’s a recap from our December Newsletter…

Save an Emperor Penguin: Upgrade from Deki Open Source

A fantastic reason to upgrade existing open source installations. Any MindTouch Deki Open Source user that upgrades to MindTouch Deki Commercial (Deki Standard or Enterprise) will have a donation made on their behalf to the World Wildlife Fund, which will pay to save an endangered emperor penguin.

Upgrade today by contacting MindTouch via phone:
866-MindTouch USA
619-795-8459 International

Or email:
[email protected]

Read Original Blog Post…

RWW: MindTouch Deki Cited In Top 10 Enterprise Web Products of 2008

ReadWriteWeb has spoken and has named MindTouch as one of the 10 Best Enterprise Web Products of 2008. This is an amazing honor to be listed along side such remarkable enterprise products such as  Salesforce, Amazon Web Services, and others. Thank you RWW!

Read Full Article…

WOA for the Enterprise: An alternative architectural style

Steve Bjorg, MindTouch CTO, Founder and Chief Architect, recently wrote an article on Web Oriented Architecture (WOA) that was published at DotNet Developer’s Journal.

Read the full article published in the .Net Journal…

MindTouch Desktop Suite v.1.1

From a product development standpoint, one of the benefits of adopting a WOA approach to development is the ease in developing new tools on top of an API. At MindTouch, we’ve taken full advantage of this by rapidly creating whole new applications on top of Deki such as  DekiMobile. These applications allow users to interact with MindTouch Deki within the work flows they are most familiar with.

To that end, I’m proud to announce the immediate availability of the MindTouch Desktop Suite (version 1.1) for MindTouch commercial customers; download it here.

Read the full article

A Letter from the CEO

In the last several months the global economic crisis and credit crunch has caused a lot of justified concern for everyone. In times like this it is especially important to be critical of each dollar spent. Wise corporate buyers are limiting software purchases to systems that have a proven track record of producing considerable returns on investment.

Our customers here at MindTouch are consistently telling us they are having to do more with fewer resources. This is a recurring theme. Fortunately, MindTouch is delivering on the promise of big gains in operational efficiency and productivity. In some cases our customers are reporting, millions of dollars in productivity gains in the first year of deploying MindTouch Deki. Dramatic, I know. Here are some specifics:

* Bill Me Later (acquired by eBay for $945 Million) saw a 1,000 to 1 return on investment in the first 6 months
* Red Mountain Retail Group saw a 25% increase in productivity across all departments in the first year
* Fairway Technologies halves their time to market by developing on the Deki platform
* T2 Systems realized a 300% increase in adoption over previous collaboration technologies

In these uncertain times operational efficiency is of paramount importance. MindTouch Deki has consistently demonstrated huge wins for corporations and organizations in efficiency and productivity with the ability to improve collaboration and create enterprise / business automation. The unique capabilities of MindTouch Deki provides immediate value out-of-the-box and the opportunity to embrace, extend and automate existing enterprise systems and data sources. As such, even in these down times where every dollar counts and every expenditure is scrutinized MindTouch has had remarkable success. MindTouch experienced triple digit revenue growth in 2008, from Q2 to Q3 a 37% growth in revenue and from Q3 to Q4 a 53% growth in revenue! Given the economic climate it’s clear MindTouch is delivering very real value to our customers.

Here at MindTouch we’re all very flattered and pleased that the media and analysts are discovering what our community has known for some time now: MindTouch Deki is the ultimate enterprise collaboration platform. I urge you to champion MindTouch within your company or organization so that you too can realize significant improvements in productivity and efficiency.

Get a free MindTouch systems & productivity assessment

Best Wishes and Happy Holidays!!

rww_bestproductsReadWriteWeb has spoken and has named MindTouch as one of the 10 Top Enterprise Web Products of 2008. This is an amazing honor to be listed with such remarkable web products such as Salesforce, Amazon Web Services, LinkedIn, and others. Thank you RWW! Here’s what ReadWriteWeb had to say about the selection criteria

In no order of importance (all three are critical), we looked for three attributes for the top Enterprise web products:

  1. Innovation: This is the time for firms that opened up entirely new market categories through disruptive innovation to reap the rewards.
  2. Traction: We cannot put a cool new company whose product is just emerging from beta into our top 10. Winners should already have major traction in the market.
  3. Longevity: This is a mix of profitability and deep pockets; an ability to outlast the competition.

Read entire article…

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In an ongoing effort to chronicle MindTouch’s media coverage, return link-love and comment on articles written about MindTouch here’s another weekly media round up.

Starting with Clint Boulton at eWeek. This article is actually a couple weeks old, but I missed it in the previous round ups and I’m a big fan of eWeek and Clint’s work there.

eWeek: Mozilla Melds with MindTouch WikeWeeki

Mozilla’s embrace of MindTouch is a coup of sorts for the San Diego startup…

“They dig it [Deki] because they can connect to disparate systems, presenting through a common interface, and their community being able to write tools on top of that platform for adding content, reviewing content or navigating content,” MindTouch CEO Aaron Fulkerson told eWEEK.

Fulkerson told eWEEK that MindTouch does not want to be mistaken for a social media site, most of which are hosted Internet sites that let users chat and share apps. Users can chat and share apps in MindTouch, but he said 90 percent of the company’s installations are inside the firewall.

I make this distinction about MindTouch being an Enterprise software company and not primarily a social media platform for external community sites because the former is the focus of our development. Although, MindTouch has some highly visible customers who are using MindTouch Deki Wiki as a social media platform the vast majority (90%+) are deploying MindTouch as Enterprise IT connective tissue and an Enterprise wide collaboration tool. When you think about it though there is a lot of overlap between the social media platform and the “Enterprise Glue” use case.

George Dearing of InformationWeek, a seasoned IT professional and blogger, provides his input on MindTouch’s position in the accelerating mashup space.

InformationWeek: MindTouch’s Momentum Shows The Power Of Mashups – Content Management Bloginfoweek
There’s no question that mashups are hot right now. In fact, it’s a market that Forrester Research’s Oliver Young says could be worth nearly $700 million by 2013. Vendors in every sector are rushing to deliver these so-called “situational applications” to sophisticated business users everywhere in the hopes of improving collaboration and spiking productivity.

A vendor we covered recently and one that’s in the in the middle of mashup mania is MindTouch, makers of Deki Wiki, Web 2.0 middleware that’s part content management system (CMS) and part mashup maker.

Part of my inclination to cover MindTouch’s recent announcement was the results I was able to achieve on my own using Deki Wiki. Pointing and clicking through a hosted instance of its Pro version is a breeze. I was able to build a fairly extensive site with multiple pages, widgets, and several other Web services extensions in less than 30 minutes. Once you navigate through your own instance, you quickly get a sense of what all the fuss is about.

Dion Hinchcliffe, a man whose name is synonymous with Enterprise 2.0 covers MindTouch in a Mashup roundup.

ZDNet | Enterprise Web 2.0: Mashups turn into an industry as offerings mature ZDNet

One thing is now clear in this burgeoning new industry; that there is genuine interest in being a leading provider of enterprise mashup tools as organizations begin getting serious about applying them to make the development of Web-based business solutions faster, more commonplace, and less costly. One significant open question continues to be how long it will take for rapidly evolving mashup techniques to move into enterprises, which have been falling behind developments on the fast-pace of the consumer Web for a number of years now and are just now beginning to make inroads into some businesses.

Mindtouch is primarily known as a wiki company with an aggregation focus, but their new “Itasca” product [Correction: this was actually introduced 7 months earlier in the "Hayes" release] moves them definitely into the mashup space…the wiki makes a good canvas for mashups with automated version control and a familiar usage model that the ordinary user can readily understand…

Marshall Kirkpatrick at ReadWriteWeb writes of 10 wiki use cases and several of the examples he cites links to sites powered by MindTouch Deki Wiki.

ReadWriteWeb: Wikis Are Now Serious BusinessRWW

Wikis are some of the first online social software that many people in the enterprise come in contact with. They can be very popular for project management work. A recent report from Forrester estimated that enterprises spent $63 million on wikis last year, meaning that the consumer wiki provider Wetpaint has now raised 2/3 as much venture capital as the entire enterprise market spent on the medium last year. Forrester predicts though that by 2013, that spending will grow to $451 million – more than will be spent on blog software, podcasting or widgets.

Wikis are generally presumed to present nothing but an empty box and a WYSIWYG editor, but that’s not always the case. The online community for book readers Shelfari, for example, recently added a section for author wikis. These author wikis are a combination of free text space and a structured, biographical section.

The software used is called DekiWiki, from Mindtouch. Shelfari doesn’t use the DekiWiki interface, though, it just ties its pages into DekiWiki services. While Wetpaint Inject is getting some press this week, DekiWiki’s API offers more seamless, more powerful integration into partner websites.

In reference to Marshall’s above bolded assertion I’ll add the partner need not pay CPM or have data owned by a third party as is the case with the aforementioned service. Moreover, MindTouch Deki Wiki is open source and easily extensible, which is important as needs evolve and are often unique to each partner.

apprising_001 I was recently interviewed by Geoff Daily of AppRising. We spoke about MindTouch, today and tomorrow, and we discussed the significance of pervasive 100MB broadband to the home. Unfortunately, I can’t embed the video here, but you can watch the video interview at Geoff’s blog. [Geoff assures me he's switching to Viddler--the best video sharing site there is :-) ]. I start off a little slow, but I think the interview gets pretty interesting once I get comfortable with the format.

If anyone knows of a tutorial for creating this format (picture in picture video chat) with Skype Video, at a reasonable quality level, please let me know. I’d like to start doing this and think the format is wonderful.

OSalt Next, added MindTouch Deki Wiki to their site. OSalt isn’t a media outlet, but I want to mention it here because I think it’s a wonderful service. The site lists open source software to proprietary alternatives. You like how I turned that around don’t you. :-)

Lastly, I want to provide some link-love and close the round up with Sean Lew’s personal blog post, which I stumbled across today courtesy of Technorati.

Synergise IT: MindTouch Frenzy

sean I looked at a HUGE amount of Wikis. TikiWiki, PhPWiki, SocialText, WetPaint, MediaWiki and Mindtouch. I have personally either installed or tried the online versions of all of them and decided on Mindtouch Deki Wiki hosted on Even though that means I have to pay $99 per year for only 10GB of space. Oh well, good things comes at a price.

I cannot emphasize enough how simple Deki Wiki is. Creating content is simple, managing the Wiki is super easy as well. It also has the power to extend its platform to add almost anything under the sun is something NO OTHER WIKI can do. Simplicity and power at its best!

You don’t have to be a professional journalist or blogger to write about MindTouch. Hearing from users and customers in the trenches is very valuable. Keep posts like Sean’s coming and I’ll always try my best to get you into the Media Round Up.

By now our loyal readers are likely sick of hearing me talk about the latest release of Deki Wiki :-), but I’m obliged to thank all the pubs and blogs that covered our announcement and to return some link-love. The response is nothing short of remarkable. In no particular order, here it goes:

The must read post of all the coverage, and there was a lot of quality coverage, is Dr. Dobbs. I say this only because it’s the most technical post and most of our readers are technical. I summarize here, but I encourage you to read the entire post:

Dr. Dobb’s | Web Oriented Architectures…and why Mozilla adopted the Deki Wiki | May 7, 2008 drdobbs

Steve Bjorg: Web-Oriented Architecture is an alternative to Service-Oriented Architecture. WOA is fundamentally about “open” systems that communicate over “open” and established protocols and formats. In WOA, HTTP takes center-stage as the communication protocol between applications and web-services. Beyond that, the exchange format is also web-centric and is often XHTML, RSS, RDF, or other such formats. In WOA, web-services embrace the same technological design principles that web-applications have been following for years: communication between services is stateless, formats are open and extensible, and data exchanges are cacheable. All desirable properties for creating large scale, ad-hoc networks of connected, heterogenous web-services.

Mike Shaver: … We were looking for a system that would give us the tools to combine and “remix” those data sources creatively, and Deki Wiki is designed with exactly that goal in mind.

Because Deki Wiki is designed as a distributed application, it will be quite straightforward for us to integrate content and data from other parts of our world, without creating a maintenance nightmare by hacking on the core code or trying to program to underpowered APIs. More than any other Wiki system we looked at, Deki Wiki feels designed to be extended as a platform for web applications and we’re really looking forward to having that power available to our community.

Mike Shaver: Mozilla is a large project, and our Developer Center alone has hundreds of editors collaborating in more than a dozen languages to create tens of thousands of pages of content. With the Jay Cooke release of Deki Wiki, we have more powerful localization tools than ever before, and great support for working with many different types of web content at our significant scale.

You can get started quickly with the VM image that’s provided by Mindtouch, and whipping up a new extension or integration point is easy enough that even a Chief Evangelist can do it. :)

Mark Hinkle (Mhinkle), from Socialized Software (and Zenoss), provides analysis and commentary on the latest release:

Mark_Hinkle_caricatureMicrosoft Ex-Pats Developing Open Source Software Outside of Redmond | Socialized Software

Rather than striving to be an all-in-one solution Deki Wiki boasts a robust web services API that allows for integration between other applications. Already Deki Wiki supports authentication via LDAP and Active Directory as well as authentication systems from popular open source content management systems like WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla!.

Today was the release of MIndTouch’s v8.05 (codenamed Jay Cooke) which was largely driven by requirements from the Mozilla Foundation (who will be relaunching their developer community using Deki Wiki). I like to see open source projects use open source software when they get the chance. Sometimes I think we do that because of solidarity among free software developers. However, in the case of Deki Wiki I think that it’s safe to say that Deki Wiki is not only open source, but also best of breed. I have raved about Deki Wiki before but this release has some very cool new features. Through web services you can enable real time chat, embed Google spreadsheets, query databases, and include interactive maps from Google and Windows Live.

Kristen Nicole of Mashable provides coverage of the new release. As always, her assessment is insightful and thorough.

Mozilla’s Tower of Babel, Powered by Mindtouchmashable

Mindtouch’s Deki Wiki is among the most used for enterprise solutions because of its ability to provide highly customized options that meet variant business needs. The result is a consumer-facing page that often bears little resemblance to a wiki at all. And with the never-ending list of included programs, plug-ins and options, the combinations available for clients can pretty much offer whatever it is you need.

Mozilla agrees, and has selected Mindtouch to power its new Developer Community. As a result of the partnership between Mindtouch and Mozilla, a new version of the Deki Wiki has been released, to meet Mozilla’s demands. That’s good for you, because there are some very handy features involved in this latest version, entitled the Deki Wiki “Jay Cooke” v8.05.

The most notable new feature, in my opinion, is the new polygot capability, which provides support for all the major languages out there. It’s a virtual tower of Babel, where every user can experience the wiki in its entirety, in their native language. The language is set in user preferences, and content, including searched content, is served up accordingly.

The ever vigilant and intelligent Marshall Kirkpatrick jumps in with his assessment of our latest innovations:

MindTouch Goes Polyglot, Gets Nod From Mozilla – ReadWriteWeb

MindTouch also announced that Deki Wiki has been chosen as the new rwwframework to power the Mozilla Developer Community site, some great validation for a company that often seems to stand so far out on the bleeding edge that it could make potential users feel uneasy.

Ordinarily we wouldn’t write here about new versions of software, but this internationalization seems like a great fit for our international audience. MindTouch is far more than just a wiki, it’s a CMS with extensive application and mashup support. We wrote in January, for example, about the company’s integration with one of our favorite services, Dapper. Deki Wiki was born as a Mediawiki fork, but those roots are barely recognizable anymore under several years of powerful innovation.

Also covering the announcement is VentureBeat, which has been increasingly expanding it’s coverage with the addition of the seasoned Dean Takahashi from the San Jose Mercury.

MindTouch releases new version of multi-language software » VentureBeat ventureBeat

[With Deki Wiki, users] can integrate multiple languages into a single site, rather than create a separate site for each language. In addition, users visiting the site can search across all languages, with the search results prioritized to that user’s language.

Mozilla, maker of the Firefox web browser, plans on using Deki Wiki for the Mozilla Development Center, the site where Mozilla manages its community of developers. That’s important for open-source developers such as Mozilla, which has thousands of developers around the world.

CenterNetworks, the up and coming media star also provides brief coverage:

MindTouch DekiWiki Revolutionizes Multilingual Content Management | CenterNetworks CenterNetworks

MindTouch is announcing the latest release of their Deki Wiki (8.05) open source enterprise collaboration and integration platform today. I’ve embedded a short video below that reviews the new features. MindTouch is also announcing that their platform has been selected to power the upcoming re-launch of their Mozilla Developer Community.

The major update to Deki Wiki in this new version is a new “polyglot” feature. MindTouch describes polygot, “will allow Mozilla to host all languages as a single site. Now language can be specified by sections and pages thereby automatically adapting the user interface of Deki Wiki to the appropriate language. Also, users may search across all languages and search results are prioritized by the user’s default language.”

Mary Fallon from, a person whom I enjoy talking tech with because her experience always provides a valuable perspective, gives her angle on the recent news:

MindTouch introduces 16 language content management system | demo

MindTouch, whose open source collaborative software tools let enterprises manage and share information, today released the world’s first polygot content management system that helps software developers create Web applications hosting 16 major spoken languages including English, Japanese, and Russian on a single site.

“It’s really bleeding edge,” Fulkerson said. “Now it’s easier than ever to create content, systems automation, dynamic reports, and situational applications.”

Mike Shaver, Mozilla’s chief evangelist, said Mozilla chose MindTouch Deki Wiki after extensive testing of alternatives. “Mozilla believes in the power of the Web to bring people together in wonderfully collaborative ways and MindTouch Deki Wiki’s extensibility and flexible architecture will allow us bring more of this to our developer community,” Shaver said. “The opportunity to easily create our own tools and extensions on top of Deki’s extensive API is sure to inspire some great improvements from our community.”

techmeme_001 Shockingly, my blog post made Techmeme! I love Techmeme. I would have thought some of these other great articles/posts would have made Techmeme before my write-up, but hey: yay me! :-)

Also, Jeff Haynie, CEO of Appcellerator, an RIA development platform, had some very kind words about MindTouch, an opinion on the significance of the release, and some criticism about our release naming convention. :-)

Introspection by Jeff Haynie

OK, putting aside the silly release naming convention — this is a pretty big announcement for the really cool open source wiki provider, MindTouch.

MindTouch has continued to gain tons of traction and I hear, from one of our common advisors, that they’re getting a lot of downloads on a daily basis. This is a great thing and today’s announcement is important for several reasons.

I expected some comments or questions about the new version numbering. We’ve explained it, in part, elsewhere, but allow me to elaborate. We give every release the code name of a state park in Minnesota in descending alphabetical order. This code name is used by the community and the development team to reference the release independent of the release date/number. As of this release we’ve changed the release numbering scheme to one that’s similar to Ubuntu’s. The release number is the release year + . + month; therefore, “Jay Cooke” v8.05 was released May, 2008. The next release is “Killen Woods” and will likely be v8.07.

The coverage of our announcement today is nothing short of remarkable. Thank you all who covered it. We promise to keep innovating and outpacing the competition to give you more great stuff to write about. :-)

Props to future-works for helping to get the word out. Specifically, Miiko Mentz, who is wicked smart, and Allison Bethurem deserve credit for their hard work. I think our most recent social media press release has been especially well received. We’re putting to practice things many others only talk about.

Stay tuned for more news from MindTouch. We’ve got more major announcements on the way. :-)