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Archive for March 5th, 2008

SharePoint Conference 2008 – Day 3

Posted by Steve Pietrek on March 5, 2008

Beautiful day in Seattle yesterday. Sunny, high 40’s. Too bad I was inside all day but it was definitely worth it.

First session of the day was Adam Buenz and another fellow who’s name I did not catch since I was late titled “Your Data is in SharePoint, Now What?”. Adam started off covering Custom Routers for moving documents to the Record Center. Very cool! Next Adam covered Auditing and all the goodness you can build. Working for the USAF, security is, as you would expect, very important and Adam makes it super easy for his users to review auditing reports by using Word (he created some OBA’s using VSTO). Finally, Adam covered Information Management Policies – specifically focusing on labeling. The other fellow (if someone has his name, please forward to me), spoke on Rights Management Services (RMS). Very good topic but one I have very little experience with. As a side note, Adam is another great presenter (up there with Andrew Connell). Would love to spend a few weeks sitting with these guys and soaking in the information.

Second session of the day was Asif Rehmani titled “Build an Automated Expense Reimbursement Process using InfoPath and SharePoint”. Asif has created an interesting web site where he has tons of webcasts, screencasts, and knowledge maps on SharePoint – http://www.sharepoint-elearning.com/. The only downside to the talk was it was rated level 400 so I thought there would be more meat. It was a very good presentation and Asif, although it started slowly, had a good message.

Third session of the day was one I was looking for the most and one that was the most disappointing (in a good way). Andrew Connell was giving a presentation titled “Structured Approach to Building MOSS 2007 Publishing Sites”. It is no mistake I have a man-crush – in a platonic way ;) – on AC. He is such an awesome presenter and super smart. Plus AC was very helpful when I was looking to make a move to full-time SharePoint consultant. He listed the two approaches of customization and development and the pros/cons of both. He then jumped into Features, Solutions, etc. Very educational presentational – for someone who has not been down that road before. I have created numerous Features/Solutions and whole-hearted believe creating custom code is the better alternative than customization. If anything, splitting code out helps the process of reusing code when you go from client to client. If it was at least verification I am doing the right process.

Fourth presentation of the day was giving my Todd Baginski on the BDC. You can get the source code and demo here. BDC and BI are two areas of MOSS I have very limited experience with. I fully understand the high-level concepts of the BDC. Amazing what you can do with the out-of-the-box BDC web parts. In my past life, I wrote BI software for a small ISV and we wrote our own BDC-like application which could query multiple databases and display the data in a client OLAP cube – still something I have yet to see. If anything, seems the BDC only allows you to access one table at a time. What happens when you want to two tables from the same database or even multiple tables from multiple databases on multiple platforms? With SharePoint’s popularity, seems like there is room for that.

Last session of the day was Jonathan Stynder of Microsoft giving a presentation titled “Information Architecture for MOSS 2007″. The session was in one of the larger rooms. At the beginning it was quite full. After around 5 minutes, quite a few people started leaving. The reasons were either: it was the last session of the day (more likely) or everybody knows how they need to architect their SharePoint data (less likely). I admit Jonathan got off to a slow start but there were many good nuggets of information. Some included when you should split out content into separate site collections (he even had a cool Feature which set the Global Navigation of two site collections to have the same site map for consistency), when to create new site templates, and do create reuable code (Features/Solutions).

Last night, the Gala was a the Museum of Aviation. Very good food. I didn’t stick around too long. Was way to tired. I know, boo-hoo!

Today looks like it will shape up to be a good one. Greg LeMond will be giving a keynote this morning. Good sessions.

Finally, sorry about missing SPLinks. Been busy outside of SPC and have not had the time to go through my feeds. Wireless at the hotel has been mixed too – sometimes up/sometimes down. Looks like I won’t get to them until this weekend.

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