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  • In the midst of some rather exciting announcements a few weeks back at Microsoft Build 2016, there was one announcement in particular that will enable significant strides in the development of mobile applications. During the Day 2 Keynote, Miguel de Icaza announced that Xamarin will now be included in all current flavors of Visual Studio, from Enterprise all of the way down to the freely available Community Edition.

  • A new flavor of SharePoint

    David Rubinstein

    As I wrote in last week’s newsletter, there was a kerfuffle in the SharePoint community over the new look of SharePoint Online document libraries. Part of the problem is with the way Microsoft announced the change—via a post in its Message Center.

  • This morning, I started up my laptop and logged in to the different Web applications I work with. I think the only desktop application I still use is my music subscription service. I accessed my Outlook from the browser, and the UI for e-mails had changed. Arguably the most important application in the world had changed, and I did not know about it before it appeared on my desktop.

  • Infragistics, a worldwide leader in providing tools and solutions to accelerate design, development and collaboration, today announced the launch of Infragistics Ultimate 16.1, its enterprise-ready web, mobile and desktop user interface development suite. Ultimate 16.1 incorporates a broad range of additions and enhancements designed to simplify and speed development of amazingly visual native iOS and Android applications, cross platform applications with Xamarin, Web apps with the AngularJS and Hybrid Apps with HTML5 targeting Cordova.

  • AvePoint, the Microsoft Cloud expert, today announced the general availability of the latest release of AvePoint Online Services, AvePoint’s 100 percent Microsoft Azure-based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform for Office 365 and Salesforce CRM. With the introduction of DocAve Backup for Salesforce and enhancements for DocAve Governance Automation Online, organizations can ensure seamless access to resources and extend cloud computing as business needs dictate.

  • Continuing on the theme of SharePoint being a mere tool to solve business problems, not some magic software that will do that voodoo on its own: Matt Wade at icansharepoint weighs in with the thought that it’s a lack of knowledge of what SharePoint can and can’t do that stymies users.

  • I am going to hand you $35,000 and tell you to go buy a car. Nice, right? Oh, but by the way, you can only buy an American-made, four-door, blue sedan. Still nice... but a little limiting. Want leather seats? Go for it. Nice sound system? Sure thing. Want a sunroof? Nope, sorry. Want something a bit sportier or something a more rugged? Tough luck. But hey, you are getting a car! That part is cool. However, you aren’t getting a vehicle that necessarily meets your needs.

  • Many organizations using SharePoint today face the issue of running some or all of their data in the cloud. Microsoft’s story, of course, is how to adopt a hybrid approach: Certain non-sensitive data or workflows can run in the cloud while maintaining “the crown jewels” in on-premises servers.

  • Akumina Inc., whose InterChange software platform dramatically increases the productivity of internal business users and empowers developers to deliver a more intuitive way of driving the adoption of cloud technology, today announced the release of Version 3.0 of the InterChange Platform. This release includes important new enhancements to the platform which make InterChange the only development platform that can be used to create applications that leverage enterprise content, managed in Office365 or SharePoint on premises, for multichannel web and mobile delivery.

  • Beezy Inc., the premier enterprise collaboration solution for SharePoint and Office 365, has announced the availability of new capabilities through integration with Microsoft's Office Graph. The Office Graph uses machine-learning to identify connections between user profiles, social network activity, content, and other data sources and hen provides relevant, timely, and contextual data for the end user based on those connections. The latest innovations from Beezy leverage the Office Graph to provide a faster and more personalized experience within the Beezy collaboration solution for SharePoint and Office 365.

  • I borrowed this week’s subject line from Marc Anderson, who penned an excellent article in the March 21 SPTechReport on the over-importance people place on SharePoint, sometimes forgetting to understand what they’re actually trying to DO with SharePoint.

  • SharePoint has traditionally been stigmatized as a collaborative portal used for document management and lightweight process automation by organizations around the world. Microsoft's vision for SharePoint is for it to act as the nucleus for collaborative organizations, becoming the proverbial glue that holds an organization's systems together while seamlessly surfacing information across departments. That vision, one which frankly has taken Microsoft some time to craft and communicate, sounds similar to the role of human resources in many companies: acting as the component that keeps the company together, but also one that has taken time to efficiently build.

  • Infragistics, a worldwide leader in providing tools and solutions to accelerate a design, development and collaboration for any organization, today announced the availability of SharePlus, their platform agnostic collaboration and productivity application for Microsoft SharePoint on premise and Office 365 on mobile devices. The latest release enables the creation of custom mobile workspaces, providing business teams a focused environment tailored to their needs or specific job roles. SharePlus now extends centralized access to content and data across the cloud with OneDrive for Business, Dropbox and Google Drive, or on corporate network drives.

  • BA Insight announces availability of Smart Analytics for SharePoint - out of the box software that provides insight into how users are interacting with SharePoint to help improve the user experience. Smart Analytics for SharePoint automatically collects data about the operation and usage of SharePoint sites, content, and search, whether on-premise or online, and distills it into a dashboard and an extensive set of pre-built reports.  

  • Ramp, a leading provider of next-generation video management and delivery solutions for large enterprises, today announced new enhancements to its Ramp VideoVerge for SharePoint platform that help enterprises gain more business value from their video content, while empowering SharePoint users to communicate more productively than ever before.

  • As we are on the cusp of the full launch of a new version of SharePoint, I thought I’d share a few observations. Recently, as I’ve been out and about in the community, there have been a few consistent themes I have been hearing (still). These aren’t new, nor do I expect they will go away. The folks at Microsoft and most serious SharePointilists wish they never heard this stuff, but it’s real.

  • Saketa, a Technovert company announces the launch of its most awaited product – Saketa Timesheet as a SharePoint add-in. Saketa Timesheet is a time management tool to gather the time spent by the teams on various projects/tasks within an organization and comes with handy reports and dashboards for quick approvals and analysis.

  • Productivity in small doses

    Christian Buckley

    We all love the huge product announcements out of Redmond. Hey! Something shiny and new! Fantastic! And while we may brush aside some of the smaller announcements (or the feature iterations that go, for the most part, unannounced), many of these incremental additions are what actually improve productivity in our day-to-day activities.

  • One of the truly interesting things about SharePoint is that there’s an angle for just about anyone who touches it, from the front-office workers inputting orders, to HR sharing employee information and maintaining vacation calendars, to designers and devs charged with making it look good and augment out-of-the-box functionality, to IT pros who keep it all running and ensure its security.

  • At our SPTechCon events, attendees can’t get enough good information and instruction regarding the CSWP: Content Search Web Part. This, in short, enables the display of search results in ways that you want it presented through the use of templates. But that doesn’t even really scratch the surface on how it can be used.

  • With every iteration of the SharePoint Server platform, there are new features and functionality that administrators must learn about. But every now and then, instead of introducing something entirely new, Microsoft goes in the opposite direction and revisits the ability to better reflect customer needs. Such is the case with User Profile Synchronization in SharePoint Server 2016.

  • We all know that SharePoint governance is important: to avoid team site "sprawl,? to ensure that content quality is maintained, to improve search results, to provide a high-quality user experience, and to ensure that content is compliant with legal and records retention policies. In other words, governance is important because without it, you are not likely to achieve your business results. However, implementing governance policies and guidelines can be a big challenge.

  • Muhimbi is announcing version 8.0 of the PDF Converter for SharePoint, the biggest release in its eight-year history.

  • Ignatiuz is introducing at SPTechCon a SharePoint 2013-based vendor management platform called iVendor that facilitates easy bid and RFP posting and management by businesses and government agencies. iVendor can be run on farm based SharePoint instances or SharePoint Online. 

  • Groups, meet Team Sites

    David Rubinstein

    The final touches are being put on SharePoint 2016, and it should be released "in relatively short order,? as told during the Microsoft keynote at SPTechCon Austin yesterday.

  • I think when companies do good things, they deserve credit for it. When Microsoft embraced the open-source community, I was pleasantly surprised and shared how I'd been feeling about the change in the company. As a MacBook Pro/OS X guy, I shared my mostly positive experience with my new Surface Pro 4. We saw the Office group ship a client to help build Office Add-ins for non-Windows and Visual Studio developers, which was such a cool move for the platform!

  • Plustek Inc., a leading manufacturer of document, film and book scanners, today unveiled Plustek eScan for Office 365, a dedicated standalone one-step scanner to bring paper documents to Microsoft Office 365, at SPTechCon, the SharePoint Technology Conference, in Austin, Texas.

  • Defining a governance strategy for your SharePoint environment doesn’t have to be an exhaustive exercise. However, it should be one where everyone agrees on the purpose of SharePoint, the role it has within enterprise IT, and what SharePoint shouldn’t be. These boundaries are a great place to start.

  • Mobile app development has continued to grow astronomically over the last couple of years. Our smartphones and tablets have become an all-inclusive virtual workspace, or rather a “Multitaskers ‘R’ Us” for constant communication and collaboration. The world is literally at our fingertips 24 hours a day, seven days a week. While I still prefer working at a desktop, my mobile applications help me meet deadlines and troubleshoot work emergencies when I can't make it to a computer in time.

  • Many organizations are beginning to realize the value in social collaboration platforms. Yet proving that value and relaying it in the form of numbers and metrics has proved to be challenging for enterprises across the spectrum. Portal stakeholders and administrators need to be equipped with the right tools so that they can deliver intelligent and easily digestible insights to senior management. Understanding why measurement is important (and then how to proceed) is vital for aligning business requirements with portal initiatives.

  • BELLEVUE, Wash.Feb. 4, 2016—Nintex today announced that it will be a diamond sponsor of SPTechCon, the SharePoint Technology Conference, to be held February 21-24 in Austin. Nintex will exhibit in Booth #600 and demonstrate its workflow platform that IT professionals and lines of business (LOB) leaders utilize to automate simple-to-sophisticated business processes.

  • Last November, I got the opportunity to work with Microsoft to gain insight and understanding into what the ideal cloud solution would look like from the eyes of the CXO. During last year's European SharePoint Conference's CIO Summit, a select number of CIOs participated in a full-day event focused on discussing the future of cloud and hybrid. At the end of an action-packed day, we asked the CXOs to divide up into working groups of four and design for us their ideal cloud solution.

  • Get ahead of SharePoint 2016

    David Rubinstein

    The good news is that the SharePoint 2016 release candidate is here. The bad news, for those interested in giving it a whirl, is that you have to first install the beta before installing the RC.

  • Wait, what? Natural language processing, as in reading what people are saying on my SharePoint site?

  • MessageOps unveils 'ROOT'

    SPTechCon Newswire

    MessageOps, a Microsoft Cloud business unit of Champion Solutions Group, announced today the launch of ROOT, a new SharePoint Intranet platform for Office 365 that is intelligently built, intuitively designed, and immediately useful. This feature-rich intranet portal is attractively priced to give all Office 365 customers an opportunity to create a more collaborative working environment, and give their employees a central access point to important company information and apps.

  • Many years ago, I came to the conclusion that thoroughly training end users on SharePoint is a waste of time for employees and trainers. I don't mean to say that SharePoint trainers are bad people or that all training programs are useless. It's just that comprehensive SharePoint training, crammed into a 1/2 day or five days is by and large wasteful. This might sound controversial, but this is the conclusion I have come to after many years of unsuccessful attempts by myself and other Microsoft MVP trainers like me.

  • User experience. Branding. APIs. Office add-ins. Hybrid. Hosted. Business value. Office Graph. Videos.

  • A typical month for the Microsoft Office 365 Exchange Online Protection team might be considered atypical for most. In our fight against spam and malware, we process over 200 billion e-mails each month and block 10 million spam messages every minute. That’s the norm for our malicious threat protection efforts—but we don’t stop there. As e-mail attackers around the globe are getting smarter and more sophisticated, we’re making big investments in our Exchange Online Protection and Advanced Threat Protection services to proactively identify and block the most dangerous e-mail threats, with features like:

  • For many of us, the rise of the remote workforce comes as no surprise. For years now, office workers have been abandoning their desks in favor of settings that are farther afield and allow them to work in a more comfortable—and often more productive—environment. And it’s a trend that only promises to keep growing.

  • The product group released the January 2016 Cumulative Update for the SharePoint 2013 product family.

  • One of the greatest strengths of the Microsoft collaboration platform, which now encompasses both SharePoint on-premises and Office 365 in the cloud, has always been its rich extensibility options. Customers who wish to enhance the platform with dynamic line-of-business solutions or organization-specific customizations have a rich set of APIs and remote interfaces to work with that provide a great deal of flexibility in designing engaging, user-centric applications. With the recent addition of Azure Web Applications, Microsoft has created yet another method for extending the cloud experience, presenting developers with a new set of application design choices.

  • It's amazing to me how quickly 2015 is coming to a close, but as I look forward to 2016 I'm anticipating another great SPTechCon event in Austin. Each year the BZ Media team goes above and beyond to create another fantastic Women in SharePoint luncheon.

  • We’ve all made it through the holiday season, and for those of us in the Northern hemisphere, the days are finally starting to get longer. We’ve also read everyone’s Top 10 list for 2015.

  • Around the world, audiences are flocking to the theaters to participate in the ongoing saga that is Star Wars. But in a galaxy much, much closer to home, within the expanded universe of SharePoint and Office 365, we have our own ongoing saga: OneDrive.

  • SPTC_Thrive_Header.jpg

    Women Helping Women Thrive: Supporting Other Women at Any Level in Your Career

    BZ Media LLC announced today the first ever Share Your Story Contest for women who are attending SPTechCon 2016 in Austin. The contest is intended to highlight stories of women supporting other women.

  • The business world faces a real dilemma these days. Stated simply, there are a lot more applications that need to be built than programmers or consulting companies to build them. This has created a big blockage in the system to get apps built and out the door.

  • SP Marketplace (, the leader in Office 365 business portals and applications, released SP DataManager, a robust Microsoft Excel add-in that can retrieve, clean, and migrate SharePoint data and documents.  

  • Microsoft has announced the availability of new SharePoint CSOM version targeted for the Office 365 or more specifically for SharePoint Online. This updated CSOM release contains numerous highly requested new capabilities which will enable new business scenarios and capabilities when you are developing solutions for SharePoint Online. You can find the latest CSOM package for SharePoint online from the NuGet gallery with an id of 'Microsoft.SharePointOnline.CSOM'. Microsoft will also update the redistributable package in upcoming weeks, but you can already right now start using some of these new capabilities in your solutions.

  • Colligo yesterday announced two new cross-platform applications and an update to its Engage platform to enable better data synchronization and content management for SharePoint and Exchange.

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