SPC14 – Keynotes

Transformation – that’s the theme of the SharePoint Conference this year. Transforming to the cloud, transforming to become more social, transforming to use technology for the good of mankind.

That latest remark was from president Clinton’s opening keynote. Bill spoke about his experiences as the president of the United States, but more specifically about the work of the Bill Clinton Foundation and the role technology has played here.

Microsoft itself emphasized how technology has changed the why we work and live. Microsoft now lives by some new mantras:

  • Working like a network;
  • Get personalised insights
  • Use an Open Development platform and a solid platform (cloud is the key)
  • Anywhere and always on

These in itself are not new. In fact, the ” always on” bit is somewhat old. But still relevant. To enable these mantras, Microsoft will address a lot of functionality and usability issues in the next releases of SharePoint and Office365. There are a lot of innovations to be presented this week.

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Some examples:

1. The social workplace. Yammer fully integrated with Office365. For example: the “post to Yammer” button now available in a document library. A new Windows app Oslo App (still in concept) aggregates all information in one overview on desktop, tablet and mobile.

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2. PowerBI: BI for the masses. Instead of using difficult queries or pivot-tables, I can just use a plain question: “Give me the average income of several countries”. SharePoint will present your answers in graphs, maps et cetera. Really cool.

3. Video portal: Yep: YouTube via SharePoint Online. To be released later this year. Off course the Yammer integration is here as well.

Some other nice innovations:

  • Open source SDK for creating Office Android apps;
  • Compliancy Center. Basically the eDiscovery Center “on steroids”. Data protection, eDiscovery, auditing, encryption and archiving all managed using the Compliance Center.
  • Two-factor authentication for Office365 and in hybrid scenario’s.
  • Instant out of office (so you don’t have to send that e-mail, when the recipient is out of the office).
  • Policy tips: if you are not allowed to send sensitive information outside the organization, Outlook will show the tip and disallow you to send the email.

Microsoft plans to add functions to the Office365 platform every week. The bottom-line is therfore: cloud, cloud, cloud! But for the on-premise people: all is not lost! Microsoft will release a new on-premise version of SharePoint in 2015 and have just released SP1 for SharePoint 2013 (which includes many features to integrate with Office365 – Yammer).

Should you want to move to the cloud, now could be the time. Microsoft introduced a special offer for “Ondrive for business”. Get all your users to OneDrive (with Office Online) with a quotum of 25GB per user! Btw: SharePoint Online will going to support 1TB site-collections…..

To be continued.

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