A Close-up Look at the Office Web Apps; A Silver Lining for Government Clouds; Google Docs Gain in the Office

By Chris DooleyNo Comments

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Review: Microsoft’s Office’s Slow Road to the Web (PC World)
Last October, Microsoft casually dropped a bombshell at its PDC event: It was working on a new version of Microsoft Office that would include browser-based versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneNote. The Web version of Office is part of the suite later officially dubbed Office 2010, which won’t arrive until next year. But it tiptoed a little closer to reality today: Microsoft has released a “technical preview” of the Office Web Apps, a pre-beta, invite-only test version which it’s using to get early feedback from a limited number of users.

A Close-up Look at the New Office Web Apps (ZDNet)
Microsoft flipped the switch on its new Office Web Apps last Thursday, offering a partial technical preview to a limited set of beta testers and invited guests. I’ve had a couple days to work with the new web-based apps, which are both more and less than I expected. Here’s a hands-on report.

Google Docs Gains Traction in the Office (USA Today)
IDC analyst Melissa Webster has just gone public with a sneak preview of results of an online poll showing Google Docs is gaining traction as a workplace tool in larger companies. The poll, conducted in July, showed 19.5% of respondents claiming Google Docs is widely used in their organization, up from  5.8% a little more than a year and a half ago. Some 27% of respondents are either already widely using Google Docs or expect to be widely using Google Docs a year from now.

Microsoft Unveils Shield for Critical Windows Flaw as Attack Code Looms (Computer World)
With attack code that exploits a critical unpatched bug in Windows likely to go public soon, Microsoft wants users to run an automated tool that disables the vulnerable component. The bug in SMB (Server Message Block) 2, a Microsoft-made network file- and print-sharing protocol that ships with Windows, affects Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008 and preview releases of Windows 7.

Windows 7 – Not a Question of If, But When (TechRepublic)
Windows 7 will prove to be a hit and is likely to be the next “Windows XP” in the NT line.  There are a number of reasons that this the case.  First of all, after the fiasco that was Windows Vista, there has been little negative news regarding its successor, Windows 7.  In fact, just about every review has been quite positive regarding Windows 7.  This is due in no small part to Microsoft learning to under promise and over deliver.  During Vista’s development, the development news was rarely positive; features were constantly removed and the entire development was even scrapped at one point in a sort of “development reset”.  This kind of news truly set the stage for a string of disappointments that eventually culminated in a release that disappointed on almost every level.  Although many of Vista’s flaws have been addressed, the damage was done.  With Windows 7, development simply seemed to improve all the time and has culminated in a release widely considered excellent.

Pink and Microsoft Tablet (Take 2): A Couple of Updates (ZDNet)
Project Pink and the rumored remake of a Microsoft Tablet are back on the rumor treadmill this weekend. It’s been quiet out there lately on both fronts. Here’s a recap — plus a couple of small updates — that I’ve heard recently about these two skunk-works efforts. And just so it’s clear: Microsoft isn’t corroborating or even commenting on Pink or the new Tablet. This info is purely from sources.

A Silver Lining for the Government’s Cloud (Technology Review)
Cloud computing received a strong push last week when the U.S. government’s Chief Information Officer Vivek Kundra announced apps.gov, a website that lets government agencies find and buy access to cloud-computing tools and services. Experts have previously warned that cloud computing can introduce new security, privacy, and reliability risks, but some say that the technologies on offer could actually help improve the government’s information-security record.

Why Apple is Betting on HTML 5: A Web History (Apple Insider)
Despite making the vast majority of its money from hardware sales, Apple is investing heavily in shaping the future of software. One example of this pertains to HTML 5 and related web standards. While the standard isn’t yet finished, Apple is already using HTML 5 as an important component in the company’s strategies, ranging from the iPod touch and iPhone’s mobile browser to Safari on the Mac and PC, from Dashboard widgets to new iTunes LP content, and from MobileMe apps to the latest iTunes Store.

Around the Blogosphere
Quiesce The SharePoint Server (Sharing The Point) (SharePoint))
Qui-what?  According to Wikipedia, Quiesce is used to describe pausing or altering the state of running processes on a computer particularly those that might modify information stored on disk during a backup in order to guarantee a consistent and usable backup. In SharePoint, quiesce allows you to reduce the number of users that are connected and takes long running apps slowly offline (think Forms Services here).  It prevents the loss of data – and is good practice when performing server maintenance.  It has 3 statuses: Normal, Quiescing, and Quiesced.  Quiescing is when the connections are being reduced, and when the status is Quiesced new connections aren’t started.

A Brief History of SharePoint (From a Relative Newcomer’s Perspective) (End User SharePoint)
SharePoint has evolved a great deal since its early days as sort of an incubation technology at Microsoft –it’s evolved almost like a horror movie, where the mad scientist’s creation takes on a life of its own, breaking free of its creator’s expectations and rules.  The technical evolution is obvious – the WSS 3.0 object model is richer and more complex than WSS 2.0, which was itself an improvement over earlier versions.  The next version will no doubt show tremendous improvement over 3.0.  From an End User’s perspective, however, SharePoint’s evolution is even more significant.

Easier Silverlight Development Against SharePoint (Matthew McDermott)
I have been spending quite a bit of time lately working with Silverlight 3 and SharePoint. One of the first big shifts for me is that Silverlight Development is Client development. Silverlight runs in the browser, but it runs on the client, so no SharePoint Object Model code. You have to access all of the goodness that is SharePoint through its web services. Once you get started on your project you add a Service Reference and point at your desired SharePoint Web service. You will immediately run into the Visual Studio Warning:

Working with Existing SharePoint Views from Code (Stacy Draper)
Every week I have to fax a form that has data that I keep in a log, a SharePoint list actually.  The recipient expects it to be done by hand, I guess there aren’t many people who go the extra step and make a SharePoint list.  I was just hoping to export the information to an excel spreadsheet,  but the spreadsheet confused them.  They just wanted to see their little for filled out by hand.  I don’t like to do anything by hand.

Patching a Mirrored Farm with Minimal Downtime (To the SharePoint)
For administrators of large SharePoint server farms, a newly-published article describes how to update server farms that use database mirroring, while incurring minimal perceived downtime for users. This solution is for enterprise customers who have high-availability needs and infrastructure. This article describes a step-by-step process for Office SharePoint Server farms that incorporate SQL Server mirroring. You can achieve similar results on Office SharePoint Server farms that are set up in a clustered server environment.

Setting Back Connection Host Names for SharePoint 2007 Using STSADM (SharePoint Automation)
Not too long ago Microsoft introduced a security fix which addresses a possible attack vector in which malicious software tries to impersonate a local request, thereby bypassing certain constraints.  The problem with this fix is that it introduces some issues for SharePoint servers, effectively resulting in 401.1 Access Denied errors.  Spence Harbar does a great write-up of the fix and the options available to get your SharePoint environment working again so I won’t re-hash all that here: http://www.harbar.net/archive/2009/07/02/disableloopbackcheck-amp-sharepoint-what-every-admin-and-developer-should-know.aspx.

Creating a SharePoint Tasks List for Use As a Web Part (SharePoint Blank)
By way of providing background, I’m in the process of managing a major editorial initiative for Bamboo Nation, and one aspect of that project is assigning articles to colleagues based on their area of expertise.  Another aspect of the project is tracking the progress made on those assignments.  As a writer, my natural environment is Word, so I initially drafted the assignments in Word and then created a wiki in our SharePoint portal to host the content as a living document.  Many of you, particularly any project managers out there, have probably already recognized the missing component in my wiki-based approach:  there’s no built-in way to chart a given assignment’s progress in a wiki (also: it’s easy to ignore a wiki).

SharePoint Job Listings**
SharePoint Consultant – Saint Louis, MO
The SharePoint Consultant is responsible for working with our internal team and our clients on .NET development projects that will involve the latest version of MOSS and other SharePoint Technologies. The SharePoint Consultant is responsible for a variety of roles ranging from development to analysis and technical leadership.  The primary role is to serve on project development teams, providing technical solutions, tool/software alternatives and capabilities, design specifications, and recommendations related to technical issues.  Occasionally the position may mentor other team members including client personnel.

MS SharePoint Server 2007 (MOSS 2007) Admin. – Reston, VA
ATSC is looking for an MS SharePoint 2007 Consultant with InfoPath Forms/XML experience to provide expertise, support & maintenance for MS SharePoint infrastructure. Candidates MUST BE US CITIZENS or GREEN CARD holders.

Microsoft Updates
Description of the SharePoint Server 2007 Cumulative Update Server Hotfix Package (MOSS server-package): September 9, 2009 (Microsoft)
Cumulative update packages for Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 contain hotfixes for the SharePoint Server 2007 issues that were fixed since the release of SharePoint Server 2007. Note This is build 12.0.6514.5002 of the cumulative update package. We recommend that you test hotfixes before you deploy them in a production environment. Because the builds are cumulative, each new release contains all the hotfixes and all the security updates that were included with the previous SharePoint Server 2007 update package releases.

Bamboo Partner Events*
September 24, Online, SharePoint for Project Management Webinar – DataLan
September 30, Online, InnovaOPN – SharePoint-based Innovation Management Software Webinar – DataLan

October 1, Malvern, Pennsylvania, SharePoint – A Platform for Business Solutions – DataLan
October 1, Online, Using SharePoint for Product Management Within the Distribution and Consumer Goods Vertical – InterDyn
October 2, Sydney, Australia, nSynergy SharePoint Conference 2009: Empower – Improve – Perform – nSynergy
October 6, New York, New York, Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) and Document Management for the AEC with SharePoint – Gig Werks, Organice
October 6, Melbourne, Australia, nSynergy SharePoint Conference 2009: Empower – Improve – Perform – nSynergy
October 7, Online, SharePoint for Business Process Automation – DataLan
October 8, New York, New York, SharePoint for Enterprise Content Management – DataLan
October 14, Online, The SharePoint / RMS: SEC Protects Your Investors but who Protects and Controls Your Company Information? – InterDyn
October 14, Canberra, Australia, nSynergy SharePoint Conference 2009: Empower – Improve – Perform – nSynergy
October 15, Iselin, New Jersey, SharePoint – A Platform for Business Solutions – DataLan
October 21, Online, Advanced Topics in SharePoint – Basic Business Intelligence and Reporting Webinar – DataLan
October 22, Waltham, Massachusetts, SharePoint – A Platform for Business Solutions – DataLan
October 29, Iselin, New Jersey, SharePoint for Enterprise Content Management – DataLan

November 4, Online, Breakthroughs in SharePoint for Pharmaceutical, Life Sciences, and Biotech – DataLan
November 10, New York, New York, SharePoint – A Platform for Business Solutions – DataLan
November 12, New York, New York, SharePoint for Intranets, Extranets, and Public Websites – DataLan
November 18, Online, Advanced Topics in SharePoint – Business Process Automation and Workflow Design – DataLan
November 19, Online, Breakthroughs in SharePoint for Financial Services Firms – DataLan

December 3, New York, New York, SharePoint Winter Expo 2009 – DataLan
December 9, Online, SharePoint for Enterprise Content Management – DataLan
December 10, Iselin, New Jersey, SharePoint for Intranets, Extranets, and Public Websites – DataLan

SharePoint Events**
September 21-25, Chicago, Illinois, SharePoint Branding Bootcamp
September 21-24, Germany, ShareConnect
September 22, New York City, New York, Bamboo Solutions SharePoint Project Management Workshop
September 22, New York City, New York, Bamboo Solutions SharePoint Project Management Workshop
September 23, New York City, New York, Bamboo Solutions SharePoint Project Management Workshop
September 23, New York City, New York, Bamboo Solutions SharePoint Project Management Workshop
September 23, Online, Bamboo SharePoint Project Management Central Webinar
September 23, Online, Project Management Using SharePoint Webinar
September 24, Online, Project Management Using SharePoint Webinar
September 23, Online, SharePoint Administration Webinar
September 24, Online, ‘What’s New from Bamboo?’ Webinar
September 24, Online, SharePoint for Project Management Webinar
September 30, Online, Bamboo SharePoint Project Management Central Webinar
September 30, Online, Bamboo SharePoint Project Management Central Webinar
September 30, Online, Bamboo SharePoint Project Management Central Webinar
September 30, Online, Project Management Using SharePoint Webinar
September 30, Online, InnovaOPN – SharePoint-based Innovation Management Software Webinar

October 1, Online, Bamboo 101 – List Roll Up Webinar
October 1, Online, Project Management Using SharePoint Webinar
October 1, Malvern, Pennsylvania, SharePoint – A Platform for Business Solutions
October 1, Online, Using SharePoint for Product Management Within the Distribution and Consumer Goods Vertical
October 2, Sydney, Australia, nSynergy SharePoint Conference 2009: Empower – Improve – Perform
October 6, New York, New York, Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) and Document Management for the AEC with SharePoint
October 6, Melbourne, Australia, nSynergy SharePoint Conference 2009: Empower – Improve – Perform
October 7, Online, SharePoint for Business Process Automation
October 8, Online, Bamboo 101 – Chart Plus Webinar
October 8, New York, New York, SharePoint for Enterprise Content Management
October 10, Matthews, North Carolina, Carolina Code Camp
October 14, Online, The SharePoint / RMS: SEC Protects Your Investors but who Protects and Controls Your Company Information?
October 14, Canberra, Australia, nSynergy SharePoint Conference 2009: Empower – Improve – Perform
October 15, Online, Bamboo 101 – Calendar Plus Webinar
October 15, Online, SharePoint: From Chaos to Success
October 15, Iselin, New Jersey, SharePoint – A Platform for Business Solutions
October 19-22, Las Vegas, Nevada, SharePoint Conference 2009
October 21, Online, Advanced Topics in SharePoint – Basic Business Intelligence and Reporting Webinar
October 22, Waltham, Massachusetts, SharePoint – A Platform for Business Solutions
October 29, Iselin, New Jersey, SharePoint for Enterprise Content Management

November 4, Online, Breakthroughs in SharePoint for Pharmaceutical, Life Sciences, and Biotech
November 7, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, SharePoint Saturday
November 7, Raleigh, North Carolina, SharePoint Saturday
November 10, New York, New York, SharePoint – A Platform for Business Solutions
November 12, New York, New York, SharePoint for Intranets, Extranets, and Public Websites
November 14, San Antonio, Texas, SharePoint Saturday
November 14, Tampa, Florida, SharePoint Saturday
November 16-17, Stockholm, Sweden, SharePoint & Exchange Forum 2009
November 18, Online, Advanced Topics in SharePoint – Business Process Automation and Workflow Design
November 19, Online, Breakthroughs in SharePoint for Financial Services Firms
November 21, Birmingham, Alabama, SharePoint Saturday
November 21, Phoenix, Arizona, SharePoint Saturday

December 3, New York, New York, SharePoint Winter Expo 2009
December 9, Online, SharePoint for Enterprise Content Management
December 10, Iselin, New Jersey, SharePoint for Intranets, Extranets, and Public Websites
December 12, Kansas City, Kansas, SharePoint Saturday

January 9, Virginia Beach, Virginia, SharePoint Saturday

* If you are a Bamboo Partner please contact Janet Goda (janet.goda@bamboosolutions.com) to have your event included in the Bamboo Partner Events.

** Please contact Chris Dooley (chris.dooley@bamboosolutions.com) to include your event  or job listing in SharePoint Daily.

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