TechEd.USA.2005.Expo.Reflection()

Saturday, June 11, 2005 8:02 PM
Microsoft MVP Logo

A few of the booths stood out to me over the last week that I wanted to mention. First, I got demos of Sketa and K2’s workflow products and had great conversations with both groups. 

Sanjay, the CEO of Skelta, had a great team who were all very friendly and helpful, not to mention demo’ing their product for me.

I found that the VP of Marketing for K2 (Leah Clelland) and I had a common acquaintance: Mike V who used to be with NCompass, then MCS as a MCMS consultant, and now is with the Windows Server group.  Mike, Leah had some very nice words to say about you.

Mindsharp may have had the most unique “walk-always” in the entire Expo.  If you’re not familiar with them, Mindsharp is a SharePoint training company run by Bill English, the chief author of the SharePoint Resource Kit, and Todd Bleeker (who I’ve mentioned numerous times on my blog).  They have taken all the menus within WSS and SPS and put them on large charts.  They had these menu-maps printed out and stuck in big tubes.  You know someone had stopped by the Mindsharp booth when you saw them walking around with a tube!  I got mine!

One product I saw that impressed me, which I immediately got Heather Solomon to check out (who in turn dragged Chris over), was the SharePoint Explorer by Dot Net Factory.  This tool is an IE add-in which you can use to quickly navigate to any part of a SharePoint site.  It’s ideal for admins and those of us who manage many sites/portals. You can easily add new sites at a whim.  Heather had a good idea about creating some sort of a web service where you could push “site subscriptions” down to all your employees who were using the product.  I heard two different pricing models, one was supposed to be more accurate… and if it’s correct, it’s DAMN CHEAP.  I’m not going to quote it now because I’m not sure if it’s true, but when I do and if it’s what I think it is, I’ll surely pass it along.

Finally, DevExpress.  I mentioned before that on day 4 I got to introduce myself to Mark Miller and some of his crew.  I shared with him my idea for a plugin, but that I was having some trouble finding full documentation on the DXCore object model. He took the time to sketch out a prototype of what I’m trying to do.  I can’t wait to jump into it.  This being my last big TechEd post (I will write more about some little specifics I learned over the next week or so), I should begin to have a little more time.

I can’t wait until TechEd 2006!  Now… to hit that or the PDC (assuming I have a choice)… thankfully I have a while to ponder it.

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