SharePoint Conference 2014 : what’s new ?

Jeff Teper stressed the 4 Microsoft “Office” beliefs

  1. the future of work is working like a network : the way we work/live in our private life (creating a network, creating relationship, the way we interact with people…) must be based on openness and transparency
  2. personal and proactive insights : people can focus on the right stuff
  3. open developer platform and ecosystem : solutions must be agilely provided in weeks and not years
  4. we be able to do the work anywhere, on any device

He also stressed the Importance of the Cloud : the cloud allows Microsoft to provide more value, faster: rapid innovation.

We are now in the 2nd phase of the cloud strategy:

In Phase 1 Microsoft focused on hosting: hosting SP, Exch, Lync : economic : we do it for you because MS will do it most cost effectively

Now in Phase 2 Microsoft wants to transform the experiences in SharePoint, in Exchange, in Lync, to connect Yammer, to leverage big data, the social and mobile

  • Benefits for users : they work like a network, more responsive, make better decisions
  • benefits for developers: make more apps and services (inside orgs, or for partners)
  • Benefits for IT : protect the necessary information->empower users and developers

 

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work as a network = the social workplace

New personalized insight = OSLO and the Office Graph

Information overload; in the past the search engines were reactive (basically we go to the search and the search engines returns the information); today the search comes to you by leveraging big data and machine learning; the search becomes proactive and provide a personalized experience. The engine is the Office Graph (aka “the Social Fabric”): across SP, Exch, Lync, Yammer,custom application, we are building links and relationships.

One example is OSLO which provides an immersive way to navigate the information.

Another example is the Next Generation portal (on premise and in the cloud) : out of the box and engaging.

There will also be a new video portal build on SharePoint and leveraging the Azure Media services and the Office graph,

Julia White will demonstrate the new “Office” features to be released in the next 3 months by Microsoft

 

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Julia White

 

New groups experience across O365 :

Yammer is now part of O365

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One of the Yammer group in this demo is “Marketing Campain Groups”

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When Julia clicks on he inbox, the SharePoint groups she belongs to shows up:

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When she clicks on the group name, the Yammer conversation shows up as well :

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She can “reply”  the conversation here :

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When clicking on Calendar (see below), and by selecting the My calendar (left) and a few groups calendar(left) both the personal calendar events and the groups events can show up in the calendar :

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If one of the group event is important and cannot be missed, it can also be copied to the personal calendar:

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From Yammer she can navigate to the (Marketing Campaigns groups) site which hosts the group document library :

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Is this a SharePoint site ? (to be determined)

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Clicking one of the file (here a PowerPoint document) will open the document and bring the associated conversations along:

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(in the future Yammer will be integrated with Skype and Lync)

In the conversation, a user mentioned a video, how can we find it : by using the Oslo app.

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The Oslo app

The office graph (running behind) knows the content we are working on, the people we are working with and therefore can generate a great user experience by bringing what’s relevant to us.

The next picture illustrate the Olso search bar

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The Oslo search bar

Ex: presented to me (meaning to de determined):

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The social features of SharePoint will be frozen , everything will happen in Yammer; Microsoft is investing to help customers easily manage hybrid environments so that they can connect their on-premises farms to their in-the-cloud social network..

The Power BI has also be demonstrated by Julia, but since I’ve been working on it since Summer 2013 with my partner Isabelle Van Campenhoudt (SQL Server MVP), I recommend the reading of  our SharePoint Pro mag article , you will learn much more : – )

 

After Julia White Jeff Teper talked a little bit about the developers stuff. Jeff stressed the role of contextual applications ;

 

2 types of contextual applications

  • apps that extend the UI of SharePoint/Yammer/Office

ex: composed apps in Outlook, content app in PowerPoint : see the demos presented by Arpan Shah down below…

He announced the new open source O365 android sdk for O365

  • apps where almost everything (including the UI) is created from scratch

The REST api will be extended  in the cloud (sometime we can do more on premise-> we have to fill the gap like self service site collection provisioning, document-workflow manipulation,…)

The will be a new O365 API with new namespaces to simplify the developer experience across SharePoint, Office, Exchange (and Yammer?), and Dynamics (including on premise).

Customizing SharePoint by end user will be much easier

Access will play a important role for Power users; even today, Access is the easier/faster way to create cloud based apps. Access in O365 is no longer in preview.

Pure developers want a better support  for non MS technologie in Visual Studio: they want intellisense & debugging support for Java, C, PHP, Rubby,…, new templates,… This will be addressed by the team.

Developer demos by Arpan Shah :

build contextual O365 apps, wherever we are (pc, mobile, …)

Arpan starts with a basic site with a custom list with custom metadata and workflow to track a process related to Marketing campaigns :

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Users have to know the url, come to the site and fill in the information

->How to make that more contextual ?

Arpan goes to outlook where he gets an e-mail for starting a new campaign

 

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In the reply message, we see the “Apps” button ;

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We can select an application

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and we can use it in the e-mail context

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For the developer it is pure html5/javascript integrated with the O365 back-end.

In this specific case, the developer made use of the new O365 office 365 API (like the People API to grab people information like who’s is VP and who’s Director, but also to Calendar API  see who is Out of Office :

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For instance, Alice Bellew is in vacation (-> Out of Office)

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Documents can be submitted etc, and users can be notified when a task will be assigned to them, thanks to the Azure notification service; the notification will show-up when they go to their phone (and of course not just here)

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Clicking on Approve :

 

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Then the workflow (running on the server) goes on, assigns a tak to the next user who can also check his/her device (in this case an Androïd device) : here the notification will also show up

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The user can also use an custom Androïd app created with the new O365 Open Source API and he can interact with the back-end :

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And when the document is finally approved by everybody, the app will provision an O365 web site (also a new possibility with the REST api):

 

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Clicking on the link will redirect the user to the newly created SharePoint site where the document has been uploaded (with new new O365 file API)

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Jeff Teper : IT

There will be a new version of On Premise SharePoint and Exchange in 2015.

Will be very solid, based on today’s experience in O365

SharePoint Online released 8 years ago

O365 today =

  • 250.000 responses/second
  • 400.000 cores in 22 data centers around the world
  • 400 petabytes (storage)

Just SP online between 10-20% storage growth/month

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Online –>great velocity and reliability : new bits of SharePoint online every week to > 10.000 servers around the world with SLA = 99.98%

new :

  • 1 TB site collections
  • infinite scale in the tenancy

     

    Making transition from On premise to  the cloud easier (and faster), new hybrid options:

    sp2013 SP1 : in Admin UI, switch to support hybrid scenarios: we can now choose:

    • social to be powered by Yammer (in the cloud)
    • personal documents to be managed by One Drive for Business in the cloud
    • new : One drive for business standalone (25 GB/User).

    New IT Pro Office 365 Yammer network to connect MVPs, Pros, and engineers : https://www.yammer.com/itpronetwork

    Security and privacy is key

    making sure all these upgrades & maintenance can take place and making sure no Microsoft employee can see your data; data will be encrypted. Security and compliance processes are certificated.

    New features will be added every week to make IT management easier

    • IRM (Information Rights Management) updated
    • Multi-factor authentication updated and to be updated (support for Office clients)
    • e-Discovery and legal holds
    • Data loss prevention
    • Mobile device management
    • Increased compliance and reporting capabilities
    • …More and more to come

    all these feature are provided in the cloud first, and later just a subset on premise.

    Illustration on Compliance&security + Multi-factor athentication with Michal Gideoni

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    new compliance center for data loss prevention demo :

     

    ex we start by defining a case (here where the passport numbers are stored in O365) –>we created a case (like before) based on search results. This is based on the current e-Discovery features.

    What is new is we have a new centralized Compliance Center:

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    with new auditing possibilities : who view some specific kind of data ? (based on a case, itself based on a search result )

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    This is better than the default auditing of SharePoint where we can audit site collections, sites, lists : here we audit some specific types of data/content.

    She also illustrated Multi-factor authentication, but read my previous post if you want to understand what’s in there.

     

    Future of Forms

    Contextual user experience; people don’t have to leave where they work. Regarding Infopath, read this post.

  • The strategy is to have the forms available in Outlook, in Excel, in SharePoint,… and in different devices.

    Access will be a key tool, but we should be able to design forms in the browser as well, not just in a rich client.

    Information worker are targeted first

    http://officeforms.uservoice.com/

    4 types of forms, 3 of them based on Access technology

    • list forms (released for the Summer) and on Premise in SharePoint 2015 : codenamed “Fossil”” = forms on top of SharePoint Lists
    • structured document forms  (working with the Word team on) (released end of 2014); will look like paper (printable,…)
    • application forms (will work very well with Visual Studio), already available with Access Services
    • Excel survey (codenamed “FoSS” pronounce “fossis”= forms on top of spreadsheet) = already available in O365.

    There will be  extensibility points for developers

    • Lookups, cascading combos, SharePoint list workflow … 6 months
    • Rules, business logic, mobile/touch, profile information…. 1 year
    • Web service call, electronic sign, enterprise data … much later

    Here is the roadmap :

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    Watch the following video.

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