I remember all the buzz generated when we announced the new Fluent UI (Ribbon) for Office 2007 applications. The Microsoft Office Fluent UI replaced the previous system of layered menus, toolbars, and task panes with a simpler system optimized for efficiency and discoverability. The new UI, including the Office Fluent Ribbon, provides improved context menus, enhanced screen tips, a Mini toolbar, and keyboard shortcuts that help to improve user efficiency and productivity.
In Office 2007, the Fluent UI is implemented in several applications in the 2007 Microsoft Office suite, including Access, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Word. Fluent UI can be customized programmatically thanks to Fluent UI extensibility. MSDN has great articles, VHTs, and downloads that show you how to get started with Fluent UI extensibility.
In Office 2010, the Fluent UI is available in more Office apps including Visio, InfoPath, Publisher, Outlook (improved), OneNote, and Project. Thanks to the expansion of Fluent UI to more products, developers will be able to provide more custom Fluent UI experiences. As explained by Brian Jones, in Office 2010 the Fluent UI extensibility story has been improved as well. We have added the ability for programmatically activating tabs in the Fluent UI. For example, you can now have your custom tabs behave like built in contextual tabs, where tabs only show when specific events are fired.
If you are interested in learning more about Fluent UI extensibility and get ready for more Fluent UI programming in Office 2010, here’s a list of recommended resources:
Also, check out the Fluent UI resource centers on TechNet and Office Online.
MSDN Office Developer Center (ODC) provides a developer roadmap to understand and work with Office System programs, servers, services, tools and technologies. Since we are developers, we thought it would be great to provide a Office Developer Resources Ribbon Tab that you can download for free. Frank Rice created a super cool Visual Basic .NET shared add-in in Visual Studio that creates a tab on the Word 2007 Ribbon.
This Ribbon tab provides quick access to developer sites on MSDN for Office and SharePoint, as well as a rich set or organized links to Get Started, MSDN Library, Learn, Community, Forums and Support resources that matter to Office/SharePoint developers.
This is a useful tool for anyone interested in getting quick access to Office and SharePoint developer resources from a frequently used application like Word. Also, if you are into blogging from Word or writing technical documentation related to Office or SharePoint, this a tool that simplifies navigation and discoverability to most popular developer resources. Finally, this is just another great sample of the detailed level of customization you can get with Fluent UI extensibility.
Frank Rice has created most of the developer content we have about Fluent UI extensibility on MSDN and he is considered our expert in Fluent UI development. Frank shares in his blog post the code and process he followed to create this Ribbon. You can download this free add-in at: http://code.msdn.microsoft.com/OfficeDevResourceTab/. Kudos to Frank for this great sample.
I was out of town and had to miss the excitement of blogging about the launch of the Office Technical Preview yesterday. Lucky me, today I have tons of links and trackbacks to other blog posts to share!
Yesterday, Stephen Elop announced the technical preview milestone for Microsoft Office 2010 at the WorldWide Partner Conference.
From the Press Pass:
Office 2010 and related products will deliver innovative capabilities and provide new levels of flexibility and choice that will help people:
Read more here: http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2009/jul09/07-13Office2010WPCPR.mspx
Read more details at John Durant’s great post.
Read more details at Paul Andrew’s post and at the Developer Sneak peek video:
Availability to the Technical Preview program is “by invitation only” and is not broadly available to the public. There is a waitlist you can sign up for, found here.
I’ll keep updating this blog entry as I hear more.
This will be interesting for all of you who are into Office development: As Office developers, we can start identifying ourselves as active members of the community by joining the “Office Developer Guild” spearheaded by John Durant.
The developer community for Microsoft Office grand and healthy. And, the knowledge and expertise in our community is pretty vast and deep. To make it easier for us to stay alert about events, up-coming content, etc. and more easily share ideas we now have the “Office Developer Guild”—a group of like-minded professional friends on Facebook. Additional benefits in the ODG include receiving announcements, slightly ahead of everyone else, of up-coming content, events, etc. That way you can tee up your own blog entries in advance! You’ll also receive exclusive messages from community leaders and insiders. As part of the on-going Office developer conversation I’ll be reaching out, asking questions, and soliciting feedback as well.
Who can join? Anyone who is interested in how to developer productivity solutions with Microsoft Office. This includes Web, SharePoint, SQL Server, Exchange, VBA, XML and other developers--- all of these products & technologies are relevant.
How to join? Search for my email on Facebook and request to be added: email@example.com. I’ll add you.
Host the ODG image: Place the ODG “badge” on your site or blog so that you identify yourself as a member of the “the Guild”. Be sure to announce on the ODG wall that you are hosting the ODG image (shown below).
Hope you all join the “Office Developer Guild!”