For the last couple of months, I‘ve been focusing on
One of the really cool new features is the new Office Open XML
File Formats. When you save a Word Document, it gets saved by default to a file
with a docx extension. One can rename this to .zip and then open the package to
see all the components out of which the document is composed together with the
document properties etcetera. The specifications are open and free for anyone
to use (more here
and here). And
yes, we’ll make sure that you can work with them in a (some) pre-Office
These new file formats are a really important innovation from
a technological perspective as well as from the perspective of Microsoft playing
an important role in the IT industry where we need to compete and act
responsibly at the same time.
The technological aspect is the one that I’m most
passionate about. There are many advantages to having this new file format
ranging from decreased possibility for documents to get corrupted to enabling
applications to easily manipulate documents without needing to automate Word,
Excel or Powerpoint. I’ve built a small sample application to manipulate some
Word documents and at the appropriate time, when Office 12 is sufficiently public,
I’ll post that on this site.
I’m a big believer that as long as we make the right technological
choices, the market will continue to see Microsoft Office as the productivity suite
of choice. There’s plenty of evidence that that is actually the case
today. Some of the evidence comes from the small country I call home: https://members.microsoft.com/customerevidence/search/EvidenceDetails.aspx?EvidenceID=13214&LanguageID=1&PFT=Microsoft%20Office%202003&TaxID=20153
It is so exciting to be at Microsoft at the moment. We are about to launch VS2005, VSTS, SQL2005 and Biztalk and at the same time we are taking steps to keep people up to date on the progress we are making on Office 12 and Vista.
Register here if you want to be receiving information and beta bits (starting from beta 2) http://www.microsoft.com/emea/msdn/betaexperience/.
(Oh and in the meantime MS will ship XBOX 360, I already pre-order mine! And yes, in case you were wondering we pay full price at Microsoft too!)
Looks like www.start.com
is a preview to www.live.com – which is
currently in Beta. At least that’s my early interpretation of the news we
released yesterday. I need to read some more faq’s before I can 100%
confirm that. Anyway, I migrated my start.com page to live.com today.
I had quite a few RSS feeds added to my start.com page. Fortunately,
start.com allows you to export your feeds to an OPML file (click on add feeds
and gadgets, then advanced and then you see the link).
This OPML file can then be imported in live.com (add content/advanced/import
There are some differences in the way gadgets behave in both
sites but the experience is largely the same. I definitely like the gadget that
shows the emails in your Hotmail or Windows Live account although one can see
that not all the potential of that one has been realized.
Now who is going to build me a gadget that just displays
hyperlinks (no RSS feeds or anything like that, just plain hyperlinks)? J
I recently found out about the office team allowing us – Microsoft FTE’s - to have an external facing sharepoint site with 200MB of storage.
That’s nice I thought, this is where I will post slides and demos from my presentations. Something people have been asking for a lot.
The site was serviced last night and with a few clicks I had my site: http://hansvb.officeisp.net/default.aspx.
I quickly wanted to achieve two things:
- sharing my documents with the public
- blogging from the sharepoint site
The first one was ease: I enabled anonymous access on the web site and then I added a document library to which everyone has at least view access.
The second one wasn’t too difficult either. The Sharepoint discussion webpart is perfectly suited for blogging. I configured it as follows:
Now a blog ain’t a blog if the thing isn’t exposed through RSS. vNext of Sharepoint will enable this out of the box but for the current version you need to use a tool built by Microsoft partners.
I saw to good solutions:
(Read this article if you want to find out more about Sharepoint RSS readers and writers.)
Anyway, I’m thinking about only blogging through my portal from now on. It does seem easier to have a site all for yourself including storage for documents, images and so on.
Hopefully people will know where to find me after a while!