OfficeRocker!

Strange thinking about Microsoft Office

Blog - About

About Office Rocker!

Thanks for stopping by at my blog.  I'm Darren Strange, the UK product manager for the 2007 Microsoft Office system.  We are launching the 2007 release in January 2007 together with Windows Vista and in the run up to that I'll be talking about what's new and why it is significant in the evolution of Microsoft Office.

A bit about me then. My job has two parts to it - an evangelist for the product and a project manager for the launch project.  The evangelist part means I do lots of presentations on Office and am the lead spokesperson in the UK on Information Worker matters.  I work with customers, partners, analysts and press to better understand the opportunities for Office and help people to understand and get value from it.  The project management part is running a pretty complex, multi-workstream project which covers each segment, audience and department involved in the launch.  I take a special interest in the rapid deployment customers and in the press and analyst outreach. 

Wherever possible, we are using the 2007 release to run the project using SharePoint Server, Groove, Project Server, InfoPath, Excel and PowerPoint in our project office processes.  This means I am hopefully "walking the talk" as we march towards launch.

My background is in Microsoft Consulting Services where I started as an Exchange consultant back in 1997 and later got to manage the collaboration team and then the solutions practice.  This comprised of three consulting teams; collaboration, Internet business and SQL & Business Intelligence.  Before that I worked for KPMG Management Consulting for 4 years which my first job out of university.  Last year I passed my PMI and this year my CIM professional diploma.  I won't be doing any more exams for a while now..

Anyway, do let me know what you think, add comments and let's discuss.  That's the fun of blogging afterall.

  • OfficeRocker!

    Big hair and RedMonk Chips

    • 3 Comments
    And big brains. I had the pleasure of briefing James Governor from RedMonk this morning. I must say, I do look forward to my sessions with him. James is refreshing. He's smart, opinionated, passionate and technical. If I can explain how it works, he doesn...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Feedback and help on Office 2007 beta 2

    • 5 Comments
    As so many of you are asking me about where to submit feedback or log bugs on the beta 2, I thought it would be worth linking to the Office Preview Site Community Newsgroups     The 2007 Microsoft Office System Beta 2 has been an extremely popular...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Mummy, what happens when I die?

    • 6 Comments
    Said the baby document to its parent document. "Well dear, just like all of us in the Contract family, your life is all mapped out for you. Even in your granny's day life has followed the same journey.     There was a time, back in the years...
  • OfficeRocker!

    2007 Office beta 2 available for public download today!

    • 10 Comments
    Finally I am super super excited (as it were) to announce that beta 2 is now public - hurray! You can download it free from here .
  • OfficeRocker!

    New UK IW Partner blog

    • 0 Comments
    The partner IW blog from the UK team seems to be up and running. I'm adding it to my (short) blogroll as a good resource to those of you in partnerland.
  • OfficeRocker!

    UK Office System Developer Conference 2006

    • 3 Comments
    Most weeks somebody on Officerocker asks me about whether we are running the devcon this year. I’m pleased to be able to announce we have the second UK Office devcon planned for June 21-22 nd . Last year we tried this out not knowing what sort of response...
  • OfficeRocker!

    IW Heroes - win some cheap marketing tatt!

    • 5 Comments
    So we had a great time in New York City at the reviewers workshop. While I was there I got a chance to catch up with some of the heroes of the IW faith which was great. Some of them were kind enough to record a "hello" to you, beloved OfficeRocker reader...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Blogging from Word 2007 in beta 2

    • 4 Comments
    How cool is this? This is a test post using the Word blog post feature which turns up in beta 2.
  • OfficeRocker!

    Word count does not incur any CPU hit

    • 5 Comments
    I'm out in New York at the moment with some press and finally got the answer on the word count question . I was lucky enough to get chatting with Jensen Harris today - he is da man - on the user interface design. The word count feature uses 100% idle...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Duet - cultural mashup brings integrated innovation

    • 2 Comments
    So you'll have seen that we've announced Duet now, our new joint venture with SAP to bring SAP data through into Office apps - mainly Outlook. I was amused by the IDC quote describing the renamed "mendicino" product as a "mashup" and it made me think...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Now be in two places at once!

    • 3 Comments
    One of the joys of working for a US firm is that at 3pm every day now we all have 2 hours of conference calls to attend. Happily in Microsoft, most are live meetings now and most are recorded. The challenge is, you see, that now I almost always have a...
  • OfficeRocker!

    OneNote clarifies misunderstanding

    • 0 Comments
    As you know, I'm a OneNote fan - check out my blogcast to see why. I loved this story which shows just how useful it can be for synchronising audio recording with your notes. The journalist was able to prove that yes, he really did say it. nice. When...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Geek Boutique

    • 0 Comments
    The partner team here have put together their own homage to channel9 but with UK stars. As Steve Clayton says, the out-takes are amusing - there are more out-takes than anything else it seemed to me :-) . It did make me laugh - particularly Mark describing...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Beer and pizza evening follow up

    • 14 Comments
    We had a good turn out at the Technet beer and pizza event in Reading this week. Thanks for all your kind comments. I said that I would post the slides so here they are . I'm having a few issues with anonymous access on my support site so if it asks for...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Helping people be safe and secure out there

    • 1 Comments
    How important is your data to you? How do you protect the privacy of data and information held in your documents? How do you put a price on something like that? Security is a key focus for every group in Microsoft. It always was important but even more...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Dump your stress this Easter

    • 12 Comments
    I just can't stop telling you about OneNote. It's like we've found our first love again since 2007 beta 1. It's a public holiday here in the UK today and Monday so here's my Easter stress remedy for time-compressed hours in 4-day weeks.. At the beginning...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Happy birthday Garry Kasparov - hope you don't like the World Cup

    • 0 Comments
    I think this is (nearly) cool.. On your calendar, you can click "browse calendars online" which takes you the marvellous resource that is Office Online . Here you can select a calendar you might find useful and download it. This adds the calendar...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Why Americans don't get irony

    • 7 Comments
    The classic test of an American is, as any Englishman knows, that they don't understand the difference between sarcasm and irony. This is why we get songs like " Ironic " (OK I know Alanis is Canadian) where her best shot was: A traffic jam when you...
  • OfficeRocker!

    More on OfficeLive

    • 0 Comments
    Watched a good internal talk on OfficeLive tonight (thanks to Mark for the forward). They talk about it coming to the UK towards the end of this year which will be good. It seems to be well received by users so I am looking forward to it arriving on our...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Interviews over IM?

    • 0 Comments
    My thanks to Rich Hay who introduced me to the concept of doing an interview over instant messaging. You can read it here . Don't you just love the blogsphere?
  • OfficeRocker!

    The way to a happier life with Groove

    • 3 Comments
    I've been a bit quiet for a fortnight so I thought I'd better own up and tell you why. It's been a busy couple of weeks as we have been writing our plans for the launch. It's the biggest project I've ever been part of, let alone been in charge of. We...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Register for the 2007 Office beta

    • 4 Comments
    The preview site has been totally revamped and is looking very nice. This is where you can register for the beta. So to answer all you kind people who ask me every day for the beta code.. please go and register here :-) Not long to go now.
  • OfficeRocker!

    Offline document editing in Outlook 2007

    • 0 Comments
    In response to question from Swabes I tested out what happens if you change a document in a "SharePoint Lists" folder. The steps as demo'd in the blogcast are go to the document library in SharePoint and select the "connect to Outlook" option under actions...
  • OfficeRocker!

    Blogcast: Outlook 2007 (14mins)

    • 24 Comments
    In this blogcast I demo some of the new features of Outlook 2007. In particular I look at how it can consume RSS feeds and show off some of the great integration with SharePoint Server 2007 as well. Also have a look at the OneNote 2007 blogcast which...
  • OfficeRocker!

    2007 Office for Christmas?

    • 6 Comments
    I've learnt today that although we will be holding back 2007 Office for retail and OEM until Jan (see previous post), there is still the possibility of some form of agreement with retailers and OEMs to offer an upgrade. Apparently we are still finalizing...
Page 9 of 11 (268 items) «7891011