Monday, 9 August 2010

SharePoint 2010 Simply The Best

The Premier League season might be less than a week away but as I spent a number of weeks this summer talking about the World Cup I think it is time to talk about the other of England’s favourite sports, cricket. This year 2010 might be the year of simply the best SharePoint to date but 2010 could well be the year of England’s greatest ever cricket team. Already in 2010 England have won the Twenty Twenty World cup, beaten Australia in a one day series and now they have bowled Pakistan out twice for under 100 in a week. This winter England head down under for an Ashes series against the old enemy Australia. I expect the Australians are crying into their beer already. Hope that statement doesn’t come back to haunt me.

So why is SharePoint 2010 the greatest ever SharePoint Server? The truth is that SharePoint has developed well over the years since it started in 2001. In the same way that you can chart the start of England’s cricket revival to the Ashes victory in 2006 the launch of SharePoint 2007 really was a breakthrough. It was a package that really took SharePoint to a new level and integrated it more with Microsoft Office applications. So what do I think makes 2010 even better than 2007? Here are my top reasons;

1. Easier to Edit Pages
It is now even easier to change individual sites with less clicks involved than in 2007. New webparts allow you to incorporate video and audio easier. It is also easy to make changes to the site theme. You have access to a never ending array of colours and fonts.

2. Uniqueness Field
The setting to enforce Unique Values is a useful addition in 2010 and is a feature I have used a lot. When configuring a new column, the option ‘Enforce Unique values’ is listed as one of the additional column settings with the options of ‘Yes’ or ‘No’.

3. Spell Checker
If Pakistan had been given an extra run for every time I had been asked if there was a spellchecker in SharePoint 2007 they would probably have won the latest Test Match instead of England. At least SharePoint 2010 gives user the option to spellcheck all list items. Now I can finally mask my poor spelling.

4. Two Thousand item limit smashed
The frustrating SharePoint list limit in SharePoint 2007 of 2000 has now well and truly gone. The new limit is 30,000,000 items. As yet I haven’t managed to test this but thirty million sounds plenty. Interesting exactly the same amount as ‘former’ Villa manager, Martin O’Neill, wanted for England star James Milner (O’Neill resigned as I was typing this blog).

5. Digital Asset Library
Office Talk used to create their own Media Library site for users using SharePoint 2007, but still good to see a central Digital Library has been included in the new version. The library can be used to store branded corporate assets such as logos, artwork, and other digital assets, and uses workflows and policies to manage the content.

6. Offline – Workspace 2010
People might never have quite got into Microsoft Groove but the new SharePoint Workspace 2010 finally lets you work fully with SharePoint when you are not even connected to the network. It is worth a play as even allows multiple people to work on same document at the same time. Click Here to see what Paul of Microsoft says about SharePoint Workspace 2010.

7. FAST Search
The search in SharePoint 2007 always offered so much but then failed to really provide the Google-style search engine that users required. Now on SharePoint Server 2010 Enterprise edition we have the famous FAST Search. It really is impressive brings Best Bets, relevancy tuning, phonetic searching and even displays thumbnails of documents retrieved.

8. KPI Dashboards
KPI’s are available on all sites and you really can start incorporating Business Intelligence with SharePoint 2010. Click Here to see a great video on adding KPI’s to SharePoint.

9. Content Type Hub
One of features of SharePoint 2010 that I find useful is the new Content Type Hub (which is a part of the Metadata Service Application), this is a hub for all Content Types that you can set your Site Collections to subscribe to. So instead of like in 2007 when you had to change them in lots of different areas you now only have to do it once.

10. Better Office Integration
SharePoint 2010 has a real Office feel to it with a fully customisable ‘Ribbon’ complimenting the traditional dropdown menu. If you are using Office 2010 you can’t fail to miss all the features integrating it with SharePoint to offer you a complete experience.

If you want to find out more about any of the features of SharePoint 2010 please contact the SharePoint consultants at Office Talk and they will be happy to demonstrate them to you.

Explaining the game of Cricket;
You have two sides; a team that's in and a team that's out. Two men in the team that's in go out and when one of the men who's in is out; the next man goes in until he's out. When they are all out but one who is not out; the side that's out comes in and the side that's been in goes out and tries to get those coming in, out.

When a man goes out to go in; the men who are out are trying to get him out; and when he is out he goes in and the next man in goes out and goes in. There are two men called umpires who stay out all the time and they decide when the men who are in are out. When both sides have been in and all the men have been out; and both sides have been out twice after all the men have been in, including those who are not out, that is the end of the game.