• It's common knowledge that Microsoft and Google aren't great friends. Beyond the fact that they're competing in numerous markets (notably search, mobile, productivity, browsers, and operating systems), the companies have decidedly not pulled their punches. Google has accused Microsoft of cheating on search, Microsoft has stated that Google's structure creates stagnancy and excess risk, and the fight goes on.

    One area where this war continues is in online support for productivity software. Since each of these companies runs both a cloud-based set of productivity services and a popular browser, it's a bit too easy to just "not support" the opposing team. In large part, that's precisely what both Microsoft and Google have done, to varying degrees, over the last couple years. Finally, however, Microsoft has decided to add Google Chrome support for their online tools including their various Office Web Applications via SharePoint 2010.

    These changes should be released with the Office 2010 SP1. While there's no certain date on when this service pack will be released, it's expected for "late June." Since updates are frequently rolled out on the fourth Tuesday of each month, the most likely (though certainly not official) date is June 28th. Users should keep an eye out on the Microsoft sites, however, since these updates are generally released as a manual installation months prior to becoming an automatic updates. If your'e a corporate customer, you may receive special notification before the update is made available.

    While this official support is certainly significant, it won't be the first time that Chrome devotees have used their OWA (Office Web Apps) in the Google browser; the SkyDive file sharing medium made working in Chrome entirely functional despite a lack of declared Microsoft support.

    It's hard to say how much of the previous choice not to support Chrome stemmed from an intentional evasion of Google's up-and-coming browser, and likewise it's difficult to say whether Microsoft's motivation now is just general support or if Chrome's 10 percent plus of the browser market share has now made it a vital part of a successful cloud release. In either case, the issues are now resolved and a precedent has been set for support in Office 365 and SharePoint Online.
  • Regardless of the industry, there's always a lot to be gained from conferences and conventions. SharePoint is certainly no exception. That's why we try to make it to as many SharePoint conventions as possible. Here are a few of the great SharePoint conferences coming up in the next few months.

    • SharePoint Saturday. This get-together happens on Saturdays in various locations throughout the globe, ranging from Vietnam to Tampa.
    • Tech-Ed. An event focused on technical education for all of Microsoft's products, including SharePoint and the entire Microsoft suite. Tech-Ed is happening right now, starting on May 16th and ranging to the 19th.
    • SharePoint Fest. This conference brings together Microsoft Engineers, MVPs, and certified trainers for a great lineup of tutorials, seminars, and more. This conference is taking place in Denver in May and in Chicago in July.
    • SP Tech Con. One of our favorite conferences, SharePoint Tech Con is a three day conference happening in June in Boston.
    • SharePoint Conference. This October conference is happening in Anaheim, California. The focus is on SharePoint deployment and development possibilities.
    • SharePoint Europe. Anyone near Berlin, Germany in October, 2011 should pay attention for this Europe-wide conference that looks at the crucial SharePoint decisions for everyone from C-level employees to end users.

    While we're not able to make it to a booth at every conference and convention, we're always ready to chat with you. Be sure to pay attention to this blog, as well as the SharePoint Engine site, to find conventions where you can talk to us face to face.
  • Image Courtesy of Tech Cakes
    It's hard to believe that it's been a full ten years since Microsoft SharePoint was released. In fact, it's been ten years and two months, with the birthday seeing its official celebration in Microsoft offices in March.

    One good birthday tradition is to spend some time reflecting on the advancements you've made and your overall list of accomplishments. It would normally be a touch rude to do this for someone else, but considering that SharePoint isn't sentient (it's smart, but not quite self-aware yet) it seems appropriate to take a quick stroll back down memory lane.

    Back in 2001, when SharePoint was still just a mutated extra limb to the Microsoft Office and Outlook suites, SharePoint was a difficult to use and sometimes impossible to handle platform. Its portal server and team services did one thing that was vital, though: they caught enough attention from businesses that Microsoft didn't give up on the product. In 2003, the second version of SP was released, followed shortly by Portal Server 2003.

    Then we took a break from development for a few years. While many still added extras to SP, and service packs and fixes were being released as usual, SharePoint didn't make its next advance until SharePoint 2007. But what an advance it was! The Office SharePoint Server, as well as items like the SharePoint Site Designer,  created a fleshed-out and simple to use system that also integrated essential social elements. In 2010, those features were improved further, and SharePoint became stronger, more streamlined, more stable, and easier to customize.

    Now we look to the future, as Office 365 brings us SharePoint Online. As SP is reaching its teen years, it seem that its rebellious streak – running off to the cloud as it is – is already manifesting.

    It's been a great ten years, and we hope for many more decades – as rich with advancement and possibility as this one – in the future.
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