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I have seen the future in IT.

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Due to some anomaly with the space-time continuum, I was sent to the future! I saw some key upcoming disruptions and was sent back to warn you all, so we can prepare for these disruptions now, before its too late. Oh, while I was there, I accidentally killed someone called Sarah Conner, hope that does not bite us in the @$$ later!

Everything that we find normal is GONE, and we better adapt or die!  The Microsoft Tech Summit I recently attended confirmed a few big changes in the not-so-far future that we better prepare for NOW.

1. The Intranet is no more.




Do you still use your intranet?  No, like really use it?  The intranet was a platform for collaboration, but these days, people use it to access their leave form, expense claim form, maybe the corporate telephone directory, see pics from the corporate function or to see the canteens menu and, well, that's about it.  We don't use it for collaborating, people are now collaborating via tools like MS Teams.

What makes tools like MS Te…

Get into ChatBots NOW, its what your customers want, but don't know it yet

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OK, lets cover the basics.  What are ChatBots?  Its a computer program designed to simulate conversation with human users, typically via messenger apps or chat windows.  I’m sure most of you already got that, but I wanted to make sure that we all on the same page here.So why should we focus on ChatBots?  No one is asking for them, right? Wrong.  Companies are looking for ways to engage with their customers in a way that their customers are already familiar with.  Customers don’t want to download an extra app for the companies they engage with so in order to engage with your customers in a manner that is convenient to them, you need to use a medium that they are already familiar with.You may have noticed that chat tools are becoming our clients more natural and preferred way to communicate.  In fact, towards the end of 2016, Facebook announced that they host over 30 000 ChatBots.  These bots can check the weather, order food, organise travel and even play games. China uses WeChat and t…

SharePoint Lists Views + JS Links + Data Tables = Awesome Threesome

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SharePoint Lists Views SharePoint lists are the primary building blocks when setting up a SharePoint site. Pretty much any system is designed to takes and give information and SharePoint relies on lists to make that happen.

So list are important, it stores the information you want to share, it sources workflows and forms and it defines how things relate to each other. We rely on List Views to interact with these lists which is great, but these views are created by SharePoint and gives us limited control in how we can configure the interface, which is a shame because sometimes the lists are just too important to rely of the basic configurations.
Thankfully, Microsoft gave us JS links, an ability to influence the way the views are rendered via JavaScript.

JS Links This opens a great new world of possibilities, we can now use JavaScript to read the data from the list view, check if certain conditions are met, and if these conditions are met, we can change the information that needs to…

Transposing a single column of data in Excel with a set number of columns

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I was faced with an interesting challenge, I was tasked to provide a list of all the sites available via our O365 subscription, but I was not given sufficient access rights to navigate to the administration portal to pull this list.

In fact, this is the only view I had available to me: 

Selecting, copying and pasting the content into Excel seems like the obvious next step, but alas, I was faced with one column of data with all the information that appeared in my view, i.e. the site title, the news title, the news synopsis the author and the modified date. All I want was the site title. 

After cleaning up the Excel a bit, I noticed that the information that I wanted appeared in every 4th row.  Meaning that if I could somehow transpose this single column of data into a grid with 4 columns, I will easily get the information I want. Unfortunately, this type of transpose function does not exist in Excel.
After a little googling and tweaking I finally derived a formula that will transpose …

Office 365 is changing the rules for Intranets

Before Office 365 (O365), when we were asked to build an intranet, we built a SharePoint solution with an inviting home page and some sub sites that promotes team collaboration. Maybe we added in a few interactive features and "Ta-daaa", your intranet was done.
Now, its the game is different, and many of the players don't even realise this. 
An intranet that is using Office 365 is more than just a pre-defined set of pages that has a starting point and set navigation plan that should be used by all. Its use is now dictated by the users, and if done right, no 2 users will experience their Intranet in the same way. 
We all know that O365 has this new, beautiful SharePoint Communications sites, for example, this site can help promote Corporate-Level communication and is typically seen as an ideal Home Page to an intranet, but why force that as the Home Page to everyone? Everyone is different, with different objectives when using the Intranet, why not make the users chose a hom…

SharePoint Saturday Cape Town Presentation

Thank you all who attended my session, as promised, please find my presentation slides below.

For those who missed it, my talk was on SharePoint and Maturity, I talked about the importance of the maturity assessment, and what maturity assessments models are available.

This presentation is focused around SharePoint, but I am sure the information here can assist you with other types of maturity assessments.



(You can download it here : http://www.slideshare.net/nadirkamdar/oh-grow-up-a-look-at-share-point-and-maturity-2012-final)

SharePoint 15, the BETA review

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I remember the excitement when SharePoint 2010 came out, us developers and architects saw this as the solution that will resolve ALL the flaws found in SharePoint 2007.  The SharePoint 2010 demos were, well, to narrow it down to one word, seductive!  We were convinced that this would be the best product to sell, deploy, use and support. 
But SharePoint 2010 is not perfect.  Sure, it kicks 2007’s butt!  But some of the issues identified from SharePoint 2007’s time was carried over to SharePoint 2010 and some new issues were “invented” when added functionality and complexity was added.
SharePoint 2010’s approach in providing us with a web solution is already dated by about 5 years.  Remember that SharePoint may have been available to the public in 2010, but the magicians in Microsoft started designing, planning and building the solution from 2008 at the latest.  That’s when Silverlight still had a future, Social Networking has no place in the business world and the explosion of mobile…