So, it may seem like I have forgotten how to write but in reality I’ve been writing, just not here! I have two papers complete which I think my usual readers will be interested in. One is for Information Management Magazine (ARMA’s publication) and the other for SharePointPro Connections Magazine. I need to wait until they are published before I can post links to, quote them or discuss them in detail but here’s a brief synopsis of each of them just to get you all excited:
Information Management (ARMA)
As well as publishing IM magazine ARMA represents information management professionals and records managers. They asked me to write an article about how records managers could manage the new wave of social data types – Blogs, Wikis, IM, Activity feeds, polls, discussion threads, etc. Given that SharePoint purports to manage most of these they also asked that the article would have a SharePoint focus.
This one started out well, I defined the data types and the issues at hand. I initially called this type of data ‘semi-structured’ but it turned out that the DB world already had dibs on that phrase so after talking to Microsoft I coined/stole the phrase ‘social data’. Technically what I analyzed was data that was structured at the back-end but had an associated presentation layer that makes it look unstructured to an end user.
It all fell apart when I failed to find anyone with an ‘off the shelf’ solution to the problem. Thankfully I had some great conversations with the SharePoint product team and it turns out that SharePoint 2010 does include some basic capabilities. I stitched that together with some of the custom solutions that I discovered and it all came together rather well.
SharePointPro Connections Magazine
This article is a summary of what’s new in SharePoint 2010 from an ECM perspective – the article highlights the key content management-related features and questions how well they might address enterprise requirements. I cover most of the new ECM-related features and dig down into some of them where I feel there’s either a misunderstanding wrt what the feature really does or where I think Microsoft missed the mark. IMHO this is not as interesting as the ARMA article which digs into new territory but it is a good primer for SharePoint 2010.
These types of articles frequently get me into trouble because SharePoint fans think that I am bashing SharePoint and my Documentum colleagues think that I am glorifying SharePoint. My solution is to take a truly agnostic view of the factors and try to be honest. I am not known for my tact but this does seem to be working so I’ll stick with it. I’ve also taken to talking to insiders at Microsoft to make sure that what I am saying is at least fair – maybe not palatable but fair.
I’ll post links to the articles as they get published…