My first northern technology get together…or rather net-together …


…was fabulous.

Hence I just wanted to give a shout out for Digital Union (“The voice of the digital and creative sector in North East England”) who put on the excellent Summer Net-Together in Gateshead last week. Sunshine, great venue, great food, great people and a chance to understand a little more about the digital scene in the region now I have moved up here.

And as a direct result of one conversation (you know who you are!), I will be making the time to dig into http://www.mongodb.org/ in the coming weeks.

Finally a thank you to my company Waterstons for allowing me to take one of the free tickets they received as members of Digital Union.

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Accessing SharePoint from the browser…


SharePoint was created by Microsoft when a) Internet Explorer (IE) was by far the most widely used web browser on Windows PCs (I was at Microsoft during the “browser wars” which lead to IE being dominant in 2001 when SharePoint emerged) and b) people pretty much only ever used PCs to browse the web. Oddly enough for many years, SharePoint worked great when accessed from a Windows PC using IE and … sometimes was simply impossible to use when you strayed too far away from this pairing.

Roll forward 10+ years and things have changed significantly. In the course of their day to day lives people use many devices and many browsers.  Across my tablet, phone, desktop development pc, laptop and gaming pc I use at least 5 different browsers.

The good news is the SharePoint development team were well aware of this change and in recent versions and updates have worked hard to allow SharePoint to be used from a variety of browsers.

Last Friday this topic came up at the Back to basics with SharePoint session held at my office in Durham. Which caused me to have a look for a succinct summary of cross browser support across different versions of SharePoint. My timing was spot on. Joel has just published  a blog post which contains his SharePoint Browser Comparison Report Card. Screenshot here – but really just to encourage you to visit his post.

Thanks Joel.

Back to basics with SharePoint event in Durham, Friday 24th May


At Microsoft (not surprisingly :)) we used SharePoint extensively to support the work of individuals, teams, groups and organisations. It was simply how we got things done. How we managed complexity, how we collaborated, how we remained productive.

What did we do before SharePoint? Well, we used a lot (and I mean a LOT) of server shares. Yes, you can get stuff done but it isn’t efficient, it isn’t fun and it is fraught with dangers. Unfortunately many companies still operate this way. Indeed many companies that have SharePoint are barely using the capabilities it offers to help run their businesses.

Which is why I am pleased to see the bespoke development team in my new company taking time out from coding to run a series of events which are “code free” but look at how organisations can benefit from adopting (and better still embracing) SharePoint. If your company is based near Durham then they are most definitely worth checking out.

Next session is:

Back to basics with SharePoint: Supporting business processes using SharePoint >>>
11.45am, Friday 24th May, Waterstons Durham office

P.S. And the ginger cake they serve up at these events is fabulous!

T-1 day and counting – I’m back (nearly)


After 4 months away from work, tomorrow I set out boldly from the Yorkshire Moors to Durham to find a desk at my new company, Waterstons – who I am really chuffed to be joining.

“Normal” service will be returning to this blog in due course…

Hope you all have had a wonderful 2013 so far. For me it has been excellent – the four months have flown by with the time filled with setting up a new home in Yorkshire, family, holidays and diy. But I am excited (super excited – MS joke :)) to be heading back to work, especially in a development centric role.