When Microsoft SharePoint Conference 2014 opens on Sunday night for registration check-in, thousands of attendees will roll in. I’ll be one of them, looking to squeeze the most out of the event. Here are five ways I'll be looking for answers to questions about SharePoint, Office 365, and Microsoft's intentions around its collaboration platform.
1. Seeing What's New with SharePoint Solution Vendors
I couldn't fit in meetings with some perennially favorite vendors such as Mobile Entrée and CipherPoint. Nor could I see that Lithuanian SharePoint solution vendor I have a fond place for in my heart, which is EnovaPoint. I expect they will all be swamped with attendees wanting to know more about their SharePoint solutions.
2. Attending Extra Keynotes
This is the hard part. Because of our focus here at SharePoint Pro, staying with one sub-keynote, or whatever they're called, isn't optimal. I want to hear what all three Microsoft speakers--Bill Baer, Rob Lefferts, and Julia White--have to say.
3. Talking to Everybody Who'll Talk to Me
How's your conference going? What are you interested in attending? What challenges are you facing back at work? What do you think of where Microsoft seems to be headed? Where's the best swag? Inquiring minds want to know. And I'm a very good listener.
4. Reading the Tea Leaves
What does the fact that Microsoft added many on-premises sessions and softened its cloud harangue mean? What is the future of the SharePoint brand and why do we feel compelled to ask such a question? How much better will SharePoint get before it doesn't get any better? How significant are certain Microsoft actions over the last few months? What's in store for our future? What am I not asking that I should? I hope to answer at least one of those questions.
5. Diving into SharePoint and Office 365
Who is interested in helping me reach SharePoint people? Who explains things well to me? How can we better help SharePoint admins and devs and users? One way to find out is to dive in to the matrix and find out myself. I want to learn more about Windows Azure/SharePoint, get a better look at Office 365, hybrid environments, and answer my still-unanswered question, even as a Yammer user--Why Yammer?--and I want to see how they designed the conference site. And anything with road map in the description--I'll be there.