This year has been a great year for the cloud, for Microsoft, and for SSW customers. We’ve delivered many solutions built on top of Azure, CRM Online, SharePoint Online, and TFS Online – all running on Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure. These solutions work across devices. They are easy to manage – you are set up in virtually no time and they are enterprise-ready, and we’re able to offer substantially more for much smaller costs.
On the consumer front, Microsoft will look back and see 2013 as the start of the fight for the phone and the tablet.
Building on the Microsoft Stack:
I’ve just come back from a couple of weeks at the MVP summit in Seattle (I love this event – I was MVP of the year in 2011). As a Microsoft Regional Director and ALM MVP, as well as Chief Architect of SSW, I enjoy keeping my finger on the pulse of Microsoft and its many product developments. Since my main job is helping companies adopt and deploy Microsoft technologies, my roles at Microsoft are very useful for my customers and staff. Therefore with all the new releases in 2013 it has been a busy year.
Internally at SSW we have implemented the latest upgrades across the board: all our PCs now happily run on Windows 8.1, our phones now use Skype and Lync 2013, the developers are making good use of Visual Studio 2013 and TFS 2013. Daily we run the latest Exchange Server 2013 and SharePoint 2013. Next on our to-do list is to upgrade to CRM 2013, which has just been released.
We’ve definitely seen a shift by our clients from SharePoint development to stand alone MVC solutions that have some integration points with SharePoint, CRM and other applications via REST APIs. Our developers love using ASP.MVC 4 and 5 with either SQL Server 2012 or Azure. One of these combinations power 90% of our client projects.
There were 2 standout projects this year. Both embraced the technology, both used Scrum, and both brought complicated solutions to life. The first one was Toll Transport, led by Mark Liu, and the second was PwC, led by Eric Phan. There were many other projects also where I saw exemplary work built on the Microsoft stack.
My final project starting for 2013 is one I’m very excited about: FireBootCamp. FireBootCamp is an intensive training course that will cover technologies such as .NET MVC,
even a starter developer to a .NET hero in just 9 weeks! http://firebootcamp.com
Building SSW TV:
We have continued to work hard to make more and more presentations available to view on SSW TV. This video site, for which I am the Product Owner, is focused exclusively
on promoting Microsoft platforms and interviewing Microsoft experts from around the world, continuing the SSW tradition of sharing knowledge to help our industry create
better quality software. In the last 12 months I have personally created over 30 videos on SSW TV. During this period, our total views have jumped from 44,000 views to more
than 218, 000 and our subscriber numbers have more than quintupled from 295 to more than 1500.
I also continue to run the Sydney and Canberra .NET User Groups every month to ensure best practices are identified and shared with the community. This year we’ve covered
a wide range of subjects from business law to Scrum, and have had some exciting international guest speakers such as Glenn Block from Microsoft and Jason Beres from
Infragistics. The final User Group of the year will be a crescendo featuring the handsome man Scott Hanselman.
Through SSW TV we make each Sydney .NET User Group a global event by live-streaming the meeting each month and then publishing the video online. No interested party is left out!
The TV team have matured and grown our channel extraordinarily this year.
In addition to client work, throughout the year I have spoken around Australia and at interesting international events. I also presented at my old favorite,
TechEd Australia and TechEds abroad, on topics such as:
- “Climbing the Agile Testing Ladder featuring Visual Studio 2013, TFS 2013, Microsoft Test Manager
2013, and Lab Management 2013”
- “What’s new in Visual Studio 2013 and the ALM + Team Foundation Server (TFS) 2013 story”
- “I feel the love again – Using Access 2013 and SharePoint 2013 together”
I know many of you always want to know what’s new with Microsoft and what’s cool in the industry so I will be putting together new rules and new presentations in 2014. Now’s the time to sing out and tell me.
I would like to thank our clients and all those who have sent me a terrific amount of feedback. Keep telling me what we could do better – my email address is adamcogan at ssw.com.au
I’m proud to be one of the technology leaders in Australia and I will continue helping teams work better together by being a Scrum Master, Scrum Trainer and a .NET
architect, working with TFS and implementing the whole ALM lifecycle.
Events I presented at this year:
- TechEd Australia
- TechEd New Zealand
- DDD, Brisbane
- ShareThePoint conference Sydney
- ShareThePoint conference New Zealand
- ShareThePoint conference Melbourne
- SharePoint Saturday, Canberra
- SharePoint Saturday, Sydney
- SharePoint Saturday, Melbourne
- Newcastle Coders Group (ncg.asn.au)
- Sydney .Net User Group (ssw.com.au)
- Canberra .Net User Group (ssw.com.au)
My monthly speaking gigs:
- President of the Sydney .Net User Group (this year we celebrated our 20 year anniversary!)
- President of the Canberra .Net User Group
- I blog at http://adamcogan.com/
- I tweet at @adamcogan
My TV Channel:
- I post interviews at http://tv.ssw.com/
- Our top video of 2013 was How to Use Microsoft Lync – http://tv.ssw.com/3105/how-to-use-microsoft-lync-2013-integrated-with-a-voip-phone-system
- The following screen grab shows our top 10 videos of all time:
My favourite event attended this year:
- MVP summit in Seattle
- I contributed to “The Scrum Guide, 2013”
- My favorite contribution was getting Ken Schwaber remove the word “grooming” and changing to “refining”
- I updated “The 8 Steps to Scrum”
- I created “3 steps to a better PBI”