SPTechCon Boston 2011 Wrap Up

SPTechCon was my first SharePoint conference back when I attended the San Francisco 2010 edition. That doesn’t seem so long ago, yet it really is in SharePoint time. (They say you’ll never forget your first girl, but in this case it’s my first conference, so… Yeah, if I have to explain it, it’s a stretch.)

SPTechCon was where I first really got how powerful and useful the SharePoint community is. It was when I realized that it would be cool to find a place for myself within it.

I’ve read a couple of write ups about the conference which I liked, so I figured I’d give pointers to them here. Ruven Gotz’s (@ruveng) post SPTechCon: Sing(apore) for your supper and Josh McCarty’s (@josh_a_mccarty) post Thoughts on SPTechCon Boston 2011 captured the conference well (and Josh’s not just because he talked about me!), plus a bit of what they enjoyed while they were here in Boston. If you’re interested in other slants on the conference and extracurricular activities, give them a read. 

I was once again honored to be able to speak at this edition of SPTechCon, right here in my home town of Boston. Not only was I able to do a technical session, but David Rubinstein (@drubinstein), tsar of the conference, invited me to do a Lightning Talk on Wednesday night. You get 4 minutes for those darn things, so I decided to simply do a “promo” for my session on Friday.

Thursday night, I also had the honor of being on the BASPUG “Ask the Experts” panel, sitting next to none other than Christian “Flying Monkey” Finn. Also on the panel were Michael Noel, Laura Rogers, Todd Klindt, Randy Drisgill, and Jeremy Thake. (I’m forgetting someone…)

My session was entitled “Developing in SharePoint’s Middle Tier”  (it’s session 607) and I demoed some generalized solutions from past project work. Since I had the slides from the Lightning Talks, I figured I’d clean them up a little and use them as an intro for the session. I’ve posted solution files (WSPs) for SharePoint 2010 to my Sympraxis Consulting Demos site (upper right of the page) which contain the two main demos I showed. There’s also a SharePoint 2007 version (MiddleTier2007) of the custom navigation demo, if that’s more useful to you. (It’s an earlier version, but not too far off from what I showed.)

“Customized Navigation”






Finally, and not to be too mercantile about it, if you are interested in learning more about these development techniques, consider taking my classes at the USPJ Academy. I have three courses which cover SharePoint’s Middle Tier:

  • Data View Web Part Basics
  • Enhancing the User Experience with jQuery
  • Introduction to the SharePoint Web Services

These three courses cover much of what I showed in the demos and more. You can see more details on the courses on the Academy Course Listing page. Come join us!


BASPUG Demo Site Template Available

I did a session at the Boston Area SharePoint User’s Group (BASPUG) on 8 December called "Developing in SharePoint’s Middle Tier". Thanks to all who attended! I enjoyed the conversation during the session (I like discussing more than presenting) and one of the things I said that I would do is make the demo site I used available to anyone who’d like to look at it.

I saved the SharePoint 2010 site as a Site Template, and it’s available for download from my Sympraxis Consulting demo site.

Feel free to download the template and play around with it. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to add them as comments to this post.


BASPUG Meeting Tonight (9 June) in Cambridge, MA, USA

If you’re in the Boston, MA, USA area tonight, come to the second meeting of the Boston Area SharePoint Users Group at the Microsoft New England Research & Development (NERD) Center, located in Cambridge.  The first meeting was a great gathering, with almost 100 attendees.  Even if the topic for each meeting isn’t of prime interest to you, it’s a great opportunity to meet others in the local SharePoint community.

From the BASPUG Web site:

Session Abstract

SharePoint 2010 introduces a new services architecture that represent a major change in architecture and design considerations as well as enhanced capabilities scalability, and extensibility over the Shared Service Provider (SSP) of MOSS 2007. This session will provide an overview of the services architecture, the services shipped with the product, how to manage and administer the services, topology considerations as well as considerations for extending service applications.

About Ryan

Ryan Sockalosky works at Microsoft as a SharePoint Technology Specialist. He works with customers to explore how the SharePoint platform can be used to achieve  business and technology needs. Prior to joining Microsoft, Ryan worked as a consultant for PricewaterhouseCoopers for over 10 years building repeatable client solutions on the Microsoft platform in areas such as finance, tax, cost reduction, M&A and mutual fund accounting across multiple industries. His role included national leadership for SharePoint strategy planning, system architecture, and solution design.

Food and drinks will be supplied and sponsored by AvePoint. After the meeting, depending on interest, we will adjourn to a local watering hole to keep the discussions going.

We will be handing out raffle tickets at the BASPUG meeting for the following items.

  • 1 License for SharePoint Zip from Black Blade Associates ($2000 value)
  • 1 2009 SharePoint Conference Content Pass (access to all slide decks and recorded presentations – $500 Value)
  • 2 Licenses for BCS MetaMan from Lightning Tools ($1200 value each)
  • Books, X-Box Games, and T-Shirts.


  • 6:00p – 6:30p
    • Sign-in, networking, raffle hand-outs, food, introductions, other events, news, member announcements, and a word from our sponsor(s)
  • 6:30p – 7:30p
    • Presentation
  • 7:30p – 8:00p
    • Raffle, member announcements, networking, open discussion

We will be meeting at the Microsoft New England Research & Development (NERD) Center, located in Cambridge, MA. For more information on the facility, as well as directions, please visit here: http://microsoftcambridge.com/About/Directions/tabid/89/Default.aspx

Join our group on LinkedIn today to connect with the rest of the BASPUG members, and spread the word! http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=2878468

Follow news about the Boston Area SharePoint Users Group on twitter by following us @BASPUG, and by using the hashtag #BASPUG

Contact us at info@bostonsharepointug.org today!