‘A Day in the Life with Office 2010’ at Microsoft’s Launch 2010 Event in Washington, D.C.

Microsoft Launch 2010 logoFor the better part of an hour at yesterday's Microsoft Launch 2010 event in Washington, D.C., Yung Chou presented a demo that provided a snapshot into "a day in the life with Office 2010."  The session proved to be not only a concise overview of many of the new features included in Office 2010 and SharePoint 2010, but also provided examples of how an IT pro might seamlessly integrate the various applications and functionality into a typical day's work.

Since most of us tend to begin our workday in Outlook, it's with Outlook 2010 that Yung began his demo, pointing out the inclusion of the Ribbon in Outlook, and handily demonstrating the usefulness of the "show as conversations" feature that allows you to automatically group mail together as threaded conversations around specific subjects.  Yung also demonstrated the ability to setup meetings directly based on the participants in an email conversation, and showed that the feature that will warn you if you're inviting a non-internal to what appears to be a meeting of internals.

Yung demonstrated a BI dashboard in SharePoint 2010, the ability to drill down into the data, and how you can use the People search feature in SharePoint to locate an expert in a particular area relating to the data at hand.  Having located the correct resource, Yung showed the variety of means of contacting that individual, and (through logging in as two users) showed how to easily ask a question and receive an answer via instant message via the embedded contact feature.  Since presence notification is included in users' Profile in SharePoint 2010, you'll know if a colleague is available to receive an instant message or a phone call.  Interestingly, one of the key Microsoft messages around the 2010 releases involves its being "all about minimizing interruptions to your work" which, in this case, is great if you're the person instantly getting an answer to a question sent via instant message, but is perhaps not-so-great if you're the colleague whose own work was interrupted with the asking of that question, y'know?

(As an aside, while I was writing the previous paragraph, I received an instant message from a colleague, and even though a question wasn't asked, a link was included (absent context), and seeing and wondering about the link temporarily derailed my thought process mid-sentence.)

Yung then demonstrated how you can use Excel 2010 to generate trend data, and pointed out that Excel can now handle "hundreds of millions" of rows of data.  Yung also showed how the Import Table Wizard and PowerPivot can be leveraged to display trend data before moving on to demonstrating seamlessly saving a Word doc to SharePoint.  From there, Yung demonstrated how you can download (with only a few exceptions) the contents of a SharePoint site, taking all of that content offline via SharePoint Workspace ("officially the offline client for SharePoint").  Regarding the handful of exceptions to content that can be taken offline with SharePoint Workspace, Yung said that, "Calendar is not available…yet."  With the Word doc offline, and while posing as one user while at the same time logged in as another user, Yung demonstrated the co-authoring feature of Word 2010, and the two-way sync functionality which automatically syncs offline content once you're back online.

Also included in his demonstration was PowerPoint 2010, with Yung beginning in the PowerPoint Web app, and demonstrating how a deck can be opened directly from the Web app for editing in the client app.  With his allotted time running out, Yung concluded with a brief demo of document sets in 2010, and how the same metadata can be assigned to a given set of documents, and how those documents can then be uploaded to SharePoint (with metadata intact, of course) through simply dragging them from your desktop and dropping them into SharePoint.

Read the entire Microsoft Launch 2010 Event in Washington, D.C. series:

For further reading, the complete slide decks from all of the Launch 2010 sessions are available as free downloads under the "Presentation Materials" heading on the Office 2010 and SharePoint Launch resources page at TechNet.

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