Docs on GitHub

Maybe you remember, last year I wrote about signing an App Package file, but that post was really about how I got to collaborate with someone at Microsoft, and one of the things we did was improve the online documentation for this topic.

At the time, I had noticed that there was a feedback button on each page in Docs, and underneath the feedback button it said something like ‘feedback is linked to GitHub Issues’, which led me to wonder if we’d ever see Docs in a repo that we could actually contribute to.

Now today, through a tweet by one of the managers at Microsoft, there was a link to a blog post about that very topic: here it is.

Just think how great this is! Not only do we get access to the source files of the actual documentation, we have a mechanism to contribute to the content. If you ever find yourself confused by any of the documentation, you can either leave your feedback on Docs, or you can make a change and submit a pull request to the repo itself! Either way, the actual system that is used to maintain the docs source files is also used to track issues, and you can create issues yourself in that very system!

This is what we call a BFD 🙂

 

Business Central on YouTube

Today is a Very Big Day! Allow me to tell you why 🙂

Maybe you remember a few months ago, when I posted some ‘how do I’ videos, I also mentioned that I was working on hours and hours of training material for Business Central. To make a long story short: my company was commissioned to create a long list of technical training videos. Originally, those videos would be published in the Dynamics Learning Portal (DLP). For those of you that don’t know, the DLP is a website where you can find a ton of training resources for a variety of Microsoft Dynamics products, including NAV and Business Central. There are a few caveats about DLP: not only is it inside PartnerPortal, you have to pay extra to get access to it. Partners who don’t pay this extra fee do not get access to DLP.

As soon as I started working on these training videos, I started mentioning how cool it would be to have these videos available for a wider audience, and every chance I got I would repeat that to anybody who would listen. At some point the decision was made to lift these videos from behind the paywall. They would still be inside DLP, but anyone with PartnerSource access would be able to see them. I was still not happy with that, after all PartnerSource is not free.

Now, exactly how much influence I have over these types of decisions is up for debate, but I do know that I recorded these videos, I had daily status calls with people from Microsoft, and I mentioned it to everyone that it would be great to make ALL of these videos available to the public.

So, the reason why I am so excited, is that I am very proud to be able to share that as of today, there is a separate channel for Business Central on YouTube, and the first thing that was published is a playlist with ALL of the technical training videos that are currently available. That’s right, the entire list of videos that are currently in the Business Central YouTube channel are recorded by ME!!

We still have more videos to create, and they should be added to the playlist as I finish them. At some point I’m expecting Microsoft to add more content to this channel, so it won’t be just me on there, but for now I am almost giddy with excitement.

Now like I said I don’t know just how much my insistence has played a part in this, but when I first started with this project the only plan was to publish these videos to DLP. In my mind I single-handedly convinced Microsoft to release all this great content to the public.

MVP Award Number 12

Ever since I received my first MVP award back in 2005, July 1st is a day where the first thing I do is check my email. This year I actually did not expect to get the award again, because I have not spent as much time in the community as I would like to this past year.

Wouldn’t you know, there was an email from Microsoft, congratulating me on receiving the 2016 Microsoft MVP Award. This is one of those things that gives me this very strange disproportionate level of pride. There are not many people who receive this award, even though there are many people who spend large amounts of time in the community. Still, to be singled out for this feels strange. A full dozen is pretty good.

I feel very fortunate to be part of this community, it is always a pleasure to meet people in person and talk about we help each other and how we can do better yet.

NAVUG PHX Chapter Meeting

Today attended the second meeting of the NAVUG Phoenix chapter, which was held at the Microsoft office in Tempe. The picture is the view from the conference room there, and it is not a bad place to work if you ask me.

We had maybe about a dozen people in attendance. In addition to talking about current affairs of the chapter, there were a few useful presentations. Per Mogensen from mergetool.com presented the security features in NAV. One of the ISV’s presented their product and gave us a preview of another product that they were about ready to launch.

Then I had the pleasure to present about Events and Extensions in NAV 2016. My goal was to explain what this means for non-technical people. I only had 30 minutes, which is barely enough to scratch the surface, and it is very easy to get very technical on this topic. I hope I didn’t confuse people even more, if you’re interested, you can download the slides here.

It was great to meet some people from the user community and from the local partner channel.