Office Developer Conference

In case you hadn’t heard or had somehow forgotten, let me remind you that the Office Dev Con is on this weekend in Brisbane. Thanks to Graham and everyone else involved in making this happen – I feel honoured to be amongst the presenters.  Full information on sessions and the presenters is available at Here’s my two sessions:

Title: Where’s my runtime? A tale of a mobile database engine.

One of the challenges of building rich client applications is often storing data. Whether this be caching data to improve look up performance or data entered by the user that needs to be persisted until a data connection is available, the dilemma is always what technology should you use? With only a small amount of data the answer is often a simple XML file but as the quantity of data, or in fact the complexity of the data, grows it becomes inevitable that you will want some sort of database in which to store your data.

In this session you’ll learn all about SQL Server Compact Edition (CE), a client side database technology that you can ship alongside your application. Unlike other database technologies SQL Server Compact doesn’t need to be installed and thus doesn’t require elevated privileges, making it ideal for both Office and ClickOnce applications. The session will give a brief overview of the technology, before diving into how you can use, configure, deploy and manage your databases.

Title: Document creation in the cloud with Windows Azure and the OpenXML SDK.

Since the release of Office 2007 there has been considerable work put into the Open XML SDK. Unlike previous versions of Word that relied on interop assemblies to do automation, with the new XML-based file formats you can automate document creation as and when you need to. In fact, with the Open XML SDK there is no reliance on Word, Excel or any other Office component. This makes it particularly useful for building services on the Windows Azure platform. This session will provide an overview of Windows Azure and the Open XML SDK, as well as showing how you can easily combine the two to build high volume, scalable document automation services hosted in the cloud.

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