The San Francisco SPUG Asks the Experts


Following the success of the SharePoint Saturday East Bay event, the San Francisco SharePoint User Group put together a special Ask the Experts session with several of the SPSBAY presenters. The panel included myself, SFSPUG leader Brad Maust, CEO SFSPUG 021 of High Monkey Consulting and popular speaker — Virgil Carroll, architect at StorSimple and former PM on Microsoft’s SQL/SharePoint Customer Advisory Team — Burzin Patel, and co-founder of the DC SPUG and architect – Gary Blatt, and of course our moderator and CEO of Kiefer Consulting (who also plays a mean flute) – Greg Kiefer. Missing from the panel was DR/BC expert and one of the architects of the BPOS-D platform, Mike Watson of SeriousLabz, who had to meet with some local customers and could not make the event.

Greg broke up the night by diving the topics into 6 areas  of focus, and kept the dialog flowing with the audience. He only lost control a couple dozen times, so overall it went SFSPUG 020well. At one point, Virgil and I got into a passionate discussion around social computing and metadata, but eventually decided – against our better judgment – that we were in agreement: failure to plan for metadata and taxonomy, more than any other feature or area within SharePoint, will lead to an unsuccessful SharePoint deployment. This is especially true within SharePoint. I love the fact that Virgil regularly tells people in his SharePoint Saturday sessions that unless they start with a metadata strategy in SharePoint 2010, they should turn off the Managed Metadata Service. Leaving it on without a plan and valid governance model is a SFSPUG 016huge mistake.

Great audience, lots of participation, and a fun panel overall. I hope to do more of these in the near future, because I always learn a lot from them. Ask the Expert sessions are a reminder that no single person knows everything about SharePoint – especially not SharePoint 2010, where even the “experts” are learning in real-time.


Musical Note: I came across the band Keane a couple years back, and am always refreshed by their music. I put them into the same general category as Travis, South, and the more well-known Coldplay. But Keane have a much more lively and energetic sound that simply energizes me without overwhelming me with a wall of sound. Great driving music. Listening to the album ‘Under the Iron Sea’ right now, and the song ‘Is It Any Wonder?’ Love it.

Christian Buckley

Christian is the Brand Alliance Director for AvePoint Inc., and a Microsoft Regional Director and Office Apps & Services MVP based in Silicon Slopes (Lehi), Utah. He hosts the AvePoint Office 365 Hours (#O365hours) and #P2Pnow series, the monthly #CollabTalk TweetJam, the weekly #CollabTalk Podcast, and the Microsoft 365 Ask-Me-Anything (#M365AMA) live stream. He is based in Lehi, Utah (Silicon Slopes).

Leave a Reply