SEATTLE-When Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates takes the stage to deliver the keynote address at the annual 2008 Microsoft SharePoint Conference here March 3, he will announce the availability of both Search Server 2008 Express and the Silverlight Blueprint for SharePoint.
Search Server 2008 Express, the free, downloadable enterprise search product announced in November, is relatively simple to install and easy to use, and brings a powerful set of search features, including new capabilities to help businesses connect to a wide range of information, a Microsoft spokesperson told eWEEK ahead of the conference.
Silverlight Blueprint for SharePoint jumpstarts the effort to combine the interactivity of Silverlight with the next-generation Web application development platform of SharePoint. It includes sample applications that combine Silverlight and SharePoint, detailed guidance and proven best practices, and new rich business data visualizations and interactivity.
The blueprint can be downloaded here.
Gates will also tell the audience that more than 100 million SharePoint licenses have been sold, taking sales revenue beyond the billion-dollar mark, largely due to the collaboration and information management capabilities it delivers, and that this is just the beginning of SharePoint's success, the spokesperson said.
There are currently some 2,250 certified SharePoint partners, with more than 17,000 businesses using the product to collaborate with team members, search and create social networks for experts and corporate information, manage content and workflow, and leverage business insight to make better-informed decisions.
One such customer is Elliot Gerard, a technology manager at General Mills, who said most of its workers now have an official "home" site, where they contact one another, share information and ideas, track tasks, and write documentation.
"Almost every week we are astounded by the organic applications our users create in SharePoint to make themselves more productive, as well as the blossoming SharePoint social networks that connect people to people," Gerard said.