I have to admit, I am hugely impressed with the new functionality on offer in SharePoint 2010, it is a huge leap forward. It really is an immensely powerful platform offering a huge range of services. The official one sentence description is “The Business Collaboration Platform for the Enterprise and the Web”
For a good overview of the product, read the blog post SharePoint 2010 which although long gives a good high level view. There are also a number of videos published which give a good overview; hopefully all the sessions will be made public soon.
Speaking to many of the partners and customers at the SharePoint conference this week in Las Vegas the two main comments were the breadth of functionality that SharePoint can now offer, as well as the quality of the pre-Beta1 release that they were using.
Some of the areas that stood out for me this week thinking about how Governments can use it were:
- Accessibility – as I wrote about in my previous post, SharePoint 2010 is now WCAG 2.0 compliant (UPDATE: Since this blog post more information has been released about accessibility in SharePoint 2010 on the official SharePoint blog: http://blogs.msdn.com/sharepoint/archive/2010/03/09/accessibility-and-sharepoint-2010.aspx)
- Standards Compliance – a number of standards including XHTML are supported by the UI, and the data is accessible via REST interfaces and cross browser support
- Support for multi-language – The support for handling multiple languages has improved
- Social Computing – SharePoint can now really offer the internal and external Social Computing needs of Gov 2.0.
- Enterprise Content Management – The ECM features of SharePoint not only offer huge improvements in the traditional content management, but also bringing that into Social Computing and Search.
- Web Content Management – One of the main focuses during this release was to bring the web content management up to best of breed, so Governments can use SharePoint both within the firewall as well as for building compelling websites
- Federation – SharePoint is now a Claims aware app, making it accessible through federation that will all far easier collaboration between government agencies.
This is just a quick set of features and improvements that stood out for me, there are also many other features that will improve collaboration, integration with Legacy systems, access through mobile devices and so much more.
Well done to the SharePoint team!