Introducing The Outlook Social Connector Provider Proxy Library

You may have heard of OfficeTalk. You may have heard of the Outlook Social Connector. As it turns out, my team is responsible for supporting developers building Outlook Social Connector (OSC) providers for their social networks. As a means of learning about how the technology works in preparing myself and my team for supporting this new technology, I decided to take on the challenge of building an OSC provider for OfficeTalk. It turned out pretty well and I learned a lot about the OSC and what sort of things our customers will be experiencing as they build their own connectors. That’s not really the point of this post though. In building OfficeTalkOSC I decided that it would be a great thing to have a library which sort of served as a buffer between the providers and the OSC itself and wrapped a lot of the logic that is confusing and problematic to implement. So I came up with the OSC Provider Proxy Library. The library should allow .NET developers to focus on the implementation of their business logic instead of the complexities of building an OSC provider from scratch.

This library is implemented in .NET Framework v4.0 (RTM’d today). It boils the 4 interfaces the OSC requires down to just one. It abstracts the work of maintaining the XML schema rules and provides a nice object model around activities and templates.

I would strongly suggest reading the documentation on building an OSC provider from here first. This will provide a very strong foundation for what it takes to build an OSC provider and will make the OSCProvider library much more intuitive.

Once you’ve read that documentation and you’re ready to begin, you can download the library and documentation from here:

Please also provide feedback using the Issue Tracker (for bugs and feature requests) and the Discussions tab for general praise and adoration.

This isn’t like an officially supported binary or anything like that (though you are welcome to use it) so their may be breaking changes between releases, but I’ll try to keep them to a minimum and document when those types of changes occur….I said “try”. 🙂

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