Great Experience at INTEGRATE 2017 in London!

Last week I had the privilege not only of attending the INTEGRATE 2017 conference in London, but presenting as well. A huge thanks to Saravana Kumar and BizTalk360 for inviting me as a speaker – what a tremendous honour and thrill to stand in front of nearly 400 integration enthusiasts from around the world and talk about Hybrid Connectivity! Also, a big thanks to Mexia for generously funding my trip. 14-DMT_NickHhauenstein

With 380+ attendees from 52 countries around the globe, this is by far the biggest Microsoft integration event of the year. Of those 380, only four of us that I know of came from APAC: fellow MVP speakers Martin Abbott from Perth and Wagner Silveira from Auckland NZ, as well as Cameron Shackell from Brisbane who manned his ActiveADAPTER sponsor stand. Wagner would have to take the prize for the furthest travelled with his 30+ hour journey!

After publishing one blog post summarising my take on the messages delivered by Microsoft (which accounted for half of the sessions at the event),  I followed on shortly after with another similar post highlighting the MVP community presentations. In addition to BizTalk Server, Logic Apps, and other traditional integration topics these also spanned into the new areas of Bots, IoT and PowerApps.

iPhone Import 156Aside from the main event, Saravana and his team also arranged for a few social events as well, including networking drinks after the first day, a dinner at Nando’s for the speakers, and another social evening for the BizTalk360 partners. They also presented each of the BizTalk360 product specialists with a beautiful award – an unexpected treat!

You have to hand it to Saravana and his team – everything went like clockwork, even keeping the speakers on schedule. And I thought it was a really nice touch that each speaker was introduced by a BizTalk360 team member. Not only did it make the speakers feel special, but it provided an opportunity to highlight the people behind the scenes who not only work to make BizTalk360 a great product but also ensure events like these come off. I hope all of them had a good rest this week!

As with all of these events, one of the things I treasure the most is the opportunity to catch up with my friends from around the globe who share my passion for integration, as well as meeting new friends. In my talk, I commented about how strong our community is, and that we not only integrate as professionals but integrate well as people too.

01-SundayNight-Mikael  21-Pizza_TomCanter

Arriving a day and a half before the three day event, I had hoped to conquer most of the jet-lag early on. But alas, the proximity to the solstice in a country so far North meant the sun didn’t set until past 10:30pm while rising just before 4:30am – which is the time I would involuntarily wake up each day no matter how late I stayed up the night before! Still, adrenalin kept me going and the engaging content kept me awake for every session.

And no matter what.., there was always time for a beer or two! Smile

22-PostPizza_TomCanter

I look forward to the next time I get to meet up with my integration friends! If you missed the event in London, you’ll have a second chance at INTEGRATE 2017 USA which will be held in Redmond on October 25-27. And of course, if you keep your eyes on the website, the videos and slides should be published soon.

(Photos by Nick Hauenstein, Dan Toomey, Mikael Sand, and Tom Canter)

Integrate 2016 – What an Event!

Last week I had the privilege of attending the world’s largest integration event this year, Integrate 2016 in London. A big thanks to my employer Mexia for sending me. As is typical for events organised by BizTalk360, it was on an especially grand scale (27 sessions with 25+ speakers) and did not disappoint in the content presented by members of the Microsoft product team and the MVP community.

Day 1 of the three day event featured a number of announcements from Microsoft that clarified their vision and direction for integration, even more so than the Integration Roadmap delivered at the end of last year. Showing their commitment to BizTalk Server as the on-premises integration platform and Logic Apps as the cloud platform provided some much-needed reassurance and comfort to the community. “BizTalk and Logic Apps better together” is the mantra underpinned by the addition of a Logic Apps adapter in the upcoming BizTalk 2016 CTP2 release and the new BizTalk Connector soon to be introduced in Logic Apps.

Without explicitly stating it, it also became rather apparent as to what is “on the outs” in the integration space:

    • Microsoft Azure BizTalk Services (MABS) is likely to be deprecated as both the VETER pipelines and the EDI/B2B functionality moves into Logic Apps by way of the Enterprise Integration Pack;
    • Azure Stack is no longer being touted as the on-premises integration platform; rather BizTalk Server will continue to be king of that domain.

I’ve already posted an article on Mexia’s blog giving my rundown on all the sessions presented by Microsoft and the  significant announcements. Soon after I followed up with a summary of the many MVP sessions that rounded out the conference.  In addition, there are plenty of other blog posts from the community giving their thoughts and recaps of the event; here are just a few:

Besides Microsoft’s clear roadmap message and the excellent presentations, perhaps the best thing about this conference was the opportunity to catch up with colleagues and friends from around the world – and meet new ones as well!

Kickoff Dinner
(photo by Thomas Canter)

 

Saravana&Dan
(photo courtesy of BizTalk360)

 

GreenwichKitchen
(photo by Tara Motevalli)

Dinner_with_MVPs
(photo by Steef-Jan Wiggers)

Kudos again to Saravana Kumar, BizTalk360, Microsoft and all the sponsors for making this such an outstanding event! Looking forward to Integrate 2017!

BizTalk Integration Summit 2013 (USA) – BizTalk is Alive & Well!

Just enjoyed an awesome experience at the BizTalk Integration Summit in Seattle with my esteemed colleagues Bill Chesnut and Dean Robertson! Not only did I have the opportunity to meet most of the top BizTalk experts in the world for the first time (including Sandro Pereira, Tord Glad Nordalh, Steef-Jan Wiggers, Saravana Kumar, Richard SeroterKent Weare, Michael Stephenson, Stephen Thomas, Jon Fancey and others), but we were there to hear Scott Guthrie personally announce the General Availability of Windows Azure BizTalk Services (WABS) just minutes before the news went public:

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BizTalk360 Presentation to Brisbane User Group

Tonight I set out to present a 45-minute discussion and demonstration of BizTalk360 to the Brisbane BizTalk User Group. An hour and a half later, I was still answering questions and displaying in-depth features of the product! We’re a pretty small & intimate group, so there was plenty of opportunity for discussion and catering for specific requests (“Can I see how … works?”), which for me as a presenter is awesome. I love interaction because you know you are really reaching your audience (small or large) and addressing their interests & concerns.

BTS360The truth is, they were truly impressed with the power and flexibility of the product, despite the limited scenarios that I was able to present to them. Saravana and his team have really hit the mark with this release, addressing a critical void in the BizTalk operational support area. Looking forward to Version 7.0!

Only downside was that I barely had time left to present my second session for the night, new features of BizTalk 2013! Oh well, I don’t think Microsoft needs too much help in selling that product anyway! Winking smile

Next BrizTalk Meeting: BizTalk 2013 & BizTalk360 Demos!

I’m really looking forward to presenting a double-header at our next Brisbane BizTalk User Group meeting on Wednesday:

What’s New in BizTalk Server 2013

Finally released to manufacturing, this long awaited edition hosts a variety of new features that make integrating your on-premises system with the cloud so much easier. The new REST and Azure Service Bus adapters provide quick & simple connectivity for building powerful, flexible and highly scalable hybrid solutions with BizTalk & Azure.

We’ll see an example of both in action during this part of the presentation.

Monitoring with BizTalk360

Now in Version 6.0, Saravana Kumar and his team have released the best-ever edition of BizTalk360, an easy to install web-based application that helps manage the complexity of supporting your BizTalk environments. In addition to the standard features of monitoring, alerting, administrating and auditing, the new capabilities of this release include:

  • Search & Action on Artefacts (Receive locations, send ports, applications etc.)
  • ESB Exception Management Portal
  • Custom SQL Query Complete Rewrite
  • Database Query Monitoring
  • SQL Agent Job Outcome Monitoring
  • Threshold Monitoring Window
  • Scheduled Monitoring Downtime
  • Support for SSL

I’ll present a demo of an active installation so you can witness first-hand the simplicity with which this awesome tool provides value!

If you’re in the Brisbane area, drop by Microsoft at 400 George St, Lvl 28 at 5:30pm on Wednesday, 29th May for some pizza and a great session! All i ask is that you register first so that I know how many pizzas to order!

BizTalk360 – Latest Version

The latest version of BizTalk360 (v6.0) was released on 7 March 2013. It features some great improvements over the previous version and proves the team’s commitment to regular releases in response to customer feedback.

For a discussion of the new features, please see this post on my employer’s blog, which also contains a link to my previous post on the core capabilities of the product.

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New Search Screen – BizTalk360

We are recommending this product to our clients as a relatively simple and inexpensive way to manage the operational support of a BizTalk Server environment.

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