SV Code Camp Session Report: Working with Sharepoint Data

Session: Working with Sharepoint Data @ SV Code Camp / Presenter: Joseph Ackerman, Senior Consultant with Allin Corp. MS Partner

Things I heard (caution: I am not a Sharepoint user or developer):

  • Sharepoint development is not fun. 80% audience (~30 prople) raise hands as sharepoint users.
  • Had never heard of CAML until now…CAML=Collaborative Application Markup Language
  • Sharepoint woefully under-documented for developers, getting better but right now it sucks.
  • Though built on top of 2.0, SQL Server, Sharepoint has lots of differences. E.g. cannot do the way you are used to doing it with those stuff.
  • Biggest difference is working with data. Everything is a list. Lists =  Tables. Fields = Columns. Rows = ListItems. Lists have more metadata. Less flexible (e.g. joins are difficult or impossible). Lots of things to stitch together.
  • You get a Context object to work with anything in Sharepoint (e.g. SPContext.Current.Site). Sites have webs. Web has a collection of Lists. List has 1-n views.
  • Sharepoint / Web Parts is impossible to debug – use the famous println approach.

After this conceptual discussion, I am lost in all the XML files, C# and other code shown on screen (probably because I am not a SharePoint developer).

My Rating: Presenter was really good. But not so sure about Sharepoint itself. After attending, I did not come away with “Holy Macro! I need to get my hands on Sharepoint and try this out!”.

Session Wiki here | Slides here

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