I am extremely proud to announce that I have been selected for the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award for 2021-22 in the Office Developer category. This journey has been long and while it is certainly a lot of work, I love being active in my tech community, from SharePoint to Azure to M365 to Power Platform. When I learned of the MVP program almost 14 years ago, it sounded like a group of ultimate professionals, so I started inquiring about how to become an MVP.
I’m always excited when I earn a certification, but some are more special than others. I have been working for over a year to learn all the skills needed to earn the Microsoft 365 Developer Associate certification. While I have been working as a SharePoint developer for almost 15 years, most of my work has been in very specific areas, like webparts or apps. Certifications normally require more skills than one person would have experience in, even someone doing this as long as I have.
I recently took my first vacation since the Covid-19 pandemic began. We travelled to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, and to be completely candid, I was nervous. For the last 10 years, I have travelled often for work and pleasure, but this is the first time in over a year that we have been on an airplane. While I think my health is pretty good, I fall into the high-risk category for Covid-19 based on the official guidelines.
As 2020 ends (finally!), I realized that I neglected to post about an acheivement that I am very proud of. Last month, I was confirmed as a Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT) for 2021. This is my 5th MCT certification and I even received a nice polo shirt for the 5-year acheivement. I am very proud to be counted among professional instructors in Microsoft technologies and look forward to more opportunities to use my certification help educate others.
Recently, I built a web part for a client, which led to a discussion about why the web part background was static white, which did not reflect the branding on the page. My quick fix was to just change the color manually, but now I wanted to know more about how I could build webparts that are aware of the area that they are in. It turns out, there are several options, depending on the capabilities needed and the web part framework.
Microsoft warned us! The Document Object Model (DOM) on web pages was a common target in my pre-SPFx solutions, especially the ones that used jQuery. When SPFx came along, Microsoft was very clear that the classes and element ids on the modern page were not an API. By that, they meant that there was no contract with developers that those values would not change in the future. The future is here!
I recently ran into a situation where building and debugging a SPFx web part seemed to go off the rails. Then I figured out that my normal pattern of skipping the ‘gulp clean’ command during project deployment had cause what I thought was bizarre behavior in Site Collection Features and toolbox. I was working for a client that does not have a dedicated development or QA environment due primarily to political reasons.
There were definitely doubters, but the North American Collaboration Summit has successfully executed the first “hybrid model” conference. And the results were better than any of us imagined. To read a full summary, including lessons learned, from conference organizer Mark Rackley, click here The decision to go Honestly, my beautiful wife, Tracy, and I were excited to just get out of the house and go somewhere. We have tried hard to abide by the recommended protocols of social distancing and protective measures.