Archive for April, 2007

New Home for SFDC User Groups

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There’s a new home for all of the formalized Salesforce.com User Groups that are out there. Visit http://usergroups.salesforce.com/ or click on the MEET Users Near You link on the Community page.

The user groups used to be located as Dreamforce blogs, but have since been moved to this new location. The old URLs are being routed to the new, so you shouldn’t be missing any posts in the blogs. However, it’s probably a good idea to update your RSS readers with the new location.

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Salesforce Platform Edition Has Arrived

A little over a year ago, I wrote a post suggesting Salesforce offer a “Platform Edition” that offers the Apex platform to companies/developers, but excludes CRM from it.

In a press release today, Salesforce announced that it will now be offered. The offering sounds very similar (except more expensive :) ) to what I wrote about a year ago. Visit Salesforce’s landing page about this new offering for more information.

Per the website, the following is the high-level offering:

sfdc_platform_edition1.png
As of April 23, 2007. See the Salesforce website for up to date information.

For this offering, the Apex platform consists of:

sfdc_platform_edition2.png
As of April 23, 2007. See the Salesforce website for up to date information.

It sounds almost identical to what I suggested except that it doesn’t sound like adding/removing licenses is as self-service as I’d like. You still have to run through a sales organization to get it.

What isn’t clear is whether a company can simply purchase the Platform Edition without purchasing CRM first. The marketing materials on the website make it sound like you have to be a CRM customer first and then you can extend non-CRM functionality to others. Also, the names of the offerings are “Salesforce Platform Edition for Enterprise Edition” and “Salesforce Platform Edition for Unlimited Edition“. This definitely makes it sound like its not a stand-alone offering, which is too bad. It would have been an easy thing to do and it would open up their market a lot more. I imagine many companies would be interested in starting with non-CRM offerings and move to CRM later once they see how great the platform is.

It’s definitely a step in the right direction.

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Schedule your Apex logic

Steve over at gokubi.com feed-icon-12x12.png has been doing a lot with Apex Code recently. He has a clever post about writing Apex code triggers and having them run on a schedule. It’s a good post to get the wheels turning with regards to what you can now do on the platform.

Nice work, Steve.

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New Flex Toolkit

Salesforce posted a new wiki page for a Flex Toolkit, allowing for rich interactive components to be built on Adobe’s Flex platform and integrated with Salesforce.com. The overview, per wiki page is:

The concept for this library is simple: Begin with the Salesforce AJAX toolkit, port the data layer to the ActionScript 3.0 programing language found in Adobe Flex, returning native strongly typed ActionScript objects for the Flex programmer to manipulate and render. This allows Flex programmers to build S-controls — components within the Apex interface where custom code can be executed — without dropping into JavaScript.

For more information:

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Auto vCard Usage thru Mar 07

Last September, I posted about the usage stats for Auto vCard where I had about 1000 hits in August 2006.

Auto vCard usage continues to grow and is now being used by large companies in their Salesforce environments. The script received ~3500 hits in March 2007. Current stats below:

auto_vcard_stats_0307.png

Auto vCard allows you to add a custom link to both Leads and Contacts and automatically create a vCard file from the record. These files will open into Outlook and other PIMs. In short, you click a link in Salesforce to save that contact/lead to Outlook.

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