In this final post covering off some miscellaneous new features of SharePoint 2010 that could be of benefit for you and your team I am going to look at three distinct areas:
- Managed metadata – providing consistent metadata across your organisation;
- Wiki improvements – how SharePoint 2010 wiki’s have been improved; and
- Graph web part – SharePoint’s new graphing data visualisation web part.
SharePoint 2010 introduces a new concept, managed metadata, which allows you to define a central set of metadata items for the whole farm which can be referenced across all sites. This allows the central definition of metadata terms that will be used across the whole organisation and ensures consistent tagging of metadata against content, reducing the chances of items being tagged incorrectly and increasing the chances of items being found.
Each managed metadata ‘term set’ is stored in the ‘term store’ a central repository of terms that is located in Central Admin.
Creating a new term set couldn’t be easier, simply click on ‘Managed Metadata Service’ and choose ‘New Group’.
Enter the relevant information for the metadata group, including who owns the group of term sets, and people that are authorised to contribute term sets.
Finally, you need to add a term set to the group, to do so click on the group and choose ‘New Term Set’ to manually enter the term set, or ‘Import Term Set’ to import a CSV file containing the term set automatically.
SharePoint 2007 was the first release of SharePoint to introduce Wiki’s. Wiki’s allow users to create a rich web of interconnected web pages easily that allow information to be captured quickly and structured. I am often taken aback when I see the phenomenal uptake of wiki’s across organisations, ranging from FAQs through to Project Procedures & Processes. However I also tend to hear the same problems again and again like, ‘Why do I have to upload pictures to a separate library?’ & ‘Why can’t I easily reference documents or lists from within the wiki?’.
Well in 2010 the wiki functionality has been improved significantly. It is now possible via the new rich wiki editing to upload a picture directly at editing time, instead of having to upload it to a library first, then insert a reference. This is a massive improvement!
Through wiki linking, entering [[ + ctrl + space will give you the option to link through to another wiki page, a list, file or list view all from within the wiki.
This makes linking to other pages, or other content much much easier and will no doubt further drive the usage of this fantastic tool.
The final SharePoint 2010 feature I want to call out is the Graph webpart. Previously, graphics in SharePoint had to be achieved using Excel Services, Reporting Services or bespoke web parts, now Microsoft provides a webpart out of the box that can be configured to display data graphically.
Setting up the webpart couldn’t be easier, there is a simple wizard based interface that lets you choose what the chart is going to look like, and what data you want to connect to the chart.
The web part supports a diverse number of data sources, ranging from other web parts using a connector, a SharePoint list, the BDC or an Excel Services workbook.
You can also simply configure what you want the web part to look like:
There is huge potential for this web part, for instance, using it to represent issue and risk information on a Project site, or to give a graphical overview of bug numbers and their associated status, the sky is the limit.