It’s another great day at Microsoft Inspire at the D.C. Convention Center! Lots of great sessions and keynotes are coming up today, but here’s a glimpse of some of the sights and sounds from yesterday! Read More…

It’s another great day at Microsoft Inspire at the D.C. Convention Center! Lots of great sessions and keynotes are coming up today, but here’s a glimpse of some of the sights and sounds from yesterday! Read More…

Members of the @aisteam are attending Microsoft Inspire in Washington, D.C. this week! More than 16,000 Microsoft Partners from around the globe have come together for a week of networking and learning. The theme for day one at #MSInspire was all about empowerment: How we can use the Microsoft mission to empower every person and every organization to achieve more.

We’ll be posting some more in-depth blogs about the keynotes and other highlights soon, but for now, please enjoy some videos and photos from yesterday. As always, please follow @aisteam on Twitter for live updates from this amazing event!

powerappsIt all started with an email from a customer: They wanted an event app for an upcoming regional sales summit. The requirements fit the mold of a typical event app (session schedule and downloadable documents, photo sharing, surveys, sync with Outlook, etc.), but there was one small problem. The app needed to be done in less than a week.

Fortunately, we knew exactly what tools to use and how to put them to work for our client.

Read the rest of the story, and find out exactly how we got the job done, over at the Microsoft PowerApps Blog.

Data Analytics, Cortana Intelligence Suite, Data Visualization The Cortana Intelligence Suite is a fully managed data analytics platform that offers a range of services aimed at helping businesses find meaning in all of the data they are collecting. This post will dive into the services that are offered by the platform. Prior to discussing these services in detail, let’s take a quick lap around data analytics specific to goals, what to expect when building and maturing a competency for your business, and challenges businesses experience while on this journey. After laying this groundwork, we’ll discuss the Cortana Intelligence Suite in a bit more detail and provide a list of the services offered by the platform. Additionally, we’ll cover how the Cortana Intelligence Suite can offer the tools needed to implement a robust strategy to address the key challenge areas we’ve described. Read More…

I’ve been reading a lot about the sweeping organizational changes at Microsoft. It’s always interesting to analyze and attempt to interpret their strategy and internal politics. (For example, why is the Dynamics business still separate? Is it being positioned to be sold? Probably not, but fun to consider.)

However, I am more drawn to the larger changes the re-org is enabling. The external press always seems to be negative about the actions of Microsoft’s executive leadership ever since Bill Gates left.  While I may not agree with every choice Steve Ballmer has made, when you really stop and think about how they have transformed themselves over the past six years, it’s pretty amazing — especially when set in juxtaposition to the lack of change at other lumbering IT giants. Microsoft is well on their way to transforming from a worldwide monopoly of “Windows and Office” to a “devices and services” business. Read More…

Last week, Microsoft proudly announced the 2013 East Region Partner Award winners during a ceremony at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) in Houston, TX.

“The 2013 East Region Partner Award Winners represent some of the best and brightest our ecosystem has to offer,” said Jack Braman, Vice President, East Region Small and Midmarket Solutions and Partners (SMS&P), Microsoft Corporation.  “We applaud our winning partners for their incredible focus, passion and dedication to solving the most pressing technology challenges facing our mutual customers today.”

AIS was recognized with the 2013 Microsoft Mid-Atlantic Cloud Practice Award.  We were honored among the top Microsoft partners for providing outstanding solutions and services based upon Microsoft technologies, as well as fostering superior customer engagement in the Mid-Atlantic. The Cloud Practice Award recognizes “an innovator in the area of Cloud in their respective market. Their MS Cloud strategy components include Azure, CRM Online, BPOS/OFF365, IaaS/PaaS/SaaS/Private cloud. Partner must have adopted at least one MS cloud solution for internal use.”

Microsoft presents Field Partner Awards in 13 categories, with honorees selected from more than 200 organizations across the East Region.

“As a dedicated leader in Mid-Atlantic Cloud Practice, AIS is incredibly deserving of this award,” said Jack Braman. “AIShas a proven track record of consistent excellence in its service to commercial customers throughout the Mid-Atlantic.”

Please be our guest at the next Azure ‘n’ Action Café online session on April 10th from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. This is a jump-start overview session, including demos and best practices focusing on Windows Azure Virtual Machines: IaaS “On Your Terms.” You will experience how easy it is to bring your own customized virtual machine images — or select from a gallery and retain full control of your images — and maintain them as your business requires. You’ll also be the first to see how to provision a brand-new SharePoint 2013 farm in Azure IaaS.

The Azure ‘n’ Action Café is a series of “lunch and learn” online sessions on a variety of topics related to the Windows Azure Platform. Please register for Windows Azure Virtual Machines: IaaS “On Your Terms” by clicking on the link below and adding the meeting to your calendar from the registration page.

Click here to register to secure your seat at the Café.

We’re honored to announce that AIS’ own Media Center app won an Appy award for “Coolest App” at the SharePoint MVP Summit 2013. Media Center is a SharePoint app that allows you to integrate your Windows Azure Media Services (WAMS) assets in SharePoint. And we agree that it’s pretty darn cool.

You can download the award-winning Media Center app for free from the Office store.

And here’s a brief video demo of the app’s capabilities:

Congratulations and special thanks to AIS team members Jason McNutt, Harin Sandhoo, and Sam Larko for their contributions to Media Center!