Well Vista was released last night and so was Office 2007. I attended a seminar sponsored by Microsoft last week that highlighted the new technologies. I was really impressed with the new version of Office. If you are a knowledge worker that uses Office, Outlook is going to be your new home.
As a small business owner, I really liked the Outlook Business Contact Manager (BCM) for how well integrated it is into the other office suite products. Using the BCM in Outlook, you can manage marketing campaigns, sales campaigns, and perform many elements of project and time management.
The other feature I really like about Office 2007 is its almost seamless integration with SharePoint 3.0. I expect SharePoint’s popularity to soar because of how well integrated Office 2007 is with it. If you are currently running SharePoint 2.0, the upgrade to 3.0 is free and can be downloaded from Microsoft’s web site.
Finally, I’m surprised (if the rumors are true) that SAS is not Vista compatible and the Institute will not be releasing an update to their product line until the end of 2007 or early 2008. It’s not like anyone in the IT industry was unaware that Vista was not on the horizon for the last few years. When you are a company spending thousands of dollars a year to license SAS products, expecting a timely release to run on Vista should be taken for granted. It’s my personal opinion that SAS just doesn’t respect the SAS Developer anymore. They would rather spend their time and energy focused on developing vertical applications and loving up to those who have control over purse strings at companies that they do business with or who they want to do business with.
If you’re a SAS Developer, you know what I mean. You’re still working in an editor that was designed in the 1970’s and popularized in the 1980’s and lacks features such as intellisense and code templates. I remember using an old version (version 5.5 perhaps?) of Turbo Pascal that had some elemental code completion features back in the late 1980’s. The SAS text editors on the other hand are stuck with color coding and the bolding and italicizing of text as their only enhancements in 25 years.
Please SAS Institute, work on your editor or better yet, create an API so that third parties can come in and help us who actually have to use your editor out in the field.