Tuesday, August 30, 2011

It’s the @Dreamforce Community Conference!

This morning is kind of a big deal for all of us involved in the Salesforce community: the Community Conference. It’s an opportunity for us to share our experiences with Salesforce and our perspective as individual customers.

You can view the itinerary for the Community Conference here.

Where You Can Fine Me

I’ll be speaking in at least two sessions:

  • Building Your Brand (10am – 10:45am and 11am – 12pm)
  • AppExchange: Discover Top Apps on the Leading Cloud Marketplace (3:30pm – 4:30pm)

Come up and say hi! I’d love to meet you. And I’ve got quite a few extra geeky pins that I’m happy to share.

Monday, August 29, 2011

San Fran: Pre-Dreamforce, Day 1, in brief

I’m too exhausted to post much today but I’ll share some highlights so I can dive into them more later.

  • Took a course with a few other Salesforce MVPs - “Intro to Object Oriented Programming for Non-Developers.” It crammed a normally-5-day course into one day. Eek.
  • Did a scavenger hunt (involving some equally awesome and embarrassing moments) as part of a team building exercise for the MVPs, organized by Erica Kuhl.
  • Hung out with great people – a few familiar faces and some new ones too.

The community conference is tomorrow (more on that coming soon) and then the official Dreamforce conference follows. There is always so much to cram into such a short time, but we make memories here that last all year!

Note: I’ve still got quite a few geeky girl and guy pins available. Find me tomorrow to claim yours!

Jenna Baze is a rather geeky girl with average social skills and an affinity for: Google Apps, Salesforce.com, Pinterest, natural light photography and finding creative ways to avoid doing dishes (which includes updating a handful of blogs).
Email:
rathergeeky@gmail.com
Twitter: @RatherGeeky
Facebook: Rather Geeky Tips

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Awesome @Dreamforce Session Calendar Import Tool from Mavens Consulting

After finalizing my schedule for Dreamforce, I recalled a tweet from @BotosCloud about a neat tool that his company (Mavens Consulting) had put together.

In the Dreamforce app, you click on "My Calendar", then "Email My Calendar." Then forward the email you receive to dfcalendar@mavensconsulting.com. You'll receive back an email with an attachment that you can import and add to your calendar.

This is a great way to provide an integration that works for those of us that no longer use Outlook. (Yay for Google Apps!)

Also, I love that I'm now able to see all of my sessions and I can add my own meetings (like with my boss or evening events), which isn't possible with the Dreamforce app Calendar (yet - although I have suggested it. Maybe next year).

Thanks for sharing a neat solution guys!

Now my calendar looks like this:
My Google Calendar (screenshot)

Note: it appears that their website is currently down for maintenance, so I viewed a cached copy of the original link by going to Google, searching for the url and then clicking on 'cached.'

Http mavens force com dreamforce  Google Search 1

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Dreamforce Countdown: 2 days. San Fran: tomorrow.

I leave for San Francisco tomorrow to attend Salesforce.com's annual Dreamforce conference.

So far, I've got my schedule pretty well planned.

For those of you that might be looking to grab a pin, I'll be sharing my location on twitter periodically. I'll also be updating the Dreamforce app with the sessions that I'm in. I'm toying with the idea of posting a daily 'this is what I'm wearing' pic so that it makes it easier to find me. :)

If you're interested in listening to me speak (eek), you can attend one of these sessions:
  • Building Your Brand, Tuesday 8/30 10-10:45am, Moscone West 3022
    With Mike Gerholdt and Nick Westergaard. We've got some great tips for building your brand and blogging, whether you're a Salesforce admin or not. Note: It's possible that they've scheduled another session for us right after, so if there isn't room in the first one, please stop by the second!

  • AppExchange: Discover Top Apps on the Leading Cloud Marketplace, Tuesday 3:30-4:30pm, Marriott Marquis - Lower B2 Level - Yerba Buena Salons 1-3
    Discover a few apps that you might not have heard about and how we are using them. The solutions I'm discussing might appeal to smaller Salesforce orgs, while my co-presenters are from much larger orgs.
I hope that you all have a great learning and networking experience at Dreamforce 2011. And for those that aren't able to make it, don't forget that you can join online!

If you're interested, you can read about my experience at last year's Dreamforce conference here.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Admin Journal: A Confession About Chatter

I have a confession… and I’m rather ashamed.

We don’t use Chatter (well, a post here and there). I haven’t devoted much time to training my users to use it. And, I haven’t tweaked it at all.

But, there’s hope. I plan to attend a session (or 2) at Dreamforce to learn about getting people on board and some customization options.

Anywhoo, something happened today that made me realize that I shouldn’t be so intimidated about discussing Chatter with my users.

I created a new user. 15 minutes later, I received a notification that she had commented on a chat.

15 minutes.

That tells me that I need to give my users more credit. It’s not that hard.

Additional Resources

 

Jenna Baze is a rather geeky girl with average social skills and an affinity for: Google Apps, Salesforce.com, Pinterest, natural light photography and finding creative ways to avoid doing dishes (which includes updating a handful of blogs).
Email:
rathergeeky@gmail.com
Twitter: @RatherGeeky
Facebook: Rather Geeky Tips

A Letter to Juno: My Nana is Dead. Stop Charging Her.

Shame on you Juno. Shame on you for continuing to charge my dead Nana.

The other day, I was helping my mom type something up on the computer that we inherited from my Nana. She died a few months ago and we have slowly been picking up the pieces and getting through the grief.

As I showed my mom how to align her text, she mentioned that, despite several efforts of my family members to close down my Nana’s paid Juno account, the company was still charging her.

I couldn’t believe it.

First of all, I didn’t realize that people had to pay for Juno. Exactly what sort of ‘additional features’ are included in their premium plan. I decided to check out what $14.95/month gets you:

image

  • I think it’s rather likely that my Nana was already paying for internet service, so it’s nice to know that she was doubly covered for ‘Fastest Dial-Up Surfing You Can Get’.
  • Unlimited Access: What does that even mean? Unlimited access to The Internet? Uh, I didn’t realize you had to pay for that.
  • Spam and Email Virus Protection: Hey, did you know Gmail does that for free?
  • No Credit Card Required: Well, thank goodness that you’re willing to find alternative ways of taking peoples’ money for technology that should have been left behind in the 20th century.

Regardless of the ‘services’ provided, shame on you Juno. Shame on you for continuing to charge my dead Nana.

If a Juno representative happens to stumble upon this post, you can reach me via email at rathergeeky@gmail.com.

Jenna Baze is a rather geeky girl with average social skills and an affinity for: Google Apps, Salesforce.com, Pinterest, natural light photography and finding creative ways to avoid doing dishes (which includes updating a handful of blogs).
Email:
rathergeeky@gmail.com
Twitter: @RatherGeeky
Facebook: Rather Geeky Tips

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The #DF11 Goodies Have Arrived. Yay! @Salesforce


Thanks to Zazzle and Moo, I'm ready for Dreamforce 2011 in San Fran. One more week to go!


Monday, August 15, 2011

Admin Journal: Saving Clicks When Logging in as a User - @Salesforce

Dear Admin Journal:

Based on their profile, I request that one or two users grant me login access to their accounts until 2090 (or somewhere around that time). This allows me to periodically check in on how the system appears after updates.

It has always been a bit cumbersome in my mind to first log in as myself (although I'm pretty much always logged in, then click on my name --> Setup --> expand Manage Users --> search for the person's name --> Login.

Today, I thought 'hey, I wonder if I could just bookmark the login link...'. I wanted to speed up the process as I was doing quite a bit of testing.

I dragged the login link to my bookmarks bar in my browser. Then, I clicked on it. And, poof! I was logged in as that user.

I'm always keen on saving clicks...

That's all for tonight,

Jenna, The Admin


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Test Driving Clarify from @ScreenSteps. Awesomeness.


Recently, I shared my excitement about Clarify (currently in beta for Mac), a tool for creating and sharing step-by-step tutorials that are based on screen captures.

I took it for a test drive today.

I'm impressed.

Like, really.

I used it to create a tutorial to explain to a friend why she shouldn't create a brand new Facebook account just to share things with her family members. I explained in a few steps how you filter specific posts so they are visible to certain people.

Take a look here.

So far, my favorite thing about Clarify is that it starts with screen captures (rather than text-based steps and then adding screen captures later). It saved me a lot of time that I would normally spend toggling back and forth to grab a screen capture and then write my step details and back again.

Anyway, I'm excited about where this is going.

Monday, August 8, 2011

A Confession (I'm not in love with my Mac)

I've tried for weeks. Some days have been wonderful. Others, have made me question my intelligence.

And I've come to this decision: I'm not in love.

I'm talking about my Mac.

After years as a dedicated Windows-based PC user, I switched two months ago to a Mac. I purchased an iMac, mainly in an effort to improve my photography and partially because I love my iPhone so freakin' much that I figured I'd fall for another Apple product just as hard.

Nope.

I'm in the tech industry. I'm young. I'm adaptable, right? So why can't I adjust to a new OS? Why does it constantly make me question whether I really 'get' what the Mac is all about?

I haven't completely given up yet, but I thought I'd share a few of my main gripes.

  • The inability to resize windows from any corner except the lower right. This is often infuriating.
  • I can't keep the Shift, Control, Option, Command and Function keys straight. After training myself to be a keyboard shortcut ninja with my PC, I haven't yet gotten up to speed.
  • I struggle to adjust to the menu bar at the top left.
  • I can't maximize a window. I know that it might not make sense when the window is perfectly sized to the contents of the webpage I'm viewing, for example. But if I want crazy whitespace, GIMME SOME CRAZY WHITESPACE!
  • The fact that I have to pay for software that I was already using... or have to search in vain for alternatives.
I'm not saying there aren't things that I love about this computer. There are.... several in fact, such as:
  • It starts up crazy-fast.
  • It hasn't crashed. (Okay, maybe once.)
  • The magic mouse. Fantastic.
  • The minimalistic keyboard (and no separate CPU). When my mom first saw it, she said "That's your computer?! Don't you feel naked?" Ha.)
  • The graphics are lovely.
  • There is no glare on the screen - I don't have to tilt it a certain way for someone to read over my shoulder.
I do regret buying an iMac as opposed to a MacBook Pro, but that just wasn't in my budget. I should have waited. And actually, the more time that goes by, the more I find myself wishing I would have just upgraded my Dell laptop (gasp).

I want my comfortable keyboard shortcuts back. The software that I can rely on (don't laugh). The workflow that I had refined and perfected for post processing my photos. The file structure that I was used to.

I feel like I made a mistake.

Have you made the switch? Did you struggle? Make me feel like I'm not completely crazy by sharing a comment. Please. For my sanity. :)


Friday, August 5, 2011

My Experience at Dreamforce 2010 (24 Days Until #DF11) @Salesforce

It’s 24 days until Dreamforce 2011 and I just realized that I never posted my review of 2010… actually, I never even finished writing it. I’m hoping to have a more detailed post for the next conference!


I attended Dreamforce 2010 (the annual Salesforce conference) in San Francisco last fall. Though it was the second year that I attended, it was the first time I was actually involved (albeit in a small way). I participated in the Community Conference, talking about contributing to the IdeaExchange.





I was also interviewed as part of a roundtable about the community, along with Brad Gross, Garry Polmateer and Jeff Grosse by the lovely Karin Versace.



I was surprised (and totally psyched) to be included in the inaugural class of Salesforce MVPs along with Brandy Colmer, Matt Brown, Rebecca Dente, Tal Frankfurt, Mike Gerholdt, Andres Gluecksmann, Jeff Grosse, Steve Molis, Mark Passovoy, Gary Polmateer, Rhonda Ross, John Seabury, Alex Sutherland, Tom Fox, Mattias Nordin, Leyna Hoffer and Brad Gross. (See members of the Spring and Summer ‘11 classes here.)





Every time I think about Dreamforce, I am reminded of how great it is to be part of the community, on Twitter, Chatter and locally. Salesforce is really in tune with what’s happening in the community and, most importantly, listens. I’m a fan. :)

Much of this would not be possible without the support and encouragement of my boss, Antonio Montoya.



Here are my video highlights:


Photos courtesy of Antonio Montoya (flickr: mon*ari).

Additional Resources

Jenna Baze is a rather geeky girl with average social skills and an affinity for: all things Google, Remember the Milk, Salesforce.com, Inbox Zero, Etsy, natural light photography and finding creative ways to avoid doing dishes (which includes updating a handful of blogs).
Email:
rathergeeky@gmail.com
Twitter: @RatherGeeky
Facebook: Rather Geeky Tips

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

{Update} Val Rule to Prevent ‘Dear John L.’ has a Glitch – Fixed! #DataQuality @Salesforce

A few months ago, I shared a validation rule for Contacts to prevent sending emails with “Dear John L.”

My data quality check ensured that users didn’t enter a middle name in the first name field.

But, when I was doing some updates with the Excel Connector yesterday, I realized that my validation rule had a glitch.

It was correctly preventing middle names in the first name field, but it was also throwing the same error when they entered a name that happened to be abbreviated (such as “A. R.”). Or in this case, I was getting the error when I attempted to update the records en masse.

2011-08-01_144033

So, I’ve updated my rule to allow abbreviated first names by adding a function to my formula to cause it to fire only when the length of the field is greater than 5 characters.

This accounts for names where a space exists between the acronym or vice versa.

Here is the original error condition formula:

2011-08-01_144116

And here’s the updated one:

2011-08-01_144317

If you have a more effective way to accomplish this, please do share in the comments!

Related Posts

Jenna Baze is a rather geeky girl with average social skills and an affinity for: Google Apps, Salesforce.com, Pinterest, natural light photography and finding creative ways to avoid doing dishes (which includes updating a handful of blogs).
Email:
rathergeeky@gmail.com
Twitter: @RatherGeeky
Facebook: Rather Geeky Tips
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