Oporto BizTalk Innovation Day – The Story

Posted: March 21, 2013  |  Categories: BizTalk Events Portuguese Community

Around 45 attendees, from 19 companies across 8 countries, some companies were Microsoft partners who brought their BizTalk consultants other were customers and/or possible customers, 5 Microsoft Integration MVP’s present and 1 member of Microsoft BizTalk Product group and 3 Sponsors (DevScope, Codit and Microsoft Portugal) these are some of the numbers that reflect the success of this event that was held in Casa do Infante –Oporto, Portugal last 14th March 2013!

Is not very common in Portugal have an event dedicated exclusively to BizTalk Server and in my experience and personal opinion, It’s a great feeling when we manage to successfully execute something like this after months of work, gather these fantastic people who paid their own expenses to be at this event and for the first time bring one Program Manager in the BizTalk Product Team to Portugal! And at the end receive great feedbacks and most important some attendees asking me if I think to repeat the event next year! Well, it is still too early to answer that question.

The event was held in Casa do Infante, located in the heart of Porto’s UNESCO Heritage Site, and what a beautiful combination between a building with 7 centuries of history and full of culture with new technologies. I would like to thank Porto Convention Bureau for kindly given us the venue for the event we couldn’t pick a better place.

OBID Casa do Infante
OBID Casa do Infante Auditorium

I also would like to thanks my company DevScope for helping me organize this event since day one and for being one of the sponsors, in special my two coworkers Marcia Teixeira and Sónia Gomes they were simply wonderful and tireless in preparing all the details of this event. And also of course to Codit and Microsoft Portugal for having sponsored this event, without all of them none of this would have been possible.

OBID Registration
OBID Registration

The day began at 9:00 am with the opening of the registration process and the guests didn’t take too long to start arriving and start doing some social network with other attendees and speakers. With the Records with the registration process progressing very smoothly, two of my biggest problem was confirmed: due to bad weather in Europe, both Akshat Sharma and Tord Glad Nordahl were delayed so I had the need to reschedule almost all the sessions.

At 9:50 am I kick-started the event with his introduction speech welcoming all the guests, present all the speaker and all information about the event like a coffee break, lunch dinner and so on.

OBID Welcome

Steef-Jan Wiggers presenting BizTalk Server 2013: Cloud-based adapters

With Akshat delayed, Steef-Jan Wiggers was the first one to climb the stage to present his session about cloud-based adapters in BizTalk Server 2013 with some deep technical demos. This session was an introduction to the new adapters available with BizTalk Server 2013, in particular, those targeted for integration with the Cloud and how each can be applied in various use cases.

Steef-Jan-Wiggers BizTalk Server 2013 Cloud-based adapters

Saravana Kumar presenting Monitoring and Management of BizTalk environments using BizTalk360

The second session of the day, and also because Tord delay was Saravana Kumar who took the stage to present his session about BizTalk360. This session introduces you to the new “standard” for monitoring and management BizTalk Server platforms and it was the first time in a public event that Saravana presented the sixth version of the product.

Saravana Kumar Monitoring and Management BizTalk environments using BizTalk360

Sandro Pereira presenting BizTalk Mapping Patterns and Best Practices

What was supposed to be the last session of the day, turned out to be the last in the morning. At 11:45 am I took the stage to present my session about BizTalk Mapping Patterns and Best Practices. The goal of this session was to present some common mapper problems and common solutions and present some of the best practices to have in maps with some technical demos.

Sandro Pereira BizTalk Mapping Patterns and Best Practices

Akshat Sharma presenting Keynote: BizTalk Server 2013 and Future Vision

Finally, between 11:30 am and 1:30 pm all speakers arrived and Akshat Sharma, Program Manager in the BizTalk Product Team, that did a great session, was able to take the stage in the first session in the afternoon to present the Keynote about BizTalk Server 2013 and future vision. This presentation provided an overview to the audience of what’s the Microsoft Integration Strategy both on-premises and in the Cloud and an introduction to the future BizTalk Server Release in which he explained some of the core features that will be added to BizTalk Server 2013 and what to expect in the new Windows Azure BizTalk Services as well BizTalk IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service).

Akshat Sharma Keynote BizTalk Server 2013 and Future Vision

Nino Crudele presenting BizTalk assessment and architecture review, strategies, methods, and troubleshooting

Nino Crudele had a session on Assessment and Architecture Review, Strategies, Methods, and Troubleshooting and after some minutes in the stage, the audience was already laughing about crazy problems that he found over the years. I personally love this session with lots of tips on real scenarios and problems found through years of experience, as well as tools and techniques to create and maintain good documentation and make a good assessment.

Nino Crudele BizTalk assessment architecture review strategies methods and troubleshooting

His whitepaper on these subjects can be downloaded here.

Tord Glad Nordahl presenting Proactivity in BizTalk

The last session before the Q&A had as protagonist Tord Glad Nordahl that captured the audience with his mastery and excellent advice from and to, BizTalk administrators. This presentation addressed some of the most important aspects to be aware of in order for the enterprise to maintain a stable BizTalk environment.

Tord Glad Nordahl Proactivity in BizTalk

All together now: Discussion and response to voted topics (unconference style)

I tried to do something different than usual in this type of session to join even more the BizTalk community together, and I invited some people from the audience, on the same day, to join the panel Q&A.


Therefore, Ricardo Torres (Premier Field Engineer at Microsoft Portugal) and Sam Vanhoutte (Microsoft Integration Architect at Codit) have joined the Saravana, Steef-Jan, and Akshat in the Q&A Panel and the result was proximally 30 minutes of good talk with several questions.

Short Breaks, Lunch, Evening drinks and Dinner

In addition to all technical sessions for us, it’s also important to provide a good opportunity for people to network and interact. Therefore and similarity of the past events we carefully planned short breaks, lunch, some drinks after the event and dinner that gave the opportunity to all attendees speak and interact to Microsoft product group, speakers, and fellow attendees.

OBID Launch
OBID Coffee Break
OBID Dinner

The speakers

The fourth event after Milan, Stavanger, and London had a special guest over from the Microsoft Product Group, Akshat Sharma, who did a session (keynote) and here’s the usual group photo!

OBID Speakers

All the presentation slides are available for you to download it here: http://obid.devscope.net/presentations

After the event

After the event has ended the BizTalkCrew enjoyed themselves a little, visiting and getting to know the City of Oporto and I had the pleasure this time to be the tourist guide.

After event Port Wine
After Event River

Our next event will be in Italy on June 2013. See you there!

Author: Sandro Pereira

Sandro Pereira lives in Portugal and works as a consultant at DevScope. In the past years, he has been working on implementing Integration scenarios both on-premises and cloud for various clients, each with different scenarios from a technical point of view, size, and criticality, using Microsoft Azure, Microsoft BizTalk Server and different technologies like AS2, EDI, RosettaNet, SAP, TIBCO etc. He is a regular blogger, international speaker, and technical reviewer of several BizTalk books all focused on Integration. He is also the author of the book “BizTalk Mapping Patterns & Best Practices”. He has been awarded MVP since 2011 for his contributions to the integration community.

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