I used today's Salesforce.com scheduled maintenance window to do some maintenance myself, and pushed out the aforementioned SSF upgrade to v7.0 of the sforce API. I added a custom image field to my contacts object to show off SSF's new support for such, as shown here. Very cool.
As always, please let me know if you have any problems.
The big question in my mind yesterday was, why buy the company when Sendia was already effectively acting as an exclusive Salesforce.com partner?
The answer to me as an ISV developing applications for salesforce.com's AppExchange platform is simple. By buying Sendia, Salesforce pushes wireless capability down into the platform layer of the stack, immediately making it available to third-party applications. The richer the platform, the more attractive it is to ISVs. Platform vendors know this, and rant about it.
The success of any platform is determined by the quantity and quality of the apps built for it, both of which are largely influenced by the breadth of the platform itself. Mark Benioff talks a lot about how serious he is about making the AppExchange a platform for what he calls "the business web". With the Sendia acquisition, he's simply putting his money where his mouth is.
I decided to perform some simple traffic analysis against the Spanning Salesforce logs and was delighted to see the trend. Traffic for April is estimated on a pure pro rata basis, and doesn't take into account accelerating adoption.
Scott runs Arrowpointe, a prominent Salesforce consulting provider, and is the creator of the wildly popular User Adoption Dashboard. His name and his work were mentioned several times at the recent AppExchange seminar in Austin, and his suggestions for things like platform edition licensing are clearly having an impact on the folks from One Market Street.
Scott Hemmeter is a well-respected voice in the Salesforce community, and I'm thrilled to have earned his highest rating. Thanks, Scott!
In order to get a better sense of who is currently using Spanning Salesforce, I did some analysis and matched companies to industries. I was at first surprised by the overwhelming predominance of software and professional services companies, which comprise 64% of the user base, but considering the technical savvy required to even think about using RSS for more than news maybe I shouldn't have been.
The complete results are as follows:
64% Software and Professional Services
25% Cable TV, Telcos, and Networking
The SSF engine makes it almost trivial to add new feeds, but it takes a bit of manual work to integrate them into the web site. I plan to add some simple content management functionality that will let me do so more easily, but until I have time to do that I'm left hand-editing multiple HTML files and one OPML file.
Oops! Looking at these feeds, I see that I need to convert datetimes to the user's local timezone.