I had a long coffee today with my friend Chuck who is another Access developer. It was an opportunity to show him the SharePoint story in Access 2010.
So I connected using my 3G Aircard at the Tim Horton’s, and displayed an application that I have migrated from a Client-Only FE/BE design to a SharePoint 2010 Access Services solution where it is still a Client app but with the data synchronized automatically to Access Services tables on my SharePoint 2010 site. I discussed the deployment scenarios both with new installs (using an ACCDW file) and also how maintenance can be delivered seemlessly to the user machine simply by running the ACCDW file. We also discussed how because the data principally resides on the local cache and only gets synched to the Server and from the Server bits at a time, the performance is good even across a VPN (unless you do an action query – but that can be managed).
Chuck was impressed, but he made one comment that resonated with me.
It was to the effect that “After 20 years of hoping for a true Client/Server Access and now the ability to distribute applications to users ANYWHERE becomes available using SharePoint – it’s not “Cool” anymore before it even ships …. 😦 …”
By that Chuck meant that this new Access/SharePoint product is finally coming out and shipping into a market where Microsoft is pushing the “Cloud” where apps live on the Web and where the client-side and Windows is getting played down.
That’s really unfortunate. It sucks.