Dev Notes

Notes on Development with Microsoft Technologies


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Relationships in PowerApps and the Common Data Model question…

Since I am unable to post comments directly to this page because Disqus is refusing to send a verification email, I am posting the question here and hope someone can provide answers.


I understand building relationships, but I need to be able to do more than use a relationship in a lookup. I need to be able to display related records from an entity based on a currently selected entity in a parent table.

For example, say I am building a work order tracking system for techs and customers. I have a work order entity and a work order history entity I would like to use. The work order tracks the original request from the customer while the history tracks the individual touch points a tech has made with the customer. I have a screen that displays the details of the work order. I want to be able to display the full history of the work order (and add more records) by going from the currently selected entity. This scenario is almost entirely missing, and in my opinion a much more common use of relationships in entities.

Are there plans to support related data in a much more comprehensive manner? If not, this could be a very limiting factor with using both the common data model and PowerApps since a lot of data structures make use of relationships to expose related data.


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Microsoft Flow : Building a Simple Twitter to Trello Flow

In this post, I hope to give you some ideas of how easy it is to use Microsoft Flow as I walk through how I created a really simple flow. The flow looks at my Twitter timeline and captures Tweets that contain a specific keyword. When it finds tweets that match, a card is created on my Trello board so I can review it later. This scenario could easily be expanded for an organization that wants to monitor a product launch or needs to field support requests from customers or clients and have them tracked by a team in Trello.

Before we begin, let me introduce you to Microsoft Flow. It is a new service currently in preview that allows you to “Create automated workflows between your favorite apps and services to get notifications, synchronize files, collect data, and more.” If you have used web sites like IFTTT or Zapier, you may be familiar with the general idea of Microsoft Flow. These tools allow you to build workflows between various internet based applications.

For example, I have an IFTTT recipe that automatically puts my cell phone on silent any time I reach my office building and another IFTTT recipe that notifies me if my Nest thermostat detects my house has reached 80 degrees (uh oh, time to call the A/C repairman). The focus of these tools is to make it easy for a user to automate a small task.

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Setting Permissions on an Item to a Group with Nintex Workflow for O365

PermissionsActionBlockRecently, one of the summer interns at my company was tasked with creating an expense report solution utilizing O365, Nintex Forms for O365 and Nintex Workflow for O365. As the expense report moves through the approval phases, permissions need to be altered so the original report that has been submitted cannot be changed by the author. This allows the approver to review the expense report without alterations occurring after approval.

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Handlebars + JSLink

First, I want to apologize for such a long silence. Project work and life in general has kept me very busy over the last year, so it has been difficult to find a time to write new content.

This article describes a specific scenario I experienced as part of my standard project work. It hasn’t been extended or tested for other scenarios (yet!). Handle with care.

Since the release of SharePoint 2013, I have been doing a lot of customizations utilizing JSLink on lists and list views. One of the things that I really do not like about JSLink is all of the string concatenation that tends to happen when building the output for your JSLink customization. It is not a huge challenge when you are working with a small template or limited output, but when you start working with complex HTML strings, it can be a bit unwieldy.
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JS Link: Avoid Polluting the Global Namespace

Over the past few months I have been doing a lot of research around JavaScript frameworks and techniques as I am learning how to create SharePoint 2013/O365 Apps for clients. A recent project had a need to override the default view of a few columns. JS Link proved to be the easiest way to accomplish the changes, but every example that I found had all of the JavaScript functions placed squarely in the global namespace. One of the things that I find seems to be common among all of the books and articles I have read over the past three months clearly states that we should do our due diligence to keep the global namespace in JavaScript as clean as possible.

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