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Thursday, August 31, 2006

Dear Santa

Santa, I know it is just summer but I want to give you a heads up on this year's holiday wish list.  I know how busy things get at the North Pole in the fall, so you may want to start looking at this list now to make sure you allocate enough resources for a December delivery.

World Peace
OK - Now I have the altruistic part of my list out of the way, the rest can focus on me.

BMW 650i Convertible
Its for my son... really!  Yes, he is only five... but one day.

Microsoft CRM Enhancements
Now for the hard part.  This is a list of features I would love to see included in Microsoft CRM 3.0 and hope they will be part of the upcoming Titan release:

  • Allowing for the display of attributes from multiple entities in a single query (beyond the basic lookup information).  The FetchXML schema supports this, but the graphical tools in MS CRM do not.
  • Providing for true many-to-many relationships.  This is a biggie.  Sure, it is possible to create a many-to-many relationship by creating a junction table, but this can lead to awkward navigation for the user.  I would like to see the functionality given to some of the system relationships be available via customization (i.e. Opportunities <--> Competitors).
  • Generic lookups.  I have had a few instances where I want to create an entity that can be attached to several other entities, but not in a many-to-many scenario.  For example, I have created an Image entity that can be associated with an account, contact, custom entity, etc.  The referencing entity can have many images, but an image would never belong to multiple entities.  However, if I create a standard relationship from each referencing entity I end up with an Image entity riddled with physical links back to them.  What I would like to see is the ability to great a generic lookup using the same "ObjectId, ObjectTypeCode" approach MS CRM uses for annotations and activity pointers.
  • Ability to suppress related entities from appearing in the navigation bar when editing an entity.  They can be removed from JavaScript, but this is an unsupported hack (which we have chosen not to implement).  On a similar subject...
  • Ability to suppress custom entities from showing up in the New drop-down menu.  There are times I want to use an entity for system purposes (like one of those many-to-many junction tables) the user does not need to know even exist.
  • Filtered lookup dialog.  Need I say more.

I know I am asking for a lot this year, Santa.  But I have been very good this year and eating all my veggies every day.

Yours truly,
Ross

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