So it's day 2 of the Microsoft Professional Developers Conference 2009 and what we have all been waiting for has happened. Microsoft has announced the beta release of SharePoint 2010 to the world.

The beta for SharePoint 2010 was first released a couple of days ago to TechNet and MSDN subscribers. Everyone else had to be patient. That wait is over. The SharePoint 2010 beta is available to everyone at the new SharePoint 2010 website.

Something New to Try Out

Outlook Social Connector

The Outlook Social Connector brings communications history and business and social networking feeds into Outlook. The Connector works for SharePoint 2010 now and at launch will work with Windows Live.

In addition, Microsoft says that LinkedIn will be the first of a number of third party social networks that will provide a connector using the new Outlook Social Connector Software Development Kit (SDK).

Duet Enterprise

Microsoft also took the time to announce the next step in their partnership with SAP: Duet Enterprise for Microsoft SharePoint and SAP. Jointly developed, this project deals with the interoperability between SAP and SharePoint 2010 and Office 2010.

A previous version of Duet was developed in 2005 for Office and SAP. The new version will enable developers to build applications that leverage SharePoint's collaboration and productivity capabilities with SAP data and processes. Being offered in the product are interoperability (such as seamless authentication), building blocks, templates and other tools. 

Silverlight 4 Also Announced

Scott Guthrie,corporate vice president of the .NET Developer Platform, also took the stage at PDC2009 in Berlin to announce the beta of Silverlight 4. The beta, which can be downloaded here, includes several new features:

  • Extended out of browser capabilities for desktop applications
  • Full support for Visual Studio 2010
  • New webcam and microphone capabilities and over 60 customizable controls

Not Just SharePoint 2010

That's right, you can also download the betas for Project 2010, Office 2010, Visio 2010 and Office Web Apps for business customers. And add to that the Office Mobile 2010 beta that will let you build apps for Windows Mobile 6.5 phones. Pick up your copy at the Windows Mobile Marketplace.

Duet Enterprise will be available the second half of 2010. Silverlight 4 and the Outlook Social Connector Software Development Kit (SDK) are also available now.