Dreamforce 18: Remote Debrief

Well the excitement and the fever of another Dreamforce is now behind us, it’s time to reflect and digest some of the highlights from a remote perspective.

Chris mentioned thst all of us would be absent from this years Dreamforce, and provided us with some tips – here it is again.. How To Do Dreamforce Remotely

For me I missed the event due to my son starting primary school, so this year some shuffling of priorities were in order to allow for his smooth transition into big school.

This being said I did indulged myself in plenty of the live feeds, Twitter streams and have watched many of the sessions on YouTube – some picks coming later.

You know we love a good FACT CHECK round here – shall we check some of my predictions? Here is a reminder as to what I was predicting!


Equality is a core value at Salesforce and this years Dreamforce felt more inclusive than ever, even from behind my screen. It’s a shining example of what all organisations and communities should be and can be when you can really all pull together and start to address many of the unconscious biases and equality issues we face in our own communities and workplaces. The work on Equality will never be done or enough, it needs our commitment to ensuring we break and keep down barriers that are both physical and social. One such organisation working incredibly hard at this is the folks st Pepup Tech. Please watch this

An absent… Will I.am No chance!

Okay, Will I am was suppose to be taking a year out – Well I got that one so very wrong didn’t I?

My kids love Will, he’s a regular on British TV and regular at Dreamforce, so much so that my children think he works at Salesforce and that I work with him. To be fair I cannot think of better role model and his voice over for this years Dreamforce Opening Film feels warmly encouraging and awe inspiring. So let’s hear it for Revolutions! Good job Will! You’ve won me over, please come back next year.


Someone said there would be a Salesforce blockchain product, unless I missed it, no actual salesforce product materialise. However that didn’t stop others who focused on Emerging technology of blockchain getting a jump start. Check this out 

That’s enough FACT CHECKING for now – there was plenty of keynotes to watch – it wouldn’t be dreamforce in the flesh or remote if you didn’t tune into one of these

Admins Keynote – A New Tech Hero was Born

This years Admin Keynote is opened by the amazing Parker Harris who kicks things off with thank yous including thanking our fellow MVP’s before jumping into an amazing story about Alimali Stephen from Nairobi. Salesforce’s #GivingBack is in full effect here showing that if we pull together, anything is possible. Congratulations Alimali on the golden hoodie, well deserved.

It wouldn’t be a keynote if it didn’t have some cool demos of features recently released or coming very soon – so here are the main ones

  • Lighting List View Search – GA
  • Lightning Reporting Enhancements – Beta
  • Lightning on Mobile – Pilot
  • Lightning Layouts – Sneak Peek
  • And wait for it… Einstein Voice

Lighting Layouts feels like the final piece of the jigsaw for Admins and Org customisation. There is nothing worse than designing Lightning record Pages only to edit the page layout and get thrown back into the dark ages with the classic layout tool!

And there is more…

  • New Lightning Flow Screen Components – GA
  • Einstein Prediction Builder – Beta
  • Lightning Object Creator – Pilot
  • New Flow Builder – Sneak Peek

New Flow Builder stands out for me, I kind of predicted we would see this one and I was correct, all though it’s not quite out in the wild yet, but at least it’s being shown which means it’s coming and it’s not vapourware – I am super excited to see it and soon have access.

Developer Keynote – Build Apps of the Future

The Developer Keynote was exciting and the message was super clear, we can all build apps…fast.  It was also crystal clear that the approach to app development has been abstracted away in order to allow anyone to build apps using an approach of No Code, little Code and of course code in the more traditional sense.

Plenty of exciting features were explained by the amazing Principle Architect Christophe Coenraets – here are some highlights

No Code

  • Lightning Experience on Mobile – Pilot
  • Lightning Flow Build – Pilot

Pro Code

  • 150+ Base Components – GA
  • CLI & VS code – Beta
  • Apex Test – GA
  • Unlocked Packages – GA

Salesforce mobile and Lightning Experience on mobile demo was awesome showing real-time updates using the latest empApi component – emp stands for Enterprise Message Platform and provides a low code way to subscribe to things like platform events.

Next and not surprisingly a large portion of the developer keynote was given over to the Integration cloud and Mulesoft which is the fabric for stitching disparate systems and API’s together to creating, dare I say it that 360 customer view!

Best Sessions – Must Watch

So many to pick from, but here is my Must Watch sessions:

Advanced Lightning Components

Demystifies how the use of Controller.js, Helper.js and introduces a pattern for shared business logic using static resources and best practices on perform data caching. 

Super Session: Salesforce DX

It’s the future, it’s super, It’s Mr Fawcett and Wade.. Nuff said!

Advanced Techniques to Adopting Salesforce DX Unlocked Packages

This one I accidently stumbled upon, but glad I did. Curving up your org is pretty complex and navigating the web of dependencies is no easy task, but these guys provide some food for thought around things like dependency injection and other strategies which helped them.

Extending Lightning Flow with Lightning Components

This is the very reason I am started loving Flow again and the ability to sprinkly components and use components within your flow orchestration is very powerful – a big thank you to Alex and Rakesh for this one.

Build and Deploy a mobile app with Heroku Backend in 40 mins or Your Money back

And last but not least and yes it’s major click bait but worth it to hear Paul making it look too easy to build apps using Salesforce and Heroku – Your lucky!

Last fact check then, did Salesforce did not Slack off this year? I think no, even though they did not aquire Slack as I predicted.

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