London Salesforce Dev Meetup – July Review


Cloud Encryption Image – Perspecsys (rotated)

After sadly being unable to make the last meetup of the London Salesforce Developers‘ group we were back in attendance this month. This time I was joined by both Paul and Justin and we were all looking forward to the talks and of course the pre and post meetup chats and drinks.

The Make Positive offices were once again the venue and beers and pizza were, as usual, supplied to fill our bellies. With this in mind thanks go to them and the other sponsors, Appririo, BrighGen, Cloud Sherpas and Manning Publications.

Wave (The Analytics Cloud) and Salesforce Platform Encryption were the topics to be presented, both of interest but it was the latter that I was most looking forward to.

Salesforce Wave – Kerry Townsend and Scott Gassmann

Wave is the technology that powers Salesforce’s Analytics Cloud, and that is what Kerry and Scott were covering in the first talk. To be honest I think the two terms can be used pretty much interchangeably without anyone getting too excited.

Kerry kicked off with a brief introduction to Wave and, I suppose, why Salesforce have such a product. The Analytics Cloud is separated from the rest of your organisation’s Salesforce data, and in fact integrations with all sorts of data stores are possible.  My key take-away was that the Analytics Cloud was able to make raw data easier to be explored and insights gained from it. There was some mention of it being mobile, but I doubt this extends to offline capability. It’s hard to ignore that when you’ve grown accustom to offline being run-of-mill through my work at MobileCaddy.

Scott then took up the baton and walked us through creating a dashboard for a user, and showed off some of the visualisations that are possible. He also covered how a dashboard’s widgets could be modified by altering the underlying JSON (which I suppose could be classed as the configuration). He mentioned how this manual work was likely to be replaced by some GUI features in the future.

As well as likely being a useful tool for insights and data analysis, there’s definitely no getting away from the fact that data visualisations really would be a handy asset to have if a sales pitch too. If you’re interested in seeing how charting can be made easier in your JavaScript applications then checkout our review of the latest JS Monthly meetup that covered charting with D3.

The slides for the presentation can be found here.

Salesforce Platform Encryption – Thomas Waud

Thomas is a CTA at Cloud Sherpas. Though his job tonight was to guide us through Salesforce’s new Platform Encryption.

He started off giving a general overview on encryption and the Whys, Whats and Whos and Hows. He briefly mentioned some of the laws and regulations surrounding data security (Gagging Laws, Data Residency, etc) and also briefly ran over the basics of Symmetric and Asymmetric encryption methods and how they can be used together to further strengthen security.

The core chunk of Thomas’ presentation was of course on the new Platform Encryption feature. He covered a fair amount (a link to his slides is below) but for me the following points were well worth noting;

  • Platform Encryption requires a feature license (freely available in developer orgs)
  • It uses 256 bit encryption keys
  • More type of data can be encypted (compared to Salesforce’s classic encryption)
    • Attachments, Files and Content
    • Encrypted Custom Short Text, Long Text Area, Phone, Email, and URL Fields
    • Encrypted fields are searchable (including fragment searches)

This is a diagram from the Salesforce Summer ’15 Release Notes

Salesforce Platform Encryption Process Diagram


Thomas presented very well and it was obvious that he was very comfortable with the subject matter. His slides can be found here. Presentations like this really do make the journey into the Big Smoke worth it.

Platform Encryption started rolling out as part of the Summer ’15 release but is, at the time of writing, not available on the eu5 instance. It seems from discussion last night that this would be resolved in the coming weeks.