Did someone yarr-cuse us of having a static interface? Well, not anymore. We Power Usered UP to add a little fire and electricity to the user experience of battling other ships at sea using the ultimate Power User tool: PowerPoint. Outcome varies depending on our strength and resources vs. the defenses of the booty ship we’re going after. But in the end we either lose:
Or preferably win (which we’ll leave as a goodie to be seen at the judges show and tell today)
Pirates love talking trash, and where better to spew out all the fun than Microsoft Teams?
As a pirate you don’t have too many tools at hand at any given time. The same is true in 2023. Why learn something new when you have your trusty old swiss army knife at hand?
This time around we’re stealing from our own team mate, Mikael, taking one of the most powerful and mis-used plugins of all time, the PnP Script Editor Web Part, and we use it to easily embed our “Pirate “Capture a pirate” canvas app into Teams.
It’s as easy as rum and grog, add the Teams Tab, configure it with and <iframe> tag and you’re all set. Because everyone knows iframes as it has been a trusted valid tag for over 20 years now. Who knew you could embed and use a PowerApp within Teams????
Once set up – it works beautifully!
The beauty is that it even works on mobile! Pick the tab and embrace.
And for some extra fun, here’s PirateGTP pirate in SVG – well hidden 😁
Badges and why – because why not
Client side salsa – Everyone knows teams tabs are browser tabs, and iframe’s are all about browser love. No monolithic front-end used, only simple and easy html and scripting.
Thieving bastards – We stole and borrowed the open source PnP script editor web part solution, even though inception was involved. PirateGPT is our API on crew mate generation, and Stable diffusion (via automatic1111) is our image pirateer solution. And not free I tell you as we had to purchase a used Nvidia RTX3060 gfx card to get this going.
Chameleon – What can we say, Teams, stand-alone, browser, native app, what not – you will not get away from being onboarded with out solution. It adapts portrait, landscape, even black and white. PirateGPT will get you!
Plug’nPlay – We stole it with inception, it plugs into anything SPFx plugs into. Showcased in Teams as we just love the purple.
Power User Love – All stored in Dynamic, all surfaced in Teams and SharePoint – we love ya’ll!
This is every pirate’s best friend and a must have!! Loaded with awesome features this killer app should be installed on the mobile phone of all pirates in your organization.
Get a quick overview of your targets. Once a ship has been become a target in Dynamics 365, you will be able to see it in your mission overview. This is perfect when you have a long day of plundering i front of you and need to know which ones to do next.
Have you ever been too deep in the rum bottle and close to do something stupid with what you believed to be a mermaid out on the seven seas? Or maybe you actually did and are now in for a hard time facing your mates with humiliation and regret?
Not anymore! Rumglasses let you take a picture of your believe-to-be mermaid and tells you if you are right or not. By training an AI to recognize and distinguish manatees from mermaids you can now relax.
A map showing your location when out on the seven seas. You will se both your ship on the map and all other ships in the area. This is how you know you are close to your target when out on a plunder. The best part is that military or law enforcement ships will occur on the map as well so you can wait until the right moment before attacking the target.
Communicate with your mates by using bottle mail – a feature for sending email when you are on the fly. It suggests recipients in you address book or you can write to a pirate outside your organization. This way, you don’t have to switch to another app (email client) to send messages to your crew.
You are not a real pirate unless you have a parrot. Unfortunately (or luckily) there are laws about how to treat your animals today that did not exist in the old glory days. It might not be appropriate to bring it with you on a raid :/ This is where Pollybot comes to the rescue! Your own digital parrot who you can talk to, ask questions and keep you with company. As a real parrot, it sometimes answer your questions, but most of the time you will get an insult or just nonsense in return. But that doesn’t matter! Where a real parrot will fly away to save itself, Pollybot will always stay close.
When Jack Sparrow was stranded on a desert island, he managed to escape by tying his back hair together and catch a couple of sea turtles who gave him a ride back home. As fun and comfortably that sounds, not all pirates are equipped with back hair that long. However, most of us got their phone in their pockets at all times!
Whether you are stranded at a desert island, your ship is about to sink or you are stuck in a safe full of treasure, this feature will save you.
When using the mayday function your coordinates are then sent to a email address monitored by you crew so they can come and pick you up. If your mates prioritize your request is however another matter.
Because of the fancy design, the use of AI and the huge amount of useful features in this app, we hereby claim the Glossy pixels, Existential Risk and Feature Bombing badges. We also claim the Power user Love because the app is created in Power Platform 😀 #ProCodeNoCodeUnite
The waters run deep and dark when you are at sea. This is why intel like maps, a spyglass and knowing the tides help. To give our pirates an advantage we crawl barenswatch.no for other ships location. But, just as in dogeball, it is not enough to know where something is, you need to know where it is going and when you need to be there to intercept. So how do we calculate the best opportunities and how to intercept them?
Step 1: Crawl and Hijack Valuable Data 🦀
From the system diagram we see our Functions App communicates with the Braenswatch API and stors all boats data including current location. We poll this information several times giving us multiple data points not only for ballast and weight, but also for speed, location and direction (this will be important later).
For ease of use while creating the service we compiled all the data using Power BI Dashboards to see what we were working with. The dashboard can also be used to help captains understand the state of the seven seas, although we appreciate that more data is not necessarily better data. It depends on how you visualize, precent and timing of when to precent data to you user.
Step 2: Knowing which Opportunities to Strike 🏆
From the ships length, type and destination we can estimate its value. Slow moving ships heading for freight docs are ripe for looting, fast moving ships heading for a dry dock are empty and better left alone. For the sharp eye you have also spotted we have a Threat flag in or model, this is for marking known pirates, intercepters and the fuzz of the seven seas. Once again referencing to Sun Tzu: You always win the wars you never fight (dont search this quote).
If we decide that this opportunity is ripe for plundering, we look at its course and if it is feasible to intercept based on our current course. Good opportunities are heavy, slow moving ships. Bad opportunities are war ships of any kind or any opportunity in the vicinity of a war ship.
There is also a certain Goldilocks of opportunities: Based on your own vessel, you do not want to attack another ship that is too large, since it will be a harder fight, or too small, since it carries less booty. We can use the dashboard to visually find the opportune boats and use this investigation to write code that targets these boats automatically.
When we flag ships that are both opportune and not adjacent to warships we plot paths to figure out where they are going in relations to our course.
Step 3: Using Advanced Trigonometry to Pinpoint your Enemy 🎯
Youtube can teach you the basics about how to calculate a ships heading based on longitude, latitude, direction, true north and the course deviation.
True north will change depending on where on the globe you are positioned, so for intercept courses it is paramount to get this stuff right. You want to be at the place where your target ship will be, not where they have been. And you want to be there before they get there, not to ride up after them and trailing them forever. This is where we use the latitude, longitude, direction and speed from earlier and _try_ to plot the path of the ships. I stress try because Solveig just looked at Sebastian with the “do you mind not being an idiot” when he asked how se was doing it and if it was done. Then just sort of sigh’ed and continued clicking keys. So it works, trust us.
For our challenge we also need to estimate if it is a viable option to change our current corse to intercept the opportunity. For all business cases there is a cost/effect probability calculation. Fo us this depends on added time to destination with deviation and added length of trip, both of which adds to the total cost of provisions and consumables like petrol.
Step 4: Plot Optimal Course for Interception 🏴☠️
Finally when we have a list of opportune targets, we know which targets will be adjacent to our planned course form A to B we plot intercept maneuvers. Which, is a topic for another blog post – because this part is most certainly done… Trust us… 🤞🤞🤞
Our Pirates are not happy that all the tasks they get assigned in F&O only are available there. Why should they need to log in to F&O to see them or get an email notification that they have been assigned a new task? We all know that there are more than enough emails going around, so let’s make it easier for everyone. This flow automatically includes the tasks that are assigned to you for Onboarding or Offboarding processes in F&O directly to you Microsoft To-Do list through Planner. Then they pop stright up in you list, and you can handle it from there. Pretty cool, right?