Something I do pretty regularly is look up what people are search for when they reach my blog. CUCiMOC is the top topic for hits. This week while looking over the keyword analysis I came across the CUCiMOC Microsoft support question. This is really a loaded question that causes contention in some of the discussions I have seen when Cisco is presenting their sales material. When looking at this situation or any that involves the use of Microsoft’s APIs to create LOB application integration, the reason Microsoft has stated that CUCiMOC is not supported by Microsoft is pretty clear.
CUCiMOC makes extensive use of two areas of integration within Microsoft Office Communicator. The Communicator client API and the Custom Tab. The client API provides the functionality and the custom tab provides the presentation of the CUCiMOC client to put it in simple terms. Both of these Communicator features (the API and Custom Tabs) are fully supported by Microsoft and I have worked with other vendors and internal staff who have developed applications that use both of these features. In these cases (as is the case with CUCiMOC) they were independently developed and supported by either the vendor of the product or internal support staff. The key to all this is “independently developed”. There is no joint roadmap and no cooperation in development unlike other areas of innovation that Microsoft does do with some of its partners.
What can we take away from this question? Well, the first thing is that both Communicators APIs offer a great deal of potential to developers to integrate both at a client and server level. Second is that avenues for developers to get support for Microsoft API’s are available at http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/aa570318.aspx.
For a comprehensive look at third party plugins for VoIP and Microsoft Communicator: http://voipnorm.blogspot.com/2010/01/microsoft-communicator-native-versus.html