I came across a problem today, where I wanted to create a Google Intensity Map based on a selection of people in my Outlook Global Address List. I thought it would be kind of easy, since I already have a tool to take Excel data and make the actual visualization. But I quickly got bogged down at ‘get data from the GAL’ part. I guess I could have gone to Access and used the outlook connector to do a query and so on, but I wanted something right there, in Excel so I could create an integrated solution.
Looking around at the Outlook object model, it became pretty clear that’s is messed up, with fields coming from all kinds of places, and property schemas in all kinds of formats, with no clear and definitive reference documentation.
I decided to put a layer of abstraction on all that, so that future outlook type things could go a bit smoother. Here is an example with some custom classes that look up and populate Excel tables from matched data in an Outlook Address List.
Now i need to move on to integrating this into a google visualization.