Virtual Access DevCon 2021
Date April 22+23, virtual in Microsoft Teams
Attendees 151 registrations from 16 countries (attendance fee was 85,- €)
Organizers Karl Donaubauer, supported by Peter Doering and Philipp Stiefel
Workshops The offered workshops for Power Apps and PowerBI sold out and had to be repeated.


All session recordings are available to the conference attendees. 3 selected videos are publicly available on Youtube:
twinBASIC – the new kid on the block  Mike Wolfe, Grandjean & Braverman, Prompton, PA, USA

A project by Wayne Phillips, iTec Masters, known from

twinBASIC is a brand new BASIC compiler and development environment that aims to be 100% compatible with existing VBA and classic VB6 syntax. Compiling to native code for best performance, twinBASIC offers a massive array of new language features whilst keeping everything backwards compatible with existing VBA and VB6 code.

In next to no time you'll be creating more secure and more performant EXEs, Addins, and DLLs that you can use and reference directly from VBA.

Join us to learn how to get started with twinBASIC, and see some of its fantastic features demoed live. We'll be discussing the features, the benefits and the future roadmap of the product. Just for starters:

•  Seamless integration with VS Code as dev environment
•  Multi-threading and full Unicode support
•  Generics and Overloading as per VB.NET
•  New datatypes, operators and statements
•  Removal of legacy limitations, such as the size of procedures, number of line continuations
•  + much more. Come and see to believe it!

Mike is a former US Army officer who has been developing in Access and SQL Server since 2007. He earned a bachelor's degree in Computer Science from the US Military Academy (West Point) in 2002.
Since 2014, he has served as president and owner of Grandjean & Braverman, Inc., a small software development company specializing in Access applications. Mike is one of the top 15 all-time contributors in the MS Access topic at StackOverflow (user: mwolfe02). He also writes daily about version control and other advanced Access topics at his blog,

Access Update by the Product Team  Joe Jimenez+Courtney Owen, Microsoft, Redmond, USA

The latest news, plans and features for Access, demonstrated and explained by two engineers from the Microsoft Access team.

To prepare yourself for this session have a look at the Access Roadmap.

BTW I think in the pictures you can see how well people are doing when they made it to the glamorous Access team... or was that life before? ;-)


Joe is a software engineer on the Access team. Born and raised in the Seattle area. BS in Computer Engineering from University of Washington.

Courtney is new to the Access team, but has been a Software Engineer at Microsoft for many years on other teams, including Excel, SharePoint and InfoPath.
Originally from Miami, Florida. Courtney now resides in Seattle. He is eagerly looking forward to emerging from his COVID-bubble in the coming weeks, and once again enjoying the natural splendor of the Pacific Northwest.

PowerApps and Access  Karl Donaubauer, donkarl, Vienna, Austria

For several years now, Microsoft has been telling us that Power Apps are the replacement for the failed web efforts with Access. Many customers have long wanted mobile apps or parts of their Access applications available on the go. Yet I refrained from working with Power Apps until I felt they were out of beta. Last year, I decided to tackle the learning curve vigorously. Since then, I've been busy crafting apps for several clients, and I'm sharing some experiences with you:

•  Basics: positioning at MSFT, technology, licensing, market
•  Database view: data sources, binding, volumes, capabilities and limitations
•  Learnings: start, first/second/third app... change and improvement
•  Hybrid demos: Access+PA frontends with shared backends
•  PA vs. Access (developers): competition, complementation, communities, innovation
•  Latest PA news: features and plans, expansions, and of course renamings ;-)

Karl is an Access developer, data protection officer and MVP. He's been preaching and muddling around in the Access community for a few years now.

If you haven't connected with him on LinkedIn yet, finally do so, because he wants to get rich with millions of connections that will then flood his conferences.

Advanced Graphical Interfaces with Access  Alessandro Grimaldi,,
 Frankfurt, Germany

Tired of the usual buttons, combo boxes and continuous forms? Why not creating funny, colored and user-friendly interfaces? Here are some examples of unusual Access interfaces.

•  Graphical interfaces with Access
•  Real life scenarios:
   – Geography
   – Interactions with other applications
   – Logistics
•  Fun tools and other ideas

A programmer since 1983, VBA since 1998, for several years Alessandro was consulting for the United Nations in different countries (Italy, Afghanistan, North Korea, Ethiopia, Austria), creating dozens of Office applications, from simple automation tools to corporate level, multiuser, Oracle based applications.
Since 2014 he lives in Frankfurt where for five years he worked as a VBA developer for the European Central Bank. He has been experimenting on graphical interfaces with Access since 2006.

Power Automate Desktop and Access  Ynte Jan Kuindersma, bird, Haren, The Netherlands

Power Automate Desktop (PAD) is now included free of charge with Windows 10. This is in line with Microsoft's concept of providing easy-to-use but powerful tools to the "Citizen Developer" as part of the Power Platform. This talk shows what PAD will change, and what it means for our work as Access developers.

•  What is it? History, installation, cost (some advanced features require a license)
•  What can it do? Skimming the action list, functionality, included toolset
•  How does it work? Examples for automating tasks
•  Review of functions relevant for Access developers:
   – Automation of Windows applications and website actions
   – Office and database actions
   – Automation of Access actions
   – Test automation for Access applications

Ynte Jan has been working as developer and trainer since the 80s. He is extremely solution-oriented and chooses his tools accordingly, be it Visual Studio, Access, SQL Server, Power Platform or not from MS.

He has given many trainings and presentations on programming, database and BI topics in the Netherlands, Germany, Austria and at numerous online conferences.

Tuning an Access/SQL Azure Hybrid App  Kevin Bell, AccessUI, Redmond, WA, USA

One of the few good things to come out of the global pandemic is a much broader acceptance of working remotely. With an Access Hybrid application, users can connect from anywhere in the world and be productive. Unfortunately, it is not as simple as just migrating your data to SQL Azure and relinking the tables. In this session we will look at some common performance issues in a production application and explore ways to dramatically improve performance. Such as:

•  Building Views in SQL Server
•  Running Pass-Through queries from Access
•  Using SQL Table Value Functions
•  Why combo boxes can kill (performance)
•  Effectively using temporary tables
•  Utilizing trees view instead of combo boxes for navigate data

Kevin started working professionally with Access in version 1.0 and has been working with SQL Server since version 4.21. For 15 years he ran a small consulting firm in Colorado that specialized in creating custom data driven applications on Access and SQL Server.
In 2008 he joined the Microsoft Access Team as a test engineer, working on the Access 2010, 2013 and 2016 releases. Kevin is now helping companies migrate their Access backends to the cloud.
In his free time he enjoys cycling, playing baseball and someday being able traveling the world again searching for the perfect pint of ale.

Access in Production Control  Davide La Mantia,, Palermo, Italy

Demo of a production situation where the entire workflow is organized with Access

Small factories need to control their production environment as well as bigger ones, or even more. We can achieve this goal using MS Access and SQL Server in a multi-application system.

•  Operators get an easy-to-use touchscreen application to collect production data
•  Administrators use the analysis application where they
   – plan, monitor and analyze every step of the production processes
   – and view a full range of statistics

Davide is an IT consultant and developer registered in the Italian professional register of technical industrial experts.

He has worked with Access since 1994 and he also has many years of SQL Server programming experience. He develops and manages IT services for a wide range of purposes, such as billing and business management, factory production control and measurements, datawarehouse analysis and more.

Attractive Infographics in Access  David Nealey, WordSmart Business Services,
 Littleton, Colorado, USA

Helping knowledge workers (your users) make better and faster business decisions requires building data visualization into your Access applications. The good thing is that you can easily add attractive and professional-looking graphics with very little or no code.

You will see forms and reports that use images created in PowerPoint and pasted into an Access application. Textboxes, conditional formatting, and command buttons were added to the forms and reports to tell data stories for managing sales proposals.

You will come away with ideas that you can use immediately to enhance your applications for any industry or market in a short period of time.

David is a retired geologist who has been using Access for more than 20 years. As a proposal and business development manager, he is developing a comprehensive proposal management application that currently has more than 6,200 forms/reports.
His application, Proposals Essentials Plus, guides proposal professionals through a process that can take anywhere from two weeks to two years to complete. PEP reads information aloud and is integrated with Bing Maps, Google Earth, and other services.

Power Excel
      The most popular database in the world
 Anders Ebro, Exacto, Copenhagen, Denmark

Whether we like it or not, the masses (and many customers) use Excel for everything. Very often as a database but without the benefits of relational integrity, version control, or multi user support. If you as an Access developer have to go along with it, then do it properly and resolutely! Get everything you can out of it.

•  Keep your Excel spreadsheet, but upsize the data to a real database (Access or SQL)
•  Learn how to superpower your Excel sheets with read-write connections to your database
•  Dynamic tables that update when you change a cell
•  Loading and formatting Excel "tables"
•  Enabling write-back to your database, such that edits made in Excel are written to the database

Originally an engineer with a degree in Applied Physics and hundreds of hours spent in a hi-tech clean room, Anders started working with Access in 2008 and hasn’t looked back since.
Anders has made applications ranging from Requirement Management Tools, document management and tools to calculate financial depreciations. Anders has been an Access MVP since 2014.
On his blog, you can find several code samples for treeviews, change tracking (similar to words track changes), and error/crash reporting.

Selling Access Solutions  Juan Soto, IT Impact, Chicago, USA

It is important to be a good Access developer or to have a good software product. But that doesn't make you full or even rich. Commercial skills are just as important. Only if you can actively sell and negotiate will you become a successful Access guy. Employed developers can also take a leaf out of this book if they learn to communicate their skills and the benefits of Access.

•  How to find customers online
•  How to close $25k contracts over the phone in one hour
•  How to handle “It’s too expensive”
•  The number one thing you can do to increase your sales that you aren’t doing now
•  Why its so important to charge a deposit, and why it’s a red flag when they don’t want to pay
•  Why you will never make six figures with Access consulting until you do this

Juan is the President of IT Impact Inc. and a Microsoft Access MVP for the last ten years.

His blog is focused on Access+SQL Server and he is the founder of

When he’s not working or blogging, Juan enjoys traveling around the world. You can reach him at

Practical Tools for Access Various presenters

A gourmet selection of free and commercial tools presented by the authors


•  Data Source Manager – more than just another linked table manager

•  Advanced Data Generator – the luxurious way to create test data for your project

•  JSON Analyse & Transform for Access – easily manage the import & handling of JSON files

•  Access Crash Reporter – let your users screenshot error reports and email them to you

Kevin Bell, AccessUI

Martijn Tonies, Upscene Productions

Colin Riddington, Mendip Data Systems

Anders Ebro, Exacto