Business software doesn’t change as fast or as frequently as the apps on your phone, but product development is a constant. As demands expand, capabilities and faster performance are a market expectation!

When a team of Danish developers started to create a financial accounting package in the 1980s, (later to become known as Navision), they were focused on monitors the size of small refrigerators and floppy disks. The software was built on a proprietary database which was specifically designed to meet their requirements – an innovation that enabled them to program a powerful and successful software package that soon attracted Microsoft’s attention.

But as monitors and storage media evolved, so did the performance expectations for the software. By now, all business processes have been digitized – from product development and production control to sales, warehousing and, of course, accounting. That was the moment when we realized that financial accounting software and all the above should be integrated into what we now call an ERP system.

This is exactly the path that the Danish developers took – from the mid-1990s onwards in cooperation with Microsoft.

When Microsoft acquired the company in 2002, Navision became part of the Microsoft ecosystem and was subsequently developed into Microsoft Dynamics. It became more and more essential that data be seamlessly exchanged between individual departments and companies without complication, and that existing information could be used not just for reporting but also for the creation and implementation of new business models and business processes.

To this end, a wide variety of automation and AI tools can already be integrated today. A fascinating example of this is Azure Cognitive Services, which can be used to create applications that see, hear, speak, understand and have even begin to “think”.

The goal now is to make updates as easy as is the case with smartphone apps – or to be able to use particular services simply when needed. Microsoft established the foundation for this with the switch to the AL programming language. knk has completed this transformation from the previous C/AL language to the current AL language in our knkPublishing software.

This means that users of our current release are at the cutting edge of technology and can benefit from all new Microsoft developments. In the next steps we will create the conditions to access a common database with the help of the Common Data Model, and by so doing, access a whole range of very capable and constantly expanding cloud applications, including CRM, marketing automation and others.

This impressive journey has taken less than ten years and we are far from reaching the limit of the technologies’ capabilities. The possibilities that open up with the use of quantum computers, artificial intelligence and other technologies, are extraordinary and with Microsoft’s multi-billion dollar annual commitment to investment in Research & Development those possibilities are truly infinite.

We are sure that the possibilities will be enormous and look forward to making them available to the publishing and media communities!

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