Interview with a Wiki Ninja: Kjetil Tonstad

Welcome to our Monday interview with a Wiki Ninja!

Today we’re interviewing BizTalk Wiki Ninja… Kjetil Tonstad.


Here are some his statistics on Technet Wiki:

  • 16 Wiki Articles
  • 160 Wiki Edits

And here are some of the most recente his Wiki articles:

Let’s get started…

Tell us something about yourself. Who are you, where you come from, and what do you do? What are the technologies of your interest? And your passions and hobbies?

I'm Kjetil Tonstad, 37 years old, married, born and living in Norway. I currently work as an integration expert in Bouvet Integration Competency Center. We serve large and small organizations, national and international. I have worked with integration since 2006, with focus on BizTalk and SSIS. The first edition of BizTalk I used was 2004, and have used all versions since then. I am especially pleased with BizTalk Server 2016, and have spent a lot of time with it the last few months. I have a deep professional passion for Microsoft Azure, and really like Microsoft's strategy for integration in the cloud. I'm interested in a lot of Microsoft technology, and am currently looking into Azure Machine Learning, Power BI and other bits of the Cortana Intelligence Suite. I'm also working on the MSCD Azure Solutions Architect certification, and the Microsoft Professional Program in Data Science.

On my spare time I love traveling the world, adventures, watersports, CrossFit and flying. I've had my pilot's license 4 years now, and it has given me some fantastic experiences. The pictures below are from a flight over a local glacier here in Norway, and a recent trip to Peru.


What do you do with TechNet Wiki? And what is it about TechNet Wiki that interests you?

I have used TechNet Wiki as a technical resource as long as I can remember. The amount of knowledge available today is unprecedented, and has improved a lot the last few years in the integration area. The willingness to share knowledge seems inexhaustible amongst experts around the world, which I have appreciated for a long time. I have not heard of any non-Microsoft wiki communities of this size. I started contributing myself about 1.5 years ago with a couple of articles. They both received a BizTalk Technical Guru Award, which really motivated me to keep going. I have published several articles and code samples since then, with good feedback from MVPs and Microsoft employees. The monthly Guru Awards competition is an excellent way to ensure high quality content, and get feedback on our work.

Normally, when we start sharing or using a platform, we have some people that inspired us or helped us? Who were those community members to you? If that makes sense.

In the beginning I didn't pay much attention to the author names. That changed when we arranged Bouvet BizTalk Innovation Event in 2012 and 2013. Here we got to meet several MVPs and community contributors face to face, both in a professional and social context. Some of the people I would say inspired me include Saravana Kumar, Sandro Pereira, Tord Nordahl, Nino Crudele and Steef-Jan Wiggers.

What are your favorite articles you’ve contributed?

I would like to mention 3 articles. First, "Top 10 Tips From a BizTalk Admin to BizTalk Developers" is a culmination of 10 years of experience as a BizTalk Administrator. I believe most developers could learn something from this. One of my tips, "Use your BizTalk administrator", brings me to my second article. "BizTalk: Latency Improvement Without Changing The Code" is a real-world case I was involved in, and shows how much impact a BizTalk admin can have on application performance and latency. Finally, I would like to mention "BizTalk Server PowerShell Installation Toolkit". This is a collection of PowerShell scripts to make a BizTalk Server installation easier and more consistent. I created this collection after numerous BizTalk installations, which took a lot of time. I have used the toolkit on several occasions, with increased quality and time reduction.

What are your top 5 favorite Wiki articles?

Do you have any tips for new Wiki contributors?

First of all, don't be afraid to get your feet wet. If you have a good idea, publish it. All articles do not have to be groundbreaking. Keep in mind that a lot of people read these articles, many which are not experts. The content does not have to expert level. A real-world case can be a good start, but focus on quality content rather than quantity. Submit articles to the TechNet Guru Awards challenge, to get feedback from experts. There is also a Facebook group, which you should be a member of. Finally, read the articles under the "Before you contribute" section on the TechNet Wiki front page. There is a lot of useful information there. If you have questions or need help, do not hesitate to ask someone. People are eager to assist, and we have all been newbies at some point 🙂

What suggestions do you have to improve TechNet Wiki?

I would like to see a content request system, where users can submit requests for technical content (articles, code samples, etc). This way contributors can focus on what the readers actually want to see, instead of what they think readers want to see. In addition, several contributors create their own "User Page" on the wiki (myself included). It would be nice to enable more content on the Profile Page, eliminating the need for user pages. Maybe we will see integration with LinkedIn someday. Finally, there are some bugs on the wiki, like sometimes having to submit an article or comment several times before it actually works.



“In vain have you acquired knowledge if you have not imparted it to others.” - Deuteronomy Rabbah

– BizTalk Wiki Ninja Sandro Pereira (Blog, Wiki, Twitter, Profile)

Comments (7)

  1. Great Interview,Nice to meet you Kjetil Tonstad.Thank you for sharing Sandro Pereira

  2. Wow, what a great interview.

  3. Superb!! Nice to know you Kjetil
    And Thanks Sandro for sharing

  4. Awesome Interview! Nice to meet you Kjetil 🙂 Thank you for sharing Sandro

  5. pituach says:

    Thanks for sharing Sandro 🙂
    Great to read about you Kjetil Tonstad.

    Kjetil regarding your idea: “I would like to see a content request system, where users can submit requests for technical content (articles, code samples, etc).”

    We have it, but people not familiar with it probably, We need to promote it a bit more….
    Here is the article where users can submit requests for technical content 🙂

  6. Thanks Sandro and Kjetil, we appreciate your hard work on these articles, i love that you enjoyed our latest release of BizTalk, we got more coming. Keep it up!

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