Register for the PASS summit 2017

PASS summit 2017

The PASS summit brings you three days of inspiring, jam-packed educational opportunities focused on the Microsoft Platform, professional connections, and new skills and know-how you can put to use immediately. Don’t forget to stop by the IDERA booth for your chance to win one of 3 apple watches!

What to expect this year at the summit:

  • More than 5,000 registrants from more than 2,000 companies
  • Representatives from 52 different countries
  • Over 200 technical sessions presented by industry experts from around the world including more advanced sessions than years before
  • 70+ hours networking with MVPs, experts and peers
  • Inspiring keynote speakers that include Rohan Kumar, Rimma Nehma, and Heather Ritchie,
  • An opportunity to connect, share and learn

Pass

TMS Component Pack v8.8 released with 3 new components

TMS Component Pack v8.8 released with 3 new components

TMS

TMS has released Version 8.8 Component pack for VCL development using Delphi.  The components range in vast improvements that allow a Delphi developer to easily drop a component on the form to reduce the amount of coding necessary to get the application to market.

TMS Component Pack v8.8 released with 3 new components: http://www.tmssoftware.com/site/news.asp

 

  • New : TAdvDBListBox v1.0.0.0 : Listbox control with embedded filter + insert data capability that can be bound to a dataset field.
  • New : Automatic button column type when setting Columns[x].Editor := edButton in TAdvColumnGrid
  • New : Hover background, text & border color capability in TAdvResponsiveList
  • New : Name property added to TInspectorItem in TMS InspectorBars
  • New : InspectorPanel.Items.Item[Name] added to access items by name in TMS InspectorBars
  • New : Planner.GridControl.BorderColor: TColor property added in T(DB)Planner
  • New : Enabled property added at item level in TTodoList
  • New : Property EnableWheel added in TAdvComboBox
  • New : ListLeft.Caption, ListRight.Caption properties added in TAdvDualListBox
  • New : Lookup, resizable and save function in design time editor in TPictureContainer
  • New : Label added in TAdvMultiButtonEdit
  • New : Property AutoCheck added in TAdvOfficeRadioButton
  • New : Automatic button column type when setting Columns[x].Editor := edButton in TDBAdvGrid
  • New : TAdvHighLightLabel v1.0.0.0 : Label that allows to highlight specific words in the label text in different colors.
  • New : TAdvTouchSpinEdit v1.0.0.0 : Spin edit control with spin buttons left and right from the edit control to allow easy up/down button access from touch screens.

Create modern-looking & feature-rich Windows applications faster with over 400 components in one money and time saving bundle for Delphi 7, 2007, 2009, 2010, XE, XE2, XE3, XE4, XE5, XE6, XE7, XE8, 10 Seattle, 10.1 Berlin, 10.2 Tokyo & C++Builder 2007, 2009, 2010, XE, XE2, XE3, XE4, XE5, XE6, XE7, XE8, 10 Seattle, 10.1 Berlin, 10.2 Tokyo

 

Idera – Free Tool – PowerShell Scripts for SQL Server

Idera – Free Tool – PowerShell Scripts for SQL Server

Idera

Idera is offering a free tool of Powershell scripts for Microsoft SQL server.  You can simply your SQL Server Administration with 89 free Powershell scripts by simply providing some information and it is an amazing assortment of scripts.  The scripts will allow you to work on your server providing you with some outstanding quick pieces that will enhance what you do on a daily basis.

  • 89 example scripts for managing SQL Server objects
  • Initialize PowerShell SQLPS module and work with databases
  • Scripts for Analysis, Integration, and Reporting services
  • Experimental support for SQL Server 2016
  • New scripts for exploring In-Memory databases and query store features

Powershell script break down

Database Engine

  • Connect to a server instance, manage databases and publish scripts
  • Work with policies and SQL Server logs
  • Manage security and backups
  • Create and manage SQL Server jobs
  • Get extended event information

Analysis Services

  • Connect to an Analysis Services instance
  • Get connection information
  • Get a list of databases
  • Backup databases and remove old backups
  • Restore a database

Integration Services

  • Start and stop services
  • Get package information
  • Provision a catalog
  • Publish a project
  • Modify catalog settings

Reporting Services

  • Start or stop services
  • Get instance information
  • Backup and restore encryption keys
  • Get configuration information
  • Get event log information

***NEW Scripts***
In-Memory Databases (SQL2014 and SQL2016)

  • Get overall utilization
  • Get size on disk
  • Get detailed utilization by table
  • Get checkpoint size

Query Plan (SQL2016)

  • Set Query Plan desired state
  • Set Query Plan data retention maximum size
  • Get Query Plan information
  • Get Query Store status

 

Day of the Programmer so let’s Celebrate

Day of the Programmer so let’s celebrate

Day

The Day of the Programmer is an international professional day that is celebrated on the 256th (hexadecimal 100th, or the 28th) day of each year (September 13 during common years and on September 12 in leap years). It is officially recognized in Argentina, Bangladesh, Chile, Brazil, Mexico, Austria, Germany, Canada, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, India, Belgium, Australia, Poland, Romania, Ireland, Italy, Serbia, Slovenia, Ukraine, United Kingdom, the United States and Russia.[1][2]

The number 256 (28) was chosen because it is the number of distinct values that can be represented with an eight-bit byte, a value well-known to programmers. 256 is also the highest power of two that is less than 365, the number of days in a common year.

You wonder why Russia out of all places decided to create the official day of the programmer.  I guess the old “JOLT” and late nights weren’t the prize after all to all programmers.

If you think about it, everything in your life now is based on a software developer from your phone to your heating system.  So celebrate the day!

How to tell which iPad model you have

How to tell which iPad model you have

iPads

iPads aren’t as easily distinguishable as iPhones are the following article will assist.

How to find your iPad model number

In addition to the marketing names that we all know so well, all iPads have a model number. Two of them, actually. The first one is on the device itself. If you flip over your iPad, you’ll see a bunch of tiny writing below the word “iPad.” That’s where you’ll find the model number.

At the end of the top row, you’ll find the world “Model,” followed by an “A” and a four-digit string of numbers. The number string tells you what screen size and generation of iPad you have, as well as whether it’s cellular-equipped. For example, the latest 10.5-inch iPad Pro is A1701 for the Wi-Fi model and A1709 for the LTE version.) There is also a serial number printed here, but it’s unlikely you’ll ever need it.

In addition, some cellular-equipped fourth-generation iPads and first-generation iPad minis have an “MM” version indicating CDMA compatibility—though you’ll see that designation only on spec sheets. If you use one of these iPads on Verizon’s network, the MM version is probably the one you’ve got.

Please click here to review the chart on PC World

You’ll also find a model number in Settings.

The second model number (which is really an internal SKU number) is in Settings. If you tap General and then About, you’ll see a Model tab that lists a completely different number than the one on the rear of the device. This is a much more specific identifier, which provides information about the capacity and country, as well as the type of iPad.

If you’re selling or buying one internationally on eBay, it’s an important number, but otherwise the number on the back will tell you everything you need to know.

Coding Boot Camps should they go or be used ?

Coding Boot Camps should they go or be used ?

Boot Camp

Within the past week, two well-known and well-established coding bootcamps have announced they’ll be closing their doors: Dev Bootcamp, owned by Kaplan Inc., and The Iron Yard, owned by the Apollo Education Group (parent company of the University of Phoenix).  Not the most strongest places to learn how to code but some industry observers have suggested that the market may be merging in the coming months.

It appears that there are simply more coding bootcamps – almost 100 across the US and Canada – than there are students looking to learn to code.   Remember these courses are geared for a quick turnaround in studying and learning how to program.  I never mentioned that these were gifted academic schools since on average they are charging $11,000 for a 12 weeks of intensive training in a programming language or framework.

College or Bust ?

Does a person who goes thru this actually know the basics, sure but can they develop software that could possibly be used by millions, most likely not.  They stand a chance of getting a low entry level position at a software house.  They could have simply saved the money, learn the piece they needed from the vast amount of knowledge on the internet, or webinars.  Writing software is an art form as well as a love fest.  There are times a software developer will stay up long hours going over code to make it better.

In December of last year, Bloomberg published a warning to prospective students: “Want a Job in Silicon Valley? Keep Away From Coding Schools.”

The article contended that many companies have found coding bootcamp grads unprepared for technical work.   A tech recruiter told the publication. “My clients are looking for a solid CS degree from a reputable university or relevant work experience.” Google’s director of education echoed this sentiment: “Our experience has found that most graduates from these programs are not quite prepared for software engineering roles at Google without additional training or previous programming roles in the industry.”

New iPhone will be announced soon

New iPhone will be announced soon

iPhone

 

September 12th a very important date to mark on your calendar.  That’s when Apple will host its next media event, at the Steve Jobs Theater on its new Cupertino campus, where it’s expected to unveil three new iPhone models, the third-generation Apple Watch, and an upgraded Apple TV with support for 4K and HDR display technologies.

With new iPhones just days away from being officially revealed, a Bloomberg journalist has reported what he saw in images of the expected new high-end model. The key change is said to be the removal of the Home button, which has been rumored before. However, Bloomberg goes into fine detail on accompanying gestural changes on the software side. Click here to read more about this.

Even if you’re planning to stick with your current Apple hardware for now, there’s lots more to look forward to on September 12. During Apple’s media event, expect to find out when you’ll be able to upgrade your devices to iOS 11, watchOS 4, tvOS 11, and perhaps even macOS High Sierra as well.

Additional Information

Meanwhile, if you ever connect to public hotspots, you’ll definitely want to know more about a new Wi-Fi feature that’s coming in iOS 11.   You can also check out MacRumors for additional information on the iPhone that will be released.

The hardest thing to understand with Android and iPhone phones is the cost, it is always going up placing close to a $1,000 for units.  Sooner or later folks will have to make that decision on whether their budgets will be able to handle it.  It would also be nice if there was a recycle program with the vendors to trade in a phone and get discounts.  You can always send to a third party but the amount of returned funds is low.  Anyway an Apple release is always fun.

 

A simple approach to software development

A simple approach to software development

Development

Setting up your software development for a new application there are quite a few set of software developers that tend to jump on their machine and begin coding.  I would strongly suggest that an application which could be successful needs to start from thought to paper (even electronic) before any new code is typed.

Now as some suggest creating designs or layouts are the best method for them and sometimes that does make sense.  Creating a sketch board  or laying out the screen design is a simple way to visually see what you want to achieve.

Here are the steps that you can use when you are preparing to create a new application.

Sitting at a table or desk
Using white boards do help when you plan to get your thought on to the board for the initial start of the project.  You can quickly put down what your clients (consumers) wish to have or to fulfill their needs.  Simple step is to list all of the pieces in bullet point what you think the client is expecting from your application.

Always remember that developers can write a great application that nobody wants.

Flowcharts
Yes this is one of computer 101 concepts that no software developer wishes to use any longer but if you set up a general flowchart it will show you things you did not think of.

Screen Design
Screen layouts are extremely important, it gives the visual aspect on what the application will look like.  The best thing is that it could be done on paper without using a computer.  Sure it looks like stick men but it does show the layout that you think clients will be happy with.

Data Model
This is essential if you plan on having some sort of database manager that will capture the information entered with your application.  A proper data model will show exactly what you think each table and record size will be.  The database manager is another piece where you must either sell to the client on a robust database or a small foot print.

Know your customer
Sitting with your clients or consumers or customers, you need to understand the business.  You may not be a retail sales guru but you have to understand what the client wants and possibly increase business.  This does not mean as a software developer you need to allow the client overrun the project where your team gets the blame for it falling apart but you have to understand how the client starts and ends the day.

Team work
The biggest and one of the most difficult piece is to have the presentation in front of the software team.  You must be prepared to accept criticism from your peers.  They may see something you did not see or whether there is a market for your application.

Starting a new application for a market can be either a hard task or you can set up a plan that will get you to the end line quickly and successfully.

Visual Studio 2017 Version 15.3 Released

Visual Studio 2017 Version 15.3 Released

Visual Studio 2017

For Visual Studio 2017 version 15.3, Microsoft focused on improving accessibility, particularly using Visual Studio with the most popular screen readers. Microsoft made over 1,700 improvements but if you are using Visual Studio 2017 in a low-vision or no-vision mode, a lot has improved.

Couple of the more major things Microsoft improved.

  • Debugging is much more accessible. Debugger windows like the Call Stack, Locals, Autos, and Watch windows were inaccessible to screen readers. That’s now fixed.
  • The VS editor’s text adornments let developers know about features available at particular points on a line of code, such as breakpoints, lightbulbs, and error and warning “squiggles.” Customers can now discover and navigate between these adornments via the new “Show Line Annotations” command set, which you can find on the editor context menu.

In addition to accessibility,  many fixes for reliability issues to improve performance, many of which were reported through report-a-problem. Here are some of the more notable ones that had high votes that were fixed:

  • A crash that could occur in C# and VB projects when editing linked files, files in Shared Projects, or files used in projects targeting multiple runtimes.
  • A race condition when debugging C# or VB projects that could cause Visual Studio to crash when ending the debugging session.
  • A crash in C# or VB projects when malformed metadata is encountered in the code file.
  • A crash that could occur when compiling a local function in C#.

Additional key improvements

  • Azure Functions Support. 
  • Broad Azure sign-in support.
  • Improved container support.
  • Continuous Delivery Tools now included.

For the full list of improvements check out the release notes for Visual Studio 2017 version 15.3.

Amazon’s Alexa and Microsoft’s Cortana are going to work together

Amazon’s Alexa and Microsoft’s Cortana are going to work together

Phone

Amazon and Microsoft announced on Wednesday that they’ve been working on a partnership to allow their respective voice assistants, Alexa and Cortana, to speak to one another.

Starting later this year, owners of Amazon Echos and other Alexa-powered devices will be able to say: “Alexa, open Cortana” to start querying Microsoft’s voice assistant. Owners of devices running Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system will be able to summon Alexa via Cortana in a similar manner.

Why would customers want that — especially with the relatively clunky nature of the necessary voice command? The companies say that each voice assistant has its strengths — features like Microsoft Outlook and Exchange email integration for Cortana and smart-home controls or shopping for Alexa — and that customers of both companies would benefit from an integration.

It’s not clear if the two assistants will share voice data in an effort to make each digital assistant smarter. But there is the hope that someday these artificial agents will be intelligent enough to route requests to the best virtual assistant for the task without a specific “Alexa” or “Cortana” command.

What about Apple ?

The new partnership throws a wrinkle into the narrative of the emerging world of voice assistants, where Microsoft, Amazon, Google and Apple have been competing to build the operating system of the future. Google, of course, has Google Assistant built into the Google Home speaker as well as select Android phones. Apple’s Siri has been the digital assistant inside iPhones for years and will power the forthcoming HomePod.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and Microsoft chief Satya Nadella told the New York Times they would welcome such cooperation. But, as the Times notes, such a future may be unlikely since Google and Apple see their AIs as key differentiators for their mobile phone operating systems.

As Windows always wanted was to have a house completely working with their OS so now that you have Alexa involved or linked that dream may come true.