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The place where I page to when my brain is full up of stuff about the Microsoft platform

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  • Blog Post: Don’t be a turkey

    It’s not great being a turkey, pheasant or grouse at Christmas, but my Christmas sketch this year isn’t too worried as he’s a protected and valued Capercaillie. In the same same way the cloud first world might not seem like a great time to be an IT Professional but there are certain species who are similarly...
  • Blog Post: E-Mail Signature Fun

    One of the many things about the Microsoft culture I love is e-mail signature anarchy. What do I mean well the boring bit is that there is no clue or standard to the format of our aliases so I am afryer@microsoft.com , but steve lamb is stephlam@micrsofot.com and if Bruce Banner joined we might get bruce...
  • Blog Post: 1st Day of Christmas – Looking for Vulcans

    I hope you like the card (a result of a miss spent youth at Art College) and are enjoying your well earned break. My 12 days of Christmas this year will take a look at what sort of free stuff you can download from Microsoft, some of which you may already know but maybe not all of them. The series...
  • Blog Post: Win a Ray Ozzie signed copy of Windows

    One of our evangelists ( Marc Holmes ) has managed to get Ray Ozzie (Microsoft’s chief architect) to sign a copy of the pre-release previews of Windows 7 and Windows 2008r2 and he’s giving these away. To win you’ll need to make a cool video of some aspect of a Microsoft product and then let Marc now...
  • Blog Post: 11th Day of Christmas – Live Mesh

    Live Mesh is the brainchild of Ray Ozzie and is cooler than the weather outside at the moment.  To see why Viral has put together a short video to explain all.. Technorati Tags: Live Mesh
  • Blog Post: It’s official, 64 bit Windows is fun

    Although I have an Xbox, I still find flying and adventures are often better on the PC and I am not alone.  I am also not alone in that I use 64 bit windows 7 at home for gaming according to this steam hardware survey … What I am seeing here is that windows 7 is seen as a high performance platform...
  • Blog Post: On the Sixth Day of Christmas an IT Pro sent to me...

    Six Geeks a Playing   The only thing I didn't get for Christmas was Halo 3 for the PC, because it doesn't exist! So while the other evangelists on my team are on the X-Box I will be sticking to my guns in Gears of War and Crysis on the PC. Technorati Tags: PC Gaming
  • Blog Post: On the Twelfth Day of Christmas an IT Pro sent to me...

    Twelve New Servers Coming   The product guys at Microsoft have been busy so there are going to be lots (but not 12) of new servers coming out this year: Windows Server 2008 (in 8 exciting flavours depending on whether you need virtualization or not) SQL Server 2008 editions: developer, express,...
  • Blog Post: SQLBits Goes West 19-21 November, Newport

    When I am not doing the day job I like to draw and paint to relax so I have combined a bit of business & pleasure for the SQL Bits Goes West  conference by doing a few cartoons for them… As you can see the event has grown to three days. While there has always been a deep dive, paid for training...
  • Blog Post: On the Fifth Day of Christmas an IT Pro sent to me...

    Five Acronyms One of the worst things about being in IT is doing battle with all the acronyms we use, and having to constantly explain them to people who don't work in our industry. Two of the worst things about being in IT is doing battle with all the acronyms we use, having to constantly explain them...
  • Blog Post: What you see is what you get

      Data Visualisation is one of my many interests and Marc Holmes showed us a bunch of wordles like the one above in yesterdays team meeting, and we had to guess the blogger. Mike Taulty won despite not recognising his own blog!. You can see why Marc didn’t use my wordle, SQL Server sort of stands...
  • Blog Post: Apologies for the Inconvenience

    Sadly I am not as reliable as SL Server and so the blog has not been updated for a couple of weeks while I have been recovering form an operation.  My events have also been affected so Keith Burns will be on hand in Scotland tomorrow instead of me, and my TechNet virtual event on saying farewell...
  • Blog Post: On the Ninth Day of Christmas an IT Pro sent to me...

    Nine Laptops Surfing   Why do large hotels hammer us for internet in our rooms, and sometimes charge for wireless access in the lobby areas while the independent guys invariably provide it for free? Because they can I suppose. Technorati Tags: internet access
  • Blog Post: SQL Server TV

    One of the Microsoft guys at the last SQL Bits events was Chris Guest who works in the Media Room team which is all about TV over the internet.  I wasn’t sure why he was at a SQL Server event so I grabbed a camera (well two camera and and cameramen) to find out more… Technorati Tags: SQL Server...
  • Blog Post: Do What You Love

    “Happiness lies in being privileged to work hard for long hours in doing whatever you think is worth doing.” -  Robert A. Heinlein, “ To Sail Beyond The Sunset ” I want to make two comments about that quote; firstly it pretty much sums up working at Microsoft, secondly that is on an e-mail signature...
  • Blog Post: Bi Product

    I have just read Paul Gregory’s guest post for the TechNet Flash , and the two things that caught my eye was to be bi-lingual and to keep your skills up to date.  I put these two themes together and came up with the title for this post which essentially means being skilled in more than one technology...
  • Blog Post: Brown IT

    Green IT is about saving power in offices and data centres, so my definition of brown IT is about making the best use of the existing kit you have.  This is good for two reasons, it saves you money as you don’t have to buy new hardware, and it saves vital resources. You will see loads of stuff telling...
  • Blog Post: Is the Tablet PC dead?

    I have the luxury of 2 laptops one for infrastructure demos and one for the day to day stuff most of us need to do.  I have added luxury on top of that becuase my day to day machine is a multi-touch tablet (Dell XT2).  Before I get the iPad comparison comments at the end of this post about...
  • Blog Post: 3rd day of Christmas – Ducks in a Row

    This blog is written using Windows Live Writer as are many of the others on TechNet and MSDN.  In this video Giorgio Sardo shows how he writes his and how to control your PC with a Samsung Omnia.. Technorati Tags: windows live writer , silverlight , wpf , blogging
  • Blog Post: 5th Day of Christmas – Deep Zoom

    Deep Zoom actually does what it says on the tin.  However while many people have seen demos of it I am not sure many have actually tried it or know how it works and that it’s free. To rectify that Viral Tarpara (he’s the good looking one in the shot below) explains all in this short tour.. Technorati...
  • Blog Post: 2nd Day of Christmas – Brighton 360

    Although Photosynth has been widely publicised in the general and IT press I still come across load of people who don’t know what it is.  In this short video James O’Neill in fine Blue Peter tradition shows a synth (the buzz word for what you make in Photosynth)  he made earlier of Brighton...
  • Blog Post: After TechDays there’s After Hours

    Hopefully you are aware of Tech Days in the UK during the week of 10-16 April, but you might not be aware of the After Hours evening event on the 14th April. This is  still about technical stuff but with homage to  scrap heap challenge and Top Gear, rather than the day events where we all concentrate...
  • Blog Post: Art for Arts Sake

    A little while ago James discovered a fun little app ( SP-Studio )  for SouthParking people.  He didn't do a great job on me last time and now I have been recast as a SQL Ninja, I am not sure if that’s a tribute to my DBA skills or because he thinks I look better covered head to foot in black...
  • Blog Post: On the Eighth Day of Christmas an IT Pro sent to me...

    Eight Mashups Linking   Happy  New Year. You've eaten and drunk too much over the last week or so and I expect your brain has been taking a break as well.  So to get you gently back into technology how about creating a mashup?  This is simply a web-site that uses dynamic components...
  • Blog Post: Windows Live Writer just keeps getting cooler

    Every couple of months as I write my blog in Windows Live Writer, it pops up and says “would you like to try the latest beta?”, and throwing caution to the wind I say OK. It just quietly keeps getting better, so when I joined Microsoft last July you could put in a picture very easily without a degree...