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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: SQL Server 2008 Spatial Data Types

    Continuing my series of notes following the TechNet event last Thursday evening,   I wanted to explain that in SQL Server 2008 there are two new data types for storing spatial information; geometry and geography.  Unfortunately on Thursday I didn't have the final release of CTP5 so my demo...
  • Blog Post: Spatial and OLAP data in Reporting Services

    I spent a very interesting afternoon last week with the IT team at the RSPB to explore what they could do to combine their mapping data with the olap cubes they have in analysis services. The only out of the box solution in SQL Server for spatial data is the map control in reporting Services (in SQL...
  • Blog Post: SQL Server 2008 & Virtual Earth

    There's a lot of buzz around Software plus Services (S+S) from Microsoft and others.  It's all very simple as Eileen will tell you -  it's when you use a service like GPS that's remote and public and combine it with some software like CoPilot or TomTom on your GPS to find directions. ...
  • Blog Post: Spatial Referencing Systems in the UK

    I have had a couple of queries about spatial data in SQL Server regarding SRIDs.  I have posted already on some of this here , and while I mentioned SRIDs I didn’t really cover what that means so hopefully this explains it... First of all the term Spatial Reference Identifier ( SRID ) is a European...
  • Blog Post: Expenses on Virtual Earth

    There’s a lot of heat on MP’s expenses so if you want to quickly see how your local MP compares then have a look at them on Virtual Earth here .. What I like about this is that it shows the spikes, so in my neck of the woods this MP is in red because he’s claiming a lot. But what’s interesting...
  • Blog Post: SQL Server Advent Calendar 22 – Spatial Data

    Day 22 of my virtual advent calendar, about stuff I like in SQL Server 2008.. SQL Server 2008 now has data types to store points lines and polygons in 2 spatial data type, Geometry and Geography. I have already posted quite extensively on spatial data, but it is is one of my favourite new things in SQL...
  • Blog Post: Weather in Business Intelligence

    We are obsessed by the weather in this country, but I can’t say I have ever actually used it in a business intelligence solution.  I know that Iceland (the frozen food people not the country) have a model that identifies an ideal BBQ day i.e. not too hot or cold, no rain, low winds and so on, preceded...
  • Blog Post: TechEd 09 Ask the Experts

    I have been at TechEd Berlin last week and when I wasn’t speaking I spent most of the time in the Learning Centre (TLC) or ask the experts. I must confess I felt a bit of a non-expert this year for two reasons; I have been spending time getting up to speed on the new Windows releases There were...
  • Blog Post: SQL Server 2008 Geo-Spatial functions and indexes

    SQL Server 2008 enables the use of geo-spatial data or location intelligence in four ways: a new geography data type (there's another one for 2D geometry), which can store points, lines, line segments and polygons A rich set of functions to make use of them, e.g. whether they intersect, how far are they...
  • Blog Post: The Shape of BI

    I spent a couple of hours this morning with a partner who wants to work with the Microsoft platform to deliver spatial business intelligence.  Unlike some companies who have BI skills they are trying to extend into the spatial world, these guys are spatial experts who want to understand Microsoft...
  • Blog Post: Reinventing the Wheel

      A lot of the things you need to do with SQL Server may well have been done before even if it’s using the new features in the new version , SQL Server 2008.  The challenge is to find this stuff and be able to make use of that earlier effort and a key resource for this is codeplex an open source...
  • Blog Post: Putting SQL Server data on the Map

    Storing and manipulating spatial data into SQL Server 2008 is fairly straightforward, thanks to its new data types, methods and indexing.  However presenting this data is more of a challenge; showing your users a grid of latitude/longitudes isn’t really going to help and so you need to put your...
  • Blog Post: Spatial Data in SQL Server 2008

    All editions of SQL Server 2008 hav the new spatial data type geometry and geography (including express) and if you want to know more about doing interesting stuff with spatial data you really need to get to Microsoft’s offices… on 16 April for a dedicated SQL Server community event on this subject given...
  • Blog Post: EcoCamp

    The best thing about my job is the interesting people I get to meet and this weekend was no exception, because I went to an EcoCamp in Coventry and met an arctic explorer and some amazing industrial designers amongst others. You might wonder what that has got to do with my work? Well strictly nothing...
  • Blog Post: Using SQL Server 2008 R2 Report Builder 3 with Bing Maps

    This article shows you how to get started with Report Builder 3 (RB3) and Bing Maps. I could use adventure works to show you this but I thought you might want to see a little bit of our green and pleasant land instead. To do this I have put the previous SQLBits venues into a venue table.. CREATE...
  • Blog Post: A worked example of using spatial and olap data in Reporting Services part 2

    Following on from my my post on Monday I wanted to show you how to link reports together using the mapping control in Report Builder 3.  This is actually pretty easy to do as any polygon or point on a map can have an action associated with it and one of the available action types allows you to call...
  • Blog Post: Data Data every where but it’s hard to tweak

    The people we employ to run the country have decided to make a lot of the data they collect on our behalf freely available at  Data.gov.uk .  This data by itself is of limited use, however when combined with in house data in a business or academic institution and plotted on to a map then it...