Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Stop the meltdown - Boxing Day and Beyond in Australia

Christmas day in Australia is like most other Christmas days around the world, presents, food, don't give the spare ham to the dog and lying around with too full a belly. But there is one fundamental difference "Its HOT". So as a general rule, the following two or three weeks are not for work, they are scheduled so that you can have some fun whilst you melt.

Firstly there is the Boxing Day dash which can happen in a number of ways

There is the mad dash out of the city - everyone makes the same mistake every year
If you are really mad, you get in a boat and head for the worlds most dangerous ocean and Hobart

If you have no imagination, you head to the "Boxing Day Sales" and use the store card your uncle gave you


More than likely you will aim to end up in a motel or a caravan park somewhere near the water

So now you are established in your now busy caravan park or motel, you can enjoy the heat with just about everyone else. The boring people who are left in the city will find no traffic jams, empty beaches and empty air-conditioned shops to spend uncles store card in peace. It happens every year, that is January in Australia.

I thought I had heard most of the ways to avoid meltdown but this year Sue Waters who works for us visited Parkes in central NSW.  She committed to this last year and arrived in the middle of a heat wave. Imagine donning your Elvis silk and poly and heading outside when it is 111 Fahrenheit. Yep Aussies do silly things in January. Here are some of Sues pictures from the Elvis Festival in January in Parkes  and a few words as well. 



 Sue Writes  Elvis Presley died 40 years ago, but for the last 25 years an Elvis Festival has been held in Parkes in January – 377 kms west (ish) of Sydney.  This year was baking!  The temperature on the Friday reached 44C but still Elvis tribute artists did their thing in the main park in that iconic white jumpsuit.  All that polyester!


 It was a hoot.  On the Thursday evening we went to the Priscilla Dinner where people dressed up just for heck of it (see image), while prizes were given for best Priscilla.

Saturday morning was Parade Day!  Hundreds of Elvis look alikes paraded alongside cars, Californian Police motor bikes, Priscillas and more Elvis related 60s icons than you could possibly imagine.  I’ve never seen so many sideburns, rhinestones, white shoes or sunglasses.



On Saturday afternoon we had front row seats for  the Grand Final of the Elvis Tribute Artist competition, where 8 of the winners from the heats performed 3 songs each.  All amazing.  The winner gets to go to Memphis for the international competition.  

It was fantastic, then came the long ride home in the hot sun.  

You may ask why did you write this Garry and Sue. The reason is its 100 Farenheit outside and its January and we are going crazy.  Have a good day....



Building Your Own Data Mining Interface

Back in the early 90's the mining company I was working for was being taken over and all my bosses were busy protecting the company. So  I had lots of time to learn Access. In that time I quickly understood the data exploring potential of Access and I created a data mining product called Graf-FX.  It sold a 100 copies and found me my first big client when I setup my own business.

So the other day I was looking through my article archives and I found a cool little sample that builds basic drilldown queries on the fly. I thought I would finish that sample off and write the story that goes with it. Here is some background to the story


Tucked away in the bowels of Access is a powerful graphing tool called MS Graph.  A lot of Office users will be familiar with the graphing capabilities of Excel but very few people seem to have successfully implemented graphs of much use inside Access.  Both products use similar core elements from the Office charting engine.  The difference between the two is that with Excel, you derive your graph data by pointing the graph to cells in a spreadsheet.  This allows people to manually move the cells around until they end up with a graph that they are happy with.  In Access, you have to manipulate queries until you end up the graph that you want.  This is a lot more difficult but the end result is far more versatile as the Access graph will work irrespective of the number of rows of data that you introduce via the query.  The other important feature of Access that you will deploy for data mining is the direct support of Structured Query Language in Visual Basic code. This allows you to easily change the exploration queries on the fly.  Read more on how to setup your first data mining interface here

The sample data link will appear on this page when the article is published in my newsletter.

Here is the download link for this article...






Thursday, January 19, 2017

How I Deploy vb123.com.au - a story about Azure Websites that can apply to any ftp website

In this article at LinkedIn, I am going to show you how you can publish your website into the cloud using Azure and Dropbox. This is a way that you can move on from a old style FTP host into a Microsoft Azure. To see my website that runs this way, go to http://www.vb123.com.au

As you can see the site it is very big and it runs fast. Before I moved it to Azure, that was not the case.  Even the site search engine is slick and that has a lot of work to do. So first of all a bit of background as to how I make the website. I use a Help Authoring tool called Help and Manual.  It can create Visual Studio help files, pdf books, kindle books, word books and chm files. But for me, it creates my website on my local computer. The second tool that I use is a combination of Dropbox and Azure.  Here are the steps that I follow to update the site.  If you are still reading at the end of this article, I guide you how to make the site in Azure.


Note: If you are running an FTP authoring program, ignore the help and manual section and continue reading because anything that can be posted into a local folder can be adapted into a Dropbox folder and this article will become very relevant.

So here is the link to the article once again.  I hope you Like it    Garry

Late Update:  Help and Manual loved the article. They posted a note into their website here

Sunday, January 08, 2017

European Holiday Anyone - How About An English Speaking Conference in Vienna ?


Karl Donaubauer is the guru of conferences for MS Access in Germany. They are pretty big. Now he wants to run an English speaking conference in Vienna, Austria.

The conference will likely take place on April 1 and 2 in Vienna.

http://www.donkarl.com/devcon/  << Link is working now

All you have to do is convince your boss.


Below are some of the great buildings in Vienna.

Schönbrunn Palace 


Vienna Town Hall

Belvedere Palace

Saturday, January 07, 2017

Microsoft Access Conferences Coming Up In the USA


There are two Microsoft Office/Access conferences coming up in the USA in April. If you live anywhere near them you should make an effort to go. If you don't live nearby, what about one of those working holiday's that you have always dreamed about.

Conference One

Office365Day is a FREE 1-day event for MS Office users, power users and developers to learn from industry leaders and local experts. It’s also a great way to network and share knowledge with others. The event is free, thanks to our generous sponsors & those that volunteer their time to make the event a success.

Learn more about:  Word   Excel   Access   PowerPoint   OneNote   Power BI   PowerApps

Event:  Office365Day – Grand Rapids
Date:  Saturday April 1, 2017
Times:  8:00am – 4:30pm
Location:  Davenport University, Grand Rapids, MI
Open To:  Everyone
Cost:  FREE!
Website: http://www.office365day.org/

Conference Two

The Portland Access User group is having its yearly 3 day conference in late April. Speakers lined up thus far include Luke Chung, Alison Balter, Jack Leach, Juan Soto, Thomas Moller and Armen Stein. This conference is almost full and is always a sell out.  

Event: Portland Access User Group Conference
Dates: April 29, 30 and May 1, 2017



Wednesday, January 04, 2017

What will 2017 bring for Office Access Solution Specialists ?


Garry polishes up his crystal ball and discusses what may be the big thing for MS Access professionals in 2017. Read Garry's prediction here in a new LinkedIn article.



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