Saturday, September 28, 2013

Oracle software on Windows Azure

You can now have Oracle on windows Azure. Right now (effective immediately) it is in preview which means it is the time for you to check it out without shedding too many dollars.

This became possible as a result of a partnership between Oracle and Microsoft.
Customers can run Oracle supported software on:
  • Windows Server Hyper-V
  • Windows Azure
The following Oracle related items are available as preview in Windows Azure image gallery:
  • Popular Configurations of Oracle
  • Java
  • Oracle Database
  • Oracle WebLogic Server
  • Oracle Linux
Customers who have Oracle license can run Oracle on Windows Azure (license mobility is OK)

Read more details here:

Start your trial here:



Installation of SQL Server 2014 CTP1 on a Windows 8 partition

This post describes installation of SQL Server 2014 CTP1 on a second partition (Windows 8 Preview) of a computer with Windows 7 on the first  partition. As the first partition had too many of SQL Server 2012 related programs, SQL Server 2014 CTP1 was installed on the second partition clear of any SQL Server installations or programs.

The computer used was a Toshiba Satellite P775 laptop.

Some details of the reasons for using the second partition are described here:

The installation of SQL Server 2014 CTP1 proceeds smoothly without any problem on the second partition. The installation screen shots with some annotations can be found here:

Purposes of testing all installation options were chosen as shown here:

When the installation is complete, the program components appear as Apps in Windows 8 as shown here:

The Reporting Services was installed for Native Mode, but the program also installs required files for SharePoint Integrated mode. The developer has to configure the SharePoint Integrated Reporting Services service from Central Administration in SharePoint server.

SharePoint Integrated mode configuration; Tabular Mode of Analysis Server; Power View are all described in detail in my recent book here:

The Analysis Services server was installed to support Multidimensional model as shown here:

If you are interested in details of the Reporting Services in SQL Server 2012 make sure you get your hands on some of the important links collected here:



Friday, September 27, 2013

Windows Azure and two-factor authentication

Two factor authentication beefs up the usual username/password authentication by laying in another layer. You sign-in with username/password but then the authentication proceeds after verifying on a mobil device; an automated telephone call or a text message with a passcode.  This is what is called the Windows Azure multi-factor authentication and is available for,
Web applications.
It can run both on existing hardware or Windows Azure Virtual machine. There appears to be a small charge to use this service.
Both Amazon web Services (AWS) and Google Compute service offer this feature and more providers may jump in.

Read details here:

This company from Norway seems to provide this alternative through an APP it is planning.

Watch this video from Microsoft:

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Big data to aid Big apple

Big data shakes hands with academics.

Big cities are sources of big data. Data comes in streams from all directions from diverse sources like traffic, crime, scams, events, emails, social media sites, weather sensors, sniffers of various kinds, parking lots and you name it. This data is not the kind of data that you can feed directly to a relational engine, it is diverse, a mélange and can only be termed informatics.

A new center, Center for Urban Science and Progress (CUSP) at New York University will be utilizing Big data to understand the dynamics of the city through various sensors and look through the data they bring in. Similar programs are already in place in University of Chicago and MIT. Outside USA similar efforts are in place like Spain and Singapore.

NYU will offer MS and PhD programs and takes an integrated look at physical, biological and informational data form the city's sensors. The data comes from not only installed sensors to measure temperature, pollution etc.  but also from body worn sensors like FitBit, and Up wristbands that volunteers wear and go round the city. Of course data from twitter feeds, blogs, video cameras etc. will be integrated as well.

Well there is no dearth for data from such a large resource as Big Apple.

The program has sponsors committed to Big Data with biggies like Microsoft, IBM, Xerox, City agencies, MTA and a couple of National Laboratories thrown in for good measure.

This post was written after reading this article, ‘Smart Cities will need big data’ in Physics today a journal published by the American Physical Society, September 2013, pp. 19, 20. For details get a copy of the journal from a library near you.

Related resources (Please do not skip):

Watch this video:

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Do You Need to Connect to SQL Anywhere 16 from OpenOffice 4.0? - Part 4

Accessing SQL Anywhere 16 from OpenOffice 4.0 using an ADO connection allows us to view objects and their contents. The details are described in this post..

When SQL Anywhere 16 is accessed by OpenOffice 4.0 using an ODBC connection, the problem of viewing table contents is not yet settled as described in the previous two posts here:

However, a work around was found and was described in this post:

From earlier posts we have seen that OpenOffice 4.0 provides couple of different options to access data.  We start as in earlier posts by launching OpenOffice 4.0 as shown here. It is assumed that the SQL Anywhere 4.0 sample database 16.0 has started and that you can connect to the database from Sybase Central 16.0

We have chosen to connect to SQL Anywhere using the ADO connection as shown above.

In Step 2 we need to set up the ADO connection for which we need to provide an URL.  I have used demo as the URL (not strictly follows the definition of an URL, which is, Internet address: an address identifying the location of a file on the Internet, consisting of the protocol, the computer on which the file is located, and the file's location on that computer).

This was a guess on my part looking at the Personal Server shown here:

Clicking Next on the OpenOffice 4.0 Database Wizard screen brings up the following wherein User authentication must be set up:

We use the same credentials (dba / sql) and click Test Connection.

After entering the Password (sql) click OK.

You get a confirmation from OpenOffice Base as shown above.
Click OK.

We have come to Step 4. Accept the defaults as above and click Finish.

Now we see all the objects. Note at the bottom the type of connection (ADO as shown). You see all the objects although not shown in their original nodes. The database file saved is named, SeptSqlAny16.odb. It has a mixture of objects from the demo database.
This shows that ADO connection is perhaps a better option to connect to SQL Anywhere 16.0 from OpenOffice 4.0.


Monday, September 23, 2013

iPhone 5S is now available

Mixed reactions to both 5C and 5S from local users. Touch ID is not enough to drive customer crazy. Fun users like the color of 5C but after a while sets in fatigue.  One Jane Doe user I questioned told me that she had a look at the 5C but she is satisfied with her old phone for now. She did not like the black front. She appeared to me like a careful spender and would not jump at a new introduction. iPhone 5S appears nice and the finger print impression on the screen appears to have fewer lines than in the original(the thumb). I am sure law enforcement folks may need a scanner with better resolution. The one in the picture shows lot more lines than what I experienced, perhaps it depends on the pressure on the Home button.

The sales are reported to be higher than for the previous version. However take a look at this review here post September 18.

What are its features?
  • It is the first smart phone with 64 bit architecture
  • It has an outstanding camera
  • It has finger print recognition system
  • The above in addition to other standard features.
It comes in 3 colors, Gold (very easy to seduce Indian and Chinese markets), Silver and grey. In fact, I heard that gold colored 5S is sold out in China. 

The A7 chip is at the heart of this phone with the M7 chip providing much needed motion related data processing.

Here are some of the details of the chips:

A7 chip was designed by Samsung using its 28 nm Hi K Metal Gate process. It is twice as fast as A6 and it is the first time 64-bit architecture used on a smart phone. Even for computers 64-bit is a recent introduction. 

The M7 Co-processor takes care of motion data from accelerometers, gyroscope, and compass.M7 lessens the load on the A7. M7 is from NXP Semiconductors (part number NXP LPC18A1) and is based on ARM's Cortex-M3 architecture. NXP details are found here:

The above details were excerpted from the following site:

About future iPhones:

Read my post on Apple's future chips, and who provides them here:

Here are some screen shots, more details in my other blog here:

About Touch ID

Finger print detection is accessed via Home button(See picture). 

Here are some technical details:

Phone buttons and externals:

  • Retina display
  • 4-inch (diagonal) widescreen Multi-Touch display

iSightCamera (very similar to iPhone5c)

  • Auto-focus
  • Tap to focus
  • Face detection
  • Panorama
  • Auto image stabilization
  • Burst mode
  • Photo geotagging
Power and battery life:
  • Built-in rechargeable lithium-ion battery
  • Charging via USB to computer system or power adapter
  • Talk time: Up to 10 hours on 3G
  • Standby time: Up to 250 hours
Built-in sensors:
  • Three-axis gyro
  • Accelerometer
  • Proximity sensor
  • Ambient light sensor
  • Fingerprint identity sensor
Default (out of the box APPs):
Looks like a complete set but fewer than in 5C!

Additional free apps:

For complete specs here is the link from which some of the above were taken:

Follow to read this review here:

Friday, September 20, 2013

Do You Need to Connect to SQL Anywhere 16 from OpenOffice 4.0? - Part 3

The problem of viewing table contents is not yet resolved as described in the previous two posts here:

However, a work around was found.
This post describes the work around.

It was noticed that while the table contents could not be viewed in OpenOffice 4.0, the content of a SQL Anywhere view can be viewed in OpenOffice 4.0.

Here is the 'View' node in SQL Anywhere 16 which has the view - ViewSalesOrders.

Here are the contents of the view -ViewSalesOrders opened in OpenOffice4.0

Taking this as the hint, the table in Sybase Central that could not be opened in OpenOffice 4.0 was used to create a View in Sybase Central. The Sept5_View was created in SQL Anywhere 16 with the following statement:

The content of Contacts table in SQL Anywhere 16shown here:


The content of the view - Sept5_View in SQL Anywhere 16 shown here:

The Sept5_View shown in OpenOffice4.0 shown here:

This can be used to create other objects in OpenOffice 4.0

Part 2

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Brand new look of Bing

Search need not be boring scrolling over a thousand links and yet not finding what you are looking for. With Bing search became just smarter. Bing was already beautiful with terrific images and now it has been reborn again providing a more useful interface. Search for something and you have everything related from web to music to eating related to your search. It is a totally immersive experience. It also has a new logo.


Cool search!!

Bing smart search in new window (Smart search in Windows 8.1)

Bing Food and drink
Guide to food
hands-free mode

Bing health and fitness
1000 exercise videos
Nutrition info
Medical References
Diet Trackers

Check out this video!
These images were captured on a Windows 7 computer.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

MySQL is challenged by its fork

MariaDB has thrown the gauntlet to MySQL (written by Michael (monty) Widenius who also forked MARIADB). It looks like Google will take up MariaDB abandoning MySQL. One of the reasons appears to be a difference in perception between Oracle  and Google. The support for MySQL from Oracle does not match the aspirations of Google, read the story here:

Google is the latest to abandon after Red Hat, SUSE and Wikipedia.

Read up about the history of MariaDB here:

Look out for my next post on a brief introduction to Maria DB 10.0.


Sunday, September 15, 2013

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) to supply A8 chips for Apple's future phones

Apple to severe its relationship with Samsung:

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company(TSMC) to supply chips to Apple on a 3-year agreement. TSMC is listed on NYSE.

Apple Chipset lineup according to a Digitime article:

A8  20-nanometer design rule-->2014
A9  16-nanometer design rule-->2015
A9X 10-nanometer desgin rule-->2015

The 20-nanometer node and its features appears on TSMC's site here:

But (Hodentek wonders ?) getting from 20 to 16 and 10-NM will not be easy within a year. 

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Uninstalling SQL Servers has become very easy lately

Installing SQL Servers may pose problems depending on the resources on your computer, but uninstalling SQL Servers may also present problems. However installing / uninstalling SQL Servers have become very easy and straight forward lately. In the following I present some screen shots of uninstalling SQL Server 2012 instances (Evaluation Enterprise) on a Windows 7 (x64) Ultimate OS on Toshiba Satellite P775 Laptop used in the preparation of materials used in my recent book here:

These instances were used to completely document Reporting Services 2012 in both Native Mode and SharePoint Integrated mode. However there are still items in the Control Panel (Programs) that may interfere with my installing SQL Server 2014 CTP1. I will cross the bridge when I come to it.

Uninstalling SQL Server 2012 did not present any problems. I have a Windows XP machine with several instances of SQL Server 2005, 2008, 2008 R2 that I was unable to remove completely and resorted to flattening the lap top.

Friday, September 13, 2013

iPhone5C coming soon to an Apple Store near you

Follow the story here:

The iPhone 5C will go on sale on Sept. 20, with pre-orders starting on Sept. 13.

The cheaper version of the smartphone starts at $99 for a 16GB model with a two- year contract.
Home screen and Wall Paper matches with the color you choose.
All plastic back cover with a structurally sound steel reinforced frame holds the innards as well as
functioning as an antenna.

The technical  details are summarized here:

Here are some screen shots for starters:

Five colors
Front and back
External Connections
Out  of the box Apps:


Thursday, September 12, 2013

Microsoft Visual Studio 2013 RTM will be available on October 18

Right now Release Candidate (RC) 2013 is available which came out in September. Microsoft Visual Studio 2013 with many new features will be launched November 13.

Things you find in this version:

Innovative new features to boost productivity:
  • Improvements to UI - more than 400 modified icons, ramped up color usage, redesigned Start page and other hard to summarize subtle changes.
  • Greater productivity with features such as automatic bracket completion; move code blocks with keyboard short cuts; and in-line navigation.
  • Two modes of scroll bar usage, bar mode and map mode. You can home-in on the exact code location and navigate to it using these modes.

  • The GoTo definition command has a added feature called Peek Definition. A line of code is something you or perhaps another developer added to the program and now you can backtrack and see all the historical details of when and who all dealt with the code. This is achieved by the new feature - CodeLens. CodeLens gathers your project META data and Team Foundation Server 2013 to provide this forensics.
  • The Connected IDE experience is introduced making start up very fast. Microsoft Visual Studio 2013 will automatically synchronize settings (keyboard shortcuts, themes, fonts, etc.) across the devices using Connected IDE Experience.
Support Windows 8.1 applications across all devices and platforms
Support for windows 8.1 store development including:
  • Tools 
  • controls and templates
  • Test support for XAML
  • UI Responsiveness Analyzer
  • Energy Consumption profiler for HTML and XAML Apps
  • Memory profiling tools for HTML Apps
  • Improved integration with Windows Store

Content layout enhancements to,
  • Blend for both XAML and HTML apps providing precision layout
  • Enhancements to coding in XAML apps with improved intellisense which is now available for databinding,template binding and resources. 
  • Improvements to connectivity using Windows Azure Mobile Services.
Web Development enhancements
  • The One ASP.NET vision unifies your web project experience in Visual Studio 2013 provides the ability to easily create hybrid applications that include improved versions of ASP.NET WebForms, MVC or Web API, all in a single project.
  • Browser link enhances interactive development with mutlitple, diverse open modern browsers, so that switching back and forth between source and web browsers is eliminated for enhanced productivity.
Create Modern Apps for office 365
  • Create Apps that extend the Office 365 to help interact with business processes,artifacts, etc.
  • Leverage the Office 365 in the cloud to integrate with business related IT operations
Visual studio 2013 supports TypeScript
"TypeScript is a programming language with support for classes, modules, and interfaces that compiles down to JavaScript, which runs on any browser, in Node.js, or in any other ES3-compatible environment." 
Debugging and optimization improvements

Expanded Application Lifecycle Management Capabilities

* In order to use many of these features Team Foundation Server will be needed.

Begin your journey here by downloading Visual Studio 2013:

This post is excerpted from this Microsoft web page:

Do You Need to Connect to SQL Anywhere 16 from OpenOffice 4.0? - Part 2

In the following post,

An ODBC connection to SQL Anywhere sample database ‘demo’ was established in OpenOffice 4.0.

Using an ODBC connection presented some problem as described in the above post. Specifically the main problem was you could connect to SQL Anywhere 16’s demo database and see the objects in OpenOffice 4.0, but it was not possible to display the data in the tables. It was assumed that probably the driver was wrong. This assumption may not be correct.

In order to sort out this problem the following test was conducted:

As the connectivity did not throw any exceptions and the demo database objects were visible a table Sept11 with DBA Schema was created (in OpenOffice 4.0) as shown. This assumes that a database in OpenOffice 4.0 has been created using the ODBC connection and that the SQL Anywhere 16’s Personal Server Sample (x64) is running.

It was then populated with some simple data as shown and the database aug31.odb was refreshed.

Sept11 was then opened in Sybase Central to see if the changes are updated. The result is shown here.

Double clicking Sept11 table displays the details as shown.

Clicking Data displays the sample data crated in OpenOffice 4.0 as shown.

Looks like this works from OpenOffice 4.0 to SQL Anywhere 16.
However, going back to OpenOffice 4.0 to reopen Sept11 resulted in an error. The main problem appears to be in OpenOffice 4.0.

Part 2

Monday, September 09, 2013

HTML5 and browser support - 2

In this post we take a look at the hyperlink in HTML5.
The hyperlink in HTML5 as in other versions is represented by 'a'. This has changed in
HTML5. There are,
* Permitted contents
* Permitted attributes
* number of constraints that list out obsolete attributes

The readers should read the W3C working Groups note here

In here we will see how a web page with a number of links gets displayed in the four
browsers (versions of browsers used are in the below link) we previously considred in here:
The 'a' tag can sorround inline or block content as described in the above w3C note
quoted here:

"Although previous versions of HTML restricted the a element to only containing phrasing content (essentially, what was in previous versions referred to as “inline” content), the a element is now transparent; that is, an instance of the a element is now allowed to also contain flow content (essentially, what was in previous versions referred to as “block” content)—if the parent element of that instance of the a element is an element that is allowed to contain flow content."

The following HTML5 was used in Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2013 Preview to look at how browsers responded and whether screen readers such as 'JAWS 14' could pick up the elements correctly. Of the tested browsers only IE10 and Chrome could be read with 'JAWS' and the other two browsers did not. I am not sure if the browsers support the accessibility features needed. The reading by 'JAWS' is a little difficult to understand unless you hear a couple of times over and over again. It is fair to say that Chrome fared a little bit better than IE 10 in that where as the reading was continuous from top of page to the bottom in Chrome it was discontinuous in IE 10.

<!DOCTYPE html>
<html lang="en" xmlns="">
<meta charset="utf-8" />
<a id="section5">TOP</a>
<p >The very beginning of internet can be attributed to the use of hyperlinks. <br/>
Hyperlinks are decorated region of a document when clicked takes the user to <br/>       
more details of the clicked region in the original document. For example, clicking<br/>
Microsoft below takes you to Microsoft Web site where you can learn lot more about<br/>
<h2>Here follows an example of a simple hyperlink that when clicked takes you to Microsoft Web site.:</h2>
<a href="" target="_blank" >Microsoft</a><!--inline-->
<h2 >Here follows an example of what is new and what you can do in HTML5. Now you can link<br/>
a whole block.</h2>
<a href="">
<img src="C:\Users\mysorian\Desktop\MicrosoftImage.png" alt="Microsoft" />
<address>Microsoft Corporation<br/>           
One Microsoft Way<br/>           
Redmond, WA 98052-6399<br/> USA </address>
<span class="email">Send us an email</span>
<a href="" target="_top">Email address</a><br/>   
<a href="#section5">Go to top</a>

All the browsers recognized the block as a single link however the rendering of the 'flow and phrasing content' was different in different browsers. IE 10 and Chrome performed the best as far as rendering is concerned,

Logo used in the post is a Microsoft Copyright and is used for illustration only.
Here is a link to JAWS:

 Protection Status