Sunday, December 04, 2016

Tour of Munich, Budapest, Vienna, Prague and Salzburg - 5


It was free day for those who wanted to explore more of Vienna. We opted to take the Danube river cruise. We went from Vienna to Dürnstein, after about an hour or more bus ride. We did some sightseeing of this town with the blue church over the hill and 16th century residences. It was typically a town for tourists with lots of shops, restaurants, wine shops etc. on both sides of narrow cobbled streets. We then boarded the boat at Dürnstein pier around 10:00 AM. The ride was for about 3 hours or more and the boat had an on-board restaurant. At a distance, you can see the castle now in ruins that had held Richard the Lionheart captive.  Lots of wine, beer and snacks could be exchanged for euros. We finally got off at a place called Melk (see map references) and visited the Melk Abbey.  It has an awesome library. We then drove to a winery at Pfeffel in der Wachau. The owner showed us round the orchard. We were served wine (free) but of course there were cheese plates and cold cuts as well (not free). They do not export their wine as the local market is strong enough. We returned to the hotel around 5:00 PM. Some members from our group went out to the city for more fun. We called it a day.

Here are some pictures in a slide show:

If you somehow cannot get to see the slides here is another option.

Saturday, December 03, 2016

Review my recent SQL Anywhere 17 posts on HodentekMSSS

There are a number of SQL Anywhere 17 posts on my HodentekMSSS blog related to using Power BI. Perhaps you may want to read.

SQL Anywhere 17 Reports using Power BI                                                                     12/1/2016

Retrieve data from SQL Anywhere 17 in JSON format                                                    11/28/2016
Problem connecting to SQL Anywhere 17 to Power BI using OLE DB                           11/23/2016

Problem connecting to SQL Anywhere 17 to Power BI using OLE DB - the workaround 11/24/2016
Trick to querying a SAP SQL Anywhere Server database with R                                      9/5/2016

Tour of Munich, Budapest, Vienna, Prague and Salzburg - 4


Vienna is a historic city in Europe with its fine music and arts. It has very nice restaurants albeit expensive. The area around the Imperial Gardens speaks volumes about its past glory. The Schonbrunn Palace which was very near to where we stayed is worth visiting.  It was built to surpass Versailles but comes somewhat short. The Gloriette at the elevated place looks very impressive. The city tour has lots of other interesting places like the Hundertwasser haus and the Mozart Statue in the Burggarten. The Albertina museum was somewhat of a disappointment. They were exhibiting 'Monet and Picasso'. The entry fee was expensive. The number of exhibits were small.Perhaps your impressions are different.

There was also an optional event, the Viennese traditional Heurigen dinner. We skipped. Being a vegetarian I would have been an inconsonant participant.

Here is the embedded slide show:

If for some reason you are unable to open this document you can visit this link on Google.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Get moving installing SQL Server 2016 SP1

SQL Server 2016 Service Pack 1 is released  and now generally available(GA).

According to the above release blog:

Many of the features (listed in the table here) available in Enterprise Edition are now available in several other editions as well after installing the SP1 (Standard, web, express and LocalDB).


Note that Change Data Capture requires SQL Server Agent not available in Express and In Memory OLTP not possible in LocalDB due to security reasons

DBCC CLONEDATABASE added supports cloning of CLR, Filestream/Filetable, Hekaton and Query Store objects are available after installing SP1

DBCC CLONEDATABASE  (source_database_name, target_database_name)    –– Default CLONE WITH SCHEMA, STATISTICS and QUERYSTORE metadata.
DBCC CLONEDATABASE  (source_database_name, target_database_name) WITH NO_STATISTICS                                                                                               –– SCHEMA AND QUERY STORE ONLY CLONE
DBCC CLONEDATABASE  (source_database_name, target_database_name) WITH NO_QUERYSTORE                                                                                              –– SCHEMA AND STATISTICS ONLY CLONE
DBCC CLONEDATABASE  (source_database_name, target_database_name) WITH NO_STATISTICS,NO_QUERYSTORE                                                          –– SCHEMA ONLY CLONE

New Create/Alter supports modifying and deploying database objects such as
Stored Procedures, 
User–Defined Functions, and 

This is just a short list from more than a dozen others. Make sure you visit the link referenced at the top.

The SQL Server 2016 Enterprise specific sample database, WorldWorldImporters can now be used in Standard and Express editions.

Download SQL Server 2016 SP1 here .

Sunday, November 27, 2016

IoT and changing direction of Intel XDK

If you have been using Intel XDK to build apps both HTML5 based and native apps, there is going to be (actually has been going on) a change in the direction. A number of frameworks were used with Intel XDK in the designer. You might have noticed that the number of frameworks are being deprecated. Presently, in version (the latest) 3641 only the Twitter Bootstrap is currently supported and the others are being deprecated.

Intel XDK is going to focus more on IoT apps. The other apps are not going to be supported in the Intel XDK. Since most of the technologies used in developing non-IoT apps are mature, Intel XDK will get provide documentation help to use these technologies.

This is according to Paul, one of the Intel XDK moderators:

" it's not that there is a benefit for developing IoT apps over mobile apps, they are quite different apps; the point is that we are focusing the tool to emphasize IoT app development, especially since the free and open-source tools available for developing, debugging and building Cordova mobile apps have now become quite mature. We will continue to support the development of Cordova mobile apps, but will rely more heavily on these freely available tools, rather than try to compete with them. The product today supports the creation of two basic types of apps: IoT apps and mobile Cordova apps. When we say "IoT companion apps" we simply mean a mobile Cordova app that is focused on working with an IoT app and any supporting IoT cloud services. As the product progresses it will make more sense."

In version 3641

That going forward the emphasis will be on IoT apps makes great sense from the point  view of Intel Corporation. Intel Corporation makes IoT boards of different kinds and will be investing a lot of effort on IoT.

What better way can be there than this change of direction.

More here for all comments on related topic:

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Visual Studio 2017 RC available

Visual Studio 2017 RC! is now available for download. Download here for free (during trial period):

I am not sure probably it also went by the name Visual Studio "15".

Read the release notes here as it provides you with most of the enhancements to the IDE; layout for off-line installation; new commandline installation;code navigation related improvements and many more. The release note runs several pages covering all aspects of Visual Studio.
Download release notes here:

Interesting about the installation is there is a new installer which has good features:

  • Reduce the minimum footprint of Visual Studio.
  • Install more quickly with less system impact, and uninstall cleanly.
  • Make it easier for you to select and install just the features you need.
Earlier you had editions targeting Windows Desktop, Windows Web etc.

There seems to be Visual Studio Community 2017 (yours to keep edition) but I cannot find any links to it except this one:

You will hear from me here when I find it.

Mixpanel gives more useful information than Page view

If you want to measure user engagement Page views is standard metric. However, you would like to know more than Page View and you want to know what people are doing with your content. This is where Mixpanel excels (

Review this image in zoom to get the basic idea:


This is how it works:

Look at all options for Analytics and Marketing here:


If you are a developer go directly here:

Lots of Integration options:


What is more, Power BI can now connect to Mixpanel in the October update.

More features enhance Power BI in October update

The October Power BI was out on October 31, 2016. Some often requested features like date slicing and snapping to grid were added. Also added are the grouping; top N filtering; new data connectors and custom R-visuals.

The complete list of October updates are:
Report View
Date slicer
Report gridlines and snap to grid (Preview)
Data label improvements
Map formatting options
Improved date axis range formatting

Top N filter
Include/Exclude data points
R-powered custom visuals

Data Connectors
Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Financials

Query Editing Improvements
Support for table parameters in “Invoke Function” dialog

Other Improvements
Diagnostic information in the “About” dialog
Read full story here:

Review details of OLE DB Connectivity here:

Over a dozen recent articles on Power BI go here:

Thursday, November 10, 2016

TypeScript 2.1 ready to go!

Microsoft's TypeScript (also regarded as industrial strength JavaScript)  is getting upgraded with new features:

Improved Inference
Async Functions

TypeScript 2.0 was released as recent as September 2016. TypeScript 2.1 is in RC (release candidate)

The upgrade makes modelling easier and migrating JavaScript to TypeScript easier. Aysnc/await () introduced in ECMAScript 2016  is featured in the new release and makes asynchronous programming easier. It shares same keywords in C#, Dart and Python.

Here is sample code from the msdn blog links above:
async function main() {
 await ping();
async function ping() {
 for (var i = 0; i < 10; i++) {
  await delay(300);
function delay(ms: number) {
 return new Promise(resolve => setTimeout(resolve, ms));
Read the rest of the story here if you are into programming with JavaScript.

Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Vini, Vici, Vidi - Trump vanquishes Hillary to win the election

The victory was decisive. Trump won the Presidency with a huge margin. He won fair and square.

This result is all the more significant as he fought against the entrenched forces; massive advertisement spending from the other side; a ganged-up media; spending a percentage of what the other side spent; against a massive support by the sitting President and the First Lady; and a list too long to dwell upon not to speak of party insiders who wanted him to lose, lose badly.

Now with a clear mandate, he should have an open road towards fulfilling election promises so that those who were hurting for a longtime get some relief. Jobs, jobs and more jobs.

Long live democracy and hope we will have a multi-party government in the future years where there will be possibility of more checks. 

Monday, November 07, 2016

Tour of Munich, Budapest, Vienna, Prague and Salzburg - 3

June 20, 2016

Today we are on the move to Vienna from Budapest and we will visit a place called Szentendre which not really on our route to Vienna. However it not too far from Budapest either.

Szentendre has become a popular tourist spot because of its historical significance with  so many nationalities having lived there in the past and the tourist shops, museums and the church.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Building and deploying an Apache Cordova app using Visual Studio 2015 Community Update 3

Visual Studio 2015 Community is a free Comprehensive Windows IDE from Microsoft. You can develop both web apps as well as native apps. It is also cross-platform. Besides these you can develop a whole lot other types of projects including Databases and IoT.

Besides Visual Studio 2015 Community there are other IDEs that cover cross-platform app development using HTML5,CSS and JavaScript such as Intel XDK. Visual Studio 2015 or(VS 2013) address a whole lot of technology besides web and mobile. Here it is not the intention to compare or contrast but mention the availability. If there is a requirement for a simpler IDE then perhaps Intel XDK could be an option where as Visual Studio would require a steeper learning curve.

This post deals with creating a Apache Cordova app using Visual Studio 2015 Community Update 3.
In the New Project... window you find only one template, a Blank App available for developing a Apache Cordova JavaScript based app.


If you accept the default blank project you would see the following in the Solution Explorer.


The project can be developed at least for two platforms Android and Windows unless scripts are not needed for WP8 and IOS devices.

By default when you try to build this project, the IDE builds it for Android. The build process is lengthy and takes some time. As this computer does not have Google Chrome installed when you try to Start Debugging, you will get the following error:
Severity Code Description Project File Line Source Suppression State
Error  Error: DEP10401 : The Ripple emulator requires Google Chrome to launch your app, but Chrome is not installed on this computer. Please install it from: BlankCordovaApp_0   IntelliSense
In order to test this blank project you need the Ripple emulator.

However one can direct debug target to another device Windows Universal (for example).

In order to build for Windows Universal we can change it from the Project's Property page (Menu Project | Project Properties) as shown:

However when you try to run this you get this error:

Most of these errors are related to not choosing the right debug target device / emulator.

Windows as deploy target:

Windows Emulators run in Hyper-V and that needs to be working as the next message shows trying to work with Windows 10. This message is strange as Hyper-V is enabled. However, there
must have been a Windows 10 update which probably resets other settings.

I enabled Hyper-V using the Control Panel. However, you also need to restart the computer.

 As I had launched the Visual Studio as a normal user, it needs to run in elevated mode.

 Well. I still get this error message and cannot run..

 I changed my emulator to Windows x64 and the program ran without any errors and the emulator image is shown below.

 I tried to run in Window Phone emulator and it came up with many other errors. This one is hard to run in Windows 10 emulator.

 I am not sure what this error message is about. I wish there were more helpful messages.

Finally I ran the start debug for Window Phone with the Emulator 8.1 WVGA 4 inch 512 mode and the program ran without errors.

I have to see how it runs in other emulators/devices. Let you know in another post.

Paint 3D Debuts in preview for now

Microsoft has released  a preview version of Paint 3D which you can download from Windows Store and test drive.

I have been using Paint (it was not called 2D) for quite a long time although it is quite limited in many ways. I think it did get an upgrade, I do not remember when.

The new Paint 3D looks nice and it can do a lot of things.

This is what you see when you search for Paint 3D in Windows Store.

Paint 3D_00

Here is the description.

Paint 3D_01

Some more additional information.

Paint 3D_02

I downloaded the APP to my laptop (Toshiba Satellite S 70 series) with Windows 10 Professional and launched it. Here is the as launched view of the app.

Paint 3D_03

There are two videos that you should review and quite interesting.
I did a very quick test drive and the interface is very intutive. May be I will make another post for those who want step-by-step help.

But here is the first picture I created using the interface. Not really all the 3D things it can do.

Paint 3D_04

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Cloud-based service- AppDome's AppFusion automates mobile apps

Less coding and more fusing is what AppDome offers on the cloud.

First of all AppFusion is a codeless platform to automate mobile integration. It is a cloud-based service that can be used by mobile developers as well as mobile professionals (Mobile IT, Ops, LOB etc) to rapidly integrate new functionality and services to mobile apps on demand without any coding.

The following are the key parts of this platform:

Mobile Integration Workflow
 Primary user interface for interacting with the services. The workflow is intuitive for uploading, fusing, signing and deploying. Also analyze fused apps plus collaboration and productivity tools.

App library
 Upload and store unlimited number of apps in a stateful, private repository.

Fusion workbench
  Choose services that the customer wants to fuse to the app and create what are called Fusion Sets to apply to apps.

AppFusion Catalog

Also to note: When you sign you can add a complete best practice mobile security suite to mobile apps - for FREE

View fusion video here:

View security related video here:

Read more details here, or even better create a trial account if it is available. Trying it out to find if it  fits your requirements.

Get your beta here.
Source: AppDome web site.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Broadening IoT adoption and building trust with IoT test beds

IOT Solutions World Congress takes place in Barcelona, Spain during 25-27 October 2016. Not many days left.

The IoT Solutions World Congress is the only event featuring live testbeds of Industrial IoT solutions and applications.

Here are some copied from their site:

Communication & Control Testbed for Microgrid Applications
Continuous noise monitoring and sound event detection & identification

Energy, Information, and Avatars
"When a physical system is connected in such a symbiotic relationship with its virtual representation, we call the resulting interconnected system a “cyber-physical avatar”.

Industrial IoT beneath our cities. Interoperability and IPv6

Remote Patient Monitoring

"Cognizant’s Remote Patient Monitoring solution, powered by Microsoft’s Azure Internet-of-Things platform, empowers healthcare providers to transform the patient care relationship while mitigating the challenges impeding innovation and outcomes.

Sensitive Networking Testbed
"The goal of this testbed is to display the value of new Ethernet standards referred to as Time-Sensitive Networks in a Manufacturing ecosystem of applications."

Smart Airline Baggage Management
"Actual smart baggage trackers / RFID sensors will be shown that generate live data when they move – illustrating how the trackers are used with and applied to airline checked bags generating baggage data and alerts. "

Surgical Kit Tracking Solution
Inventory tracking for surgical kits

Transformation of business operations through IoT enabled edge to cloud video, sensors and advanced analytics
"Telefonica Fleet Management testbed will show how B2B customers from different industry segments can benefit from vehicle telematics solutions and the best way to support them through the digital transformation process."

Complete agenda of the IOT Congress here:

New JS Foundation launched

The Linux Foundation announced the launch of JS Foundation. JS Foundation will be a new project for everything that developer would be going to the open governed, open source JavaScript.

Both JQuery Foundation and Dojo Foundation plan on joining to create a more forceful new foundation.

The fact is JavaScript has become very popular.

"JavaScript is a pervasive technology, blurring the boundaries between server, client, cloud and IoT. We welcome any projects, organizations or developers looking to help bolster the JavaScript community and inspire the next wave of growth for application development."

The initial members are:

Sauce Labs
Sense Technic Systems
Site Pen
University of Westminster

There is also a mentor program.

The main motive for the foundation is to encourage and drive JavaScript centric projects towards broad adoption and facilitate ongoing development of related technologies.

Read for more about this interesting article here;

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Java Developers can use Red Hat's extension for Microsoft's Visual Studio Code

The Red Hat's extension is based on what is called a Language Server Protocol(LSP).
Read this interesting post on LSP.  LSP is a new protocol for language and IDE interoperability based on JSON.

The extension is based on Red Hat's Java Language Server & JSON-RPC-20
This summarizes (Source: article by Paul Krill on InfoWorld Setp2016, ) the highlights of this extension as vocalized by one of Microsoft's engineer:

""When the extension is not present, VS Code can only provide syntax coloring while editing Java artifacts," he said. "When the extension is enabled, VS Code can assist developers with code completion, error reporting, code formatting, and similar features that developers are accustomed to from IDEs such as Red Hat JBoss Developer Studio."

I wonder anything like intellisense and code completion at the very least are also in this extension.

If you are interested in using it go here and get a copy:

I believe it is free. Install the extension and if you have JAVA 8 Development kit you are ready to go.

Enterprise. Open Source. For Life - the one liner of LIFERAY

Liferay's stated mission statement,

"By building a vibrant business, making technology useful, and investing in communities, we make it possible for people to reach their full potential to serve others.

Read more here:

OK. How is it different from many others?

They talk about their first 10 years and that says a lot in this fluid industry. Liferay's main product is Liferay Digital Experience Platform.

The platform used to create and connect personalized digital experiences across web, mobile and connected devices.

The Digital Transformation Platform:

Easy Integration-Secure access to apps deep in the system
Modular Services-reusable and resilient services
Runtime Platform- Digital business model that supports cloud as well as on premises

Omni Channel Experiences:
Modern Web -Build fast usable web interfaces
Mobile-Native apps + mobile sites including gps and camera
Digital Hybrid-In-store experiences with context and services

Customer Relationship Insight:
Personalization & Segments-segment identification and targeted interests
Analytics and Metrics-evolve touch-points and increase click-through
Single View of Customer-  full understanding of customer actions

Got interested. Meet them at many of the international events as well as at Gartner's Gartner Application Strategies and Solutions Summit in Las Vega in December.

You can also downlaod:
Liferay Digital Experience Platform-an Enterprise trial
-launch your business-critical deployments with Liferay DXP
Liferay Portal CE
-Community supported Liferay Portal CE- smaller and non-critical deployments built with Tomcat

Visiting Munich, Budapest, Vienna, Prague and Saltzburg - 2

The breakfast was good at the Radisson Beke hotel in Budapest.

We left around 8:00 AM for the city tour and we had a very good city guide. Our main, more detailed tour consisted of visiting the Castle District; the Fisherman's Bastion; the Matthias Church and the Parliament. After this some of us opted to visit the City Market and have lunch there and take our bus back to the hotel.

The rest of what we saw was from inside the bus. We could have spent some time near the Hero's square.

Tour guide explaining finer details of the beautiful roof of the church

Day 1:
Tour of Munich, Budapest, Vienna, Prague and Salzburg - 1 

Day 3:
Tour of Munich, Budapest, Vienna, Prague and Salzburg - 3

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

Random thoughts on Google's foray into crowded smartphone market

The smartphone mobile area is full of actors having various kinds of difficulties from exploding phones to trembling hardware infected with 'touch disease'. Apart from the headline news of problems there is the underlying problem with 'Sales'. Well, Google wants to take on Apple, if I go by some of the Internet sites. Good luck Google! In any case, competition is good.

More here:

Microsoft tried to enter smart phone market with a really good phone like Microsoft Lumia 950. Tiles display with living updates and badges is still to be copied. But, it has not made any significant dent and can Google with similarly priced phones with very similar features do any better. OK, there is a better camera, so what?

Google is also moving to AI-First from Mobile-First. Looks like it wants to one-up the Microsoft's Mobile-First slogan. That's OK, too. Everyone is on the AI bandwagon with Microsoft rearranging its entire AI related research activity by beefing up with more developers.

Google phones were already in the market with the brand name Nexus made by Chinese and Korean manufacturers but now PIXEL is a Google branded phone made to Google Specifications by HTC.

Verizon appears to be the sole vendor and I did not have a great experience with Verizon when I bought my Nokia Icon.

Pre-ordering has started in many countries and you can pre-order at the Google site.

The most significant feature of what makes Pixels  different from other phones it appears is its advertised AI integration embodied in Google Assistant whose name you can customize. Can it compete in a big way with Cortana, Siri and others? Wait and see how good it is! We probably need impartial technical fact checkers and some bench mark.

Apart from the Pixels, Google has come out with other products which may perhaps bring in more revenue although competition exists product-for-product for all of those new Google Products.

Saturday, October 01, 2016

Visiting Munich, Budapest, Vienna, Prague and Saltzburg - 1

Living in Honolulu, Hawaii, it is not easy to think about going to Europe. However, as we go even eastward to India, sometimes, it does not feel too tough to go to Europe. In order to visit Budapest, we had to go via San Francisco, Newark, and Munich.

We took off from Honolulu at 10:55 after our son, daughter-in-law and their dog Oliver dropped us at the airport, a mere 20 minutes from where we live. We reached San Francisco the morning of June 16 at 9:00 AM just in time for a breakfast at airport.

We hung around in the airport as our flight was in the evening at 8:00 PM. It was quite a wait. It so happened that our flight from San Francisco was delayed more than 2 hours and we barely made it to Newark. Newark airport has changed a lot with lots of new construction. We barely caught the shuttle to the departure terminal. We reached Munich somewhat late (around 11:00 AM) on June 17. The arrival/departure gates are such that it takes effort to board the plane as you need to change the terminal using the shuttle. We literally ran like crazy to board the shuttle. The escalators at Munich Airport are really steep and run fast like at other airports/subways in Europe compared to those in USA.

Again we hustled to board the plane from Munich to Budapest where our tour begins. We reached Budapest a little after mid-day and to our chagrin the suitcases did not accompany. We had to do some paper work and the girls at the Lufthansa kiosk attending the lost baggage were very efficient. Good show!

We were met by our tour director, a very friendly and outgoing guy. He seems to have had lots of experience as tour director in Europe as well as North America. He was presently living in Salzburg, Austria. He spoke fluent German and English but I am not sure how well he spoke Hungarian (a tough nut) and Czech. He being originally Czech, I am sure he spoke Czech like any other native.

We were going to stay (for the following three nights) at the Radisson Beke in Budapest and after check-in we attended the tour orientation for a short while with a glass of champagne and had dinner at the hotel. I assume either the food was good or folks were hungry, I could not tell. Being vegetarian it is not my place to make a comment. I did observe though that the waiters appeared to have been preoccupied. I later found that the Europeans were playing football and surely they had the game on their mind.

  Although we were dog tired, decided to take a short walk and followed some of our tour buddies.

The photos we took are in the video hosted on google docs slides.
Partially filled slide pictures were taken with iPhone 6S and the full screen pictures using Microsoft Lumia 950.

Day 2:
Visiting Munich, Budapest, Vienna, Prague and Saltzburg -2

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

The what, why and how of Microsoft Azure Stack

Microsoft Azure Stack is a new hybrid cloud platform which can be used to deliver Azure Services from the customers own datacenter. It is in preview now, which means you can try it for free after providing some of your information:

Read about the Azure Stack ecosystem

Watch this video which explains Microsoft Azure Stack at length:

You can learn more about Azure Stack at Microsoft Ignite at Atlanta, September 26-30.

Review the session stack here:

iPhone 7 earbuds and NFMI

You know Near Field Communication (NFC) but you you may not be knowing that NFMI is also hot. NFMI stands for Near Field Magnetic Induction. The iPhone 7 earbuds use NFMI so that they do not require a wire running between them. The company which specializes in NFC goes by the name NXP Semiconductors in Holland also makes the NFMI.

The NFMI chip uses less power than an equivalent Bluetooth Low Power device and its absorption by the body tissues is 10000 times less than Bluetooth makes it an attractive alternative. As a consequence of this low power operation its range is limited to about a meter making it just appropriate for connecting the two ear buds and of course it is tiny with a 10.4 mm sq area.

Ear is a very sensitive area of the body where other body functions can also be monitored and, of course it has very sensitive parts. Any thing to reduce damage from anything including RF damage is most desired. The new NFC chip also has a two-axis accelerometer embedded, another very desirable feature is, it is also water proof.

I have only summarized this excellent coverage of the article by Colin Johnson and I recommend you reading this article which appeared on EETimes.
Here is a short video of NxH2280 demonstration .

This schematic of the NxH2280 chip appeared in the article.


Thursday, September 22, 2016

Connectivity Options for Microsoft Azure SQL Database

There are many drivers and libraries that client programs can use to connect to Azure SQL Database or Microsoft SQL Server.

The following are the language options:

Java using JDBC on Windows

This enables developers to use their language of choice and appropriateness of thei application to choose.

ADO.NET related specifics here:

Microsoft JDBC related information here:

Microsoft Node.js driver for SQL Server here:

Connecting with PHP use Microsoft PHP driver for SQL Server here:

Connect using Python:
Get Python SQL Driver

Connect using Ruby:Get Ruby driver for SQL Server here;

I have described in detail with examples connecting to SQL Azure (as it was called then) using ADO.NET, Java and PHP in my book when SQL Azure was still in Beta:

Read more about the book here:

Oracle's purchase of NetSuite

When I read the news couple of days ago, I was interested in knowing why Oracle wants to buy NetSuite. Of course I guess there may be other reasons for this purchase.

I was interested in learning what unique features of NetSuite would make it attractive for a buyer. I just came across this site , > which seems to answer this question.

Guru's site described the features why NetSuite would be desirable:

Visibility with good dashboards etc
Browser and mobile accessible from anywhere
Adaptable and
Up to date with automatic upgrades with latest innovations

I did get the feeling that the same list things has been offered by other cloud vendors as well for quite some time. It just appeared to me like any other cloud vendor. I could be wrong, and perhaps I did not hit the right site to get answers.

Read more about NetSuite vis-a-vis Oracle buy

Video showing why BM Online chose NetSuite:

Azure SQL Database is also for Apps

It is certainly the most sought after cloud based database for enterprise applications, but it is also the managed cloud database for app developers. You can easily build and maintain apps with a high degree of productivity. The intelligence is built-in that learns and adopts to maximize performance, reliability and other metrics. It is indeed the excellent choice for app builders to rely upon.

If you like you can start for free here: <>

Why would app developers would go for SQL Database?

In addition to its long history you have these unique features:

Azure SQL Database learns and adopts to your unique app patterns


Scaling performance on the fly is easy


Build multi-tenant apps with customer isolation


Build apps with the development tool you like best


Build apps with data protection and security enhancements


 Read more here:

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Query SAP SQL Anywhere 17 using R

As previously posted you should have the RODBC package in your library. Once you have this it is very easy.

You also need to have an instance of SAP SQL Anywhere  or access to it on/from your computer. An installation of SAP SQL Anywhere 17 (latest developer version) also installs DSN's for accessing the sample database using ODBC.

 Since you will be querying from R, you have R installed on your computer.

Some relevant references to the above can be found here:
[Windows 10 ODBC :
 SQL Server 2012 ODBC DSN:
SQL Server 2012 Installation: 
Installing R: ]--------------------------------------------------------
You bring the necessary libraries with these statements in R Gui (x64bit):
> library(RODBC)
> ch <-odbcConnect("SQL Anywhere 17 Demo")
SQL Anywhere 17 Demo is a demonstration sample database. After installing SQL Anywhere you can find it in the ODBC Database DataSources window.

After defining the channel as shown above, when you run the above you will be presented with this screen.
The database name is 'demo' and type over the password field with the password 'sql'. Click OK and you get a prompt in RGUI.

Now you can query the database as shown here Only 6 six out of 60 shown):
> sqlQuery(ch, "Select * from Contacts")

   ID    Surname          GivenName    Title          Street                                City               State
1   1     Hildebrand      Jane                ma             280 Washington St.          Kanata         CA
2   2     Simmon          Larry              sa               343 Granville St.              Kitchener     TX
3   3     Critch              Susan             pd              457 Center St.                   Yale             WY
4   4     Lambert          Terry              ad               20434 Page St.                 Phillipsburg  CO
5   5    Sullivan           Dorothy          cs               541 Minuteman Dr.          Uxbridge      ME
6   6      Paull              Rose               fi                718 Bay St.                       Huntsville     AZ

However, a SELECT query such as the one shown below spawns an error. 

> sqlQuery(ch,"Select Surname, City, Country from Contacts where state='CA'")
Error in .Call(C_RODBCFetchRows, attr(channel, "handle_ptr"), max, buffsize,  :
  negative length vectors are not allowed

In fact any WHERE clause produces this error.

The trick is to start the connection as shown here,

 >chs <-odbcConnect("SQL Anywhere 17 Demo", believeNRows=FALSE)

Now if you run the query you will not get an error.

> sqlQuery(chs, "Select Surname, City, Country from Contacts where state='CA'")
       Surname        City        Country
1     Hildebrand    Kanata     USA
2     Lyman           Kanata     USA
3     Davidson       Kanata     USA
4     Pettengill       Kanata     USA
5     Romeo           Sheffield  USA

I am indebted to an answer to this error at stack overflow site:


a question here:

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Easy to transfer files using RavPower FileHub - Basic

RavPower Filehub has a number of functionalities in one small device. What I have is a model called 'Seabird', a middle range device in the File hubs. They have one called 'Combi' a low end device and 'Pon' a higher end device.

It can also be used as a standby battery charger which you can use it to charge your cell phone battery. When the RavPower is fully charged, it could charge my Lumia 950 from 7% to 96% in two hours.

I am basically interested in file transfers from my phones which have reached limits for storage and I would like to have files on my own device rather than in the cloud. I think this device would do it.

I have just started using it and perhaps in a couple of days I should be able to verify its full potential. This is just the basic set up and it is fairly easy to use as you can read from the post.

You need to download software (from for the device and they have software to go with the iOS, Windows, Android and Mac Platforms. Since I needed file transfer capability from both Lumia 950 and iPhone 6S, I downloaded the required files shown in this image.

FileHub Plus_V1.0.8.0.exe   Windows
FileHub Plus V2.0.024.ipa   iOS

Basic set up for file transfer:
  • Install the Windows version of FileHub Plus.
  • You connect your storage device to the Filehub with a USB Cable. The storage device in this case is the My Passport ULTRA from Western Dynamics.

  • Turn on the Filehub device and hold the power for the Wi-Fi indicator at the center of the device above the power button. In the beginning it will flicker and then becomes steady.
  • Now turn on your PC which is connected to a Wi-Fi network. Refresh the Wi-Fi Connections.


Run the downloaded executable (FileHub Plus_V1.0.8.0.exe) and the login window is displayed and hit the center REFRESH button. The device is discovered


Highlight the device in the above and click Log In button to display the FileHub Plus login screen. Just click Login as the password is empty (you can change it later if you wish to).


The password is blank and remove if any characters are in this field. If there are no errors then you should see this FileHub Plus dashboard.


Click on Settings and review the Settings menu.


The next image shows that I can connect to two of my windows devices on the Wi-Fi (from Network DNS Clients). One is a Toshiba Laptop and the other is a Toshiba Tablet.


The basic set up is very easy and with the dashboard which is nicely arranged you can test out the other file operations.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Sensity to be acquired by Verizon

Verizon to beef up its IoT inventory by adding Sensity. The deal is expected close in the fourth quarter (

Sensity with its NetSense, the next generation Light Sensory Network platform transforms street lights by incorporating distributed intelligence, capable of High_Speed, High-Bandwidth communication. Pretty neat as the core hardware is ready and standing to be exploited.


Sensity also safe guards privacy as it addresses privacy issues.

Watch this video:

Sensity has solutions for:
Retail Malls

The Applications include:
Lighting Management
Location Analytics and

NetSense has two kinds of NetSense Nodes, the Core and the Video Core.  Node EX is an integral part of the NetSense platform. It basically converts the LED fixtures into IP_enabled sensory node.


The Video node is also part of the NetSense platform. The video captures and transmits real-time video data. The video node also has computational power to process HD video and has streaming capabilities.

Read more on Smart Cities according to Sensity here: Protection Status