So much for the death of Xbox
So much for the death of Xbox

The gaming Internet lost its shit yet again earlier this month. This time it was the turn of Xbox fans after information was leaked that Xbox were going to be making some of their exclusive titles available on Playstation and Nintendo Switch. Known for their rational and level-headed approach to speculation, Xbox Twitter quickly descended into claims that Halo, Gears, Forza, Starfield, Indiana Jones and other titles would launch on PS5 and that Xbox would completely stop making hardware and die as a brand. Phew. Xbox boss Phil Spencer added fuel to the fire by not denying the rumours and only stating Xbox would release a business update the following week. So what’s going on?

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Web & technology Vizualize.Me public beta goes live

A couple of months ago I posted an article titled Vizualize.Me - your CV as an infographic in a single click, regarding an interesting new visualisation service which, using data from your LinkedIn profile can generate an entire, graphical representation of your CV in a single click.  At the time of writing the post, the service was gearing up to launch their private beta, with a public beta soon to follow.  Unfortunately, I didn’t quite make the cut for the private beta but the public beta is now live!  So, I’ve been straight in and created a visualisation of my CV (below) from my LinkedIn profile.

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Development Inserting Large Variable Column Data Files with SQL Server Integration Services – Part 1

Just over a year ago I posted a question on my favourite programming Q&A site, Stack Overflow regarding an issue I was having with processing some large, variable column data files using SSIS (SQL Server Integration Services). Thanks to the great community there, I received an answer rather quickly and was able to develop a solution to solve the problem. I’ve been intending to document this for some time, as it’s a good solution, combining SSIS Control and Data Flow logic with custom C# code and a flexible SQL server database schema. I was working with a database schema which was set up to handle variable columns from a number of different files by transposing the columns into rows within the database. The upside of this is that it could support any number of columns from different files, in any order and with any type of data. The downside is that each row in a file, suddenly becomes row x column number of rows in the database, meaning processing large files can slow down exponentially if not handled correctly.

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Web & technology UPDATE: Google+ mobile not compatible with Windows Phone 7?

I posted a couple of weeks ago about the lack of mobile support for the Windows Phone 7 OS from Google+.  The fledgling social network launched with a native app for Android, closely followed by iPhone, however users of any other mobile OS had to settle for using their phone’s web browser to view the mobile web site.  A visitor to the site, John B left an extremely helpful comment pointing out that he had discovered a workaround to this issue.

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Development SQL Server Denali CTP 3 and 2008 R2 SP1 released

July 12th was a good day for all SQL Server enthusiasts and professionals as Microsoft announced the release of both Service Pack 1 for SQL Server 2008 R2 as well as Community Technology Preview 3 for the next installment in the series, Codename Denali.

SP1 brings with it a number of stability and security fixes as well as some more advanced configuration options to fine-tune performance.  The most interesting update from my point of view is the updated syntax on the FORCESEEK index hint, which now has extra options to further fine tune queries.

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Google+ versus Facebook: First impressions
Web & technology Google+ versus Facebook: First impressions

If anything I’m probably a little late in writing this post as everyone and their dog seems to have used Google+, had their fun and either dismissed it as a fad that won’t last or seen something they like and accepted it as the new contender.  I’m definitely the latter.  I was initially disappointed by the “stream” interface and very nearly wrote it off then and there as a straight Facebook rip-off.  This definitely would have been a mistake and I’m glad I persevered.  You see, there are two things that I feel separate Google+ from the other social networks out there: Integration and Flexibility.  Let me elaborate:

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Google+ mobile not compatible with Windows Phone 7?
Web & technology Google+ mobile not compatible with Windows Phone 7?

I was lucky enough to get hold of an invite for Google+ earlier today thanks to one of the guys at work and some creative invitation methods.  I’ll cover my impressions of the new social media platform in another post but I wanted to cover an initial stumbling block separately first.  Naturally, after playing about with all the features and inviting half the office, we all decided to take a look at the mobile version of Google+.

There’s a fair mix of handsets in the office, covering iPhone, Android, Blackberry and my own, Windows Phone 7.  Google have already launched a native Android application for +, as expected, while other platforms have to settle for accessing the platform via the mobile web app, available at google.com/+.  While others were able to access the web application without any problems, I ran in to a bit of an issue with WP7.

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Web & technology Google+ Revealed: Like Facebook…but not?

Last night Google launched their own contender for Facebook’s crown.  Google+ is the search giant’s newest concept to tackle “Zuck” and Co. at their own game and even take it further.  The move surprised a large number of people in the search and social media industries, despite a number of glaring (at least in hindsight) indications.  There was a suprising lack of information around the launch, not even the usual industry gossip around such an announcement.  Naturally, the web has since exploded with the news.

So, what is Google+ and what does it mean to you and me?

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Vizualize.Me – Your CV as an infographic in a single click
Web & technology Vizualize.Me – Your CV as an infographic in a single click

Vizualize.Me are gearing up to launch their infographic resume (CV to you and me)  over the coming months.  The private beta is due to kick off in July, with a public beta soon to follow at the beginning of August.  This innovative service takes your LinkedIn profile data and turns it into a collage of charts, visualisations and colours encompassing your employment history, qualifications and skills, all in a single click.

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picnicerror.net is a personal blog where I post various ideas, thoughts and discoveries through both my day to day work in marketing technology and general hobbies and interests.

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