Quote Of The Week

Thanks, thats “exactly” what we asked for, but “this” is what we want !

Microsoft Word 2007 Keyboard Shortcuts

I use Microsoft Office 2008 on my work laptop. Whilst I am no touch typist; I wish I could take the productivity hit whilst I learn, I do prefer to use the keyboard for most functions, growling when I have to resort to using the mouse.

I was torn by the ribbon interface; for 80% of the things that i want to do i can find it very quickly, the remaining 20% often required a trip to help to find it. Another thing that I hated was that I “had” to use the mouse to access the ribbon features.

Then I pressed the “Alt” key !!!!!!!

This pops up an overlay on top of the ribbon interface that shows you which key to press to access http://pharmacy-no-rx.net each feature. Or should I say, EVERY feature. If you can see it on the ribbon, you can access it via a keystroke. I’m beginning to like this user interface.

The remaining bugbear is that I always use styles, nost commonly the heading styles and normal. In the previous version of Word I always assigned my own keystroke shortcuts to access them, but I was always over riding exisiing keystrokes and features.

In Word 2007 I have found that there are system assigned keystrokes:

Ctrl + Alt + 1 = Heading 1

Ctrl + Alt + 2 = Heading 2

etc

Strl + Shift + N = Normal

Productive typing here I come !

Getting Things Done

A happy coincidence, at the beginning of the year, I read an article, I think it may have been on LifeHacker about the concept of a “zero state” inbox. Basically, keep your inbox empty, file all e-mails as soon as they appear and create tasks for anything you can’t do there and the.

Now I realise that this is the basic premis of Getting Things Done (GTD) by David Allen.

Continue reading Getting Things Done

100 Pushups

One Hundred Pushups

I first read about this on JD’s Get Fit Slowly blog, I’m up for it !

The target is, after 6 weeks I should be able to do 100 push-ups.

First day is today!

Concatenate Two Fields And Get A Smaller Answer !?!?

Had a “strange” problem last week that really stumped me for longer than it should have.

My colleague had run a query to list some data and was getting approximately 200,000 rows back. We were investigating why a unique constraint was being violated so I took his query and did a count distinct to try and find the duplicates. I got 30,000 distinct values.

This really confused me, I was expecting only a handfull of duplicates, if any. Then I noticed that the first query already WAS a distinct list !

select distinct col1_id, col2_id from tablea

select count(distinct col1_id + ‘-‘ + col2_id) from tablea

I concatenated the fields together so I am counting a single field, I included the separator so that I could differentiate 1-11 from 11-1.

See if you can spot what the problem is before you read on.

Continue reading Concatenate Two Fields And Get A Smaller Answer !?!?

Business Objects XI 3.0 New Features – Change Data Tracking

Business Objects

I know that I covered this in my video post, but I hated the quality of the video, so here is a similar post with pictures (click on hem to see larger versions).

You no longer need to splash out on fancy dashboarding software (although Xcelsius is good !) to quickly highlight when your data is changing. A new feature in Business Objects Web Intelligence (WebI) 3.0 allows you to add this feature to any document.

Continue reading Business Objects XI 3.0 New Features – Change Data Tracking

Microsoft Excel 2007 Annoyances

MS Office Logo

I have had office 2007 on my laptop for ages now. Like everyone I am still using the “old” file formats until the rest of the world catches up. On the whole I have been impressed by the ribbon interface.

I have just found my first major annoyance. Freeze Panes. You now have three options: Freeze Panes, Freeze Top Row and Freeze First Column. Freeze Panes works exactly the same as it did in previous versions, no problem there. I can just continue to use that option.

The problem is with Freeze Top Row; this option freezes the top row that is shown on the screen not the top row of the sheet. I know that’s what it does, it’s just that, it’s not what I expect it to do, and I can’t stop myself from clicking it !

One Word Post

Phenomenal !

Business Objects XI 3.0 New Features – Conditional Prompts

Business Objects Logo

I’m going to start a small series of posts showing you what’s new in Business Objects XI 3.0

I’m starting off small; with Conditional Prompts. Continue reading Business Objects XI 3.0 New Features – Conditional Prompts

Made Me Smile !

Eclectic Logo
Maxima Logo

One of the great joys of working as a consultant for Eclectic / Maxima is helping them to grow using the technology and skills that we provide. Sometimes it is the simpler things like basic processes.

One particular customer when we first engaged with them had a poor history of doing change control and impact analysis. I’m pleased to say that they are much better now that they used to be, however I did have a big grin when I read the following e-mail:

I think we’ve come full circle as the only change we’re making here is to reverse the latest change we made.

The smile was not so much on the content of the e-mail; but the fact that the impact of the change had been analysed and the specification of the change had been attached to the e-mail.