Good Morning Vietnam…….

June 8, 2013

Up bright and early today thinking about IT development. I have been thinking about a lot of stuff so this is a big blog !

I am not a computer programmer, I was a computer programmer, I am a Systemsy Analyst.

But I have prototyped solutions in Visual Basic, C#, SQL Server and Visual Foxpro. I do try and the reason why I try is that in 2000 when I decided that I wanted to set up a software house I was surrounded by experts but in different disciplines and I did not want to tie myself down to one skill set.

I also recognised that I needed PHP/Mysql and java script and Linux.

So I got some PC’s from the scrap yard learnt how to network them and introduced myself to Linux and saw some diferencies ! I was doing simple stuff, raw html.

I decided to do a course and got a city and guilds qualification in C, and started a second level open university course in java so that I could network with other developers. Sadly I was the only person to attend the first seminar at the Open University – the course fees were £450 so i requested a refund and used the refund to do courses in Management, Health and Sociology.

I latter went on to create a visual basic online application to capture lesson plans and session plans for teachers. This I hosted from a PC in my bedroom and delivered it to my tutor as my solution to the course requirement. I had joined a city and guild 7302 Delivery of Learning course, I was advised that I had to deliver a paper based solution so I came off the course and got a refund. I latter continued my interest in teaching by joining a scheme conducted by Manchester City Council for volunteers wanting to teach literacy and numeracy – which I enjoyed. Sadly the funding went so that was it ! However I still have the interest and I have registered for a PTTLS course.
When I do this course I will create the paperwork that they will require and on my lap top create a solution in C# and SQL/Server for my own interest…..

I have plans but I can’t do them alone I am heavily dependent on my friend to supply me with sample source code and I am aware of how hard he works and how valuable his time is. My experiences of courses is that they are shallow, I did all the ECDL courses plus two Front Page courses in a fortnight when I found out that they government was withdrawing funding and that each module was going to cost £1oo. ECDL has changed and there is some ITC2 course that I did just to see what they were teaching – a good background to my Digital Champions venture. Next week I will see if there are any free IT courses available to see what is being taught now.

So onto today’s thought …..

My father in law was the production manager at Ferranti Computer services and I was able to get a PC at home long before they appeared in the work place. My brother in law created an application pre windows that enabled people to select what application they wanted to access from a menu screen. The application was called Q, we should have sold it as it was some time before windows arrived !

With my understanding of the PC I proposed a PC solution for a Time and Attendance system using electronic clocks and IRMA communications to the mainframe. Th IRMA board was £1200 pound at the time. We installed UNISTAR it worked an I was told off and was politely told that we develop mainframe solutions. Look where we are now !

Anyway I have a question.

I have not prototyped a sql/server to Excel spreadsheet solution.
What I used to do was :

1, Create a database extract, VSAM, to create a flat file.

As part of our solution we installed an application called CopyKing which allowed us to create virtual pc disks within the mainframe VSAM environment.

2, We used to pick up the file and PARSE it into the spreadsheet manually.

For users not registered to the virtual disk environment we were able to use file transfer commands to copy the files to the PC.

My question now is ….. can you as a Microsoft developer automate the SQL/SERVER to spread sheet process.

If so I will be keen to hear from you as I have a client that may request an IT development.

I am particularly interested with people new to the business who are trying to learn the language and are prepared to be mentored. People looking to gain c# and SQL/Server skills, I have a little to offer and I know men who can help – provided there is a reciprocal arrangement and that you have skills / services to share.

Please comment……

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