Wise Owl blogs written by Andy Brown (page 1 of 9)

Showing blogs 1-20 (out of 162)

An under-the-hood look at how the new Wise Owl website works

Posted by Andy Brown on 08 October 2014 | no comments

This blog summarises the technology used to make this website appear on your screen, including ASP.NET MVC, SCSS, responsive website design and entity data models.

Tags:   Musings | Random musings    |    ASP.NET MVC | General

Addiction to the 2048 mobile phone app

Posted by Andy Brown on 08 October 2014 | no comments

One owl's sad story of addiction to a simple computer game: a tale of lost time and lost sanity.

Tags:   Musings | Random musings

Teacher training: learning how to code at school

Posted by Andy Brown on 08 October 2014 | no comments

How Wise Owl training courses can help teachers to fulfil the new UK National Curriculum requirement to teach all schoolchildren how to program.

Tags:   Musings | Random musings

VBA code to create a chart and textbox, and copy them to Word

Posted by Andy Brown on 03 October 2014 | no comments

Charts in VBA are a bit weird: this blogs highlights some of their foibles, by showing how charts are really just special shapes, which contain shapes of their own!

Programmatically searching websites using VBA

Posted by Andy Brown on 19 September 2014 | no comments

I've already pinched (with permission!) the ideas of Fergus Cairns to explain ways to run automatic searches on popular websites like Google; this blog gives an update on the same topic.

Tags:   Excel | Excel Visual Basic    |    VBA macros | References

What does the SCD transform in SSIS do, and should you use it?

Posted by Andy Brown on 05 July 2014 | no comments

Integration Services include a Slowly Changing Dimension transform, which is designed to make loading dimension data easier. This blog explains how it works, and discusses whether it achieves its objectives.

Tags:   SSIS | SCD transforms

How to create a simple website in ASP.NET MVC

Posted by Andy Brown on 16 June 2014 | no comments

This blog explains the steps you'll need to follow to create a simple one page website in ASP.NET MVC. The aim of the blog is not to act as a tutorial, but to help people choose between ASP.NET MVC and classic ASP.NET.

Tags:   ASP.NET webforms | General    |    ASP.NET MVC | General

How C# beat VB to take the programming language crown

Posted by Andy Brown on 13 June 2014 | no comments

This blog explains why Wise Owl have gone over to the dark side, and now program in C#

Tags:   Visual Basic | General coding    |    Visual C# | General

Revealing how Excel workbooks are actually stored as zipped XML files

Posted by Andy Brown on 16 May 2014 | no comments

Did you know that Excel workbooks are really just a collection of XML files, all zipped together? We didn’t either, so we thought we'd tell the world.

Tags:   Musings | Random musings    |    Excel | General

Thoughts on working with SSIS 2008 and SSIS 2012

Posted by Andy Brown on 12 March 2014 | no comments

Some thoughts and advice to those who have to shuffle between versions 2012 and 2008 of Integration Services.

Tags:   SSIS | General SSIS

How to enable compatibility mode in Internet Explorer

Posted by Andy Brown on 06 March 2014 | no comments

This short blog shows how to get round a compatibility mode problem with the skills assessment site.

Tags:   Musings | Random musings

A blog to accompany our YouTube tutorial on script components in SSIS

Posted by Andy Brown on 19 February 2014 | no comments

This blog provides the SQL, C# and VB script needed for the Integration Services script components tutorial.

Tags:   SSIS | Scripting

How to create autoshapes, lines and connectors in VBA macros

Posted by Andy Brown on 25 January 2014 | no comments

You can use Visual Basic within Excel, PowerPoint or Word to draw shapes, format them and even assign macros to run - this long blog gives lots of ideas of how to proceed!

Tags:   Excel | Excel Visual Basic    |    VBA macros | General

Advice on how to scrape tables of data or HTML from webpages using VBA

Posted by Andy Brown on 13 January 2014 | no comments

You can use VBA to extract data from web pages, either as whole tables or by parsing the underlying HTML elements. This blog shows you how to code both methods (the technique is often called "web-scraping").

Tags:   Excel | Excel Visual Basic    |    VBA macros | General

Getting the Calendar control to work in Excel 2010 onwards

Posted by Andy Brown on 13 January 2014 | 1 comment

The calendar control for user forms is built into versions of Excel up to 2007, but has to be imported for later versions - this blog shows how to do this!

Tags:   Excel | Excel Visual Basic    |    VBA macros | User forms

The new brand for Wise Owl Business Solutions

Posted by Andy Brown on 10 January 2014 | no comments

As the first part of a complete rebranding, you may start seeing our new logo appearing on stationery and pages of our website. Here's a preview of it!

Tags:   Musings | Random musings

Access 2013 - an overview of the new web app feature

Posted by Andy Brown on 09 January 2014 | 1 comment

Access 2013 will still look familiar to existing Access users, but it now includes the facility to develop and publish web applications. This blog explains the thinking behind Microsoft's radical move.

A review of Power View, including examples of use

Posted by Andy Brown on 09 January 2014 | no comments

Power View is an Excel or SharePoint add-in which allows you to create quick and interactive dashboard reports, with built-in drill-down. This blog considers whether you're missing a trick if you don't know how to use Power View.

Tags:   Excel | PowerPivot    |    PowerPivot/DAX | General

How to use environment variables like USERNAME in VBA

Posted by Andy Brown on 25 November 2013 | no comments

You can get at all sorts of system information within Visual Basic for Applications by using environment variables - this blog shows you how to get at your user's name, computer name and much more besides.

Tags:   Excel | Excel Visual Basic    |    VBA macros | General

How to loop over enumerations in VBA

Posted by Andy Brown on 07 November 2013 | no comments

A short blog explaining how to use Visual Basic for Applications to loop over enumerations.