Wise Owl's quarterly (ish) news tweet  |  Issue 15 - January 2015

The items included in this newsletter are listed below. Our newsletter go out about 3 times a year - if you'd like to subscribe, just let us know!

Excel data analysis course (PowerPivot, PowerView and PowerMap)

We've launched our new two-day Excel Data Analysis course (the first dates for this are 19-20 March in Manchester, and 28-29 April in London).  The course uses Office 2013 Professional, and shows how to create data models in PowerPivot, how to use these to create pivot tables based on multiple data sources (some with very large numbers of rows), how to create DAX expressions to analyse the data (for example, to compare this quarter's sales with the same period in the previous year), how to create views in PowerView and how to use PowerMap to create interactive maps.  If time allows we'll also throw in a few ideas about dashboards too!

Moving to Excel 2013

With immediate effect we'll be running all of our scheduled Excel courses in 2013.  This will make no difference whatsoever for our VBA courses (VBA is the same in all versions of Excel), only tiny differences for our Excel Modelling and Intermediate/Advanced Excel course, and quite a lot of difference for our one-day Introduction to Excel course.  You can see our take on what's new in Excel 2013 here.

Analysis Services does the splits

SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) 2012 is pretty much exactly the same as SSAS 2008 R2 if you're using cubes (rather grandly now called multi-dimensional models), but there's also now the option to create tabular models instead.  Tabular models in SSAS look remarkably like PowerPivot data models, and also use the DAX language (as opposed to the traditional MDX language used hitherto in SSAS).  Have a look at our summary of the differences between the two approaches to using Analysis Services, or at our brand-new three-day course on using tabular models in SSAS.

Room-naming competition: results!

Congratulations (and thanks) to Alison Feist of AQA, who won our room-naming competition from the last newsletter (and received a voucher from Amazon for her effort).  Thanks to Alison our two rooms in our new(ish) Manchester training centre are now called Hedwig and Pigwidgeon.  For this issue's (slightly recursive) competition please suggest what we can run as our next competition (any winner will be suitably rewarded). 

Minecraft in the real world

Microsoft have announced the HoloLens, a headset which overlays virtual reality onto the real world in - by all accounts - an impressively realistic manner.  Apparently Minecraft constructions work particularly well, so your home really can be your castle (well, at least when viewed through Microsoft's rose-tinted glasses).  Read a review of this latest breakthrough in virtual reality here.

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