Microsoft and Quantum Computing

Microsoft recently announced they are developing a new programming language designed for Quantum Computing.  This (still unnamed) language will come with full Visual Studio integration as well as a Quantum Computing Simulator and will be available before the end of 2017.

Microsoft is also going to release *two* versions of the Quantum Computing Simulator. One version will run locally, the other version will be powered by Azure. The local version of the stimulator will offer up to 32 qubits and will need 32GB of RAM. Each additional qubit doubles the amount of memory required. The Azure version will scale up to 40 qubits.

This is fantastic news for anyone interested in Programming or Technology in general.  I’ve been very impressed with Microsoft over the last few years, their Visual Studio development tools, their SQL Server database product, Azure etc.  I’ve signed up to the Quantum Computing preview program and am looking forward to playing with their offering in due course.

Quantum Computing

More information on Microsoft and their Quantum Computing efforts can be found here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/quantum/default.aspx

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Magic Cipher Video: File and Folder Encryption

http://www.magiccipher.com

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Version Numbering

Since the dawn of time I have been using one of the more traditional types of version numbering systems for all my software developments. Recently however I have ‘enhanced’ my methodology and now use something slightly different.

To the outside world not a lot will appear to have changed, the N.N.N methodology will still be used, albeit with a slightly different interpretation. Internally however I will be using the full version numbering system shown below:

Aside from building the release date and time into the version number and swapping out Revision Number for Restricted Release Number, the main benefits to me are building an ascending Feature Number and Fix Number into the version number.

These numbers will only ever increase, regardless of the program status changing from (for example) Version 1 to Version 2. This means that at a glance I can see how  features and fixes have been applied to this particular program since day one, without having to go to Version Control for this information.

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Syncing Your Email to Your CRM

A recent chat with a customer reminded me that there are still many companies out there running their own in-house CRM, or similar, and facing the very real problem that their email is received and stored separately to the rest of their customer information, which is accessible in their CRM.

A product of mine from ‘back in the day’, ContaxCRM, solved this problem with email sent and received being synced into the CRM, against the correct Customer / Supplier / Prospect – and it did this on both Windows and macOS.

In this post I am demonstrating part of this solution for macOS only, using Apple Mail.  Of course this can easily be modified and extended to work with other email packages should you wish to do so.  This post basically covers how to extract the received emails and store them in such a fashion that your CRM can read, parse and save this information to the CRM database the next time the CRM is launched.

The first thing to do is to install the Apple Script that does all of the heavy lifting.  You can see the Script below, and Download it from here.

capture1

This script needs to be stored in the appropriate location on your Mac.  You can see the location in the image below, generally ~/Library/Application Scripts/com.apple.mail/

capture2The second step is to open your Apple Mail Preferences and navigate to the Rules Tab.  From here you need to setup a new rule to execute the script whenever a new email is received.  See the image above.

That’s it !  A text file will be created (if necessary) and appended to with the full contents of every email received.  You can setup the Name and Path for the text file from within the Apple Script.

Parsing the text file, extracting the email address of the sender and saving this to your CRM is straightforward but will differ depending on your application, development software and requirements.

Hopefully this will be of use to someone out there 🙂

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Xojo Generic Listbox Export: Tab, CSV and JSON

The following piece of code is written in the Xojo language (highly recommended by the way) and is a method that takes two Parameters, a List Object, and a Descriptive Type which is a String that can only be one of the following values:

  1. “,” – Comma, Standard Comma Separated CSV
  2. “;” – Semicolon, Alternative CSV
  3. chr(9) – Tab Character, Tab Delimited
  4. “JSON” – JSON Structure

Click Here to Download Code

GenericListBoxExport

The contents of your specified ListBox will the be output in your chosen format 🙂

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DataViewer 1.3.0 [Update]

This latest update to the DataViewer components for Xojo and REALStudio contains the following enhancements:

  • List View Configurations Saved on Exit
  • DB Objects Now Available from the Tab Area
  • Database Objects List, Now Double Click to Insert
  • Option to prefix Columns with Table Name
  • Option to append a Comma to the Column Names
  • User Input Prompts [[T-xxxxx]]
  • DML now Supported as well as Queries
  • Parsing of Multiple Statements with Sequential Execution
  • Multiple Small Bug Fixes

DataViewer is a small collection of components that allow a Xojo or RealStudio Developer to put a full featured SQL Query and DML tool into their own applications for a one time payment. There are no restrictions on use. The images below are from the latest version.

Click here to download the Demonstration App for Mac, Windows and Linux.

www.stevencholerton.com

 

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oneSql: User Prompt Fields

oneSql Beta Update: 0402

Unique Prompt Fields are field templates that are setup in advance and saved with a SQL Script. When the script is executed the user is prompted for the necessary values to use. The video below shows how this works: 

UPFs are especially convenient when writing a query for use by yourself or a third party, and when the query will have to be executed several times, for example as part of a weekly / monthly reporting regime. The third party would need to know nothing about SQL to be able to load and execute a query with embedded UPFs. Consistency and Accuracy are maintained using UPFs.

Here is another example showing each stage of working with the User Prompt Fields. The first image shown below shows a SQL Query that has been loaded from an external file. You can see in the image that there are three UPFs, a Number Value, a Text String and a Date.

Onesql up 1

 

An explanation of the format for a UPF is shown in the next image:

Upf

The next image shows what happens when this query is executed; The query is parsed and all UPFs are pulled into a window and presented to the user asking for the required input.  There is no practical limit to the quantity of UPF’s that you can use in any given query,

Onesql up 2

This next image is the same as the one above, but with the required information having been entered by the user.

Onesql up 3

Pressing the Continue button on the User Input window reformats / rewrites the query using the information entered by the user and then immediately executes the query and displays the results in the Results Set.  See the image below:

Onesql up 4

UPFs are available in oneSql from Beta 0403.  To request a Beta Test copy of oneSql, please contact me: beta@zombielabs.net

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oneSql Beta Update

The Beta Test for oneSQL has been going well and I am very grateful for the feedback received. I still want additional Beta Testers however, so if you are interested please let me have your details here.

Betatesting

Since the start of the Beta barely a fortnight ago the product has changed in many subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) ways. I have documented the highlights below:

To start with the Database Logon and Connection Setup windows were combined into one single window that works in a far more intuitive fashion. Thanks primarily to Sasha Schneppmueller for his suggestions and feedback concerning the Logon and Connection Setup windows.

A Log ‘tab’ has been added to the Logon window and this records the history of the various database actions performed during the current session.

Thanks to Trisha Duke for thoroughly testing the CSV Export routine, which unfortunately had a couple of small bugs that had gone unnoticed. These were fixed and additional CSV export added using a ; rather than a Comma, in order to satisfy the standard in various Northern European countries.

The connection detail is now shown in the Titlebar of the main window. Still not sure if I like this …

The SQL can now be executed using a Shortcut Key. Cmd+R on the Mac and Ctrl+R on Windows.

James Sweiderk can up with some comments and issues, one of which is still outstanding (already implemented – just needs uploading). I have however fixed the issue with the USE command on MySQL and the list of Database Objects is now updated accordingly.

Peter Fargo mentioned some issues with inconsistency with the User Interface and Selection. I have now removed the Drag and Drop from the Database Objects lists and implemented Double Click which works faster / better and feels ‘cleaner’.

A bug with executing more than one statement from the same block of SQL text has been fixed. Another bug concerning the SQL History has been fixed. You can now double click any item in the list and it is copied back into the SQL Text area.

The Mac OSX version is now a 100% Cocoa product so plays extra nicely with the latest Apple Operating System updates.

In the latest Beta (0203) there is also the option to automatically prefix the Column Names with the Table Name and additionally to automatically insert a Comma after the insertion of a Column Name. These improvements help with Readability and Fast Query Composition respectively.

Some Images 🙂

www.stevencholerton.com

oneSQL Legend

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Software For Sale

I’m currently changing direction with my business and moving into some different, but clearly defined areas – all will be revealed soon – although I think some of my plans have already been ‘leaked’ due to my excitement about the future and my inability to keep quiet 🙂

In fact here I go again – these are some products and areas that I will be involved with in 2014 and beyond:

Due to this change in direction I have decided to put some of my existing products up for sale – outright purchase including full Source Code, Intellectual Property, Copyright, Domains, Support etc.

All of the software is written using Xojo / Realstudio and some of the products use plugins from Monkeybread Software.

I’ve had a lot of interest in the few times I’ve mentioned this so I am in the process of putting together a sale page, which I will document here when complete.

Software Sale

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Listbox Exporting: Take 2

Following on from a previous post last week where I talked about exporting data from a Listbox in Xojo / REALStudio, I decided to build a general purpose export routine with the extra features that were commented on and also some extra features that I believe make this routine even more useful.

Note: This is not the only way of programming a generic export function and no doubt it is not the best. It does however work and work well.

This export routine is a single simple function and is accessed by sending a string of parameters and having the results of the export request returned as an Integer containing different values depending on the success or what kind of failure occurred.

The parameters that are required by the function are:

  1. Delimiter (Comma, Tab (chr(9)), Full Stop etc.)
  2. Headings (YES or NO)
  3. Name of the Source Listbox
  4. Filename Extension (Tab, Csv etc.)
  5. Default Filename (Export.txt)
  6. Surround with Quotes (YES or NO)

A call to this export routine would therefore look something like this:

www.stevencholerton.com

For ease of reading and maintainability this is better:

www.stevencholerton.com

The actual export function itself looks like this:

www.stevencholerton.com

Note: There is a small error in the picture of the export function above. This error has been fixed in the Text download. Thanks to Axel Schneider on the Xojo Forums for pointing this out. 

To download the export function as text, please click here

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