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  • Starting PowerPoint slide show from any slide

    If you do a lot of presentations, the default configuration for PowerPoint might not be what you want. Sometimes you dont want to start the slide show from the beginning. Instead, you want to pick any arbitrary slide and start the slide show from that point. You can either use the keyboard combination of Shift and F5 or you can add an icon to the ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on June 4, 2015
  • Reserve your free copy of Windows 10

    If you have a retail version of Windows 7 or Windows 8, go to and click Reserve Windows 10 to sign up for your free copy of Windows 10. The Windows 10 release date is July 29, 2015. This offer does not apply to non-retail versions such as Enterprise edition. Figure 1. Upgrade reservation obtained on ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on June 2, 2015
  • SQL Server 2012 T-SQL language enhancements

    Part of my job with Microsoft includes demonstrating SQL Server features. I have a set of five T-SQL scripts that I use for demonstrating SQL Server 2012 language enhancements which I am providing to you below. These scripts were actually tested on SQL Server 2014, which is what I currently use for all of my demonstrations. The scripts use the ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on May 4, 2015
  • Using Data for Product Recalls to Keep People Alive

    I just received a phone call from Kroger with a recorded message informing me that someone in my household purchased Blue Bell ice cream that may be part of the Listeria recall. As both a nurse and a database technologist who is very concerned about health, privacy, and security, I found the call interesting on many levels. The call was possible ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on April 8, 2015
  • Coping with Little Data

    With all of the hype about Big Data, Little Data is being overlooked. Not every business has zetabytes of data. Businesses that have a few bits here and maybe a few bytes there are being overlooked, but there is hope on the horizon. The most fundamental part of the Little Data ecosystem is Gnorm. Gnorm is named after the gnat in Jim Daviss comic ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on April 1, 2015
  • Microsoft is Hiring for HoloLens

    If you go to and use HoloLens as your search term, youll see that Microsoft is serious about this product. As of today, I found 100 job openings for HoloLens in the United States alone. Dont know what HoloLens is? Take a look here: As augmented reality ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on March 31, 2015
  • Office Mix for PowerPoint

    Office Mix is a free add-in for PowerPoint 2013. It records the screen, either a PowerPoint presentation or you can choose a specific region of your screen. It can record video, audio, or both. It also allows you to annotate your presentations with digital ink. Figure 1. Technically Mix is a beta product. After installing Mix, a new Mix menu ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on February 17, 2015
  • Backup Basics–Doing it Faster

    Several customers have told me that the time it takes to back up their databases is taking longer than they are comfortable with. Others have told me their backups take a long time but they dont mind. Whatever the case, getting things done more quickly is usually worth at least a quick look. There are two basic approaches to speeding up a ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on January 22, 2015
  • In The Cloud: Azure Operational Insights for Server Monitoring

    Microsoft is now offering a preview version of Azure Operational Insights, which is a cloud based server monitoring solution and replacement for System Center Advisor. I decided to try it out on my desktops default installation of SQL Server 2014. I picked this SQL Server instance because its not configured how I would configure a production ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on December 26, 2014
  • In The Cloud: Enhancements to Azure SQL Database

    Last week Microsoft released a preview of the next version of Azure SQL Database, which is available now in a preview version. The feature set is nearly complete when compared to the standalone version of SQL Server 2014 and a clustered index on every table is no longer required. To help highlight the differences, Ive used the SQL Database ...
    Posted to John Paul Cook (Weblog) by John Paul Cook on December 18, 2014
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