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  • BI Publisher - Hottest Show in Vegas

    - by mike.donohue
    Two days down, two to go. Monday was a very busy and rewarding day. Attended "XML Publisher and FSG for Beginners" given by Susan Behn and Alyssa Johnson from Solution Beacon. It was packed, standing room only ... even though it was at 8:00 am. Later in the afternoon, despite being at the same time and in conflict with other Publisher related sessions, Noelle's session, "The Reporting Platform for Applications: Oracle Business Intelligence Publisher" and my session, "Introduction to Oracle Business Intelligence Publisher" were both very well attended. Immediately following our presentations we ran the BI Publisher Hands On Lab which was great fun. The turnout was so large that unfortunately we could not accommodate everyone who came to the lab. There were as many as 5 people huddled around each of the 20 machines. All the the groups completed the 2 main exercises. Some groups even took the product for an off-road test drive. Look at all the fun we had ... For those who could not attend or want the Hands On Lab document: Hands On Lab Oracle BI Publisher Collaborate 2010.pdf Note that these lab instructions assume a specific set up and files that you may not have in your environment. You can download and install a trial license version of BI Publisher from the download page. Highly recommend taking a look at the additional Tutorials available on OTN. Big thanks to Dan Vlamis and Jonathan Clark from Vlamis Software Solutions and to the Oracle BIWA SIG for setting up these machines and getting the time and space to run this lab. It was inspiring to see all of the attendees successfully creating reports. On Tuesday morning we were up early again for a rousing session of BI Publisher Best Practices that was also, very well attended especially considering the 8 am start. Later that morning saw Ben Bruno from STR Software and two of his customers speak on the additional functionality and ROI they have achieved by using Publisher within EBS and AventX to FAX and Email Publisher generated documents. Spent the afternoon staffing the BI Technology demo pod and had a steady flow of people dropping by with questions. Having a great conference so far and looking forward to the rest of it.

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  • Saddling your mountain lion with JDeveloper

    - by Blueberry Coder
    Last October, Apple released Java Update 2012-006. This patch brought the Apple-provided JDK for OS X Lion v10.7 and OS X Mountain Lion v10.8 to version 1.6.0_37. At the same time, it disabled the Apple Java plugins and removed the Java Preferences panel that enabled users to manage the various Java releases on their computer. On the Windows and Linux platforms, JDeveloper 11g R1 has been certified  to run on Java 7 since patch set 5. This is not the case on OS X.   ( The above is not a typo. Apple's OS for personal computer is now known as OS X; the « Mac » prefix has been dropped with the 10.8 release. And it's pronounced « Oh-Ess-Ten », by the way. Yes, I am a nitpicker. I know... ) Please note JDeveloper 11g R2 is not certified either. On any platform. It will generally work, but there are known issues with ADF Mobile. Personally, I would recommend to wait for 12c before going to JDK 7.  Now, suppose you have installed Oracle's JDK 7 on your Mac. JDeveloper will not run on it. It will even not install. Susan and I discovered this the hard way while setting up the ADF Mobile hands-on lab we ran at the UKOUG 2012 conference. The lab was a great success nevertheless, attracting nearly a hundred delegates. It was great to see the interest ADF Mobile already generates, especially among PL/SQL Developers and DBAs. But what did we do to make it work?  While Java Update 2012-006 removed the Java Preferences panel, it leaved in place OS X's command-line Java infrastructure. Thus, it is possible to invoke the Apple JDK 6 to start the JDeveloper installer. Suppose your user is named « Fred », and that the JDeveloper installer is on your desktop. You can execute the following command in a terminal window (on a single line) to start the installer:  /usr/libexec/java_home --version 1.6.0  --exec java -jar /Users/Fred/Desktop/jdevstudio11116install.jar  The JDeveloper installer, being provided a valid JDK reference, will set up the IDE and embedded WebLogic Server instance accordingly. Clever engineering at its finest!

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  • I owe you an explanation

    - by Blueberry Coder
    Welcome to my blog! I am Frédéric Desbiens, a new member of the ADF Product Management team.  I joined Oracle only a few weeks ago. My boss is Grant Ronald, and I have the privilege to work in the same team as Susan Duncan, Frank Nimphius, Lynn Munsinger and Chris Muir. I share with them a passion for all things Java and ADF. With this blog, I hope to help you be more successful with our products – whether you are a customer or a partner. You may have heard of me before. Maybe you have my book in your bookshelf; or maybe we met at a conference. I went to JavaOne, ODTUG Kaleidoscope and Oracle OpenWorld in the past, when I worked for a major consulting firm. I will spare you all the details of my career; you can have a look at my LinkedIn profile if you are curious about my past.  Usually, my posts will be of a technical nature, and will focus on Oracle ADF and Oracle JDeveloper. SOA and portals have always been two topics of interest for me, however, and I will write about them. Over time, you will probably get acquainted with my « strategic » side as well. I devour history books, and always had a tendency to look at the big picture. I will probably not resist to the temptation of mixing IT and history, but this will be occasional, I promise!  At this point, I owe you an explanation about the title of the blog. I am French-Canadian, and wanted to evoke my roots in an obvious yet unobtrusive way. I was born in Chicoutimi, which is one of the main cities found in the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean region. Traditionally, a large part of the wild blueberry production of the province of Québec come from there. A common nickname for the inhabitants is thus Les Bleuets, « The Blueberries » in English. I hope to see you around. You can also follow me on Twitter under  @BlueberryCoder.

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  • Syncing client and server CRUD operations using json and php

    - by Justin
    I'm working on some code to sync the state of models between client (being a javascript application) and server. Often I end up writing redundant code to track the client and server objects so I can map the client supplied data to the server models. Below is some code I am thinking about implementing to help. What I don't like about the below code is that this method won't handle nested relationships very well, I would have to create multiple object trackers. One work around is for each server model after creating or loading, simply do $model->clientId = $clientId; IMO this is a nasty hack and I want to avoid it. Adding a setCientId method to all my model object would be another way to make it less hacky, but this seems like overkill to me. Really clientIds are only good for inserting/updating data in some scenarios. I could go with a decorator pattern but auto generating a proxy class seems a bit involved. I could use a generic proxy class that uses a __call function to allow for original object data to be accessed, but this seems wrong too. Any thoughts or comments? $clientData = '[{name: "Bob", action: "update", id: 1, clientId: 200}, {name:"Susan", action:"create", clientId: 131} ]'; $jsonObjs = json_decode($clientData); $objectTracker = new ObjectTracker(); $objectTracker->trackClientObjs($jsonObjs); $query = $this->em->createQuery("SELECT x FROM Application_Model_User x WHERE IN (:ids)"); $query->setParameters("ids",$objectTracker->getClientSpecifiedServerIds()); $models = $query->getResults(); //Apply client data to server model foreach ($models as $model) { $clientModel = $objectTracker->getClientJsonObj($model->getId()); ... } //Create new models and persist foreach($objectTracker->getNewClientObjs() as $newClientObj) { $model = new Application_Model_User(); .... $em->persist($model); $objectTracker->trackServerObj($model); } $em->flush(); $resourceResponse = $objectTracker->createResourceResponse(); //Id mappings will be an associtave array representing server id resources with client side // id. //This method Dosen't seem to flexible if we want to return additional data with each resource... //Would have to modify the returned data structure, seems like tight coupling... //Ex return value: //[{clientId: 200, id:1} , {clientId: 131, id: 33}];

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  • What makes them click ?

    - by Piet
    The other day (well, actually some weeks ago while relaxing at the beach in Kos) I read ‘Neuro Web Design - What makes them click?’ by Susan Weinschenk. ( The book is a fast and easy read (no unnecessary filler) and a good introduction on how your site’s visitors can be steered in the direction you want them to go. The Obvious The book handles some of the more known/proven techniques, like for example that ratings/testimonials of other people can help sell your product or service. Another well known technique it talks about is inducing a sense of scarcity/urgency in the visitor. Only 2 seats left! Buy now and get 33% off! It’s not because these are known techniques that they stop working. Luckily 2/3rd of the book handles less obvious techniques, otherwise it wouldn’t be worth buying. The Not So Obvious A less known influencing technique is reciprocity. And then I’m not talking about swapping links with another website, but the fact that someone is more likely to do something for you after you did something for them first. The book cites some studies (I always love the facts and figures) and gives some actual examples of how to implement this in your site’s design, which is less obvious when you think about it. Want to know more ? Buy the book! Other interesting sources For a more general introduction to the same principles, I’d suggest ‘Yes! 50 Secrets from the Science of Persuasion’. ‘Yes!…’ cites some of the same studies (it seems there’s a rather limited pool of studies covering this subject), but of course doesn’t show how to implement these techniques in your site’s design. I read ‘Yes!…’ last year, making ‘Neuro Web Design’ just a little bit less interesting. !!!Always make sure you’re able to measure your changes. If you haven’t yet, check out the advanced segmentation in Google Analytics (don’t be afraid because it says ‘beta’, it works just fine) and Google Website Optimizer. Worth Buying? Can I recommend it ? Sure, why not. I think it can be useful for anyone who ever had to think about the design or content of a site. You don’t have to be a marketing guy to want a site you’re involved with to be successful. The content/filler ratio is excellent too: you don’t need to wade through dozens of pages to filter out the interesting bits. (unlike ‘The Design of Sites’, which contains too much useless info and because it’s in dead-tree format, you can’t google it) If you like it, you might also check out ‘Yes! 50 Secrets from the Science of Persuasion’. Tip for people living in Europe: check Amazon UK for your book buying needs. Because of the low UK Pound exchange rate, it’s usually considerably cheaper and faster to get a book delivered to your doorstep by Amazon UK compared to having to order it at the local book store or web-shop.

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  • how can I speed up insertion of many rows to a table via ADO.NET?

    - by jcollum
    I have a table that has 5 columns: AcctId (int), Address1 (varchar), Address2 (varchar), Person1 (varchar), Person2 (varchar) . I'm generating random data to insert into this table via a C# console application. I've tried doing this random data insert via SQL-Server and decided it was not a good solution -- SQL is not good at random on an each-row basis. Generating the random data -- 975k rows of it -- takes a minimal amount of time. It's in a List of custom objects. I need to take this random data and update many rows in the database with the new random data. I tried updating the rows one at a time, very slow because of the repeated searching of the List object in code. So I think the best approach is to put all the randomized data into a table in the database, then update all the other tables that use this data. I.e. UPDATE t SET t.Address1=d.Address1 FROM Table1 t INNER JOIN RandomizedData d ON d.AcctId = t.Acct_ID. The database is very un-normalized so this Acct data is sprinkled all over the place. I've got no control of the normalization. So, having decided to insert all of the randomized data into a single table, I set out to create insert scripts: USE TheDatabase Insert tmp_RandomizedData SELECT 1,'4392 EIGHTH AVE','','JENNIFER CARTER','BARBARA CARTER' UNION ALL SELECT 2,'2168 MAIN ST','HNGR F','DANIEL HERNANDEZ','SUSAN MARTIN' // etc another 98 times... // FYI, this is not real data! I'm building this INSERT script in batches of 100. It's taking on average 175 ms to run each insert. Does this seem like a long time? It's going to take about 35 mins to run the whole insert. The table doesn't have a primary key or any indexes. I was planning on adding those after all the data in inserted (thinking that that would be faster). Is there a better way to do this?

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  • Writing a program which uses voice recogniton... where should I start?

    - by Katsideswide
    Hello! I'm a design student currently dabbling with Arduino code (based on c/c++) and flash AS3. What I want to do is to be able to write a program with a voice control input. So, program prompts user to spell a word. The user spells out the word. The program recognizes if this is right, adds one to a score if it's correct, and corrects the user if it's wrong. So I'm seeing a big list of words, each with an audio file of the word being read out, with the voice recognition part checking to see if the reply matches the input. Ideally i'd like to be able to interface this with an Arduino microcontroller so that a physical output with a motor could be achieved in reaction also. Thing is i'm not sure if I can make this program in flash, in Processing (associated with arduino) or if I need another CS3 program-making-program. I guess I need to download a good voice recognizing program, but how can I interface this with anything else? Also, I'm on a mac. (not sure if this makes a difference) I apologize for my cluelessness, any hints would be great! -Susan

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  • Copying Columns from Grid to Clipboard in SQL Developer

    - by thatjeffsmith
    There are several ways to get data from a query or a table|view to the clipboard. You know the tried and true, copy and paste. But what if you only want one or more columns, not every column? There are several ways to do this, let’s see if we can’t identify all of them. Write your query to only include the data you want Obvious? Yes. Needed to be said? Definitely. The best tuning tip is to only ask for the data you need, only when you absolutely need it. But let’s look at a few more practical ways to do this. Hide the unwanted columns Mouse right click on an column header. In the context menu, select ‘Columns.’ Hide the columns you don’t want. Copy and paste. WYSIWYG Grids, Hide Columns and Filter Rows Mouse select the columns Obvious, but a bit painful. For a very large dataset, you’ll be holding down the Shift and PageDown buttons – but it works. Remember to use Ctrl+Shift+C to get the column headers with the data. Use the Export Wizard This used to be called ‘Unload’ – agreed, not a great name. So, we changed it. In a grid, right mouse click on the data, and on the context menu, select ‘Export…’ Select your format – I suggest ‘delimited’ or ‘fixed’ for copying data to the clipboard. You can export to the clipboard, yes you can! Click ‘Next.’ Click in the Columns dialog, and choose the columns you want copied. Trim the columns you don't want copied Click ‘Finish.’ Alt or Ctrl tab to your window or application of choice. And Paste! "FIRST_NAME" "LAST_NAME" "Donald" "OConnell" "Douglas" "Grant" "Jennifer" "Whalen" "Pat" "Fay" "Susan" "Mavris" "William" "Gietz" "Alexander" "Hunold" "Bruce" "Ernst" "David" "Austin" "Valli" "Pataballa" "Diana" "Lorentz" "Daniel" "Faviet" "John" "Chen" "Ismael" "Sciarra" "Jose Manuel" "Urman" "Luis" "Popp" "Alexander" "Khoo" "Shelli" "Baida" "Sigal" "Tobias" "Guy" "Himuro" "Karen" "Colmenares" "Matthew" "Weiss" "Adam" "Fripp" "Payam" "Kaufling" "Shanta" "Vollman" "Kevin" "Mourgos" "Julia" "Nayer" "Irene" "Mikkilineni" ... There’s probably at least 2 or 3 more ways, but… But, try these and let me know how we can improve things. I’ve already gotten a request to be able to include the SQL text used to populate the dataset on the the copy to clipboard, and it’s now on our to-do list

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  • CodePlex Daily Summary for Sunday, October 06, 2013

    CodePlex Daily Summary for Sunday, October 06, 2013Popular ReleasesMedia Companion: Media Companion MC3.580b: Fixed IMDB Actor names and Actor Roles, empty <actor> entries in movie nfo, and actor scraping during initial movie scrape. Revision HistoryEvent-Based Components AppBuilder: AB3.Iteration.53: Iteration 53 (Feature): Allow drag&drop of existing component (flow, step) from component list to chart. Duplicate names are automatically recognized and solved. By the color of the draged component you can see what kind of component (flow or step) is currently draged. New: AddExistingComponentFlow, PartDragDropEventHandler, ExistingStepPreparerPulse: Pulse Pulse is now accepting donations. To donate by Bitcoin or PayPal see Lots of updates in v0.6.7.3: (Feature) New option allows you to disable wallpaper changing when a full screen application is running. This way Pulse doesn't slow down/lag your videos and games :) (Fix) Some users were getting Wallbase errors when logging in. This has been fixed. (Feature) Right click a provider and you can now make a copy of it by selecting the "Dupl...MoreTerra (Terraria World Viewer): MoreTerra 1.11.1: Release 1.11.1 =========== =Bug Fixes= =========== Added more tile blocks (Clouds, crimstone) Added items (binoculars, rope, Pirahna Gun) Added ores (Lead, Tin) Chests now work, I broke them yesterday. =============== =Known Issues= =============== I am having trouble with new background walls. So you will see a red outline for crimson then a pink inside. Same with where I think the queen bee lives.VG-Ripper & PG-Ripper: PG-Ripper 1.4.19: NEW: Added Option to login as Guest NEW: Added Menu Option to delete an Forum Account NEW: Added Support for " links FIXED: Fixed Ripping of ForumsSimpleExcelReportMaker: Serm 0.03: SourceCode and Sample .Net Framework 3.5 AnyCPU compile.Application Architecture Guidelines: App Architecture Guidelines 3.0.8: This document is an overview of software qualities, principles, patterns, practices, tools and libraries.fastJSON: v2.0.22: 2.0.22 - added .net 3.5 project - now compiling to 'output' directory - added signed assembly - version numbers will stay at for drop in compatibility - file version will reflect the build number - bug fix deserializing to dictionaries instead of dataset when type is not definedResponsive SharePoint: Bootstrap 3 for SharePoint 2013 - Alpha 0.1: Bootstrap 3 for SharePoint 2013 Alpha version 0.1 NOTE - This is an alpha version, there are bound to be issues. Please help us solve them by contributing in our Discussion. Publishing - The source for Twitter Bootstrap 3.0.0 integrated into SharePoint 2013 for a site with Publishing enabled. Non-Publishing - A master page and branding assets for Twitter Bootstrap 3.0.0 integrated into SharePoint 2013 without Publishing enabled. PageLayoutSampleContent - Sample content for included page l...C++ AMP Conformance Test Suite: C++ AMP Conformance Test Suite 1.0.0: This release contains following changes from previous release: Removed the tests that were testing Microsoft specific behavior not part of open specification. The test suite now contains two folders, containing set of test cases, named ‘Tests’ and ‘TestsWithProp'. The set of tests under these two folders are identical except one difference. The set of test cases under directory ‘TestsWithProp’ makes use of ‘properties’ (which the compiler being tested should handle as mentioned in the open ...ASP.NET dhtmxGantt Class: dhtmlxGantt2.vb class: This is the latest class based on work performed. For more information read the project description and get the source files from dhtmlx.comExpressiveDataGenerators: Alpha 2: Fix serveral bugs, more testsQuickTestsFramework: 1.0.0: First release with stable API.VS Tiny Extension for TortoiseGit: 0.1c: + Icons revised + Push button disappeared when IDE loads the menu instead of toolbar. + Detected twice loading and prevented. + About box deprecated. + Next version will have major improvements. NEW: Visual Studio 2013 Support!BlackJumboDog: Ver5.9.6: 2013.09.30 Ver5.9.6 (1)SMTP???????、???????????????? (2)WinAPI??????? (3)Web???????CGI???????????????????????PayBox payment gateway provider for NB_Store: NB_Store_Gateway_01.00.02_PayBox: Paybox DNN module installMicrosoft Ajax Minifier: Microsoft Ajax Minifier 5.2: Mostly internal code tweaks. added -nosize switch to turn off the size- and gzip-calculations done after minification. removed the comments in the build targets script for the old AjaxMin build task (discussion #458831). Fixed an issue with extended Unicode characters encoded inside a string literal with adjacent \uHHHH\uHHHH sequences. Fixed an IndexOutOfRange exception when encountering a CSS identifier that's a single underscore character (_). In previous builds, the net35 and net20...AJAX Control Toolkit: September 2013 Release: AJAX Control Toolkit Release Notes - September 2013 Release (Updated) Version 7.1005September 2013 release of the AJAX Control Toolkit. AJAX Control Toolkit .NET 4.5 – AJAX Control Toolkit for .NET 4.5 and sample site (Recommended). AJAX Control Toolkit .NET 4 – AJAX Control Toolkit for .NET 4 and sample site (Recommended). AJAX Control Toolkit .NET 3.5 – AJAX Control Toolkit for .NET 3.5 and sample site (Recommended). Important UpdateThis release has been updated to fix three issues: Up...WDTVHubGen - Adds Metadata, thumbnails and subtitles to WDTV Live Hubs: WDTVHubGen.v2.1.4.apifix-alpha: WDTVHubGen.v2.1.4.apifix-alpha is for testers to figure out if we got the NEW api plugged in ok. thanksVisual Log Parser: VisualLogParser: Portable Visual Log Parser for Dotnet 4.0New ProjectsBasic4Android (B4A) Charting Framework: dhtlmxCharts, GoogleCharts etc: Basic4Android (B4A) mobile charting framework.Client Meeting Tool: This site facilitate users to create and schedule meetings for an event.FoodScan: This app focuses on implementing diet monitoring application for Malaysian overweight and obese adolescents using AR technique on Windows Phone 8.Hello Team foundation server: Try to use team foundation server and compare it with GitKDG C# Password Generator: C# password generator developed by KDG.KDG's C# Password Generator: C# password generator that uses Random to create strong passwords based on user input.Meta: Meta is the EECS 111 programming language at Northwestern University. Meta is a dynamically-typed scheme-like language built on .NET. This is its home.Monoscript: Allows using Mono and C# for scripting on Unix. Source files are automatically compiled and executed. Caching is employed to avoid recompiling unchanged files.mtdsharp: Developed by Chris Hyndman, Alec KC, Lu Huang and Merrill Huang for CS 196 at the University of Planr is a time management website currently in the early development stageProject Hermes: This very project is currently closed door and under core development. The project description and other works would be published soon.Remindme for Windows Phone 8: Simple, open source Pocket client for Windows Phone 8Remindme for WinRT: Simple, open source Pocket client for WinRT and Windows 8.SQL Server Periodic Table with Molecules: This a SQL Server Database intended to be used by students and researchers for Chemistry and Physics projects. Tesseract: The Tesseract Project aims to easily display and rotate 4 Dimensional Objects in 3D Test Case Manager: A Windows Application which extends Microsoft Test Manager. Features: * one click search * test case export * better test case reader * extended edit modeTest Project for Assignment 1: This is a test ProjectTorah File: Torah File is an project that allow you to use Torah Bible and Mishneh for the computer by type of the programming languages that will be able to use the ToUSAePay nopCommerce Payment Plugin: A simple plugin for nopCommerce to use the USAePay SOAP API interface for processing credit cards.Veterinaria Dr Leo: Este es nuestro Proyecto del curso Calidad y Pruebas de Software 2013-2 Arevalo Ticlla, Susan. Chalán Malca, Elvis. Cruzado Asencio, Gustavo.Visual Studio Test Extensions: The Visual Studio Test Extensions provides extensions and tools for the Visual Studio MSTest engine. It allows to execute unit tests in a separate AppDomain.WSAAD7COM1052: Central repository for 7COM1052 - Web Scripting & Application Development (COM)wscc2013online: this is a project related to Web Application Development at the University of Hertfordshire

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  • Another Marketing Conference, part one – the best morning sessions.

    - by Roger Hart
    Yesterday I went to Another Marketing Conference. I honestly can’t tell if the title is just tipping over into smug, but in the balance of things that doesn’t matter, because it was a good conference. There was an enjoyable blend of theoretical and practical, and enough inter-disciplinary spread to keep my inner dilettante grinning from ear to ear. Sure, there was a bumpy bit in the middle, with two back-to-back sales pitches and a rather thin overview of the state of the web. But the signal:noise ratio at AMC2012 was impressively high. Here’s the first part of my write-up of the sessions. It’s a bit of a mammoth. It’s also a bit of a mash-up of what was said and what I thought about it. I’ll add links to the videos and slides from the sessions as they become available. Although it was in the morning session, I’ve not included Vanessa Northam’s session on the power of internal comms to build brand ambassadors. It’ll be in the next roundup, as this is already pushing 2.5k words. First, the important stuff. I was keeping a tally, and nobody said “synergy” or “leverage”. I did, however, hear the term “marketeers” six times. Shame on you – you know who you are. 1 – Branding in a post-digital world, Graham Hales This initially looked like being a sales presentation for Interbrand, but Graham pulled it out of the bag a few minutes in. He introduced a model for brand management that was essentially Plan >> Do >> Check >> Act, with Do and Check rolled up together, and went on to stress that this looks like on overall business management model for a reason. Brand has to be part of your overall business strategy and metrics if you’re going to care about it at all. This was the first iteration of what proved to be one of the event’s emergent themes: do it throughout the stack or don’t bother. Graham went on to remind us that brands, in so far as they are owned at all, are owned by and co-created with our customers. Advertising can offer a message to customers, but they provide the expression of a brand. This was a preface to talking about an increasingly chaotic marketplace, with increasingly hard-to-manage purchase processes. Services like Amazon reviews and TripAdvisor (four presenters would make this point) saturate customers with information, and give them a kind of vigilante power to comment on and define brands. Consequentially, they experience a number of “moments of deflection” in our sales funnels. Our control is lessened, and failure to engage can negatively-impact buying decisions increasingly poorly. The clearest example given was the failure of NatWest’s “caring bank” campaign, where staff in branches, customer support, and online presences didn’t align. A discontinuity of experience basically made the campaign worthless, and disgruntled customers talked about it loudly on social media. This in turn presented an opportunity to engage and show caring, but that wasn’t taken. What I took away was that brand (co)creation is ongoing and needs monitoring and metrics. But reciprocally, given you get what you measure, strategy and metrics must include brand if any kind of branding is to work at all. Campaigns and messages must permeate product and service design. What that doesn’t mean (and Graham didn’t say it did) is putting Marketing at the top of the pyramid, and having them bawl demands at Product Management, Support, and Development like an entitled toddler. It’s going to have to be collaborative, and session 6 on internal comms handled this really well. The main thing missing here was substantiating data, and the main question I found myself chewing on was: if we’re building brands collaboratively and in the open, what about the cultural politics of trolling? 2 – Challenging our core beliefs about human behaviour, Mark Earls This was definitely the best show of the day. It was also some of the best content. Mark talked us through nudging, behavioural economics, and some key misconceptions around decision making. Basically, people aren’t rational, they’re petty, reactive, emotional sacks of meat, and they’ll go where they’re led. Comforting stuff. Examples given were the spread of the London Riots and the “discovery” of the mountains of Kong, and the popularity of Susan Boyle, which, in turn made me think about Per Mollerup’s concept of “social wayshowing”. Mark boiled his thoughts down into four key points which I completely failed to write down word for word: People do, then think – Changing minds to change behaviour doesn’t work. Post-rationalization rules the day. See also: mere exposure effects. Spock < Kirk - Emotional/intuitive comes first, then we rationalize impulses. The non-thinking, emotive, reactive processes run much faster than the deliberative ones. People are not really rational decision makers, so  intervening with information may not be appropriate. Maximisers or satisficers? – Related to the last point. People do not consistently, rationally, maximise. When faced with an abundance of choice, they prefer to satisfice than evaluate, and will often follow social leads rather than think. Things tend to converge – Behaviour trends to a consensus normal. When faced with choices people overwhelmingly just do what they see others doing. Humans are extraordinarily good at mirroring behaviours and receiving influence. People “outsource the cognitive load” of choices to the crowd. Mark’s headline quote was probably “the real influence happens at the table next to you”. Reference examples, word of mouth, and social influence are tremendously important, and so talking about product experiences may be more important than talking about products. This reminded me of Kathy Sierra’s “creating bad-ass users” concept of designing to make people more awesome rather than products they like. If we can expose user-awesome, and make sharing easy, we can normalise the behaviours we want. If we normalize the behaviours we want, people should make and post-rationalize the buying decisions we want.  Where we need to be: “A bigger boy made me do it” Where we are: “a wizard did it and ran away” However, it’s worth bearing in mind that some purchasing decisions are personal and informed rather than social and reactive. There’s a quadrant diagram, in fact. What was really interesting, though, towards the end of the talk, was some advice for working out how social your products might be. The standard technology adoption lifecycle graph is essentially about social product diffusion. So this idea isn’t really new. Geoffrey Moore’s “chasm” idea may not strictly apply. However, his concepts of beachheads and reference segments are exactly what is required to normalize and thus enable purchase decisions (behaviour change). The final thing is that in only very few categories does a better product actually affect purchase decision. Where the choice is personal and informed, this is true. But where it’s personal and impulsive, or in any way social, “better” is trumped by popularity, endorsement, or “point of sale salience”. UX, UCD, and e-commerce know this to be true. A better (and easier) experience will always beat “more features”. Easy to use, and easy to observe being used will beat “what the user says they want”. This made me think about the astounding stickiness of rational fallacies, “common sense” and the pathological willful simplifications of the media. Rational fallacies seem like they’re basically the heuristics we use for post-rationalization. If I were profoundly grimy and cynical, I’d suggest deploying a boat-load in our messaging, to see if they’re really as sticky and appealing as they look. 4 – Changing behaviour through communication, Stephen Donajgrodzki This was a fantastic follow up to Mark’s session. Stephen basically talked us through some tactics used in public information/health comms that implement the kind of behavioural theory Mark introduced. The session was largely about how to get people to do (good) things they’re predisposed not to do, and how communication can (and can’t) make positive interventions. A couple of things stood out, in particular “implementation intentions” and how they can be linked to goals. For example, in order to get people to check and test their smoke alarms (a goal intention, rarely actualized  an information campaign will attempt to link this activity to the clocks going back or forward (a strong implementation intention, well-actualized). The talk reinforced the idea that making behaviour changes easy and visible normalizes them and makes them more likely to succeed. To do this, they have to be embodied throughout a product and service cycle. Experiential disconnects undermine the normalization. So campaigns, products, and customer interactions must be aligned. This is underscored by the second section of the presentation, which talked about interventions and pre-conditions for change. Taking the examples of drug addiction and stopping smoking, Stephen showed us a framework for attempting (and succeeding or failing in) behaviour change. He noted that when the change is something people fundamentally want to do, and that is easy, this gets a to simpler. Coordinated, easily-observed environmental pressures create preconditions for change and build motivation. (price, pub smoking ban, ad campaigns, friend quitting, declining social acceptability) A triggering even leads to a change attempt. (getting a cold and panicking about how bad the cough is) Interventions can be made to enable an attempt (NHS services, public information, nicotine patches) If it succeeds – yay. If it fails, there’s strong negative enforcement. Triggering events seem largely personal, but messaging can intervene in the creation of preconditions and in supporting decisions. Stephen talked more about systems of thinking and “bounded rationality”. The idea being that to enable change you need to break through “automatic” thinking into “reflective” thinking. Disruption and emotion are great tools for this, but that is only the start of the process. It occurs to me that a great deal of market research is focused on determining triggers rather than analysing necessary preconditions. Although they are presumably related. The final section talked about setting goals. Marketing goals are often seen as deriving directly from business goals. However, marketing may be unable to deliver on these directly where decision and behaviour-change processes are involved. In those cases, marketing and communication goals should be to create preconditions. They should also consider priming and norms. Content marketing and brand awareness are good first steps here, as brands can be heuristics in decision making for choice-saturated consumers, or those seeking education. 5 – The power of engaged communities and how to build them, Harriet Minter (the Guardian) The meat of this was that you need to let communities define and establish themselves, and be quick to react to their needs. Harriet had been in charge of building the Guardian’s community sites, and learned a lot about how they come together, stabilize  grow, and react. Crucially, they can’t be about sales or push messaging. A community is not just an audience. It’s essential to start with what this particular segment or tribe are interested in, then what they want to hear. Eventually you can consider – in light of this – what they might want to buy, but you can’t start with the product. A community won’t cohere around one you’re pushing. Her tips for community building were (again, sorry, not verbatim): Set goals Have some targets. Community building sounds vague and fluffy, but you can have (and adjust) concrete goals. Think like a start-up This is the “lean” stuff. Try things, fail quickly, respond. Don’t restrict platforms Let the audience choose them, and be aware of their differences. For example, LinkedIn is very different to Twitter. Track your stats Related to the first point. Keeping an eye on the numbers lets you respond. They should be qualified, however. If you want a community of enterprise decision makers, headcount alone may be a bad metric – have you got CIOs, or just people who want to get jobs by mingling with CIOs? Build brand advocates Do things to involve people and make them awesome, and they’ll cheer-lead for you. The last part really got my attention. Little bits of drive-by kindness go a long way. But more than that, genuinely helping people turns them into powerful advocates. Harriet gave an example of the Guardian engaging with an aspiring journalist on its Q&A forums. Through a series of serendipitous encounters he became a BBC producer, and now enthusiastically speaks up for the Guardian community sites. Cultivating many small, authentic, influential voices may have a better pay-off than schmoozing the big guys. This could be particularly important in the context of Mark and Stephen’s models of social, endorsement-led, and example-led decision making. There’s a lot here I haven’t covered, and it may be worth some follow-up on community building. Thoughts I was quite sceptical of nudge theory and behavioural economics. First off it sounds too good to be true, and second it sounds too sinister to permit. But I haven’t done the background reading. So I’m going to, and if it seems to hold real water, and if it’s possible to do it ethically (Stephen’s presentations suggests it may be) then it’s probably worth exploring. The message seemed to be: change what people do, and they’ll work out why afterwards. Moreover, the people around them will do it too. Make the things you want them to do extraordinarily easy and very, very visible. Normalize and support the decisions you want them to make, and they’ll make them. In practice this means not talking about the thing, but showing the user-awesome. Glib? Perhaps. But it feels worth considering. Also, if I ever run a marketing conference, I’m going to ban speakers from using examples from Apple. Quite apart from not being consistently generalizable, it’s becoming an irritating cliché.

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  • Array help Index out of range exeption was unhandled

    - by Michael Quiles
    I am trying to populate combo boxes from a text file using comma as a delimiter everything was working fine, but now when I debug I get the "Index out of range exeption was unhandled" warning. I guess I need a fresh pair of eyes to see where I went wrong, I commented on the line that gets the error //Fname = fields[1]; using System; using System.Collections.Generic; using System.ComponentModel; using System.Data; using System.Drawing; using System.Drawing.Printing; using System.Linq; using System.Text; using System.Windows.Forms; using System.IO; namespace Sullivan_Payroll { public partial class xEmpForm : Form { bool complete = false; public xEmpForm() { InitializeComponent(); } private void xEmpForm_Resize(object sender, EventArgs e) { this.xCenterPanel.Left = Convert.ToInt16((this.Width - this.xCenterPanel.Width) / 2); this.xCenterPanel.Top = Convert.ToInt16((this.Height - this.xCenterPanel.Height) / 2); Refresh(); } private void exitToolStripMenuItem_Click(object sender, EventArgs e) { //Exits the application this.Close(); } private void xEmpForm_FormClosing(object sender, FormClosingEventArgs e) //use this on xtrip calculator { DialogResult Response; if (complete == true) { Application.Exit(); } else { Response = MessageBox.Show("Are you sure you want to Exit?", "Exit", MessageBoxButtons.YesNo, MessageBoxIcon.Question, MessageBoxDefaultButton.Button2); if (Response == DialogResult.No) { complete = false; e.Cancel = true; } else { complete = true; Application.Exit(); } } } private void xEmpForm_Load(object sender, EventArgs e) { //file sources string fileDept = "source\\Department.txt"; string fileSex = "source\\Sex.txt"; string fileStatus = "source\\Status.txt"; if (File.Exists(fileDept)) { using (System.IO.StreamReader sr = System.IO.File.OpenText(fileDept)) { string dept = ""; while ((dept = sr.ReadLine()) != null) { this.xDeptComboBox.Items.Add(dept); } } } else { MessageBox.Show("The Department file can not be found.", "Error", MessageBoxButtons.OK, MessageBoxIcon.Error); } if (File.Exists(fileSex)) { using (System.IO.StreamReader sr = System.IO.File.OpenText(fileSex)) { string sex = ""; while ((sex = sr.ReadLine()) != null) { this.xSexComboBox.Items.Add(sex); } } } else { MessageBox.Show("The Sex file can not be found.", "Error", MessageBoxButtons.OK, MessageBoxIcon.Error); } if (File.Exists(fileStatus)) { using (System.IO.StreamReader sr = System.IO.File.OpenText(fileStatus)) { string status = ""; while ((status = sr.ReadLine()) != null) { this.xStatusComboBox.Items.Add(status); } } } else { MessageBox.Show("The Status file can not be found.", "Error", MessageBoxButtons.OK, MessageBoxIcon.Error); } } private void xFileSaveMenuItem_Click(object sender, EventArgs e) { { const string fileNew = "source\\New Staff.txt"; string recordIn; FileStream outFile = new FileStream(fileNew, FileMode.Create, FileAccess.Write); StreamWriter writer = new StreamWriter(outFile); for (int count = 0; count <= this.xEmployeeListBox.Items.Count - 1; count++) { this.xEmployeeListBox.SelectedIndex = count; recordIn = this.xEmployeeListBox.SelectedItem.ToString(); writer.WriteLine(recordIn); } writer.Close(); outFile.Close(); this.xDeptComboBox.SelectedIndex = -1; this.xStatusComboBox.SelectedIndex = -1; this.xSexComboBox.SelectedIndex = -1; MessageBox.Show("your file is saved"); } } private void xViewFacultyMenuItem_Click(object sender, EventArgs e) { const string fileStaff = "source\\Staff.txt"; const char DELIM = ','; string Lname, Fname, Depart, Stat, Sex, Salary, cDept, cStat, cSex; double Gtotal; string recordIn; string[] fields; cDept = this.xDeptComboBox.SelectedItem.ToString(); cStat = this.xStatusComboBox.SelectedItem.ToString(); cSex = this.xSexComboBox.SelectedItem.ToString(); FileStream inFile = new FileStream(fileStaff, FileMode.Open, FileAccess.Read); StreamReader reader = new StreamReader(inFile); recordIn = reader.ReadLine(); while (recordIn != null) { fields = recordIn.Split(DELIM); Lname = fields[0]; Fname = fields[1]; // this is where the error appears Depart = fields[2]; Stat = fields[3]; Sex = fields[4]; Salary = fields[5]; Fname = fields[1].TrimStart(null); Depart = fields[2].TrimStart(null); Stat = fields[3].TrimStart(null); Sex = fields[4].TrimStart(null); Salary = fields[5].TrimStart(null); Gtotal = double.Parse(Salary); if (Depart == cDept && cStat == Stat && cSex == Sex) { this.xEmployeeListBox.Items.Add(recordIn); } recordIn = reader.ReadLine(); } reader.Close(); inFile.Close(); if (this.xEmployeeListBox.Items.Count >= 1) { this.xFileSaveMenuItem.Enabled = true; this.xFilePrintMenuItem.Enabled = true; this.xEditClearMenuItem.Enabled = true; } else { this.xFileSaveMenuItem.Enabled = false; this.xFilePrintMenuItem.Enabled = false; this.xEditClearMenuItem.Enabled = false; MessageBox.Show("Records not found"); } } private void xEditClearMenuItem_Click(object sender, EventArgs e) { this.xEmployeeListBox.Items.Clear(); this.xDeptComboBox.SelectedIndex = -1; this.xStatusComboBox.SelectedIndex = -1; this.xSexComboBox.SelectedIndex = -1; this.xFileSaveMenuItem.Enabled = false; this.xFilePrintMenuItem.Enabled = false; this.xEditClearMenuItem.Enabled = false; } } } Source file -- Anderson, Kristen, Accounting, Assistant, Female, 43155 Ball, Robin, Accounting, Instructor, Female, 42723 Chin, Roger, Accounting, Full, Male,59281 Coats, William, Accounting, Assistant, Male, 45371 Doepke, Cheryl, Accounting, Full, Female, 52105 Downs, Clifton, Accounting, Associate, Male, 46887 Garafano, Karen, Finance, Associate, Female, 49000 Hill, Trevor, Management, Instructor, Male, 38590 Jackson, Carole, Accounting, Instructor, Female, 38781 Jacobson, Andrew, Management, Full, Male, 56281 Lewis, Karl, Management, Associate, Male, 48387 Mack, Kevin, Management, Assistant, Male, 45000 McKaye, Susan, Management, Instructor, Female, 43979 Nelsen, Beth, Finance, Full, Female, 52339 Nelson, Dale, Accounting, Full, Male, 54578 Palermo, Sheryl, Accounting, Associate, Female, 45617 Rais, Mary, Finance, Instructor, Female, 27000 Scheib, Earl, Management, Instructor, Male, 37389 Smith, Tom, Finance, Full, Male, 57167 Smythe, Janice, Management, Associate, Female, 46887 True, David, Accounting, Full, Male, 53181 Young, Jeff, Management, Assistant, Male, 43513

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