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Creating a corporate dashboard (using OData and Microsoft PowerBI)

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Building a corporate dashboard so that you have key management information at a glance
I have recently been building some corporate dashboards (as recommended by Daniel Priestley in his best selling book "24 Assets: Create a digital, scalable, valuable and fun business that will thrive in a fast changing world").  From chapter 15 of the book:
A key asset is a dashboard that allows the team to see how the business is performing.  Carefully select some of the metrics that drive performance and make sure they show up prominently on your dashboard.  You might select metrics like cash at bank, payments collected, expected invoices, revenue per employee or monthly users; the general rule is that whatever you measure will improve.

WebPocketMoney.com: an easy way to track your children's pocket money balances online, with a natural "Tell me" user interface.

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WebPocketMoney 1.0 released! We are delighted to announce the release earlier this week of WebPocketMoney.com, our cloud based app that enables parents and their children to track and manage pocket money online. A new, sophisticated online tool for parents and children to track and manage pocket money balances This web app has been designed to help parents and children manage pocket money in a user-friendly way that encourages saving. It uses notional accounts rather than physical accounts (which are often difficult to create for children) and this has the advantage that you can offer your children much higher interest rates (e.g. 5% or 10% per month) than are commonly available in the real world, in order to encourage them to save. The app should work on all internet enabled devices, including phones, tablets and computers. (NB it requires an internet connection, i.e. it is not currently designed to work offline). This means that parents can check their children's balances and re…

Migrating to the cloud (Microsoft Azure and Office 365)

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(This article was first posted on 22 Apr 2016 on a different blog site, but migrated here 06 May 2017).

I thought I'd share a few thoughts from our experience of moving from Windows servers on which both our corporate and client websites and email were stored to the cloud, specifically Office 365 and Microsoft Azure.

The process itself was relatively painless (particularly for migrating email to Office 365).  The only problems we experienced were in migrating some older websites, and some webbased software which, for reasons best known to its manufacturer (whose blushes I will spare by not naming here), needed to be installed as a desktop program (albeit one with a web interface).  Both of these needed to be installed on a virtual machine (a windows server within the cloud) rather than as stand alone web apps (or app services as they are now known) in Azure.  We also had a few teething problems moving some databases from SQL Server 2012 or 2014 to SQLAzure, but found solutions to…

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