Friday, 4 January 2019

Fun Time Friday: New Year! Drones, Autism and SQL Server 2008

Welcome to the first Fun Time Friday of 2019 and with that I'd like to wish a very Happy New Year to our friends, customers and clients.

SQL Server 2008 is Out of Support July 2019

We have taken down the Christmas tree here at and started back to work. Albeit at a nice pace,  starting  the year with a three day week. With that said,  we have been onsite with a customer helping with database administration support and next week our big SQL Server Upgrade projects will kick back into life, and there is the possibility of digital transformation project getting the sign off. More on that if it happens.

I usually like to comment on some news stories that have a technology theme and this week is no different. The main technology story that sticks in mind over the Christmas period is...

Drones at the Airport

Just before Christmas one of the UK's busiest airports, Gatwick, was brought to complete standstill by the reported sightings of drones. As this was playing out just before Christmas it had all the hallmarks of some sort of denial of service attack. Or something that you would expect to see in Die Hard movie. Drones were constantly being reported as visible,  Drones were spotted and planes couldn't land or take off rendering the airport useless for three days and a whole bunch of people stranded with thousands of flights cancelled which I'm sure did make for a pleasant Christmas preparation for those travelers affected.

There appears to be have been a lot of confusion around what went on,  with people  arrested, their lives turned upside down as news of their arrest was splashed all over the media, only for them to be  released without charge and a police apology followed. It was then revealed by the police there might not be any drone activity at all and the drones people were reporting seeing could have actually been the police drones being used to hunt for the culprit drones.

Either way I'm glad it appears not as sinister as I first thought but can't help but feel the situation was handled badly from start to finish. No doubt the laws around drones and airports in this country is far to lax but with BREXIT taking up all of the politicians and law makers time and effort, everything else seems to have taken a back seat.

The Tech Firms Whose Staff are all Autistic 

Autism is something that we at have an interest in and our Operational Director - Sabrina Ellis is currently writing a thesis on Autism in the work place. So when I stumbled across this news article on the BBC about a firm whose staff are all Autistic I thought it would be worth sharing this with you

I talked  about this article  with Sabrina and it seems that this is not a one off company, there are other firms out whose staff are all autistic. The article states that "Autism affects more than one in 100 people according to the UK's National Autistic Society, but fewer than a quarter of these will go on to full-time employment."  The article describes some of the issues an autistic person can have finding work and describes the traditional interview process as something that an autistic person could struggle with, things like eye contact, not looking away, selling yourself can all be very difficult for an autistic person.

What I found most interesting in the article is that large companies like SAP are very aware of the value of autistic people can bring to their teams and as such they change the selection process to remove the traditional interview and replace with more task focused activity - and they insist  "employing autistic people is not done out of charity but because it boosts our bottom line". This is an area of research we are following up on at and no doubt we'll explore further and write more in this area in the future

SQL Server 2008

With SQL Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 R2 going out of support in July, many companies might be thinking of upgrading their legacy SQL Servers  in the first half of the new year. If you would like some help either developing the initial planning of your SQL Server upgrade or if you prefer we can help with a complete end to end migration get in touch. Check out our YouTube video for more information on the option available to you.

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