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SQL Server 2008 and Spatial Data ...

DId a bit of a talk at the most recent Code Camp event in Auckland City. My talk centred around spatial data, and how it is used in the telecommunications industry.

I've been doing a bit of research in relation to this matter recently and found that Microsoft have finally published a nice big section of MSDN stuff dedicated to how to use the spatial data components of SQL 2008. Looking forward to getting stuck into that!


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HOW-TO: Apply a “baseless merge” in Team Foundation Server 2010 (and 2012)

Another purely technical post on TFS...
The scenario We wish to migrate code between branches that do not have a branch/merge relationship, in order to expedite urgent changes being made by a project team, without disrupting on-going BAU development work. Sample branch hierachy/strategy Imagine the following branching strategy in TFS (visible by connecting to TFS via Visual Studio 2010 or 2012):

Essentially you have a "DEV" branch, which has a "QA" branch, which in turn has a "PROD" branch. DEV is the branch that you would be using for BAU development. As a piece of development matures, you move it into QA, where it is tested by your internal QA team. There may be further changes made in DEV that are moved into the QA branch as the QA team pick up issues. Once the QA team are happy with a packaged of changes, they will move them into PROD, which is essentially the hand-over to the customer. The PROD branch represents the software that the customer has.


HOW-TO: Add/edit a field in Team Foundation Server 2012 using Visual Studio 2012

It's been a while since I made a purely technical post...

So, today I wanted to make a change to a Microsoft Team Foundation Server 2012 (TFS2012) instance that I am working with to reflect "Actual" time spent on a task - mainly for reporting purposes, and because I have found in the past that making this minor process adjustment yields a relatively useful metric over the long-term.

I am using the Microsoft Scrum 2.1 Process Template ( for a project that I am working with. So that I don't forget how to do this (again!) I will blog-post the procedure I've used to add this field to the template as a screen-shot-based tutorial, as follows...
Before Assuming you are familiar with the Scrum Process Template (2.1-ish) - open a task and take a look at the "Details" section, as follows:

 This is where I want my "Actual" field to show up.
Get the Power Tools Download and install the latest v…

Eclipse/Android error: "Multiple dex files define [...]"

Wow, I am really going nuts blogging this-evening - 2nd post in less than an hour. 

Anyway this is a particularly nasty error that I keep running into with Eclipse/Android when starting the emulator after I have not run it for a little while. Since I run the risk of permanently forgetting the solution to the problem every time I walk away from my Android project (and thus having to spend a painful hour-or-so digging up the procedure again), I will blog it here, for my benefit, and for the benefit of anyone who may also suffer the same problem.

The gist is that when you start the emulator in debug mode (that is, you hit the button in the following image), you get the following error message come out on the console and a nasty popup telling you nothing more than there is an error with your program and you need to fix it:

[2012-04-06 23:20:57 - Dex Loader] Unable to execute dex: Multiple dex files define Lcom/google/gson/ExclusionStrategy;
[2012-04-06 23:20:57 - SimpleList] Conversion to Dal…