DCAC Supporting Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (@egpaf) #WorldAIDSDay

Published On: 2019-12-01By:
Tis the season and Denny Cherry & Associates Consulting has a quick way for you to make a difference. All you have to do, is click through to our donation webpage, and that’s it.  For clicking through, DCAC will donate $1 to Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation. Every dollar accessed by your participation matters. Having assisted 30 million pregnant women at more than 5,000 clinics in 19 countries, The Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation continues to seek an end to global pediatric HIV/AIDS through prevention and treatment programs, research, and advocacy. We’re working with the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation in part because 500 children are newly infected with HIV because their families lack access to the health services they need to prevent transmission.  And this is something that everyone at DCAC wants to help solve.  We have come so far, but progress towards ending AIDS in children and youth is stalling. We must redouble our efforts or risk losing the progress we’ve gained! Want to help out by DONATING MORE? EXCELLENT! We’re matching donations! Click through here to donate to EGPAF! DCAC will match every dollar you choose to donate through our link up to a total of $10,000 US for donations made between December 1st, 2019 through December 24th, 2019 at 11:59:59pm Pacific Time. We’re proud to be able to announce or donation page and matching fund on World AIDS Day, which is today December 1st, 2019 (which is why we are posting on a Sunday. We urge you to click through and make the $1 donation and if you can make your own donation which DCAC will match to the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation. Denny The post DCAC Supporting Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (@egpaf) #WorldAIDSDay appeared first on SQL Server with Mr. Denny.
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Microsoft Can’t Make Your Power BI Reports Accessible Without Your Help

Published On: 2019-11-30By:

Every once in a while, someone asks a question like “Can Power BI be accessible?” or “Is Power BI WCAG compliant?” It makes me happy when people recognize the need for accessibility in Power BI. (I’ll save the discussion about compliance not automatically ensuring accessibility for another day.) But most people don’t appreciate the answer to either question.

A woman, man, and person in a wheelchair positioned next to the Power BI logo

The answer is that WCAG compliance and accessible design are highly dependent upon the report creator. Microsoft has added many built-in accessibility features such as keyboard navigation, high contrast view, and screen reader compatibility. But they can’t make your report automatically accessible as there are accessibility features requiring configuration by the report designer. We need to set the tab order and alt text and use descriptive chart titles – there is no artificial intelligence to do this for us (yet?). Beyond that, things like color contrast and colorblind-friendly design are almost entirely the responsibility of the report designer.

Accessible design used to be solely the domain of UI developers. But as we democratize analytics to have everyone building reports, we now have to create awareness and a sense of responsibility among Power BI report creators, especially those who don’t consider themselves developers.

There is a similar challenge going on with data security. It used to be that people thought of it as a concern only for the IT department. Now, it is widely accepted that everyone in an organization plays a role in maintaining data security. I hope the same attitude will be widely adopted when it comes to accessibility in data visualization and analytics.

This challenge is present in any low-code environment with users of diverse backgrounds and technical expertise, which means it is relevant to the entire Power Platform and other similar tools. There is a white paper on PowerApps Accessibility Standards and Guidelines that has a great description of the situation.

PowerApps embodies the idea of “democratization of development”—anyone in your organization can quickly and easily create a powerful app and share it broadly. But the app maker has an ethical, and sometimes legal, obligation to support “democratization of usage” as well—any user of your app must be able to use it as it was intended.

Based upon the popularity of the Power Platform, I’d say the democratization of development has been a wild success. But we still have some steps to take to democratize usage. Microsoft is doing their part to make their products accessible and to fix accessibility bugs quickly. Now we need to recognize and honor our obligation to design inclusively.

The Microsoft Docs on accessible report design were recently updated to provide more guidance. I hope you’ll check them out and start implementing the recommendations in your reports.

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Happy Thanksgiving

Published On: 2019-11-29By:

Yesterday was Thanksgiving for those of us living in the United States.  If you celebrate this particular holiday, I hope that it was a day full of love and care with the ones closest to you.

I was fortunate to spend the holiday visiting family and spending time with my two sons.  It was a day of exercise (a Turkey Trot), good food, laughter, being lazy on the couch, stealing tasty treats from my mothers kitchen and your basic family craziness (if you’ve met any part of my family you’ll know what I mean).  I thoroughly enjoying spending time with my family as I live several hours away from them and I only get to see them but a few times a year.  I cherish the moments and my heart gets recharged.

Looking back over the year, I’m thankful for a number of things.

  • My two sons.  Joys of my life without question and they keep me on my toes
  • Family.  They are the foundation which upon I stand
  • Friends.  They tell me like it is (like my family) and don’t hold the punches
  • My health.  I have health issues but overall I’m generally healthy
  • My job.  I love what I do and I work for an awesome company

There are countless other things that I’m thankful for however this is to be a short post today.  I have to get back to eating treats after all.  However you might have spent Thanksgiving, I hope that it was a day of relaxation, reflection, and peacefulness.

Happy Thanksgiving!

© 2019, John Morehouse. All rights reserved.

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Install ALL Things SQL Server… What?

Published On: 2019-11-26By:

Does your server look like this?

Many of us have inherited a SQL Server instance that has all SQL Services installed. Someone, maybe even you, went through the SQL Server installation process using GUI and checked every option available to them, then just clicked Next, Next, Next and then Install. If this is your environment, please take a moment to evaluate and decide which of these services that are required.

From a performance tuning perspective, it is important to only run the services that you need. Each of these services can consume resources on your server. Sharing resources reduces what you SQL Server Engine, SQL Server (MSSQLSERVER) or named instance SQL Server (ServerName\NamedInstance) can consume to run your workload efficiently. It is highly recommended that all other services not associated with the engine be run on a separate server.

Sometimes due to licensing concerns, this not a viable solution, and that is understandable. However be sure you are knowledgeable about how each configuration setting, like memory, that may need to be adjusted with other services sharing these resources. As I stated in a prior blog the max memory set inside SQL Server does not impact other services like SSIS, SSAS or SSRS. Those services take their memory from the operating system allocation, which in turn can take memory from the SQL Server engine. Be sure to allocate enough to each service. (Note: you may end up needing to spend more in RAM, than licensing, especially if you can run standard edition for BI tools like SSRS or SSIS).

Take a moment and look to see what services you are running versus what you are using. If you find that SSIS, for example, is running and you are not actually using it in your environment turn off the services. Take the time to set it to DISABLED and not just STOP the service. Stopping the service isn’t enough if  it is set to start automatically.   When the server is rebooted, the service will diligently start, and you do not want that.  Make sure to disable the service to prevent that from occurring.

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