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September 2004 Entries
September and SQL Server 2000

It has been a while since my last post, these things are very much of the moment for me and frankly I have to be in the right mood to spout forth - I reckon MartinS must have the personality to blog away all that he does - I take my hat off to him.

On the work front I have been out for a couple of weeks doing some onsite consultancy on Microsoft SQL Server 2000. It has been a real confirmation to me of the real value of proper indexing in giving SQL Server the best opportunity to do its stuff with query plans. Indexes, especially covering indexes used in joins, really boost the response and I saw some massive improvements in performance. Even as a basic rule, make sure the primary keys are there and all the foreign keys carry appropriate indexes too.

I am quite excited at a new objective placed on me at work, amongst other things I have been given a .NET development exam to do before the end of November. I would like to clear SQL Server admin away and will do so, but then on to .NET!

posted @ Saturday, September 25, 2004 4:54 PM | Feedback (0)
The new BMW K1200S Motorcycle

Work is covered in my other post, on the life front I have been keeping things low key, but had a nice time today popping in to our 'local' BMW Motorcycle dealership Motorrad Central to check out the new BMW K1200S that they launched at their dealership today.

Motorrad Central have been going for 18 months now, and I had always meant to take a look but this was my first visit. I have wanted an R1100RS for some time now, I tried one for size a few years back and it seemed to have the shape that suited me. I have not had a bike since I passed my bike test so I have set my heart on a BMW, being right for the size albeit a bit staid as bikes go. The R1100RS will have to wait a bit longer, but we went to Bishopbriggs to take a look at the bike that marks the new direction for BMW Motorcycles.

To begin with I got lost. I ran the route through a couple of options, Multimap and The AA to get directions and stumped for the AA as being the simplest route of the two from my house to the dealers. It was all well and good until I got to the bit to turn off at Junction 15 on the M8. Junction 15 is quite familiar to me, it is the turn off that takes you through the Cathedral district of Glasgow and is the route I follow when I visit a customer based in the centre of Glasgow. What caught me out today was the little turnoff for Kirkintilloch that is just after the main turnoff for junction 15. Unfortunately the AA directions label both as Junction 15 and I turned off just too early.

I got a bit harrassed but got back on track to join the A803, but then did not follow it far enough and turned off a total of three times far too early. So here goes - things to watch out for when going to BMW Motorrad Central which is on the Kirkintilloch road in Bishopbriggs. To start with get on the A803 heading north (ish) and keep going through Bishopbriggs, past the station (on your right going north) and through the centre past Somerfield. Keep going for a couple of miles until you see Asda on your right. You actually have to turn into what looks like the entrance to the car park for Asda, but there is a small road immediately on your left that goes behind some small trees / large bushes. Go for that one and you will come to Motorrad Central.

The new bike is quite nice, and reminds me a lot of the Honda Blackbird. I had a short sit on the K1200S and the room is excellent, with my big legs fitting into the shape of the tank no problem. A big difference for me was the riding position with it being quite upright and relaxed compared to the big Japanese bikes. It was good to have a wee chat before we left to see how they were going, they have one order on their books but seem hampered by their demo bike missing the trick suspension. Aparently quite a few folk are going to wait until that comes through on a demo bike. Good to see the level of interest - lots of 50 ish couples popping in on their respective BMWs to have a look. I had a wee sit on the R1100RS that they had in the showroom. It felt different and I was a bit unsure why until the sales person pointed out the bar backs fitted that bring the bars back a couple of inches. Personally I prefer the default position (long arms that I have) but I guess putting a few miles on the bike would sort out that opinion.

All the best to the guys there, and it would be nice to see a few more of those new BMWs out on the roads of Scotland. In the meantime I think I will be saving up and exploring a different route to my R1100RS than the official dealer channel - I just do not have the disposable income that would mean I could afford proper BMW service.

They had some good deals on BMW helmets too, but did not go up to my size - I have a big head too (mmm, I might have set myself up for some feedback there!).

posted @ Saturday, September 25, 2004 4:54 PM | Feedback (0)