Category: SQL Server

What should have been a relatively easy job turned into a very complex one. How I did battle with SQL Server and (mostly) won. By the way, in case you’re wondering about the title (and the subheading below if you’ve looked further on), then you obviously haven’t read The Hunting Of The Snark by Lewis Carroll. If so, I strongly recommend you do, partly because it’s a wonderful piece of sophisticated nonsense, and mainly because it’s far more entertaining than this article! It was subtitled “An Agony In Eight Fits” with each section being described as a Fit. It seemed appropriate for what happened here… Fit The First – Background I had a request to allow the user to enter some keywords, and we would show all support tickets that used the keywords in any of a number of fields. As SQL Server provides a full-text search facility, this seemed ideal for…

I am currently working on an application where I want to have a search feature that allows people to search for businesses within a certain distance of their home (or anywhere else they care to choose). I have some old UK postcode data knocking around, and was going to use that. For those not familiar with them, UK postcodes are made up of two parts, a major (also known as “outward”) part, and a minor (or “inward”) part. The major part is one or two letters followed by one or two digits, and the minor part is a digit, followed by two letters. Examples of valid postcode formats are M25 0LE, NW11 3ER and L2 3WE (no idea if these are genuine postcodes though). Coupled with the postcodes are northings and eastings. These odd-sounding beasties are simply the number of metres north and east from a designated origin, which is…