Monthly Archives: October 2015

Using Microsoft Outlook to AutoFil Database

This week I experienced that joy you have when you finally unpick something you’ve been trying to crack for ages. I’m so glad I kept persevering with it!

As part of a beta test for a database I have now launched, some feedback was given that I could auto fill information from emails to complete the database entry, rather than allow the user to manually provide the information and then upload the email. It’s great to work with creative people that come up with new ideas. However, this idea was a very hard nut to crack. Most of the material online is about creating emails, rather than reading emails. But eventually, after lots of reading and trawling, I managed to find the commands that meant I could read these emails.

Dim myOlApp As New Outlook.Application
Dim myItem As Object
Set myItem = myOlApp.ActiveInspector.currentItem
With myItem

The third line, ActiveInspector.CurrentItem works if the user has one email open in it’s own window, then you can use “With myItem” and it’s parameters (Subject, To, MessageBody….) to get the data from the email!

There’s still a couple of things left to understand surrounding this problem:

  • How do I export/import the email from the outlook .ost file to the folder I’m storing it in the database?
  • What pop ups or displays do I need to make sure the staff open the right emails?

Game ON!

So, as part of data scientists toolbox, I got introduced to Scratch, an online programming tool, that’s targeted for kids, but fun for all. As any adult who’s been to a museum and seen the boring dry placs placed by phenomenonally important artefacts and compared them to the fun worksheets and interactive displays made for kids will know, stuff created for kids is FUN! For those of us who already find coding fun, scrach just makes it more enjoyable. So go ahead and have a go – make a game and check out the hall of fame of games, such as a copy of dance dance revolution!!

My contribution combines programming with another hobby of mine Korfball. It’s a Dutch sport hardly anyone’s every heard of, that is a cross between netball and basketball and is said to be the only sport free of gender inequality as both girls and boys get to shoot, defend, assist and most importantly, run around having fun!

Check out my game here!

shoot the korf