We know a lot of you will have thought about Windows 8, maybe downloaded the Consumer Preview from here, and few of you will have taken on the idea of writing an app for Windows 8. We love you all BUT if you are one of the people who want to write an app for Windows 8 we would love to hear from you.
You can email us on firstname.lastname@example.org so we can discuss your idea, help you get started and get you involved in our programme for people who are writing apps before the product is released. If you’d rather just get started then Mike Taulty’s blog article here gives you a simple step by step guide.
Written by Kush Depala - Microsoft Student Partner and advocate of Coding for Kids.
Big things are happening at Microsoft. With the release of Windows 8 Consumer Preview, and Windows Phone gaining traction, there has never been a better time to start developing for the two Operating Systems. The Windows Phone Application Marketplace is taking off, and creating an application that is well received could lead to thousands of downloads, and student developers can even win a free Windows Phone for their effort. And with the release of the Windows 8 Store in the Consumer Preview, you could be one of the first people in the country to have a fully-fledged Windows 8 application, for people to download, especially when the new edition of Windows releases.
But where should you begin? Well, as students, you have the ability to download professional-grade, industry-standard development tools for free. That’s right, for free. Microsoft DreamSpark provides these tools to students. All you need is your ISIC card, a .ac.uk email address or an activation code from your school/college/university IT department, then go to www.dreamspark.com/ and sign up. There are countless tools available, from Windows Server Editions, Kodu Game Studio, to Expression Studio, to Visual Studio, and so much more.
As developers, Visual Studio is the place to be, and not just for the reasons aforementioned. Visual Studio is a brilliant place to start application development, due to the speed and simplicity of its User Interface, and the base coding provided by the software. With pre-built templates for Windows Phone applications, and now, Windows 8 applications, transforming ideas into reality has never been so easy. You can even have the choice of a plethora of languages to code in. And cross-software interaction with Expression Studio is a joy to use.
And, with your DreamSpark account, membership to AppHub is free as well, meaning that Windows Phone applications (as well as independent X-Box games) can be put onto the marketplace at no cost! Resources for developers are rich and numerous as well, from MSDN posts, to Channel 9 tutorials help is at hand for almost every query possible.
The tools are free, the software is simple, all we need is you.
Do you want to be one of the first students to help create an amazing experience for Microsoft’s next generation operating system?
Register now for our London Windows 8 Camp for students HERE
Windows 8 offers unparalleled new opportunities for application developers to build and sell apps world-wide via the Windows Store. In this Student Windows 8 event, we'll deliver developer-level, demo-driven sessions that give you an accelerated entry into what it means to design, develop and publish exciting, modern, polished, world-ready applications for next-generation devices running Windows 8.
Bringing your own laptop to the event is optional - if you do bring one then remember to download and run the latest build of the consumer preview: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-GB/windows-8/consumer-preview
Level of knowledge required for the event:
1. Beginners Welcome.
2. A familiarity with .NET development and Visual Studio would be advantageous but not required.
Register as soon as possible to avoid disappointment
Agenda (subject to change):
Windows 8 for Modern App Development
Metro Design Language
"Metro Style" Apps - The Power of the Device
“Metro Style" Apps - The Power of the Cloud
From Idea to Store – Next Steps on the Journey
We’ve notified all winners in Period 1 who won one of the bright shiny Nokia Lumias. We did have people register with invalid Publisher Names. We are doing a sanity check to see if there are any obvious typos but some people registered with a “made up name” .
If you have already registered here all you have to do is publish an app and we will check validity and enter you into Period 2 draw.
As a recap for those who may not be aware we have put together a competition for those people who like writing Apps for mobile devices. Available to students aged 16 or over in the UK, we want to encourage you to write lots of Apps and submit them via App Hub into the Marketplace.
For EVERY app you write, during the periods of the competition, (see the detailed terms and conditions here) you’ll have a chance to win one of 100 Nokia Lumia 800 Windows Phones. We also want to reward those who write top quality Apps so we are complimenting the random prize draw with a judged competition, the top prize being a trip to our offices to spend a day honing your skills and your Apps with our deep technical experts.
Putting it simply
To enter the competition you simply need to register with your LiveID, App Hub Publisher name, preferred contact email address and mobile phone number and that’s it. Obviously you then need to publish Apps to have a chance of winning.
On Wednesday 25th April at 16:00 BST, the UK hosted its local Imagine Cup finals webcast at the Microsoft Campus in Reading. The 6 finalists from the Software Design competition who were chosen from a round of preliminary judging were whittled down to the two top teams on 19th April through 5 hours of judging in a sealed room at our Microsoft offices in London Victoria. Through much deliberation over the next few days, we chose one team to represent the UK at the Imagine Cup worldwide finals in Sydney, Australia!
Imagine Cup Software Design in the UK this year: A Few Stats
· We had 991 registrations for the Imagine Cup UK this year
· 374 of them signed up to the Software Design competition
· 49 teams were formed for the Software Design competition
· 26 teams submitted a Round 1 entry
· 6 teams were selected for the UK final
· 1 team won and will go to the worldwide finals in Sydney to represent the UK
Bazinga! From Motherwell College – were inspired to use smartphone technology to inspire students all about Science! “Professor Duffy’s Interactive Labs app” is a complete science Lab on the phone utilising various sensors on the phone to demonstrate the practical side of science in a fun and interactive way.
Teesside 0x32: From Teesside University was inspired to develop Cloud Doctor – In Ethiopia for example there is 1 doctor to 50,000 patients. Cloud Doctor, as the name implies, harnesses Windows Azure and Cloud technologies combined with Windows Phone and Windows 8 tablets to deliver an on-demand, flexible and intelligent collaboration system – connecting healthcare workers in the developing world with specialists and doctors all over the world who volunteer their time to help patients on the ground.
Team EyeWorks: From Northumbria University and Newcastle College were inspired to develop MIRA (a Mobile Intelligent Retinal Analysis platform). MIRA is a cloud based platform that utilises Smartphone technology coupled with a specialist lens attachment developed at Northumbria University to identify early stage sight loss in the developing world.
WykeWare: From the University of Hull were inspired to develop a smartphone application to assist those people with a risk of falling be it the elderly or people prone to fainting. Their submission embraced cloud technology to match emergencies and responders to identify how to prioritise how best to help.
Sentient Systems: From the University of Reading were inspired to develop “Sentience” a cost effective software solution designed to run affordable , advanced and customizable robot systems utilising cloud based distribution, plug-in architectures, commodity frameworks and low cost hardware specifically Kinect!
Team Loading: From The University of Manchester were inspired to develop Project Sky High. Project Sky High is a Windows Phone application combined with a netduino hardware sensor to allow aid workers in the developing world to transform a smartphone into a cost effective portable ultrasound scanner and mobile blood pressure monitor. The patient data will be recorded in the cloud in Windows Azure and accessible by a medical professional.
In 3rd place and winners of a pocket digital video camcorder each were…
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In 2nd place and winners of a Windows Phone each were…
Teesside 0x32 (Teesside uni)
In 1st place and winners of a Windows Phone each, a trip to the Microsoft Technology Center in Reading to spend a day with the
experts and also the grand prize of a trip to Sydney, Australia to compete in the worldwide finals were…
Team EyeWorks (Newcastle uni and Northumbria uni)
A huge congratulation to all teams who competed and this year, the decision was made much harder than ever before as the entries this year far surpassed previous years.
All teams who submitted a Round 2 video entry will be receiving feedback and teams who have won prizes will be hearing from the Academic Team very soon! Congratulations to Team EyeWorks and we will be seeing you in Sydney!
Nokia and Microsoft have launched a new programme seeking innovative Windows Phone 7.5 apps to feature in their latest advertising campaign. Now whilst this is open to all developers it would be great to see some UK Student apps featured! If you fancy the chance to promote your app to consumers throughout the UK for free then why not give it a shot!
What’s involved? We’re looking for innovative apps in the Windows Phone Marketplace that have recently been published by UK developers (especially students) to feature in the latest advertising campaigns. We want to see your amazing apps that will delight UK consumers in the following categories: casual games, kids, family, health and fitness, shopping, social, travel, and utilities.
Submit your app and it could be featured in an upcoming promotion – plus selected apps will be showcased in our Windows Phone & Nokia ad campaigns, including online banner ads, featured placement in the Windows Phone Marketplace, public relations and media outreach and in upcoming events and social media activities.
Microsoft and Nokia will review and choose new apps each month to feature in the campaigns but you'll have to be quick – the deadline for the next two months is fast approaching.
Deadline for submission*:
Find out how easy it is to get started, and apply today.
* New submissions are reviewed monthly. Not all apps submitted will be selected for the campaign.
Imagine you want to build your own house; you’ve managed to acquire your piece of land, got your planning permission and grabbed a few raw materials. Now, do you grab your trowel and bricks cementing away with just a vague idea of what you want your finished house to look like? Of course you wouldn’t. Or at least I hope you wouldn’t. A similar concept applies to creating websites, applications and software, although there is obviously a much better chance of your website development succeeding than your house building endeavours without design. There is a distinct reason that my university lecturer created an entire module around design patterns and why Facebook considers designers the ‘key to the company’s long-term strategic success’.
Design is important.
Good applications, websites and software start at the design stage. We understand how important design is in the process of creating something that is going to lead the market by being beautiful, user-friendly, ground-breaking and unique, so we’ll tell you about something that may lead you in that direction. But firstly, let me ask you the same question that I ask at all of the presentations that I give, to all of the audiences that I encounter; have you heard of DreamSpark?
DreamSpark is a comprehensive selection of the tools that professionals use to build real apps, real games and real solutions and it is absolutely FREE for students. If you’re a budding designer or you’re an avid software developer then download the Microsoft Expression Studio 4 Ultimate suite which gives you access to:
· Expression Web 4 for creating compelling websites visually
· Expression Blend 4 for creating rich web experiences, games, desktop apps and more
· Expression Design 4 for creating sophisticated vector graphics
· Expression Encoder 4 Pro for your video production needs
If you need a little inspiration or help in getting started and using these tools there are lots of resources available for you.
To learn how to use Expression Studio there are courses and tutorials available for you to get stuck into once you’ve downloaded the tools.
Windows Phone is an amazing technology to start developing with if you’ve not done much development before or even if you’re a seasoned developer. Expression Blend is a great accompaniment to developing for Windows Phone as it enables you to do most of the design easily in an intuitive and simple user interface, especially using tools such as SketchFlow which comes included in the Expression suite. To learn how to use the Expression suite to design Windows Phone apps take a look at this video featuring Celso Gomes and Peter Blois.
If it’s a bit of inspiration you’re after then have a look at ubelly’s interviews with designers who’ve worked on our top phone apps including IMDB, Twitter, Facebook and Shazam. There’s plenty more where that came from if that’s not enough here.
Start designing some amazing stuff today!