• Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows 8 Professional Exams now available for developers

    • 0 Comments

     

    We all now demand beautiful, elegant apps that are alive with activity. If your an IT Academy you can now get your students demonstrating there expertise at designing and developing the fast and fluid Windows 8 apps by earning the Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD)

    If your interested in IT Academy please visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/itacademy/

    With new certification for Windows Store Apps. There are two paths to achieving this certification—using HTML5 or C#.

    To earn the MCSD certification, take the exams indicated below

    If you want to upgrade your current certification to validate your up to date skills:

    Find out more about upgrade paths

    Take the exams needed to upgrade to MCSD: Windows Store Apps

    If you’re new to certification, check out the Microsoft certification tracks available to you.

    Get your MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using HTML5

    Exam 480: Programming in HTML5 with JavaScript and CSS3plusExam 481: Essentials of Developing Windows Store Apps Using HTML5 and JavaScriptplusExam 482: Advanced Windows Store App Development Using HTML5 and JavaScriptequalsMCSD: Windows Store Apps Using HTML

    yields

    Schedule your Microsoft Certification exam through Prometric

    Get your MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using C#

    Exam 483: Programming in C#plusExam 484: Essentials of Developing Windows Store Apps Using C#plusExam 485: Advanced Windows Store App Development Using C#equalsMCSD: MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using C#

    yields

    Schedule your Microsoft Certification exam through Prometric

    Note: Exams 70-480, 70-481, 70-482, 70-483, 70-484, and 70-485 will become available in beta version during the summer of 2012. If you are interested in taking the beta exams, be sure to complete a Microsoft Learning SME profile to indicate your skills and experience with Visual Studio 2012, or watch for announcements about upcoming beta exams at Born to Learn. MCSD certification requires candidates to show continued ability to perform in their chosen solution area by completing a recertification exam every two years.

    Upgrade your MCPD certification to MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using HTML5

    MCPD: Windows Developer 4plusExam 480: Programming in HTML5 with JavaScript and CSS3plusExam 490: Upgrade your MCPD: Upgrade your MCPD: Windows Developer 4 to MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using HTML5equalsMCSD: MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using HTML5

    yields

    Schedule your Microsoft Certification exam through Prometric

    Upgrade your MCPD certification to MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using C#

    MCPD: Windows Developer 4plusExam 483: Programming in C#plusExam 491: Upgrade your MCPD: Windows Developer 4 to MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using C#equalsMCSD: MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using C#

    yields

    Schedule your Microsoft Certification exam through Prometric

    Note: Upgrade exams will be available in the spring of 2013.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Tips for building stunning Windows 8 application for ARM

    • 0 Comments

    ARM-logo

     

    So if your interested in developing application of games for Windows 8 ARM devices the following white paper on ARM Development is an essential read

    Additionally we have produced some best practice guidance for developing applications and games using HTML5/JS C# C++

    For more details on Windows 8 see http://www.microsoft.com/uk/msdn/windows8

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Microsoft Student to Business

    • 0 Comments

    S2B_Web_Banners_V1

    Microsoft supports the dreams and aspirations of the next generation of technology innovators the students now studying will drive the next wave of technology innovation and Microsoft is committed to helping them achieve their goals through programs such as Microsoft Students to Business (“S2B”).

    What is the S2B Program?

    The Microsoft S2B program connects companies with talented university or post-graduate students like you  for entry-level jobs or internships in the technology industry by matching qualified candidates with open positions.

    Why should you register?

    In one word: access! Students are given FREE access to

    · Training and certification offers to help them develop the necessary skills for a successful career;

    · Software via DreamSpark

    · Jobs via Microsoft’s vast network of partner companies looking for qualified students to help their businesses grow.

    At S2B, we believe: Skills + Software + Experience = Jobs

    Register today at www.microsoft.com/s2b

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Visual Studio 2012 Colour Theme Editor

    • 0 Comments

    So if you don't like the all White look of Visual Studio 2012 you can now customize the Visual Studio 2012 colour palette, with a FREE extension. 

    screenshot

    This extension is supported for Visual Studio 2012 Professional and higher.

    Key features

    • Choose from several prebuilt themes including a Visual Studio 2010 theme (named Blue), a Light theme with a dark editor, a Dark theme with a light editor, and four additional coloured themes (Red, Green, Tan, Purple)
    • Ability to copy/paste, undo/redo, and multi-select edit colour values
    • A new and improved colour picker to easily change your theme’s colours
    • More Visual Studio UI that can be modified including most tool window backgrounds and selection colours
    • Customize your editor fonts and colours from the Theme Editor UI
    • Copy colours from existing themes to easily create variations on the prebuilt themes

    Simply download the extension here to select the theme.

    To use the new theme colour, within Visual Studio simply choose the theme and select the colour scheme desired.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Microsoft @ ALT-C 2012

    • 0 Comments



    ALTC

    ALT-C is an annual conference for learning technologists. This year it will be held at the University of Manchester on 11th – 13th September and Microsoft and Collabco will be exhibiting here for the first time.

    collabco office365moodle

    Collabco will be supporting the Microsoft exhibition at the ALT Conference, showcasing the work that we have carried out at Blackpool & the Fylde College.  The project involved adding value to an Office 365 for education solution for the college.  Collabco’s Hub Metro solution, is a SharePoint 2010 based solution. It pulls together the essential elements of Office 365 for education, such as e-mail, MySites and calendars, together with the systems students need access to on a daily basis such as timetable, Moodle, e-payments and library systems. 

    WinAzure_v_rgb 

     

    Giving students (and ultimately staff) this “single pane” view of all the systems they need, with seamless access to the collaboration tools in SharePoint and Office 365 for education, delivers a compelling solution.  This addresses many of the college’s requirements of an integrated learning platform and helps to further integrate Moodle into the delivery of learning to students.  The college is able to customise the look and feel of the platform and add further connectors to new systems as they are brought on stream. 

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    A further phase of the project will allow the college to deliver all of this information easily to the students mobile devices and smartphone, allowing them to be kept fully up to date and informed of assignment deadlines, overdue library books, room changes and other useful information.

    With Windows 8 Live tiles on the Windows Start screen display information from your website and service and turn your app into a real time awareness engine - even when it’s not running. Your services and your app, will grab your users’ attention and keep them informed of the latest announcements and updates.

    Windows 8 gives you the opportunity as an educational institution huge potential by personalising the learning and interactions with your students, the ability to list your apps in the Windows Store to current and potential students of your institution allows you to reach millions of potential applicants, learners or associated partners.

    I will be attending ALT-C, so if you are interested in leverage your existing technical staffs skills, Code fast, fluid, immersive and beautiful Windows 8 applications in HTML5/JavaScript, XAML/C# and C/C++ come by the Microsoft stand for a discussion.  If you’re simply interested in existing and new Microsoft
    Platform and Developer technologies and want to be informed of where our languages, platforms and tools are heading or simply try out Windows 8.

    Further details of Microsoft Windows 8 development http://www.microsoft.com/uk/msdn/windows8

    Running Moodle on Windows Azure

    Integrating Moddle and Live@edu

    Running Opensource Applications on Azure

    Building Custom Office or SharePoint apps

    Windows Azure Educator and Student Passes for teaching, learning and research

    Building Mobile Application with cloud services

    So if you’re interested in exploring the use of any of these drop by the Microsoft stand for chat.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows Server 2012 Certification and Training

    • 3 Comments

    Windows Server 2012 Training & Certification Now Available to all Microsoft IT Academy members

    5545.image_5F00_thumb_5F00_5A210158[1]

    if your interested in IT Academy please visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/itacademy/

     

    1) Certifications and official Microsoft training and certifications are now available for Windows Server 2012, Windows 8, Private Cloud, Windows Store Application

    image

    In addition to this we now have new structure for Microsoft Technical Certifications

    image

     

    With a dedicated number of suitable examinations for the FE/HE education market which adds added value to the student experience and curriculum content aligning your courses with employees requirements.

    image

     

    2) Windows Server Certification and examination tracks

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    3) Microsoft Second Shot promotion is active so students (and lecturers) get a FREE retake if they do not pass first time for more info click here

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    4) Courseware available for Windows Server 2012 is now available to all Microsoft IT Academy members   

    Module 1: Managing a Windows Server 2012 Infrastructure

    •What's New in Server Manager

    •Introducing IP Address Management

    •PowerShell and Server Core Enhancements

    •What’s New in Active Directory

    •Introducing Dynamic Access Control

    Module 2: Network, Storage, and Service Access in Windows Server 2012

    •Storage Enhancements

    •What's New in Remote Access

    •New and Improved Networking Technologies

    •Availability Enhancements

    Module 3: Server Virtualization in Windows Server 2012

    •Storage Enhancements

    •What’s New in Networking

    •Introducing Hyper-V Replica

    •What’s New in Live Migration

    •What’s New in Guest Clustering and VM Monitoring

    More Info:

    First Look Clinic Syllabus

    Hands On Lab Syllabus

    5) Microsoft IT Academy now  includes a number of enhanced resources including new online digital content and resources for more information click here

     

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    Click Here for the FREE E-Book on Windows Server 2012

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows Server 2012 within teaching, learning and research

    • 4 Comments

    server2012

    Well this week marked another important milestone for Microsoft with the release of Windows Server 2012, on Tuesday 4th of September, Microsoft made the official announcement of Windows Server 2012 you watch all the content at http://www.windows-server-launch.com

    What’s new in Server 2012

    Microsoft has positioned this as a very cloud-friendly OS. So its more important then ever to start ensuring your teaching cloud fundamentals to your students to help with this we have dedicated curriculum at http://www.microsoft.com/faculty

    Here are some of the new features.

    • New file system — Included in Windows Server 2012 is ReFS, a new file system designed to survive failures that would bring down or corrupt the previous NTFS file system (which is still available). Combined with improvements in cluster management and failover, this is a capability that will play across the entire user spectrum.
    • Deploy and manage at scale Windows Server 2012  is designed to make it easy to deploy multiple copies of the OS on geographically distributed systems. Obviously this is a good feature for cloud platform, but is of use to almost any enterprise IT group. Improvements in application development and deployment promise the ability to deploy any Windows Server 2012 application to any location(s) from a centralized deployment server.
    • Vastly improved Hyper-V, virtual networking, and associated tools Windows Server 2012 has many improvements to Hyper-V, including features to improve HA/DR provisioning, enhanced virtual networking, and improvements to the size of individual VMs. Microsoft’s new management solution, Systems Center 2012, offers deep integration with Hyper-V for advanced management.
    • Heavy emphasis on multi-tenancy A fundamental for deploying clouds, either as an internal private cloud or as a service provider offering shared cloud services, the ability to securely and efficiently handle multiple tenants on the cloud is a fundamental requirement. Windows Server 2012 has multiple features to enhance this capability, most of which will also be potentially useful for traditional enterprise IT environments as well. Security across the entire OS is integrated with these enhancements as well.
    • Client and remote office functions Improved management of client devices to allow centralized control of data and enhanced audit and compliance. Improvements in Branch Cache remote file services will allow tighter and more efficient management of data served to remote offices.

    So, what are the press and analyst saying about Windows Server 2012?

    Windows Server 2012 offers a major step in function capabilities aligned with several major strategic trends for both Microsoft and the rest of the industry.

    The team at Forrester posted a blog titled, “Microsoft Announces Windows Server 2012,” Here are just a few quotes.

    On the release of Windows Server 2012 as a whole:

    “Make no mistake, this is a really major restructuring of the OS, and a major step in function capabilities aligned with several major strategic trends for both Microsoft and the rest of the industry. While Microsoft’s high level message is centered on the cloud, and on the Windows Server 2012 features that make it a productive platform upon which both enterprises and service providers can build a cost-effective cloud, its features will be immensely valuable to a wide range of businesses.”

    There is no doubt that this is the most significant jump in OS capabilities since Microsoft first introduced Windows as a server OS.”

    Forrester Says Evaluate Windows Server 2012 NOW:

    “But, and this is critical, you must begin to evaluate and pilot it even if you are still completing your rollout of Windows Server 2008, as many Forrester clients still are. My guess is that WS2012 is the future of Windows OS, and will probably serve as the core of Microsoft’s strategy for the next decade. I doubt their ability to produce a radical upgrade to this in the next four or five years, and even the next version of the OS is likely to look like WS2012. This implies that you need to understand how this new OS will change and enable your strategic IT road map, particularly since the new OS has features and capabilities that, if properly exploited by you (or by your competitors), could generate real competitive differentiation such as the ability to deploy applications more rapidly, manage them more efficiently, etc.”

    What does this mean For IT Students and curricula?

    Firstly if your teaching infrastructure, administration, storage, cloud or virtualisation its critical, that you begin to evaluate and become familiar with Windows Server 2012. As academics you have a number of ways of doing this.

    1. Download a trial version from http://www.windows-server-launch.com

    2. Download and install a full version for FREE for teaching, learning and research in your labs and computer clusters from DreamSpark Premiumhttp://www.dreamspark.com 

    3. Point your students at www.dreamspark.com and get them to install windows server 2012 and get familiar. For further details and FAQ click here

    The key thing is that understand how this new OS will change and enable your strategic curricula roadmap, particularly since the new OS has features and capabilities that, could generate real competitive differentiation for your student employability giving them experience of skills such as the ability to deploy applications more rapidly, manage them more efficiently have experience of the Windows Azure IaaS, PaaS and SaaS options and virtualisation using HyperV.

    Recommendations

    1. You should evaluate this new release.

    2. Make use of FREE training resources for your IT Services and support teams at https://www.microsoftvirtualacademy.com/

    3. Attend one of our FREE IT Camps to get deeper understanding of Windows Server 2012 http://uktechdays.cloudapp.net/it-camps.aspx

    4. Make use of the curricula and teaching resources at http://www.microsoft.com/faculty

    5. Consider running older OS and software stacks within a VM, particularly given the improvements to the overall Hyper-V environment.

    6. If your contemplating a major new cloud or virtualization project or initiative, Windows Server 2012 should be the platform of choice, simply because of the FREE licensing options for teaching, learning and research as part of DreamSpark premium.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Microsoft and Nokia AppCampus – Got an Idea get funded now

    • 0 Comments

    AppCampus

    To drive innovation and business opportunities in Finland's mobile ecosystem and beyond, Microsoft Corporations and Nokia invested up to 9 million euros into "AppCampus" program -a newly established mobile application development program at Aalto University during the next three years. The AppCampus program has been set up to foster the creation of innovative mobile applications for the Windows Phone ecosystem, and in addition, Nokia platforms, including Symbian and Series 40, to create a new generation of self-sustaining mobile startups.

    Kicked off in May 2012, AppCampus is led and managed by Aalto University, which has a growing reputation as a hotbed of new startup companies. AppCampus is intended to attract thousands of application proposals from students and entrepreneurs from all over the world.

    Apart from investing 20,000 – 70,000 euros per project, AppCampus also supports the admitted applicants with comprehensive support, training in mobile technology, design and usability, and funding to create innovative new mobile apps and services. Windows Phone Marketplace and Nokia Store offer local and global business opportunities to program participants via distribution to consumers around the world.

    We don't take equity or commission from the investment. Successful applications are expected to be available exclusively on Windows Phone and other Nokia platforms for the first six months.

     

    For more details see http://www.appcampus.fi

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    So how do CS students make a beautiful looking Windows 8 application?

    • 1 Comments

     

    The simple answer is they can use this index to quickly find the user experience (UX) guidelines that can help you create a great Windows 8 style app.

    Click to download the guidelines This PDF file.

    Windows 8 design style

    Windows 8 UI style apps are the focal point of the user experience on Windows 8, and great apps share an important set of traits that provide a consistent, elegant, and compelling user experience.

    Touch interaction

    Metro style app touch interactions

    Use touch interactions that keep the user in control and confident, and leverage the screen or device edge so people can confidently find commands. See Touch interaction design.

    Snapping and scaling

    image

    These features help you create great experiences for every form factor and every viewing option your users have.

    • Flexible layouts: Design for different form factors and let users manipulate the content to fit their needs and preferences. Think of landscape view first so that your app will run on all form factors, but remember that some screens rotate, so optimize the layout of your content for a taller-than-wide view that retains functionality. See Guidelines for layouts.
    • Snapped and fill views: Design for your users' multi-tasking needs. Users want to use your app while they chat, surf the web, watch a movie, or whatever, so make your snapped view useful and maintain context when going between snapped and unsnapped views. See Guidelines for snapped and fill views.
    • Scaling to screens:  Design an app UI that looks great on devices of various sizes—from a small tablet screen, to a medium laptop screen, and all the way up to a large desktop or all-in-one screen. See Guidelines for scaling to screens.
    • Scaling to pixel density: Make sure the images in your app look great when scaled. Windows scales your app to ensure consistent physical sizing regardless of the pixel density of the device. See Guidelines for scaling to pixel density.
    • Resizing: Make sure your app looks great when Windows needs to resize it. Windows automatically resizes your app when the user changes the view state or calls up the soft keyboard. See Guidelines for resizing.
    Contracts, charms, and capabilities

    CC

    Contracts are the glue that binds Metro style apps together and to the system UI. Two apps that have implemented the same contract can work together to complete a broad or complex scenario. Some contracts are represented by charms. See a complete list of app contracts.

    Capabilities identify the device features your app uses.

    Tiles and notifications

    LiveTitle

     

    A tile is the front door into an app. Sitting on the Start screen, it is an extension of the app and can provide much more personal and engaging information than a traditional icon. Invest in designing a great tile to draw people into your app.

    Provide fresh content through live tiles and notifications to let people feel connected to your app. Make sure you help your users connect with the people and devices that they care about.

    Controls

    Design your app's UI to showcase the content. Minimize distraction and help people get immersed in the content by leaving only the most relevant elements on screen. Following these guidelines will help you provide a consistent, elegant, and compelling user experience.

    Commands

    Navigation

    Transient UI

    Images

    Text and input

    Roaming to the cloud

    Multiple devices running Windows 8: laptop, tablet, desktop monitor

    Create a continuous experience across devices by roaming data and settings that lets people pick up a task right where they left off and that preserves the UX they care most about, regardless of the device they're using.

    • Roaming: Make it easy for users to use your app everywhere, from their kitchen family PC to their work PC to their personal tablet, by maintaining settings and states with roaming. Additional guidance on roaming can be found in Managing app data and Guidelines for roaming app data.
    • Settings: Consolidate all of your app's settings on one UI surface, and let users configure your app via common mechanism they are already familiar with. See Guidelines for app settings.
    • Single sign-on:  Ensure that users can sign in with their Microsoft account and enjoy a consistent experience on any Windows 8 device they use. See Guidelines for single sign-on and connected accounts.
    Fundamentals

    Every app should always have a solid foundation in order to reach as many people as possible.

    • Splash screen:  Use the splash screen to smooth the transition between when people launch your app and when it's ready for use. The splash screen should subtly reinforce your brand with your users, not distract them or advertise to them. See Guidelines for splash screens.
    • Suspend and resume app state:  Users will switch your app on and off the screen, and Windows will terminate it in the background when it is unused. You should save and resume the app state when possible to maintain context. See Guidelines for app suspend and resume.
    • Auto-launching and "Open With": Launch the default app for a file type or protocol from your app. See Guidelines for file types and protocols.
    • Globalization, localization, and app resources: Windows is used worldwide, so you need to design your app so that resources, such as strings and images, are separated from their code, to help make localization easy. See Guidelines for globalizing your app and Guidelines for app resources.
    • Accessibility: Make your app available to all users regardless of their abilities, disabilities, or preferences. If you use the built-in UI controls, you get accessibility for free. When you need to create custom controls, see Plan for accessibility.
    • App help: Provide help or troubleshooting tips to your users. See Guidelines for app help.
    • Store categories: Learn how to create great apps for specific Windows Store categories, like games or entertainment. See Category guidance.

    Resources

    Teaching Curricula see http://www.microsoft.com/faculty

    Windows 8 resources for UK Developers  see http://www.microsoft.com/uk/msdn/windows8

    Windows 8 resources for Gaming Developer see http://www.ubelly.com/gaming

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Do you have great students? Well its their time to shine as a Microsoft Student Partner

    • 0 Comments

    MSP

    Applications are now open!

    The Microsoft Student Partner Programme recognises top young minds from around the world that are passionate about technology. It's a once in a lifetime opportunity to develop real-world skills to help you succeed in your future career, to help others learn about the technology of today and tomorrow, and to connect with other like-minded students, all whilst having a ton of fun along the way. The program is our way of encouraging students who are interested in building a closer relationship with Microsoft, and those who are simply hooked on technology, or talking about it to others to develop their skills further.

    CLICK HERE TO APPLY!

    So what exactly is a Microsoft Student Partner?

    http://www.microsoftstudentpartners.com

     

    As a team MSPs are responsible for helping students and start-ups design, create and publish great quality apps for Windows 8, Windows Azure and Windows Phone.

    An MSP’s role is to help us achieve this by:

    • creating great quality apps
    • writing great content we can use to showcase student talent
    • co-delivering content with us at events

    So we are looking for students who:

    • are experienced software developers
    • are passionate about developer technology and for Microsoft
    • are able to prove this passion
    • you have written an application for Windows Phone or Windows 8
    • are at a UK university and over 18
    • have the support of a faculty member
    • are able to articulate technology to a crowd

    We do want to encourage discussion and debate about technology and hence your experiences and opinions are extremely valuable. If you want to share your passion and develop industry-leading skills, we want to hear from you.

    What will you get in return?

    As part of your role as an MSP you will receive the following

    • an MSDN subscription
    • monthly Lync calls with the UK Academic team
    • technical education sessions organised on-line
    • the ability to showcase your skills to a wider audience though Microsoft promoting your apps and skills to the wider student and developer community
    • increased visibility in your university (dependant on you driving this with your faculty contact)

    How do we select MSPs?

    The application process will open in August 2012 and we’ll review applications in September. Subsequent selection will take place until the end of December 2012.

    Eligibility

    To consider applying for the MSP Program, you must be:

    • Over 18 years of age.
    • Studying a full-time course at an officially recognised university in the UK.
    • Have the support of a Faculty Member or a Professional within the technology industry.
    • Everyone needs to have published at least one app in a Microsoft MarketPlace or Store (Windows Phone, Windows 8, Azure etc)
    • If you have an app in the design stage you can become an MSP on probation for 3 months until your app gets published

    What are we looking for?

    All MSPs should have the following basic qualities:

    • Passionate about technology and what it can do
    • Someone who loves to learn
    • Be part of an active and vibrant network

    Competencies

    • Demonstrates a high degree of responsibility, honesty, and integrity
    • Good rapport with faculty and students studying other disciplines
    • Willing to share knowledge & eager to educate and inspire others
    • High level of social activity, both online & offline
    • Willingness to support and organise university events and involve the local community

    What’s the fine print?

    • The time commitment is somewhat variable and depends on you and the activity but it might be somewhere between 1-3 hours/week.
    • Students must be enrolled fulltime in an accredited academic institution within the UK.
    • In order for new people to be accepted onto the programme we expect prospective MSPs to provide some evidence that you have the desire, capacity and willingness to share your passion for technology.
    • If we find it is not meeting your needs then MSPs are free to leave the programme at any time
    • Microsoft retains the right to exclude people from the programme at any time.
    • Your details will not be used for any other marketing purpose.

    How to apply?

    Applications for the 2012-2013 Academic Year are now open. To apply for the Microsoft UK MSP programme, please refer to the competencies required and the responsibilities above.

    Complete the application form by clicking here.

    ·You will need to provide contact details from an academic member of your department or the professional who you have worked with in the technology industry

    Contact Us

    For all questions regarding the Microsoft UK program, please email ukmsp@microsoft.com

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