The goal of this site is to put relevant and applicable tools and information at the fingertips
With this blog we want to inform you on our latest initiatives.
Enjoy reading and stay tuned!
In line with the todays launch of Windows 8 Consumer Preview, I have collected a set of useful resources and links
Windows 8 Consumer Preview Download
Windows 8 Consumer Preview download (web installer or ISO’s), videos, and FAQ’s.
Developer downloads for Metro style apps
Visual Studio 11 Express and the Windows 8 SDK + all the extra tools and SDK’s for Metro style app development.
Design assets for Metro style apps
100+ Photoshop files with common controls, shell components, tiles, icons, animation clips, color wheel references, and more.
Metro style app developer content
Windows Dev Center home
Links to Metro style app, Desktop app, Hardware, and IE development.
Metro style app development home
Links to key resources for designing, developing, and selling Metro style apps.
Product guide for developers
Windows 8 Consumer Preview Product Guide for Developers.
Comprehensive docs, articles, quickstarts, roadmaps, tutorials, checklists, developer agreements, and whitepapers covering all aspects of app design, development, and selling:
· Getting started · Planning apps · Designing UX for apps · Developing apps · Packaging apps · Debugging and testing apps · Selling apps · API reference · Concepts and architecture · Language reference · End-to-end apps
Design principles, UX design patterns, detailed UX guidelines, downloadable design assets, assessing usability.
Selling apps in the Windows Store
Windows Store markets, developer agreements, and checklists to prepare.
Visual Studio Express and the Windows 8 SDK + extra tools and SDK’s for Metro style app development.
Metro style app samples
Over 200 official samples from Microsoft are available in multiple programming languages. You can copy code inline, upload new code, rate, and leave comments.
Developer forums for Metro style apps covering designing, developing, and selling apps.
Blogs for developers
Building Windows 8 blog (B8)
An inside look at how, what, and why different features of Windows 8 are being built. This blog is written by Windows President Steven Sinofsky together with members of the Windows engineering team.
Windows Store blog for developers
All about doing business in the Windows Store. Members of the engineering team who’ve built the Windows Store write posts along with Antoine Leblond, Vice President of Windows Web Services.
Windows 8 app developer blog (D8)
Explores best practices for coding and designing Metro style apps. It is written by the team of developers who are building Windows 8.
Windows Internet Explorer Engineering Team Blog.
Inside Windows Live blog
The engineering being Hotmail, Messenger, SkyDrive, and Windows Live.
Visual Studio Blog
The official source of product insight from the Visual Studio Engineering Team.
The Windows Blog
Consumer and general interest topics.
Social channels for developers
Twitter (Building Windows 8)
Twitter (Windows Dev Center)
Consumer Preview Newsletter
Launching with Consumer Preview
Tips, offers, and news about Windows 8 including resources for developers and businesses.
Desktop app developer/partner content
Desktop app certification requirements
Certification requirements for Windows 8 desktop apps.
Desktop App Certification Kit
The Windows 8 SDK includes the Windows App Certification Kit to test desktop apps and get them ready for certification.
Tips and fixes for common issues with desktop apps for the Windows 8 Consumer Preview and software for Windows Server 8 Beta.
Compatibility of desktop apps and devices with Windows 8. Partners can add products and update compatibility status using this template.
Hardware developer/partner content
Hardware Certification Requirements
Windows 8 Hardware Certification Requirements and Policies
Hardware tools and certification kit
Windows Consumer Preview Kits and Tools for hardware development
Driver development documentation
Developing, testing, and deploying drivers
Hardware and driver community resources
Forums, blogs, and newsletters for the hardware and driver developer community.
Last week, Moodle Rooms announced that the updated plug in will be available to the Moodle community beginning February 23rd.
I just wanted to highlight the great work done by Moodle Rooms in developing this plug in and providing it to the Moodle community as it offers the following functionality
- Log into courses using their Windows Live ID and display select Live Services on a Moodle site.
- View and compose emails and calendar events within a Moodle site using Outlook® Live
- Access Windows Live Messenger chat and Bing™ search engine within a course.
This will offer huge advantages to those institutions with Moodle and Live@edu user base and will enhance the Moodle teaching and learning experience.
This is a great example of interoperability between Microsoft and open source solutions, something Microsoft strongly supports and will continue to support in the future.
Additional resources and links
- Download - http://moodle.org/plugins/browse.php?list=set&id=11
· Sites: Liveatedu site announces availability of new plug in for moodle
· Blogs: Openness blog and Education Insights
· Twitter: @OpenAtMicrosoft
· Video on the Openness site and Live@edu
- More details on UK Live@edu Blog
Windows 8 Consumer Preview keynote - http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/presskits/windows/videogallery2.aspx
Windows 8 For Application Developers – By UK Tech.Days
This 3 city (London, Manchester and Edinburgh) tour focuses on creating broad awareness and excitement around the Windows 8 opportunities for developers.
These are 1 day events which are delivered by our Windows 8 Champs with the goal of providing accelerated learning to Windows 8 application development. You are welcome to invite your customers and partners to attend. You can see all of these events on the UK Tech.Days home page.
London, Friday, 30th March 2012 – Register
Manchester, Friday, 27th April 2012 – Register
Edinburgh, Tuesday, 1st May 2012 – Register
Windows 8 Camp – By UK Tech.Days
This 4 city (London, Manchester, Edinburgh & Birmingham) targets those that have attended the Windows 8 for Application Developers events and wish to further explore and learn about Windows 8 development in an hands-on environment. Again, our Windows 8 Champs will be delivering hands-on lab materials to fully get developers up to speed with app development.
Registration for these camps will be going live in late March.
London, Wednesday 8th May 2012, Thursday 10th May 2012 & Thursday 17th May 2012 – Coming Soon
Birmingham, Monday 21st May 2012 – Coming Soon
Manchester, Wednesday 23 May 2012 – Coming Soon
Edinburgh, Friday 25th May 2012 – Coming Soon
UK Tech.Days @ DevWeek 2012
DevWeek conference in London and will be evangelizing Windows Azure, Windows Phone and Visual Studio & ALM offerings. Check out our presence at DevWeek 2012. Tickets are still available for your customers/partners for this year’s conference - 26-30 March 2012.
Come and join us on the 27th of March in Newcastle we will be discussing the Consumerisation of IT and how to Manage consumer devices on networks. We hope that this event will be of interest to students, academics and IT Pros. The event will give you a glimpse of the latest technologies that Microsoft are running in the world of Virtualisation.
- Hands on learning with Microsoft experts Andrew Fryer @deepfat and Simon May @simonster - Discussion of the latest technologies from Microsoft including: System Center, Hyper-V, SharePoint and Exchange - Opportunity to win one of five Nokia Lumia phones - Other free goodies - Lunch, coffee and refreshments provided.
Event: Consumerisation of IT/ Manage consumer devices on a corporate network
Date: 27th March 2012
Location: Novotel Newcastle Airport, Ponteland Road, Kenton, Newcastle upon
This year the UK Tech.Days team have changed the format of our traditional Tech.Days theatre events into a series of ‘Boot Camp’ style seminars. The aim of these is to allow IT Professionals to have more discussion time with evangelists like Andrew Fryer, and each other to share common problems and solutions – and we’re looking for your help to share these with your users.
The Newcastle Event will host approx. 70 people with a mixture of discussions and practical demonstration. Although there will be a loose agenda, it will be PowerPoint-free event, allowing the hosts to focus on the questions that our guests ask.
For the event in Newcastle, we will be focusing on the Consumerisation of IT which a key topic within the UK Education sector
· How key Microsoft technologies such as System Center 2012, SharePoint 2010, Windows Server 2008R2, Exchange 2010 or Office 365 and Windows 7 come together to help you deliver flexibility and support for devices and desktops.
· How to use the latest tools to manage your estate, deliver applications flexibly, manage devices such as iOS and Android as well as Windows, implement IP Sec, reduce anti-malware costs, implement Direct Access and secure remote access.
· We'll also help you think about what you need to build into a "Bring your own device" or BYOD policy.
Registrations are now open and can be found here
Lets make TechEd Europe a giant success!
Lots more detail and updates are now available for TechED Europe which will take place in Amsterdam
TechEd updates now available on the Social section of the TechEd web site here: http://europe.msteched.com/social
Plus we’ve kicked off our regular Countdown series which will regularly bring 10 juicy minutes of information and detail from the planning team! http://channel9.msdn.com/Shows/The-Countdown-Show
So if you want to get the latest information on Microsoft products, tools and technologies TechEd should be in your calendars.
Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA) is an entry-level certification that validates the fundamental technology knowledge that students and other new entrants to IT need to start building a career in Microsoft technologies. MTA helps students explore career options in technology, prepare for advanced studies in IT, and is a stepping stone to MCTS exams. MTA is currently available to students, faculty, and staff of accredited academic institutions and to MCT’s.
The MTA HTML5 Application Development Fundamentals exam is available!
98-375 HTML5 Application Development Fundamentals has released through Certiport. This exam tests knowledge of fundamental HTML5 application development concepts, including understanding the platform, publishing an app to a store, choosing and configuring HTML5 tags to display graphics or play media, arranging UI content using CSS, etc. Candidates for this exam are seeking to prove core HTML5 client application development skills that will run on today’s touch-enabled devices (PCs, tablets, and phones). See what all is covered in the exam here.
To see MTA commentary on LinkedIn, please join the MTA group at http://www.linkedin.com/groups/Microsoft-Technology-Associate-3701818?gid=3701818&trk=hb_side_g.
You can also see an announcement of the new exam on Born to Learn, posted by Kristi Svor, here.
As Andrew states in his original blog Agility is essential to cope with the new influx of students every year as well as is the need to deploy every more applications to keep up with the latest standards for the curriculum and the way each subject is taught.
Some of these examples below are relevant to my previous discussions in regards to System Center 2012, curricula enhancements and training so I am sure you find them of interest in preparation for this years refresh plans.
The following blog is by Microsoft UK IT Pro Evangelists Andrew Fryer. Originally posted on the UK Technet Blog Insufficient data from Andrew Fryer IT Pro Evangelist
Teaching the next generation of IT Professionals.
There was a lot of coverage in the press last week about teaching coding and development as part of ICT, however I had two separate requests from ICT educators about teaching how to maintain and fix problems on PCs, because that’s what their students had asked for. We discussed setting up virtual machines on Hyper-V and using snapshots to allow a damaged desktop to be fixed and then being reset with the problem for the next lesson. I also think some of the information on clustering and virtual machines on the Microsoft Virtual Academy could be reused in class rooms or certified training via Microsoft IT Academy in the form of MTA.
Remote Desktop Services & App-V.
One way to deal with the problem of matching up students and teachers to the applications they need , irrespective of where they are working is to use App-V (application virtualisation) as this deploys a virtual copy of an application to a desktop based on the groups a user belongs to i.e. it won’t show up in programs in control panel and can run side by side alongside earlier versions of the same application which it would normally conflict with.
Another approach is to use Remote Desktop Services (RDS) and it was no surprise at BETT to see all the hardware vendors sporting their latest thin client devices, and personally I like the LG and Samsung offerings where the thin client was just part of the LCD panel. However not every application likes running as a remote desktop and you can end up creating a lot remote desktops for each type of user. The trick here is to use App-V with RDS so that the applications run virtually inside the remote desktop session and a given user only gets the applications they need even though you only have one or two standard desktops in RDS (the guidance on how to do this is here).
Another good thing about RDS is that it reduces heat in the classroom if thin client devices are used and also reduces the background noise, although the noise from pupils will still be the same! It is possible to implement RDS without also deploying Citrix or Quest technologies on top, however both of these partners’ offerings add ease of use and manageability to what the raw RDS experience delivers.
RDS can be setup so that these personalised remote desktops are available to staff & students working at home or other locations and this means they can use their own devices to interact with a school. Of course laptops are expensive and can be difficult to justify on a limited budget, so to level the playing field there is Get On Line @ Home, which provides affordable reconditioned hardware with Windows 7 + Office 2010 with telephone technical support included.
Thanks to Andrew for producing this post. For a list of upcoming events which the UK TechNet team are delivering see http://uktechdays.cloudapp.net/home.aspx and for details of your education account managers to discuss this further see http://www.microsoft.com/uk/education/
Kinect for Windows Product Available February 1st
The Kinect for Windows product group announced the upcoming release of their full commercial product in an official blog post on January 9. The new Kinect for Windows hardware and accompanying software will be available on February 1. It will be supported in 12 countries (United States, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Spain, and United Kingdom) at a suggested retail price of US$249.
Academics will still be able to use the Software Development Kit (SDK) with current Kinect for Xbox 360 sensors for non-commercial purposes and existing deployments that are licensed until 2016.
You now also have a route to write commercial applications. Monitor the Kinect for Windows site for updates.
• The announcement is here.
As the Kinect for Windows blog states, many improvements to the SDK and runtime have been made these include:
The Channel 9 folks have some great content that went live today as well.
Samsung SUR40 for Microsoft Surface (SUR40) is now available for purchase through Samsung channel and reseller partners. The device, manufactured by Samsung, was selected as an International Consumer Electronics Show “Best of Innovations 2012” award winner. For updates, monitor Microsoft Surface.
The Surface 2 SUR40 is considerably less expensive than the first-generation device. Apart from the lower price, the main improvement is its much reduced size. The Surface 2 is now more like a coffee table with no bulky pedestal.
A really nice example of Surface + Microsoft technology application is a retail example was produced by Razorfish
Basically the surface 2 is an amazing device which simply can be used to do anything however you need to develop specific applications for the surface using the Surface 2 SDK see http://blogs.msdn.com/b/uk_faculty_connection/archive/2011/07/12/surface-2-0-sur40-sdk-now-available.aspx
As the previous post state the Surface 2 requires custom development. If you do not have these skills in house we would recommend using a Surface 2 application development partner such as:-
XFACE Suite 420 4th Floor, Davis House Business Centre, Robert Street, Croydon, CR0 1QQ Or
Black Marble Woodland Park Bradford Road Chain Bar, West Yorkshire, BD19 6BW
The Surface can also be purchased with a selection of custom apps for less than >£7k
The Microsoft Surface team have a number of You Tube videos see http://www.youtube.com/user/surface
Kinect for Windows is now Available!
Version 1.0 of the SDK and runtime are now available for download, and distribution partners in our twelve launch countries are starting to ship Kinect for Windows hardware, enabling companies to start to deploy their solutions.
Looking for great on content on how to build apps for Kinect? Visit Channel 9 where we have updated quick starts and open source projects.
Get Started Guides and Tutorials Kinect for Windows Quickstart Series
Write an App! - Sample Code / Open Source Projects
Kinect Service - A Windows Service so you can see Kinect data on your Windows Phone
Kinect Paint - Draw with your hands
Kinect Mouse Cursor - Control Windows with your hands
Coding4Fun Kinect Toolkit - Developer library for easy programming
Jellybean - Our famous drivable lounge chair code has been updated to the latest release of Kinect for Windows