Faculty Connection is an online set of real-world resources and shared peer knowledge, the goal of the Faculty Connection site is to put relevant and applicable tools and information at the fingertips of technology educators.
The UK Academic Team is responsible for offering IT students and faculty members free access to software, for enhancing knowledge and skills by providing curriculum materials and other learning opportunities, for helping students achieve their dreams by organizing an international competition, and finally for assisting last year students through career resources and job opportunities at our customers and partners.
With this blog we want to inform you on our latest initiatives.
Enjoy reading and stay tuned!
If your not really a phone app developer or if you don't have curricula aimed at a specific mobile platform, you may want to look at the opportunity of the PhoneGap libraries.
Here’s a screen shot of the PhoneGap Unit Test application running on the Windows Phone emulator:
This is a new option to build applications targeting Windows Phone and gives your students more choices . PhoneGap is unique as its aimed at Web developers and simply allows them to leverage their HTML5 skills to target Windows Phone IE9 browser.
The beta version of the PhoneGap libraries can be downloaded from: https://github.com/phonegap/phonegap-wp7
For more details and information please read Nitobi’s blog post to get more details on how the whole process works. With the availability of Windows Phone developer tools, made available freely via DreamSpark to all students and academics and the fact that Windows Phone Mango Released to Manufacturing and developer tools hitting “Release Candidate”, it’s the perfect time to start trying this out.
So please get developing give feedback and join the PhoneGap open source project.
So its now only a few days until the Build Windows conference, BUILD takes place between 13th – 16th of September 2011.
The event has been total sold out for many months. I have to say I am pretty excited! why? I am lucky enough to be attending the event. As your aware from my previous posts Build Windows is a new event that shows modern hardware and software developers how to take advantage of the future of Windows. So make sure you take note of the URLs and twitter addresses below to learn how the new Windows 8 UI is being designed to work seamlessly with a diversity of devices and form factors.
BUILD will be the first place to take a dive deep into the future of Windows. Microsoft is extending its newest developer event Build Windows globally in multiple ways including live streamed keynotes, having a major international presence in Anaheim. So it want to learn about the future of Windows make sure you take a look at the following..
BUILD Conference Site - http://www.buildwindows.com/
BUILD Conference Twitter - http://twitter.com/#!/bldwin make sure you follow @bldwin
BUILD Conference Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Build/156095381124816
Building Windows 8 Blog - http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/
Building Windows 8 Twitter - http://twitter.com/#!/BuildWindows8 make sure you follow @BuildWindows8
The download also includes the AzureBlobCopy utility that is mentioned in the paper. This utility helps you copy files to and from Azure Storage, Azure Nodes, and on-premises computers.
Note: Code samples that were added in the September 2011 update are denoted as "New!". MPI samples are supported on Azure Nodes that are deployed on a Windows HPC Server 2008 R2 cluster that has Service Pack 2 installed.
There are also technical articles which provide technical overview of developing HPC applications that are supported for the Windows Azure burst scenario. The article addresses the application models that are supported, and the data issues that arise when working with Windows Azure and on-premises nodes, such as the proper location for the data, the storage types in Windows Azure, various techniques to upload data to Windows Azure storage, and how to access data from the computational nodes in the cluster (on-premises and Windows Azure). Finally, this article describes how to deploy HPC applications to Windows Azure nodes and how to run these HPC applications from client applications, as well as from the Windows HPC Server 2008 R2 SP1 job submission interfaces.
The links in this section correspond to files available for this download. Download the files from below or visit http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=12006.
Microsoft Learning hosted another new and exclusive Jump Start virtual training event featuring renowned MVPs Rob Miles, University of Hull & Andy Wigley AppMundi over 1,270 people joined the two-day event (Aug. 23-24, 2011).
The two days of Building Applications for Windows Phone Mango Jump Start was extremely popular and we are thrilled to announce the availability of HD-quality video recordings for FREE on Channel 9! There is over 14 hours of course content covering all aspects of Windows Phone development Visual Studio 2010, Silverlight, Expression, data storage, networks, user interface, XNA and the Marketplace.
Team teaching with every module having engaging discussion, packed full of best practices and real-world demonstrations and examples.
· Entire course on Channel 9: “Building Applications for Windows Phone Mango Jump Start”
Mango Jump Start (01): Building Windows Phone Apps with Visual Studio 2010
Mango Jump Start (02): Silverlight on Windows Phone—Introduction
Mango Jump Start (03): Silverlight on Windows Phone—Advanced
Mango Jump Start (04): Using Expression to Build Windows Phone Interfaces
Mango Jump Start (05): Windows Phone Fast Application Switching
Mango Jump Start (06): Windows Phone Multi-tasking & Background Tasks
Mango Jump Start (07): Using Windows Phone Resources (Bing Maps, Camera, etc.)
Mango Jump Start (08a): Application Data Storage on Windows Phone | Part 1
Mango Jump Start (08b): Application Data Storage on Windows Phone | Part 2
Mango Jump Start (09): Using Networks with Windows Phone
Mango Jump Start (10): Tiles & Notifications on Windows Phone
Mango Jump Start (11a): XNA for Windows Phone | Part 1
Mango Jump Start (11b): XNA for Windows Phone | Part 2
Mango Jump Start (12): Selling a Windows Phone Application
After this Jump Start, please check out the Microsoft Learning Windows Phone training options to better understand mobile certifications and where to find instructor-led classes to help you and your students gain accredited certification into Windows Mobile application development.
Due to my role, I have interactions with Universities across the length and breadth of the UK. I have the great fortune of seeing best practices and some truly transforming faculties, departments and schools. From my visits I get to hear and learn from educators and I’m always inspired and amazed with the activity which is being undertaken. However innovation in education is a global issue and something we all must work to solve and identifying innovative teaching practices and the impact that they can have on student outcomes is a great place to start.
There is now a real need to transform education to align with the realities of life and work in the 21st Century. This is not just about the effective use of technology but about developing the future generation to be deeply engaged in the learning process and taking the initiative to learn and to continue to have the desire, passion and want to learn throughout their career.
As part of Microsoft’s commitment to education transformation, Microsoft have initiated the Innovative Teaching and Learning (ITL) Research project http://www.itlresearch.com
The purpose of ITL is to contribute information and policy insights on where and how effective education transformation is taking place around the world. ITL Research is a multiyear global research program designed to investigate the factors that promote the transformation of teaching practices and the impact those changes have on students’ learning outcomes across a broad range of country contexts.
Microsoft is working with global and local education leaders such as UNESCO and local Ministries of Education and will be sharing data and results openly with all research partners and with the broader academic education community.
The goal of ITL is to recognise the importance of innovative teaching practices, inspire others to commitment to scaling innovation and creating a foundation for holistic education transformation. Another exciting component of this project is the opportunity for individual schools and leaders to take part. Microsoft’s Partners in Learning School Research is a self-assessment survey research system that helps educators and school leaders understand and measure innovative teaching practices that develop the skills students need for life and work in the 21st Century.
The online tool is an incredibly powerful tool that will give individual leaders an opportunity to measure and identify innovative teaching practices and compare and measure against the global survey results.
The process is also very easy to administer…
1. A school signs up on this website. 2. A administrator from the school sends out the survey to all educators and leaders. 3. Each educator and leader takes a 15 to 20 minute online survey about innovative teaching practices. 4. Once the surveys have been completed, a research report based on the responses is sent to the administrator within 24 hours, who can then share it. 5. The report shows measures of innovative teaching practices and examples of innovative teaching practices. 6. The surveys can be repeated each year to track and measure progress.
Visit http://www.pilsr.com to learn more about this project and how your school can take part.
Also you can watch the video below which provides an overview.
We would like to invite you to the 2011 Microsoft IT Academy UK Summit
We shall be hosting this year’s event at the Microsoft UK headquarters at Thames Valley Park Campus on Wednesday 19th October from 9.00am. Registration is now open and you can book your place here ››
Speakers from Microsoft, industry and the academic community will be covering a full range of topics to set you up for the new academic year and to help you get the most from your IT Academy memberships. Sessions and discussions will include;
· How will the shift towards Cloud technologies change the skills that the IT Industry will demand?
· Updates on new IT Academy benefits including free certification vouchers
· Discover new technology releases and how they can help you, including Windows Phone and Kinect
There will also be opportunities for networking with other academies, Microsoft employees and our education partners. Spaces are limited to 200 so make sure you book your place soon.
We all look forward to seeing you soon.
Register Here >>
Microsoft IT Academy Website
The new MTA exams
Free Student Software at Dreamspark
Latest Windows Phone News
Microsoft UK Education Website
UK Innovative Teachers Blog
The Windows Azure Bootcamp will take you from knowing nothing about the cloud to actually having written some code, deployed it to the cloud service and made a simple application available on the public Internet. We’ll even give you a special free pass to help you get started.
Back in May we ran some Windows Azure Bootcamps that we got some good feedback on (thanks to those who attended), so this time the camps will run for a whole day and we’ve got a camp held in Manchester as well as London.
During the Bootcamp there'll be experienced people available to guide you through each exercise. Once you have the basics in place, you'll be up and running. To get your applications running, you'll need an Azure subscription, so we can provide you with a special free pass that will entitle you to four compute instances, 3 GB of storage, Two* 1GB Web Edition databases. You can carry on using this subscription until it expires, after you've left the training course. You don't need a credit card to activate this free pass.
When you walk away from the Bootcamp, you can either de-activate the Azure application before you leave, or leave it running so that when you get home you can continue with your Windows Azure coding adventures. In any case you'll walk away with the code you've written on your laptop and an ability to modify it, test it locally on your laptop and deploy it to your free Windows Azure subscription any time you choose!
Pre-requisites: If you're a developer who uses a laptop, you'll almost certainly have most of these development components already installed. Please pay particular attention to the SQL Server setup - you'll need to use the same account during the labs as the account that was used to install whichever version of SQL Server you decide on from the pre-requisites list.
Register for a bootcamp to get your complimentary Windows Azure Pass – we’ll send you all the necessary instructions following registration.
Important Tip: Please ensure that you have completed all of the prerequisites (including getting your Windows Azure Pass) so you can maximize your time at the bootcamp to run through the practical labs and exercises provided.
Spaces are limited, so register your place in the Windows Azure Bootcamp today!
Got a question? You might find the answer below…
How much do I need to know about Windows Azure to attend this bootcamp? You don’t need any prior experience or knowledge about Windows Azure to attend this bootcamp. The purpose of the event is to provide you with the basic skills and knowledge to get started with learning about Windows Azure.
Who can attend the bootcamps? Academics, Students, developers, technologists, hobbyist, technology enthusiasts. Everyone is welcome! All we ask is that you are ready and keen to learn about Windows Azure.
How much does it cost to attend this bootcamp? Your luck's in - it's FREE.
What do I need to prepare in advance to make the most of the bootcamp? There are a basic set of things you should prepare before attending the bootcamp, listed above. Please make sure you are prepared so you can make the most of your day at the bootcamp.
What if I have registered already and cannot make it on the day? Please let us know as soon as you can if you can’t make the camp as there’ll be plenty of people who are keen to take your spot. Please respect the trainers and your fellow delegates by turning up if you have registered and committed. Thanks!
Register at the event of your choice below. Go on. You know you want to.
Then this free day of training is the quickest way to find out all you need to know.
The Windows Phone Camps will show you how to learn and build Windows Phone apps from scratch. You'll be guided through the development process with a series of hands-on workshops and short tutorials, with some seasoned experts to give you one on one help when you need it. There'll be topics like; Introduction to Windows Phone Development, Controls & Control Toolkit, Execution Model, Storing Data, Launchers & Choosers, Accessing Cloud Services, Marketplace & Submission. Also, there will be informal Mango tutorial sessions on offer covering topics such as Multi-tasking, Debugging & Profiling, Motion API, Advertising SDK and Sockets. There's even an introductory design session to help you make your app look its best. Just pick the workshops that are most useful for you and work at your own pace.
Once you've got the basics, you’ll be off and running and ready to develop your own apps. You can work on your own projects with assistance from our Windows Phone MVPs, and of course there's the all-important opportunity to meet up with likeminded devs.
The camp kicks off at 9am and finish at 6pm. By registering and attending, you will receive (fanfare please) an exclusive Windows Phone Design Guide Sketch Pad as well as your own customized Hit & Run Windows Phone Camp T-shirt.
Spaces are limited, so register your place in the Windows Phone Camp today!
Got a question? You might find the answer below...
How much do I need to know about Windows Phone to attend this camp?
You don't need any prior experience or knowledge about Windows Phone or app development to attend. The purpose of the camp is to provide you with the basic skills and knowledge to get started with learning about Windows Phone app development.
Who can attend these camps?
Academics, Students, developers, hobbyist, technology enthusiasts. Everyone is welcome! All we ask is that you are ready and keen to learn about developing apps for Windows Phone.
How much does it cost to attend this camp?
Your luck's in - it's FREE.
What do I need to prepare in advance to make the most of this camp?
There are a basic set of things you should prepare before attending the camp. This includes bringing your own suitable laptop with the Windows Phone Developer tools installed (these are free), preferably the latest version of the tools.
It would also be useful if you could read the following documentation:
If you have a Windows Phone please bring it with you.
Are you holding these camps elsewhere in the country?
Yes, this is a series of Windows Phone Camps kicking off around the country. Follow us on Twitter (@ukmsdn) to see where we’re visiting next.
What if I've registered already and can't make it on the day?
Please let us know as soon as you can if you can't make the camp as there will be plenty of people who are keen to take your spot. Please respect the trainers and your fellow delegates by turning up if you've registered and committed. Thanks!
Who are Hit & Run?
They're do cool live on-site event screen-printing. You'll get the chance to create your very own t-shirt with your unique design at the end of the camp.
What’s the Windows Phone Design Sketch Pad?
In the spirit of highlighting good design, we intend to provide each attendee with an exclusive Windows Phone design sketch pad with Windows Phone design guidelines as well as open spaces and templates to sketch your next big Windows Phone app idea. Great stuff!
Register at the event of your choice below. Go on. You know you want to.
London - Saturday 17 September
Manchester - Saturday 24 September
Next steps to the next level. Once you have the fundamentals under your belt, you should begin checking out the following videos:
Today, there are more layout options available to us. For example, we can use CSS3 Media Queries to define styles based not on the actual browser being used, but the precise device capabilities being used to view our site. Media Queries is just one option, but we now are beginning to add other layout items to our arsenal with things such as CSS3 Flexible Box (“Flexbox”) Layout, CSS3 Grid Alignment, CSS3 Multi-column Layout, CSS3 Positioned Floats. If you are interested in learning more about layout options, check out:
· IE 10: The Future of Adaptive Web Design
· The future of CSS Layouts
The following is a quick guide on HTML5 Video and the Microsoft Media Platform, I have recently had a number of question and interest from a number of UK universities whom are looking at providing streamed media content both on and off campus.
Microsoft has developed the IE Test Drive Video Format support page to see some examples of how various codecs work across the different browsers.
Web developers are generally happy to leave their existing solution in place to play their pre-existing video/audio content using plugins. However many are now supplementing these plugins with the HTML5 Video and Audio tag if the browser is able to play their particular codec of choice natively. This is ideal as the most popular mobile platforms H.264, AAC and MP3 are generally well supported using the HTML5 video and audio tags.
The Microsoft Media Platform (MMP) frameworks are the glue that holds together individual pieces of the Microsoft end-to-end media solution.
Microsoft MMP is the the video platform that sits behind the Rugby World Cup 2011 event.
The Microsoft Media Platform: Player Framework (that is licensed for commercial use under the Microsoft Public License Ms-PL) has recently added a preview of support for HTML5 (API Documentation) that enables you as web developers to compliment the Silverlight player framework with a HTML5 video experience that enables you to reach additional mobile platforms.
There are a number of commercial solutions available that do all the work for you.
Example of these include
JW Player™ (licensed for commercial use)
SublimeVideo® (Player as a Service).
It is surprisingly easy to utilise your own video solution using the default browser controls and codecs that the browser supports. The markup below shows what you need to play a video in HTML5 with a “Fall Back” to an unlisted video on YouTube.
1. Video MIME types supported
Cross Browser HTML5 video running under IIS
Video Formats supported -
The order of your markup does matter please list them as above
Add in the MIME Types support to IIS.
Under IIS 7+ this is found under Website -> IIS -> MIME Types, and you’ll want to add:
File name extension / MIME type:
Turn off Compression under Website -> IIS -> Compression, and unchecking “Enable dynamic content compression”, and “Enable static content compression
Azure Storage Explorer also allows you to do this on individual files. of one of the following formats:
3. Byte Range Requests (seeking)
There are currently a few key areas not addressed by the current W3C Video Standard (full screen support, live streaming, real time communication, content protection, metadata and accessibility). Recently the W3C Web and TV Workshop discussed some of these areas and offered some early thinking on how they may be adopted as web standards in the future.
A real issues is the lack of a solution for live and adaptive streaming. Currently there are three proprietary solutions that support live and adaptive streaming.
Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP (DASH) is currently in Draft International Standard. It looks likely that it will get W3C support if it is offered royalty free.
HTML5Labs is where Microsoft prototypes early and unstable specifications from web standards bodies such as W3C. Sharing these prototypes helps Microsoft have informed discussions with developer communities to provide better feedback on draft specifications based on this implementation experience.
On the labs site Microsoft has released a Media Capture Audio Prototype that implements the audio portion of this W3C specification. The next prototype will support Speech recognition and will implement the Microsoft proposal available on the W3C website.
If you are hosting progressive download video and audio on the web you should be looking to support HTML5 video and audio today to extend the reach of your content.