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!
Many of you are now using Moodle, as your Virtual Learning Environment and have access to Microsoft's SkyDrive via Live@edu.
Were pleased to announce that the Moodle community has developed and released a plugin for Moodle 2.3 which allows students to save their files into SkyDrive, directly in the cloud, from Moodle.
You can find out more, and download the SkyDrive plugin from the Moodle website
Note, this plugin doesn't come from Microsoft, but from the Moodle open-source community.
The Generation App website, from the Windows Phone team, is a really well structured guide to developing apps for the Windows Phone. And ‘well structured’ means that it talks you through a 30-day plan to design, build, test, distribute and monetize applications for Windows Phone – and connects to all of the resources you will need in the form of training, documentation, tools etc.
Don't forget as Educators, Academics and Students you get access to DreamSpark so you get Visual Studio 2010, Windows Phone and Azure tools for FREE and also a FREE Apphub Account to upload your finished apps to the marketplace.
For students, it’s almost like a ready-made summer school course, and where you’ve got students who are already programming, but want to move onto advanced projects, this seems like just the perfect resource.
Remember, we have lots more FREE academic resources available at Microsoft Faculty Connection resources including a full academic curricula for Windows Phone see http://www.Microsoft.com/faculty
The Microsoft IT Academy Program can provide benefits to all parts of a school or college. Here are a few of the core functions and the potential benefits that will be most relevant.
Here is a set of current questions which the UK Academic and Education teams have received..
The Head of School
· I need to present my school as being an attractive selection for parents and to make a significant contribution to the wider community
· I have seen the Microsoft IT Academy advertised but I can’t see how it would benefit our school
· We aren’t really delivering many IT subjects, so how would it help us?
· The budget is very tight so can we afford it?
A member of The Governing Body
· Our school should be seen as progressive and modern
· We must be able to meet budgets
· We have a wider brief in the community
· We have a responsibility to students and parents
· I expect my children’s school to be progressive and aligned to industry and the labour market
· Can the school help to develop my IT skills?
· Will my children have a clearly defined progression route if they choose IT as a subject
· Is it a quality controlled progam and will it lead to sound industry work skills
· I expect my school to be progressive and linked to real life employment skills
· I want more from IT than just hardware – perhaps some excitement with new technologies
· Are there creative programs that might help me be employed?
· Could I explore a wide range of technologies?
The Curriculum Manager
· Is the supply of materials cost effective?
· I need a comprehensive solution to reduce the overhead for the teaching staff
· Are there programs of learning and certifications at all levels
· Will the curriculum be just for the IT tutor or can we use it throughout the school?
The IT Tutor
· We teach user and technical skills
· Can we deliver globally recognized certifications?
· Will the curriculum save me time and money?
· Can I get qualified myself?
The Science (or any other) Tutor
· We use spreadsheets to record information, so will it help my students?
· I need to know what IT skills my students have at the moment
· I could possibly improve my class room delivery if I used the newer features of presentation software
· I need to understand new technologies to develop learning solutions with my students
The IT Manager
· We are upgrading our technology and I need to refresh the IT skills of our team
· Could I become a Microsoft Certified Trainer?
· Could we develop cost reductions through the use of new technologies?
· We must keep current!
A Teaching Assistant
· I need to maintain and improve my skills to develop my career
· Can I reach a basic level of IT literacy so that I can build on these skills?
· I now have to use e-mail
· It would be good to achieve academic or vocational qualifications
The School administration office
· I have been asked to produce marketing material to promote our IT capability
· We mainly use Microsoft Office programs and we need to understand about databases
· How can we check the IT Skills of new entrants?
· It would be good if there was a clear progression route in IT skills
The Facilities Manager
· If all my team used e-mail we could share calendars
· I came in to this role for my service skills, but now I find I need to multi-task and be fully IT literate
· I have already completed a vocational course, perhaps there are IT certifications or similar qualifications
· I have been asked to look at the cabling, so it would be good to understand networking!
The Vocational Tutor
· My students need to be work ready – some will need advanced technology or IT user skills
· Is there mapping between Microsoft certifications and vocational Units?
· It’s the fundamental skills that the students need before they enter the workplace or the next steps in education
· It would be good if there was a basics course and perhaps some understanding of everyday technologies
The Community Team
· We can make best use of our resources by spreading our skills in to the community and adding value to the school from those contacts
· Our charter expects us to make the campus available for all
· We have excellent contact with parents and relatives, many who need basic IT literacy skills so that they can use our web site/portal/e-mail
· Are there opportunities to generate revenue and goodwill?
Here the solutions/answers to some of these questions
Within UK Academia, there are large areas of crossover, and opportunities which exist for innovative use of the ITA membership.
This list just represents a starting point and helps address the concerns and question raised by the stakeholders listed above!
Head of School
· Global brand associated with technology
· Gain access to resources that will help you save time and money.
· Sector and industry alignment
· Opportunities for networking
· Vendor certification opportunities
· Increase your students’ employability with relevant technology courses that help them get jobs
· complimentary enrollment in the Microsoft Certified Trainer program
· A 60 percent discount on the Full Microsoft E-Reference Library
· Academic pricing on Microsoft Certification exams.
· Complimentary subscription to Microsoft DreamSpark Premium
· Up to 100 free lab licenses
· Complimentary Microsoft TechNet Subscription
· Marketing resources to help you promote your IT Academy
· Marketing resources to help you promote your IT Academy
· Essential computer skills training with Microsoft Digital Literacy
· Increase your employability with relevant technology courses that help get jobs
· Increase of students’ employability with relevant technology courses that help them get jobs
IT curriculum tutors
· Unlimited access to E-Learning portfolio courses
· The ability to administer content and manage your students’ progress
· Offer educators and other staff members the opportunity to enhance their own professional development.
· Educator resources such as downloadable and customizable lesson plans
· Academic pricing on Microsoft Official Academic Courses (MOAC)
· Academic pricing on Microsoft Official Courseware (MOC).
· One complimentary subscription to Microsoft DreamSpark Premium
· Complimentary enrollment in the Microsoft Certified Trainer program
Non-IT curriculum tutors
IT Support staff
· Up to 100 lab licenses
· Marketing resources to help you promote your IT Academy Vendor certification opportunities
· A 60 percent discount on the Full E-Reference Library
· Five complimentary annual subscriptions to the Full E-Reference Library
· Increase your students’ employability with relevant technology courses that help them get jobs
Mapping Professional Curricula and certification to course and awards
Please see the following QCF Mapping of Microsoft Certification/Courses to Related Awarding Body and Qualifications
Get Help Implementing a Microsoft Certification Program
Now is the time to implement a Microsoft Certification program to help your students validate what they’ve learned. Your local Microsoft Academy Service Partner (MASP) can help.
Your local Microsoft Academy Service Partner (MASP) can help you establish a Microsoft Certification program that’s right for your institution. Whether you want to become a testing center to help students get certified on campus or promote the benefits of Microsoft Certification and refer students to another testing location, your local MASP can help you turn your plans into reality for more details contact our Education MASP Mike Evans, Director – ITSkillsman, www.itskillsman.co.uk
The spring 2012 release of Windows Azure has many great new features and capabilities including new services focused on helping customers build or bring their applications to the cloud in their own unique way. These new services include: Windows Azure Web Sites, Virtual Machines, and Media Services.
These new services, along with several other enhancements, pricing updates, and availability in new countries went live on June 7th. for more details see the following presentation from Scott Guthrie and special academic trials and pricing at http://www.windowsazure.com/education
As your aware from my previous posts, I attended Microsoft TechEd Europe, the premier IT Conference with a number of the UK IT Pro team and spent the week in Amsterdam, talking to, Academics Developers and IT Pros from the academic sector, whilst supporting Microsoft TechNet and Microsoft Virtual Academy programs at the Geek Lounge and learning more about this new wave of products that are on the horizon.
During this week there will have been 350 sessions for IT Pros and Developers, there were nearly 600 UK IT Pros and Developers in attendance:
Keynote Day 1 - from Brad Anderson, Jason Zander & Scott Guthrie
It was clear from the demos that Microsoft is the only company to deliver the cloud OS. We have the knowledge, the people and the ability: Our Azure service now provides the equivalent of all the worlds computing power from 1999! We serve half a billion Live IDs a day! The key note was full of amazing demos and the power of Hyper V was clearly demonstrated with the hypervisor technology "Hyper-V" demonstrating a maximum throughput of 1 million operations per second in a VM. That's three times faster than VMware.
There were some great press reviews see http://www.itworld.com/software/282465/7-key-takeaways-teched-europe-day-1 so please do watch the keynote http://channel9.msdn.com/Events/TechEd/Europe/2012/KEY01
Keynote Day 2 – Day 2 moved onto Windows 8 for the Enterprise.
Antoine Leblond talked to the benefits of Window 8 for business. His demo of Windows-to-go received a round of applause. He talked about the shift from desktop to mobile and that next year he expected to see more tablets sold than desktop PCs. There were also demos showing that Windows 8 is still going to be a great experience on desktop machines. Again the keynote was full of excellent demos so please watch the keynote here http://channel9.msdn.com/Events/TechEd/Europe/2012/KEY02
The rest of the week has been spent attending sessions, discussing technologies and changes to the future of Windows along with the opportunities of Azure within education.
I would encourage you to ask your teams who attend the event about their experiences and get them to share the buzz and insight to the weeks learning which they received, if you weren't fortunate enough to attend the sessions then feel free to watch the presentation at http://channel9.msdn.com/Events/TechEd/Europe/2012/
We are excited to announce the launch of a new Courseware Marketplace for both IT Academies and Microsoft Learning Partners on July 31st 2012.
The new Webshop will make available the ability to customise and order digital content to IT Academies for the first time.
Some of the new features will include:
· One stop shop – for all printed and digital content, including digital discounts
· Customisation – ability to modularise and customise specific courseware from our entire catalogue
· Collaboration – share and highlight amongst classes and for yourself
· E-Reader – access content online and offline including your course notes
· New Technology – Metro Windows 8 App at Windows 8 launch
To find out more about the new features and how they can help you save costs and time as well as deliver great new technology courses and experiences for your students, sign up to one of our free webinars below.
Today I’m at the last day of TechEd 2012 in Amsterdam, I am in Amsterdam sharing some exciting news about apps and updates for Windows Azure, Windows 8 and Windows Phone.
There are number of UK Universities in attendance
University of Huddersfield University of Westminster Birmingham City University University of Leeds University of Edinburgh The University of York University of Cambridge University of Southampton University of Wolverhampton Liverpool John Moores University University of the Highlands and Islands University of Essex University of Hull Lancaster University University of Southampton Queen's University Belfast University of Derby Northumbria University Plymouth University University College London University of Bath University of Warwick Coventry University London South Bank University The Open University Royal Holloway University of London University of Glasgow The University of Manchester
I your not lucky enough to be attending the event or cannot wait for your colleagues to return you can check out the presentations and videos of the sessions here.. http://channel9.msdn.com/Events/TechEd/Europe/2012
So sit back and enjoy the on-demand sessions and live streaming content from TechEd Europe 2012 in Amsterdam.
If your interested in attending any of our events for IT Pro or developers see http://uktechdays.cloudapp.net/upcoming-events.aspx
With thousands of people expected at the Amsterdam RAI from tomorrow including delegates, speakers and staff, partners and press and analysts TechEd Europe 2012, has SOLD OUT.
Getting to the Amsterdam RAI
TechEd Europe is taking place at the Amsterdam RAI. The closest station is the Amsterdam RAI station. From the city center, you can take metro line 51, direction Amstelveen Westwijk, which takes ~15 minutes. Tram 4 starts at Amsterdam Central station and connects a big part of the city center with Amsterdam RAI. Tram 4 stops in front of the convention center.
Get the Latest Event Announcements & Share Your Experiences Get the latest event news and announcements via our Twitter account: http://twitter.com/teched_europe. Use #TEE12 to tag your tweets and share your experience with other attendees, followers and the TechEd Europe event team. And finally, the TechEd team will be sharing the event photos on Facebook, but we’d also love to see yours!
Share your photos by uploading to your Flickr account and tagging with “TEE12”.
Looking forward to meeting all the all the UK academic attendees in Amsterdam and for anyone else attending have a fantastic week in Amsterdam!
With the announcement of Windows Surface devices see press release and new site which includes additional information including a video and images and the complete event video and announcement on Microsoft News Center.
I just wanted to confirm that the current official Microsoft Surface product branding will change to the “Samsung SUR40 with Microsoft® PixelSense™”. http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/pixelsense/default.aspx This change is being made to emphasize the Microsoft PixelSense technology that makes the SUR40 unique and more clearly establish that Samsung manufactures, sells, and supports this product. I am aware a number of Universities have already purchased or about to receive devices, so just to confirm that the name change will take effect this Tuesday June 19th. If you are dealing with resellers I hope this confirmation helps to avoid any confusion with your current or new orders.
The Samsung SUR40 with Microsoft® PixelSense™ still brings people together to connect, learn, and decide using touch and physical objects.
Microsoft PixelSense is a display input processing technology from Microsoft used in the Samsung SUR40, which delivers interaction with touch, physical objects, and an interface designed for multiple people to use at the same time http://www.samsunglfd.com/product/feature.do?modelCd=SUR40
Please note that “Microsoft Surface” will still continue to exist through the software platform like the SDK 2.0 for developers.
Here is some useful guidance from the Windows UX team on the correct way to refer to various features in the Windows 8 UI.
These approved terms & phrases are used in the latest materials on http://design.windows.com so please familiarise yourself with these definitions and use them consistently in your teaching and learning.
Metro design style
· Styles that can be applied to enable apps to have a Windows look/feel, be touch targetable, etc.
· The surface that appears along the top or bottom edges of the screen and includes app commands.
· Swipe in from the top or bottom of the screen to see the app commands.
· Developer: To access the commands for an app, swipe in from the top or bottom edge of the screen to open the app bar.
· The charms connect your app to other apps, the web, your friends, and your devices. Charms provide access to the key Windows features: Search, Share, Start, Devices, and Settings.
· Tap the Search charm to find what you’re looking for in the app you’re using, on the web, or in other apps on your PC.
· Tap the Share charm to share files and info with other apps on your PC.
· Tap the Devices charm to print and connect to other external devices like media players.
· Tap the Settings charm to change common system settings or the settings of the app you’re using.
· Do NOT use “charms bar”
· Don't use in UI text.
· The area that's the outermost part or the part farthest away from the center of something.
· Swipe in from the right edge to access Search, Share, Devices, Start, and Settings.
· Do not use “edgy”
· To quickly slide a finger a short distance
· Swipe in from the right edge to show the charms.
· Swipe in from the top or bottom edge to show the app commands.
· Swipe in from the left edge to return to an app you were just using.
· Swipe across an email in your inbox to select it.
· Swipe down on a tile to select it.
· Shortcuts to places within an app or to other content.
· You can personalize your Start screen by creating tiles that act as shortcuts to your favourite content.
· Secondary tiles let users personalize their Start screen by creating deep links to specific places within your app.
· Do not use “pinned tile”