• Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    University of Southampton sends a Nokia Lumia 800 to 105,000 feet

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    clip_image002

    We have been working closely with Steven Johnston and András Sóbester members of the Astra Research team from Southampton University over the past year, since last April when the team ASTRA team launched the first Windows Phone device with huge success.

    Over the past year, the ASTRA Atmospheric Science Through Robotic Aircraft research team, are now using a number of Microsoft technologies including, Microsoft .Net Gadgeteer, Windows Embedded, Windows Azure and Windows Phone.

    The Astra team recently launched a new project which included Windows Azure and a Nokia Lumia 800 device, the device was mounted onto a weather balloon to carry out some experiments whilst in flight. The balloon and device reached a height of 105,000 feet, with a temperatures of -61C and maintained data connectivity at 8km above Earth with the Windows Azure cloud completing data capture and analysis of the flight, the results will be used to help create balloon flight trajectory prediction software that can then be used to guide other missions, like weather balloons.

    infographic

    The experiments completed by ASTRA (Atmospheric Science Through Robotic Aircraft) project investigates new technologies for making low cost observations of the parameters of the atmosphere and their latest experiment, further details of the project can be found at Nokia Conversations blog,

    The balloon and payload travelled for 2 hours and 22 minutes on a journey over South Wales en route to Cornwall. It took some quite pretty pictures along the way too.

    2012-03-16-14-21-26 _DSC7969
    _DSC7972 2012-03-16-14-25-05
    2012-03-16-14-26-53 2012-03-16-15-25-28
    2012-03-16-15-35-35 2012-03-16-15-51-44
      

    A small selection of the 2GB image set is available to download.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Visual Studio Achievements Gamification in the classroom

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    Back in January this year, we announced Visual Studio Achievements for Developers – a fun way bringing Xbox LIVE-like points to everyday programming tasks. The fascinating program makes sure your students hard day’s work doesn’t go unnoticed and after over 80,000 downloads since the initial release, As your aware from my previous blog we have now extended the game to enroll developers working on Windows Azure.

    The Visual Studio Achievements Extension has now been updated to include fifteen new achievements, all focused on exercising features of Windows Azure. Using the extension, various achievements are unlocked based on your activity. When you unlock an achievement, Visual Studio lets you know visually with a pop-up. In addition, your Channel 9 profile is updated with any achievements you earn. So, head over to Channel9, sign up for an account and download the plugin.

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    There are 15 new Azure achievements, such as publishing to Windows Azure from Visual Studio (Heading into the Cloud), using page blobs (Attack of the Blob), using SQL Azure (Database Darling) and configuring start up tasks (It’s My Party). Two of the achievements – Phone in the Cloud and Game in the Cloud – require use of Windows Azure toolkits.

    You might also want to check Visual Studio Achievements for Windows Phone – a Windows Phone app that allows you to view Visual Studio Achievements on the go.

    The Windows Phone application developed by Den Delimarsky allows viewing Visual Studio Achievements on the go. The source code for the application is available on Codeplex. You can choose to pull the source and compile a XAP yourself, and then side-load it on your phone.

    Interestingly, Den has authored a great series of blog posts about this project on DZone with details on each of the different areas, passing on some lessons learned in building this app.

    Visual Studio Achievements for Windows Phone – Developing the core
    Visual Studio Achievements for Windows Phone – What it looks like
    Visual Studio Achievements for Windows Phone – User details & official project page
    Visual Studio Achievements for Windows Phone – Storage
    Visual Studio Achievements for Windows Phone – Basic User Comparison
    Visual Studio Achievements for Windows Phone – Final notes before the beta

    You can also Download the app directly from the Windows Phone MarketPlace the app is called VSA.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Small Basic – A great tool for introducing programming

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    Smallbasic

     

    Microsoft Small Basic is, in my opinion, one of the really cool platforms for introducing programming to younger students. A FREE simple IDE, a simple subset of BASIC, and built in turtle graphics all resonate with me. And a number of teachers around the world seem to agree.

    What is really great is that we have some Excellent curriculum support. This includes a complete set of PowerPoint presentation with notes for teachers . There are other resources available

    Get Started with Small Basic

    Microsoft Small Basic puts the fun back into computer programming. With a friendly development environment that is very easy to master, it eases students of all ages into the world of programming.


    Read the Small Basic FAQ


    Download Small Basic from DreamSpark.com


    Use the Getting Started Guide to start learning Small Basic


    Use the curriculum to expand your knowledge


    Read sample chapters from e-books to dive deep into Small Basic


    Ask Questions in the Forums


    Stay informed about Small Basic by reading our blog

     

    Small Basic Curriculum Resources – Tutorials and Guides.

     

    If you use this curriculum or anything else associated with Small Basic we would love to hear from you? Also any feedback about what we can do better or differently would be appreciated.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Student Graduating this summer connect to your career

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    S2bBanner

    Microsoft Student to Business http://www.microsoft.com/studentstobusiness/

      

    Coming soon – Career Week! Week commencing May 14th

    Join the discussion on Microsoft student experience Facebook group, the Facebook group will host a themed week around career-related topics. As part of the career week, students will be able to participate in a live Facebook chat with Kevin Otten, Microsoft University Recruiter.

    Microsoft IT Academy category has been added to the S2B portals.

    This new category will expose jobs requiring MS certifications, encouraging more students to complete courses to increase their employability.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    F# in education

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    F# for Education and Innovation Workshop

    The F# for Education and Innovation workshop will be held at the University of Pisa on June 28, 2012.

    http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/events/fsharpfored2012/default.aspx

    The free, one-day workshop provides a forum for attendees to learn and explore the use of F# 3.0 for education, research, and industry. Don Syme, from Microsoft Research Cambridge, will present the keynote session. The workshop will highlight the latest developments for information-rich programming in F# 3.0, delivered through Microsoft Visual Studio 11 and Try F#. The workshop is preceded by a free F# tutorial session on June 27.

    If you are interested in attending this workshop, contact Kenji Takeda Microsoft Research.

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    TouchDevelop developing directly on a smartphone

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    TouchDevelop is a novel software development environment that lets users write programs for Windows Phone directly on a smartphone, without the need of a separate PC. The Windows Phone app can be used in the classroom—along with accompanying videos, a book, and slides—to teach programming concepts. TouchDevelop is ideal for courses on mobile computing, as it reduces the time required to write apps. It is also relevant for some compiler and computer-language courses.

    Windows Phone Loan Programme

    To help students gain access to this revolutionary new programming language and environment, we have established a program to lend academics Windows Phones for use in a course for one semester. If your interested please send a short proposal to outreach@microsoft.com. The proposal should include the name of the instructor, the course website, the number of students, and how the smartphones will be used.

    Learn more:

    · Learn more about TouchDevelop

    · Read about the TouchDevelop programming environment

    · Learn programming with TouchDevelop

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Be one of the first to help create an amazing experience for Microsoft’s next generation operating system!

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    win8logowin82

    Windows 8 offers unparalleled new opportunities for application developers to build and sell apps world-wide via the Windows Store. In this 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.

    Were hosting a special one day event for UK Students only at

    Microsoft Customer Centre
    Cardinal Place, Victoria
    80-100 Victoria Street
    SW1E 5JL London
    United Kingdom

    Friday, June 8, 2012 from 9:30 AM to 3:00 PM (BST)  Register Now


    Level of knowledge required:

    1. Beginners Welcome.

    2. A familiarity with .NET development and Visual Studio would be advantageous but not required.

    Register Now to avoid disappointment

    Agenda (subject to change):

    09:30 – 10:00 - Registration Opens

    10:00 – 11:00 -  Windows 8 for Modern App Development

    11:00 – 12:00 -  Metro Design Language

    12:00 – 12:30 -  Lunch

    12:30 – 13:30 - "Metro Style" Apps - The Power of the Device

    13:30 – 14:30 - “Metro Style" Apps - The Power of the Cloud

    14:30 – 15:00 - From Idea to Store – Next Steps on the Journey

    Register Now

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Did your School, College or University Students enter the Imagine Cup 2012

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    “Imagine a world where technology helps solve the toughest problems.”

    The Microsoft Imagine Cup is the world’s premier student technology competition. It provides an opportunity for students to use their creativity, passion, and knowledge of technology to help solve global challenges and make a difference in the world. While competing for cash and prizes, students gain real-life experiences, make new friends, and change the world.

    Now in its tenth year, the Imagine Cup has grown to be a truly global competition focused on finding solutions to real-world problems. 358,000 students representing 183 countries and regions registered for the Imagine Cup 2011 Competition. The Imagine Cup is one way Microsoft encourages the brightest young minds to join together and use technology to take on the toughest problems facing our world today, whether it is combatting diseases, improving education or creating disaster communication systems.

     

     

    UK Entries for 2012 Imagine Cup Competition

     

    Aberdeen College

    Aberystwyth University

    Alperton Community School

    Anglia Ruskin University

    Anniesland college

    Ashbourne College

    Ashington College

    Aston University

    Aylesbury College

    Banff and Buchan

    Bangor University

    Belfast Metropolitan College

    Birkbeck College, University of London

    Birmingham City University

    Birmingham Metropolitan college

    Bishopsgarth School

    Blackpool & the Fylde College

    Boston College

    Bournemouth University

    Brunel University

    Bsix Brooke House Sixth Form College

    Burton College

    Canterbury Christ Church University

    Cardiff Metropolitan University

    Cardiff University

    Cardonald College

    Carnegie College

    Castlereagh College

    Chichester College

    City College Plymouth

    City of Glasgow College

    City of Sunderland College

    City of Wolverhampton University

    City University London

    College of North West London

    Collegite High

    Coopers Company And Coborn School

    Cumbernauld College

    De Montford University (Leicester)

    Dumfries and Galloway College

    Durham University

    Edge Hill University

    Edinburgh's Telford College

    Exeter College

    Fareham College

    Fitzharrys School

    Forth Valley College

    Glamorgan University

    Glasgow Caledonian University

    Glyndwr University

    Gunnersbury Catholic School

    Haberdashers' Aske's Boys School

    Halesowen College

    Heriot Watt University

    Highdown School and Sixth Form Centre

    Holy Cross College, Bury.

    Imperial College London

    Isle of Wight College/Chichester University

    John Flamsteed Community School

    Ken Stimpson Community School

    Kilmarnock College

    King Edward VI Camp Hill School for Boys

    King George IV College

    Kings College London

    Kingston University

    Kirkham Grammar School

    Kirkintilloch college

    Lancaster University

    Leeds Metropolitan University

    Leeds University Business School

    Leicester College

    Liverpool Hope University

    Liverpool John Moores University

    London Metropolitan University

    London School of Commerce

    London South Bank University

    Loreto College

    Manchester Metropolitan University

    Meridian Business School

    Mill Hill Country High School

    Monkseaton High School

    Motherwell College

    Newcastle College

    Newcastle University

    Newcastle Upon Tyne University

    Nottingham Trent University

    Oriel High School

    Orkney College

    Paddington Academy

    Queen Marry University of London

    Queens University Belfast

    Ravensbourne

    Reading University

    Reid Kerr College

     

     

    Robert Gordon University

    Runshaw College

    Sheffield University

    Sir John Deane's 6th Form College

    Solihull College

    South Downs College

    South Essex College Basildon Campus

    Southport College

    St Andrews University

    St Leonard's RC Comprehensive School

    St Pauls Catholic College

    St Peter's Sixth Form College

    St Wilfrids Sixth Form

    St.Augustine High School

    Staffordshire University

    Stevenson College

    Sunderland College

    Sutton Coldfield College

    Swansea University

    Teesside University

    The Coopers' Company and Coborn School

    The Grange School

    The Sutton Academy

    The University of Birmingham

    The University of Bradford

    The University of Nottingham

    The University of Salford

    The University of Sheffield

    The University of the West of England

    The University of the West of Scotland

    Titanic Quarters Belfast BMC (Belfast Metropolitan College)

    Torquay Boys' Grammar School

    Trinity Saint David

    Trowbrige Collage

    Tyne Metropolitan College

    UCLAN

    UKE Learning

    University of Aberdeen

    University of Abertay Dundee

    University of Bath

    University of Bedfordshire

    University of Birmingham

    University of Bolton

    University of Bradford

    University of Brighton

    University of Bristol

    University of Cambridge

    University of Central Lancashire

    University College London, UCL

    University of Chester

    University of Derby

    University of Dundee

    University of Durham

    University of Edinburgh

    University of Essex

    University of Glamorgan

    University of Gloucestershire

    University of Greenwich

    University of Hertfordshire

    University of Huddersfield

    University of Hull

    University of Kent

    University of Kingston

    University of Leeds

    University of Leicester

    University of Lincoln

    University of Liverpool

    University of Newcastle upon Tyne

    University of Northumbria

    University of Nottingham

    University of Manchester

    University of Oxford

    University of Plymouth

    University of Reading

    University of Salford

    University of Sheffield

    University of Southampton

    University of St Andrews

    University of Strathclyde

    University of Sunderland

    University of Surrey

    University of Teesside

    University of the West of England

    University of the West of Scotland

    University of Ulster

    University of Wales

    University Of Westminster

    University of Wolverhampton

    University of West London

    West London College

    Wiltshire College

    Woldgate College

    Workington Sixth Form

    Ysgol Emrys ap Iwan, Abergele

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows Phone migration of apps to Windows 8

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    winphone     win8logo

    If your interested in porting/migrating from Windows Phone to Windows 8 then the following blog is a excellent resource from Jared Bienz

    The first three articles have now been published

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows 8 Application Excellence Labs – Make your app shine

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    win8logowin82

    Registration is now open for the UK Windows 8 App Excellence Lab for May.

    What is it?

    The Windows 8 App Excellence Labs is the only channel for UK developers to gain earlier access to the Windows Store. And of course, gain valuable feedback and advice around enhancing their great Metro user experience and much more.

    The lab is a 4-hour engagement with a trained Microsoft Services Engineer who will run their app through a series of tests based on a quality checklist to ensure their app is (or will be) in top-notch shape when they submit.

    The App Excellence Labs will be held in the Microsoft Technology Centre at Microsoft HQ at Thames Valley Park, Reading

    What do you need to do to take advantage of the App Excellence Labs?

    1. Apply to join our UK Windows 8 for Application Developer LinkedIn Group.

    2. We will reply asking you for some details of what it is you are building and then admit you into the group.

    3. You build a great app following the guidance that we have online and which meets the Store certification requirements.

    4. We will use the LinkedIn Group to invite you to an Application Excellence Lab at Microsoft in Reading where you’ll work with an engineer to ensure certification requirements are being met and that the app is providing a great experience to the user.

    5. You leave the lab with a registration code that lets you begin the app submission process at the Windows Store.

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