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  • Blog Post: Announcing two new accessibility add-in’s for Microsoft Office 2010

    The Office Platform Team released two new Microsoft Office 2010 Accessibility Add-ins on March 17 th . While comparatively small add-ins, they enable big things! Try them yourself by downloading via the below links. The Subtitling Add-in for Microsoft PowerPoint (STAMP) helps Microsoft PowerPoint 2010...
  • Blog Post: Free Microsoft ebooks - feed the geek inside you

    A few weeks ago, I wrote about the free Virtualisation ebook . I'm still working my way through it on my Kindle - I've got to page 156 of 480, and am currently in the detail of desktop virtualisation. It's been really useful to help me understand some of the technical things I'd never understood about...
  • Blog Post: Tech·Ed 2010 - Download the presentation videos free

    If you've ever been lucky enough to get to Tech·Ed, you'll know that some of the best technical presenters are there, presenting some of the most useful technical content for IT managers. Each year over 100 people from UK educational institutions travel out to it (this year, it was in Berlin), but I...
  • Blog Post: Controlled Assessment and avoiding hundreds of USB sticks

    Although this idea originates in schools, there is a direct impact for colleges too The external exam protocol called 'Controlled Assessment' is currently causing headaches for teachers and network managers, Essentially, it’s a way of letting students do coursework, in class, under controlled and supervised...
  • Blog Post: Your complete guide to virtualisation

    Let me make it absolutely clear - I am not a virtualisation expert. But I have heard enough network managers in schools, colleges and universities talking about their virtualisation projects to know that it's very important to their ICT infrastructure - whether that's reducing cost, cutting carbon emissions...
  • Blog Post: Do you want to download Windows 7 in Welsh?

    Did you know that we run a worldwide 'local language programme' which provides language packs for a range of our software? And that if you're in Wales, you can use them to run Windows and Office in Welsh natively? Welsh is one of Europe's oldest languages, and is growing, with over half a million speakers...
  • Blog Post: Start the term with new Office academic templates

    Am I the only one who gets bored with a document format after a few months, and then wants a completely different design? That PowerPoint that looked so smart last year looks a bit clichéd this term. A document which looked professional when you first published it, doesn’t look quite so good when it...
  • Blog Post: A free tool for creating SCORM learning materials yourself

    Have you heard of the free Microsoft Learning Content Development System? We’ve just updated it to version 2.5, which now supports more complex content, and is Firefox and Silverlight 4 compatible. It is a free tool that lets you create high-quality, interactive, online courses, and publish them in SCORM...
  • Blog Post: Windows 7 deployment advice for college IT managers

    Sometimes we publish so much information on a subject, in so many different places, that it’s tricky to find the wood from the trees – and that problem is as big for me as it is for people outside of Microsoft. So I’m always happy to find a resource where somebody applies an editorial approach – making...
  • Blog Post: How to manage the risk of Internet Explorer 6

    If you’re still running Internet Explorer 6 (IE6) within your campus, instead of being on a later version, then you’re probably doing it for a very good reason – especially as many websites are reducing or removing support for IE6 (for example Google and YouTube both dropped IE6 support this year). And...
  • Blog Post: The easy way to install WordPress

    Do you remember a couple of weeks ago I mentioned WebMatrix , which gives you an easy way to install a bunch of web applications – like WordPress, Moodle and Joomla! – on a standard Microsoft platform (which means you can more easily fit into the rest of your ICT infrastructure). Well, I just read an...
  • Blog Post: WebMatrix - making it easier to deploy Moodle, Joomla! and WordPress

    I noticed last week that Scott Guthrie announced the release of the beta of WebMatrix . Basically, it’s an easy and free way to get started building Web sites on Windows. WebMatrix is a tool for building, customising and deploying your Web sites in one common, straightforward way. The idea is that WebMatrix...
  • Blog Post: Planning migration to Office 2010

    This year, we’re on schedule to launch almost one new product every week. Of course, if you like discovering new technology, then that’s a good thing. But if you’re managing a big network of computers for other people – which is most of you reading this blog – then it also comes with challenges! But...
  • Blog Post: Free posters for Office 2010

    Are you rolling out Office 2010 this summer? Well, here’s some good news: We’ve just had the new Office 2010 posters delivered, to replenish our stock of Office 2007 posters that had dwindled to zero in the last few weeks. The last set had four different posters, whereas this time we’ve...
  • Blog Post: Chemistry Add-In for Word 2007/2010

    The Microsoft Research (MSR) teams around the world are always cooking up clever new bits of code, and many of them get incorporated into new products as they roll off production lines in the future. However, they aren’t part of the product teams in the conventional sense – they have much more latitude...
  • Blog Post: More Moodle advice – The Moodle on SharePoint white paper

    The team over at the Microsoft Education Labs have been busy over the last few weeks. If you’re new to it, Education Labs was created by the Microsoft Education Products Group to build and release new product prototypes and useful add-ons, specifically for education use. Following on from the Office...
  • Blog Post: Launch Announcement - New Moodle Integration for Office

    The Microsoft Education Labs team have just launched the Office Add-in for Moodle (or should it be the Moodle Add-in for Office?). This launch builds upon the success of the availability of the Microsoft Live Services Plug-in for Moodle which launched last July.  The idea behind the add-in is simple...
  • Blog Post: First Look at Office 2010 – free e-book

    Every day is a day closer to the Office 2010 release (due on 12th May for volume licence customers , and June for consumers ). And I know of quite a few UK education institutions that are widely using the free Office 2010 beta in teaching already. If you’re preparing for a rapid roll out of Office 2010...
  • Blog Post: Accessibility guide for education

    We’ve just issued the third edition of our accessibility guide for education, and it’s available as a download from our accessibility site . The site also includes a number of accessibility video case studies . The Accessibility: A Guide for Educators has been updated to include information on Windows...
  • Blog Post: Free anti-virus protection for home computers – good news for staff and students

    I was suprised to discover I hadn’t blogged this before. So if you’ve renewed an anti-virus subscription for your home computer since last October, when this was launched, then I’m sorry! We have launched a free anti-virus programme, Microsoft Security Essentials , which is for Windows XP, Windows Vista...
  • Blog Post: Guidelines on web usability – useful for college websites

    When I wrote the Good Blogging Guide last year, I concentrated on audience, purpose, search and writing like a real person ( I hear voices saying “Look at yourself Ray, you’ve forgotten it all already!”) . What I spent little time on was the technical side of blogging and the web – navigation, usability...
  • Blog Post: Windows 7 in Welsh

    We’ve just released the Language Interface Pack for Windows 7 in Welsh. It’s free as a result of the collaboration between Microsoft and Welsh Language Board. As the press release makes clear, we pay for the work, and the Welsh Language Board provide the translators through the Cymen translation company...
  • Blog Post: Ready-made IT user documentation

    When I started working at Microsoft, I hadn’t been in such an open, technology rich culture before. And with so many IT systems around, and so many different software resources, my head was buzzing. In fact, I remember that at the end of the first week, the number of links in my Favourites was massive...
  • Blog Post: Download the Office 2010 Beta and get a head start

    The Office 2010 Beta is available for free download from the Microsoft website , and it’s something that you could install on some of your campus computers to see what’s in it, and how it helps your staff and students. Remember how sometimes you felt smug when you were running Windows 7 Beta at least...
  • Blog Post: Ribbon Hero – combining games and learning

    It seems that one of the trendy topics discussed at education conferences these days is the combination of gaming and learning. Most of the time, it’s discussed in the context of the classroom or of students, but I’ve just learnt that we’ve now applied it to product training, in one of our experimental...
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