March, 2011 - Microsoft UK Faculty Connection - Site Home - MSDN Blogs

March, 2011


  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Microsoft Windows 7 & Office 2010 - Windows Slate device support


    Over the past few days I have had a number of questions, regarding the oppurtuity of institutions providing IT equipement as part of the overall student experience.

    In particular I have had lots of questions regarding Windows Tablets or the new Slate form factor.  I personnal use a Windows 7 ThinkPad x201 with a multitouch enabled screen which I simply take everywhere as its my office, phone and connection back to the corporate network, however what is really neat is that this is now also my note pad and my whiteboard during these meeting. This piece of kit has raised a number questions over the past few weeks from ITPro's, Academic and students during my institution vists.

    So what are the questions. The number one statement is woo! thanks cool! the number one question is simply who can the new range of Windows Tablets and Slate devices support students learning as there lots of debate at present in the slate market simply because the price of device is becoming more attractive. The key question in my response to this is simply what is your software portfolio and how do you manage this? The Windows 7 Slate has a major advantage for most Institutions as it natively fully supports Windows applications such as Office.

    To help answer the simple question or what are like to use?  What can you do with these in regards to software applications? and how easy are they to use?

    I suggest you watch the following video, the video gives you a quick overview of the power of Windows 7 and Office 2010 when used on the slate device form factor.

    From my perspective the Window 7 slate device is a very attractive proposition for both students and institutions wanting to deliever and support software and hardware.


  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    The Power of Kinect SDK


    So UK Student's and Academic's are you doing anything as cool or interesting as this?

    We would really love to hear about how your using Microsoft Technology and software in your curricula or research.

     Tell us and and share your outcomes and experiences at the Faculty Connection UK Linkedin Group

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Free Microsoft Certification Exam Vouchers for Students


    UK Students Get a FREE Microsoft Certification Exam from DreamSpark

    The job market can be a tough ride, but it doesn’t have to be.  Boost your CV and your job prospects by getting Microsoft Certified.

    Right now, you can get a FREE Microsoft Certification Exam Voucher to help you get started.  Recuritment managers look for Microsoft Certification on CVs and 75% of them believe that certification is important to overall team performance.

    This offer is for select Microsoft Certification exams (with 072 prefix).  Offer will expire when supply is depleted. Students must take exams by June 30,2011.

    For more information on why to become certified

    Like new jobs, these are in limited supply so don’t wait! Visit


  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Faculty Connection Resources


    Microsoft Faculty Connection is constantly updating and improving the curricula and training materials available to higher education.


    Windows Operating System Internals Curriculum Resource Kit (CRK) (Faculty Resource Center) The Windows Operating Systems Internals Curriculum Resource Kit (CRK) explains operating systems (OS) concepts based on the Microsoft WindowsP and Windows Server 2003 operating system family, structured following the ACM/IEEE Operating System Body of Knowledge (BOK) as defined in the Computing Curriculum 2001 project by the Joint IEEE and ACM Task Force (CC2001).

    Programming Language Fundamentals – From Java to C# Interested in learning C#? These curriculum materials, build on your expertise in Java to introduce C#, .NET and Visual Studio. The curriculum consists of 12 modules covering approximately 15 hours of core ACM requirements. The modular curriculum facilitates as much or as little of the content to be used.

    Introduction to Programming through Game Development Using Microsoft XNA Game Studio

    Learn the underlying skills and principles of software development as you design and build your first games for Xbox 360, Windows, and Zune.Designed specifically for students with no computer science background, this curriculum teaches the fundamentals of C# programming and the XNA Game Studio framework for skills you can apply to game programming and beyond.

    Cloud Computing - Software Engineering Fundamentals

    This set of materials on cloud computing is from Professors Johann Heinzelreiter and Werner Kurschl from the Upper Austria University of Applied Sciences. The materials propose a possible cloud computing curriculum. This curriculum discusses key software technologies and cloud software architecture issues, and also defines key terms. It also shows implementations of comparable sample applications based on Microsoft Windows Azure and Google App Engine as well as architectural
    design issues for large and complex cloud applications. Design guidelines as well as open issues conclude the curriculum. The following material is covered in this set of resources:


  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Introduce a subject or topic with the emotional power of a movie - Windows Live Movie Maker


    Bring subjects to life. Windows Live™ Movie Maker is the fast, easy way to turn photos and video clips into great-looking movies and slide shows you can share with students, other faculty, or on the Web. And it’s free.

    Learn more about the power of Movie Maker click here

    Quick Step by Step guide to using Movie Maker click here

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Bing Search in Academia


    Microsoft Bing is more than an internet search engine

    As a academic your day is filled with non-stop time commitments, class preparation and on-going research. Microsoft Office can help you handle the writing, presenting, organizing and communicating it takes to keep moving at the speed of the academic calendar.

    • Better organization. Discover the ways OneNote - the digital notebook – helps organize lectures, Web articles, videos and other rich content in one convenient program.
    • Be more expressive. Learn about the improved designs, slicker transitions, quality graphics and other ways to better engage your audience with PowerPoint.
    • Collaborate freely. Microsoft Web Apps are online companions to Microsoft Office, and are available for free. Access, edit and share Microsoft Office documents virtually anywhere with an Internet connection.

     For more info on how Bing can help click here

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Workshop - Cloud Futures: Advancing Research and Education with Cloud Computing


    All UK academics with a interest in Cloud Futures are very welcome to attend and contribute to the workshop.   

    Cloud Futures: Advancing Research and Education with Cloud Computing, June 2-3, 2011, Redmond, WA




    Call for Abstracts & Participation

    Cloud computing is an exciting platform for research and education.  Cloud computing has the potential to advance scientific and technological progress by making data and computing resources readily available at unprecedented economy of scale and nearly infinite scalability.  To realize the full promise of cloud computing for research and education, however, we must think about the cloud as a holistic platform for creating new services, new experiences, and new methods to pursue research, teaching and scholarly communication.  This goal presents a broad range of interesting questions.

    We invite extended abstracts that illustrate the role of cloud computing across a variety of research and educational areas---including  computer science, engineering, earth sciences, healthcare, humanities, life sciences, and social sciences---that highlight how new techniques and methods of research in the cloud may solve distinct challenges arising in those diverse areas.  Please include a bio (150 words max) and a brief abstract (300 words max) of a 30-minute short talk on a topic that describes practical experiences, experimental results, and vision papers.    

    Workshop updates will be posted at   

    Please submit your abstract by April 19, 2011 to  

    Invited talks will be announced on April 27, 2011


    Logistics for Attendees and Selected Abstract Presenters

    Academics worldwide are encouraged to attend.  Workshop attendees and abstract presenters are expected to make their own air travel arrangements to Seattle including airport transfers.  All attendees and presenters will be provided complimentary meals and refreshments during the workshop agenda (June 2, 3) including motor coach transport to/from the Bellevue Hyatt.  Attendees are offered a special workshop room rate in the Bellevue Hyatt of $189 per night (plus tax).  Deadline to book this rate is May 25, 2011.  

    Please use hotel booking link provided at 

    Abstract presenters will receive up to three nights’ complimentary accommodation at this hotel if booked by May 25, 2011.    Microsoft is committed to adhering to local government laws and regulations, as well as institutional policies regarding conflict of interest and anti-corruption. To ensure compliance, Microsoft may be unable to cover the expenses and fees of some attendees and presenters for their attendance at Cloud Futures 2011.


    Other hotels in Bellevue near the Hyatt

    It may be possible for individual attendees to book at one of the following hotels and ride the workshop motor coach or the free Microsoft shuttle from the Bravern office complex to get to/from the workshop at the Microsoft Conference Center/Bldg 33 on June 2, 3.  Inquire about the Microsoft vendor rate when booking.  For a detailed schedule of the free shuttle from the Bravern building to main campus call (425) 703-6000.

    Courtyard by Marriott – Bellevue – (425) 454-5888
    Microsoft Vendor Rate: $179
    11010 NE 8th St, Bellevue, WA 98004
    (Note:  this hotel 11 minutes walking distance from the Bellevue Hyatt for the workshop motor coach or attendees can take a free Microsoft shuttle from the Bravern building located across the street from this hotel with daily shuttle service to Microsoft Redmond Campus)

    Hilton Hotel – Bellevue - (425) 455-1300
    Microsoft Vendor Rate: $165
    300 112th Avenue South East, Bellevue, WA 98004
    (Note:  this hotel 26 minutes walking distance from the Bellevue Hyatt for the workshop bus or attendees can take a free Microsoft shuttle from the Bravern building located 16 minutes walking distance from this hotel with daily shuttle service to Microsoft Redmond Campus)


    Transfers to Bellevue Hyatt from SEATAC Airport

    Eastside Town Car and Limousine Service   – flat rate from SEATAC Airport - Telephone: (425) 652-1465
    Sound Transit Bus #560 from SEATAC Airport to Bellevue Transit Center ($2.50) takes 40 minutes

    Last SEATAC departure for Bellevue from SEATAC Airport is 11:24 pm

    Bellevue Hyatt is 7-10 minutes walking distance from the Bellevue Transit Center

    Questions about the workshop should be directed to

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows Azure Platform Training Kit and Course



    Windows Azure Platform Training Kit & Training Course.

    The Windows Azure Platform Training Kit & Course includes a comprehensive set of technical content including hands-on labs, presentations, and demos that are designed to help you learn how to use the Windows Azure platform, including: Windows Azure, SQL Azure and the Windows Azure AppFabric:

     Download the Windows Azure Platform Training Kit.

    The January update provides new and updated demo scripts and a new Windows Phone 7 hands-on labs for the Windows Azure Platform. These new demo scripts demonstrate how to use Windows Azure Connect, Web and Worker Role Enhancements, Windows Azure Virtual Machine Roles, and the "Rafiki" application (a keynote demo at PDC10). Additionally, this kit includes an improved mechanism for installing Visual Studio code snippets.

    Some of the specific changes with the January update of the training kit includes:

    • [New demo script] Windows Azure Connect
    • [New demo script] Web and Worker Role Enhancements
    • [New demo script] Windows Azure Virtual Machine Roles
    • [New demo script] “Rafiki” Application
    • [New lab] Windows Phone 7 and The Cloud
    • [New lab] Use Access Control Service to Federate with Multiple Business Identity Providers
    • [Updated] All Identity HOLs have been refreshed
    • [Improved] Visual Studio code snippets installation
    • [Fixes] Several bug fixes in demos and labs

    Once you learned everything about Windows Azure, you can start building your application on it in 3 simple and easy to do steps:

    1. Download the Tools:

    Get Visual Studio Express and the Windows Azure Tools for Visual Studio to start building and debugging applications for the Windows Azure Platform If you have already Visual Studio installed you can download the tools directly from

    2. Setup an Account:

    Set up an account and obtain a free subscription for accessing the online portals for Windows Azure, SQL Azure and Windows Azure AppFabric. You can learn more about the accounts or you can sign up directly

    3. Create your First application and Deploy it on the Windows Azure Platform:

    First learn how to create a simple ASP.NET application in Visual Studio for Windows Azure on your local machine Once successfully created, learn how to deploy this application on the Windows Azure Platform

    When all steps are executed successfully you should have running your first application on the Windows Azure Platform!

  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    Windows Azure supports open source PHP/Eclipse and Drupal


    Learn more about Windows Azure and Windows Azure Interoperability with PHP with these great new and updated tutorials below.

    Updated Windows Azure Tools for PHP (Compatible with the Windows Azure 1.3 SDK):

    Windows Azure with Drupal 7

    Four new generic modules developed by Schakra and MindTree that allow Drupal administrators/developers to provide users with new features:

    • Tutorial - Bing Maps Drupal Module Installation: enable easy & flexible embedding of Bing Map in Drupal content types (like articles for example)
    • Silverlight Pivot viewer Module: enable easy & flexible embedding of Silverlight Pivot in Drupal content types, using a set of preconfigured data sources (OData, a, b, c).
    • Windows Live ID Module: allow Drupal user to associate their Drupal account to their Windows Live ID, and then to login on Drupal with their Windows Live ID
    • Tutorial - Bing Maps Drupal Module Installation: allow data sources based on OData to be included in Drupal content types (such as articles). The generic module includes a basic OData query builder and renders data in a simple HTML Table. The package includes a sample module base on an Open Government Data Initiative (OGDI) OData source, showing how to build advanced rendering (with Bing Maps)
  • Microsoft UK Faculty Connection

    University move services to the Azure Cloud


    University  offers students a lifelong web-based resource called iPortfolio The iPortfolio service supports reflective learning for students of the institution and provides a useful job-hunting tool after they graduate.


    To permanently host the ever-growing amount of iPortfolio data was a daunting storage challenge for Institutions IT staff, and their original solution was expensive and difficult to scale. With the help of Microsoft Gold Certified Partner Intergen, the university has moved iPortfolio data and computing resources to the Windows Azure platform. By moving to a cloud-based platform, the Institution has reduced data storage costs, simplified IT resource planning, streamlined development, and enabled exciting enhancements to the iPortfolio application.


    Want to know more about Windows Azure Cloud Services watch this short video




    Case Study - Download 

    Business Situation


    To better support student learning and simplify IT budget planning, Curtin University needed to replace its storage area network–based iPortfolio data repository with a less-expensive system that is easier to scale and manage.




    The university has moved its locally hosted iPortfolio storage and computing resources to the cloud-based Windows Azure platform.




    Reduced data storage costs and simplified IT planning
    Enhanced learning resources
    More agile development

    Software and Services


    Windows Azure
    Microsoft Live@edu
    Microsoft Visual Studio
    Microsoft Silverlight
    Microsoft SQL Azure
    Microsoft ASP.NET


    Business Need


    Cost Containment


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