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!
Today we are announcing the following changes to www.dreamspark.com
1. An new site design which is the result of improvements to the user experience based on internal and external feedback. Notably creating more clarity around the fact that the DreamSpark program is both a direct to student program and a subscription based program for academic institutions. As a result we have created two hubs with distinctive colour branding through the site to direct users to the right information and software access depending on their role:
a. DreamSpark for Students – direct access to the individual students experience (www.dreamspark.com/Student/default.aspx )
b. DreamSpark for Academic Institutions – information about the DreamSpark subscription such as program benefits, EULAs, usage guidelines, and the steps to purchase a subscription etc. (www.dreamspark.com/Institution/Subscription.aspx )
The site today is going live in English only. Customers selecting other languages will fall back to English UI. The DreamSpark team are working as fast as we can to launch the localized versions. They should become available in the week of 24th of Sept.
As part of this site redesign we are rebranding the DreamSpark subscription to DreamSpark Standard in response to the feedback received by customers and to avoid confusion with DreamSpark for students.
2. The new site has shifted from focusing purely on software downloads to bringing tools and resources related to development on our platforms (Windows 8, Windows Phone and Games) and most importantly a new section under Student dedicated to App Development) also accessible from the Student sub-navigation .
3. A page dedicated to Windows 8 App Development where students can find the resources and tools they need to start developing Windows 8 apps, including a pointer to downloading the getting started guide. .
4. Free access for students to the Windows Store: From the Windows 8 App Development page, users will be direct to the Windows Store Access Page on DreamSpark where they can verify their user status and then get a Registration code to use in the Windows Store to register for FREE.
a. Overview of the DreamSpark program explaining what it is? www.dreamspark.com/what-is-dreamspark.aspx
b. New Software Deployment guide for institutions, www.dreamspark.com/Institution/Software-Deployment-Guide-en-us.pdf , detailing step by step how administrators can provide software access to students, faculty and labs via a DreamSpark MSDN Subscriber Portal and ELMS Webstores
c. ELMS overview: www.dreamspark.com/Institution/ELMS-Overview.aspx
d. DreamSpark Standard usage guidelines page added to academic institution overview section, www.dreamspark.com/Institution/DS-Usage-Guidelines.aspx
e. DreamSpark Premium usage guidelines page added to academic institution overview section, www.dreamspark.com/Institution/DSP-Usage-Guidelines.aspx
f. STEM definition page, www.dreamspark.com/Institution/STEM.aspx
g. New DreamSpark Standard EULA:www.dreamspark.com/Institution/DS-EULA.aspx
h. DreamSpark Premium EULA page to www.dreamspark.com/Institution/DSP-EULA.aspx
i. Revised FAQ’s; more information, more relevant to each audience (student, educator, and institution) accessible from top nav bar.
j. Separation of Student support from Subscription support with two dedicated pages: www.dreamspark.com/student/support.aspx and www.dreamspark.com/Institution/Support.aspx
k. DreamSpark for Academic Institution, and the Academic Institution Hub nav bar explaining how access an existing subscription:
I received a question at yesterdays ALT-C conference on what articles and resources Microsoft had for cross-platform development, our team (Microsoft Open Technologies) have been working with the open source communities on various projects such as PhoneGap for Windows Phone 7 or jQuery Mobile theme for Windows Phone.
You can find information and resources here http://windowsphone.interoperabilitybridges.com/
You will find pointers to interesting related articles in these posts:
These articles don’t bring a strict recommendation but rather raise the questions a developer should ask himself when considering a cross-platform project.
Do you have students who love to write games? The competition has specific categories focused on Windows 8 and Windows Phone.
Have you individuals or teams to enter the UK’s Uni Game Jam 2012, hosted at the Nottingham Trent University on the 17th – 18th Nov. Why not use this event to refine your entries for this years gaming competition at the www.imaginecup.com
For further details and entry requirements see http://www.devsoc.co.uk/game-jam
This week sees the launch of Visual Studio 2012. On the 12th of Sept we launch Visual Studio 2012 with Jason Zander CVP who will be presenting the keynote.
This is where the development of apps really starts! Visual Studio 2012 is the most significant Tools product we have ever launched and has been 18 months in the making.
Visual Studio 2012 is key to enabling Agile software development.
Tim Anderson has been recently been undertaking interviews for The Register and The Guardian. If you’re not familiar with his work then you can see the first review he has written here: Visual Studio 2012: 50 Shades of Grey by Microsoft
The launch of Visual Studio 2012 on the 12th of September will be streamed on line: http://www.visualstudiolaunch.com/vs2012vle/Home
Visual Studio 2012 Roadshow
During the first week of Oct the UK Visual Studio team will be travelling the country bringing the launch experience to Edinburgh, Manchester, London and Reading. Further details about the Roadshow can be found here: Visual Studio 2012 Launch Roadshow
Download Visual Studio Now
Visual Studio 2012 can be downloaded for free from Microsoft DreamSpark
We all now demand beautiful, elegant apps that are alive with activity. If your an IT Academy you can now get your students demonstrating there expertise at designing and developing the fast and fluid Windows 8 apps by earning the Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD)
If your interested in IT Academy please visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/itacademy/
With new certification for Windows Store Apps. There are two paths to achieving this certification—using HTML5 or C#.
To earn the MCSD certification, take the exams indicated below
If you want to upgrade your current certification to validate your up to date skills:
Find out more about upgrade paths
Take the exams needed to upgrade to MCSD: Windows Store Apps
If you’re new to certification, check out the Microsoft certification tracks available to you.
Get your MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using HTML5
Get your MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using C#
Note: Exams 70-480, 70-481, 70-482, 70-483, 70-484, and 70-485 will become available in beta version during the summer of 2012. If you are interested in taking the beta exams, be sure to complete a Microsoft Learning SME profile to indicate your skills and experience with Visual Studio 2012, or watch for announcements about upcoming beta exams at Born to Learn. MCSD certification requires candidates to show continued ability to perform in their chosen solution area by completing a recertification exam every two years.
Upgrade your MCPD certification to MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using HTML5
Upgrade your MCPD certification to MCSD: Windows Store Apps Using C#
Note: Upgrade exams will be available in the spring of 2013.
So if your interested in developing application of games for Windows 8 ARM devices the following white paper on ARM Development is an essential read
Additionally we have produced some best practice guidance for developing applications and games using HTML5/JS C# C++
For more details on Windows 8 see http://www.microsoft.com/uk/msdn/windows8
Microsoft supports the dreams and aspirations of the next generation of technology innovators the students now studying will drive the next wave of technology innovation and Microsoft is committed to helping them achieve their goals through programs such as Microsoft Students to Business (“S2B”).
What is the S2B Program?
The Microsoft S2B program connects companies with talented university or post-graduate students like you for entry-level jobs or internships in the technology industry by matching qualified candidates with open positions.
Why should you register?
In one word: access! Students are given FREE access to
· Training and certification offers to help them develop the necessary skills for a successful career;
· Software via DreamSpark
· Jobs via Microsoft’s vast network of partner companies looking for qualified students to help their businesses grow.
At S2B, we believe: Skills + Software + Experience = Jobs
Register today at www.microsoft.com/s2b
So if you don't like the all White look of Visual Studio 2012 you can now customize the Visual Studio 2012 colour palette, with a FREE extension.
This extension is supported for Visual Studio 2012 Professional and higher.
Simply download the extension here to select the theme.
To use the new theme colour, within Visual Studio simply choose the theme and select the colour scheme desired.
ALT-C is an annual conference for learning technologists. This year it will be held at the University of Manchester on 11th – 13th September and Microsoft and Collabco will be exhibiting here for the first time.
Collabco will be supporting the Microsoft exhibition at the ALT Conference, showcasing the work that we have carried out at Blackpool & the Fylde College. The project involved adding value to an Office 365 for education solution for the college. Collabco’s Hub Metro solution, is a SharePoint 2010 based solution. It pulls together the essential elements of Office 365 for education, such as e-mail, MySites and calendars, together with the systems students need access to on a daily basis such as timetable, Moodle, e-payments and library systems.
Giving students (and ultimately staff) this “single pane” view of all the systems they need, with seamless access to the collaboration tools in SharePoint and Office 365 for education, delivers a compelling solution. This addresses many of the college’s requirements of an integrated learning platform and helps to further integrate Moodle into the delivery of learning to students. The college is able to customise the look and feel of the platform and add further connectors to new systems as they are brought on stream.
A further phase of the project will allow the college to deliver all of this information easily to the students mobile devices and smartphone, allowing them to be kept fully up to date and informed of assignment deadlines, overdue library books, room changes and other useful information.
With Windows 8 Live tiles on the Windows Start screen display information from your website and service and turn your app into a real time awareness engine - even when it’s not running. Your services and your app, will grab your users’ attention and keep them informed of the latest announcements and updates.
Windows 8 gives you the opportunity as an educational institution huge potential by personalising the learning and interactions with your students, the ability to list your apps in the Windows Store to current and potential students of your institution allows you to reach millions of potential applicants, learners or associated partners.
Further details of Microsoft Windows 8 development http://www.microsoft.com/uk/msdn/windows8
Running Moodle on Windows Azure
Integrating Moddle and Live@edu
Running Opensource Applications on Azure
Building Custom Office or SharePoint apps
Windows Azure Educator and Student Passes for teaching, learning and research
Building Mobile Application with cloud services
So if you’re interested in exploring the use of any of these drop by the Microsoft stand for chat.
Windows Server 2012 Training & Certification Now Available to all Microsoft IT Academy members
if your interested in IT Academy please visit http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/itacademy/
1) Certifications and official Microsoft training and certifications are now available for Windows Server 2012, Windows 8, Private Cloud, Windows Store Application
In addition to this we now have new structure for Microsoft Technical Certifications
With a dedicated number of suitable examinations for the FE/HE education market which adds added value to the student experience and curriculum content aligning your courses with employees requirements.
2) Windows Server Certification and examination tracks
3) Microsoft Second Shot promotion is active so students (and lecturers) get a FREE retake if they do not pass first time for more info click here
4) Courseware available for Windows Server 2012 is now available to all Microsoft IT Academy members
Module 1: Managing a Windows Server 2012 Infrastructure
•What's New in Server Manager
•Introducing IP Address Management
•PowerShell and Server Core Enhancements
•What’s New in Active Directory
•Introducing Dynamic Access Control
Module 2: Network, Storage, and Service Access in Windows Server 2012
•What's New in Remote Access
•New and Improved Networking Technologies
Module 3: Server Virtualization in Windows Server 2012
•What’s New in Networking
•Introducing Hyper-V Replica
•What’s New in Live Migration
•What’s New in Guest Clustering and VM Monitoring
First Look Clinic Syllabus
Hands On Lab Syllabus
5) Microsoft IT Academy now includes a number of enhanced resources including new online digital content and resources for more information click here
Click Here for the FREE E-Book on Windows Server 2012