Faculty Connection Newsletter August/September 2011

Faculty Connection Newsletter

Welcome to the August/September edition of the Microsoft® Faculty Connection newsletter. This resource provides information about new curriculum resources and other useful educational content for use in the classroom

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Python Tools for Visual Studio
Python Tools for Visual StudioPython Tools for Visual Studio (PTVS) turns Visual Studio into a Python IDE. It is a free and open source plug-in for Visual Studio 2010 from the Microsoft Developer Division. PTVS lets developers use all the major productivity features of Visual Studio to build Python code using either CPython or IronPython, and it adds new features such as support for High Performance Computing clusters to scale your code.

Cloud Infrastructure Soars in Europe
It was barely a year ago that European scientific and industry leaders came together to develop, test, and deploy a high-quality, interoperable cloud platform for industry and research. The result was VENUS-C (Virtual multidisciplinary EnviroNments USing Cloud infrastructures). Jointly sponsored by the European Commission and a consortium of 14 partners, among them Microsoft Research, VENUS-C was conceived to meet the needs of seven different research and commercial areas: bioinformatics, systems biology, drug discovery, civil engineering, civil protection, civil emergencies, and marine biodiversity. VENUS-C has since developed into a functional, operational platform, and is now being used for 15 new pilot projects, which received seed funds after an open call that elicited 60 proposals from throughout Europe.

Kinect for Windows SDK Beta Refresh Available
KinectInterest in the Kinect for Windows Software Development Kit (SDK) beta, released in June, has been strong, and we're delighted to learn that so many developers and innovators who are experimenting with natural user interface (NUI) applications have taken advantage of the SDK to explore the potential of the Kinect sensor. In support of our commitment to encourage researchers and enthusiasts in their exploration of the possibilities of the Kinect sensor, we have released a refreshed version of the SDK. The community has provided us with a lot of good feedback, and this release addresses some of the top items you've told us about.


The Faculty Connection Resource Center is the place to find these and other classroom-ready teaching materials:

Mango Jump Start: Building Applications for Windows Phone
Mango Jump StartThis introductory content covers how to create Windows Phone solutions, edit program source files, add and manage program resources, and then build and run the solution. It also explores options for debugging solutions using the Windows Phone Emulator or an actual device as well as managing the solution properties for deployment in the marketplace. Once you are done with the basics, continue on with additional Mango Jump Start sessions that examine Silverlight, building interfaces with Expression, app data storage, using Bing Maps, developing with XNA, and even selling apps.

Windows PowerShell Overview
In this video presentation, Kurt Callemin provides an introduction to PowerShell, tells you what it is used for, why you should use it, and how it works. The goal is to make you familiar with the concepts behind this scripting language with examples and teach you how to explore the world of PowerShell in more depth.

Students to Business Day Belgium 2011 
View these video presentations from the event:


Microsoft ResearchFind recent news from a Microsoft Research site near you.

Faculty Summit 2011
Microsoft Research Connections hosted its 12th Faculty Summit in July, providing a forum for lively debate on the development, application, and funding of technologies in the environmental, medical, and educational spheres. Presentations and streaming video of keynotes, talks, panels, workshops, and demonstrations are now available on-demand; find links to them on the Faculty Summit agenda page.

Project Hawaii SDK: Create Mobile Applications
Create cloud-enabled mobile applications with the tools and services included in the Project Hawaii Software Development Kit (SDK). Arjmand Samuel, research program manager from Microsoft Research Connections, talks about what the SDK contains and how it can be used to develop Windows Phone applications.


CALL FOR PAPERS: Worldwide Microsoft Dynamics Academic Preconference 2012
Microsoft DynamicsThe Microsoft Dynamics Academic Alliance (DynAA) will host the Worldwide Microsoft Dynamics Academic Preconference in Houston, Texas, USA on March 17-18, 2012. This is an event that all members of the DynAA should attend! You have the chance to:

  • Experience hands-on training with Microsoft Dynamics products
  • Hear from Microsoft experts
  • Present and attend concurrent sessions from other DynAA faculty
  • Attend DayONE User Group sessions with Microsoft Dynamics customers
  • Attend Convergence 2012 keynotes, general sessions, user labs, and parties!

Find more information about this event, including links to last year's preconference.

DynAA invites papers/abstracts in research, research-in-progress, teaching, applications, and case studies incorporating Microsoft Dynamics into business and information systems curricula. The deadline for refereed paper submission is January 1, 2012. DynAA will publish conference proceedings in CD/DVD format and online. In addition, the best quality papers from those accepted will be recommended to the Journal of Integrated Enterprise Systems (ISSN: 2162-9285) for publication. The deadline for presentation and panel discussion submissions is February 1, 2012. For more detailed information, please visit: clcloud.com/DYNAA2012.

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The Faculty Connection Resource Center contains recommended Curriculum Resources, Reference Materials, Software, and Supplemental Resources:


View the Faculty Connection Resource Kit page for curriculum materials on areas such as Cloud Computing and Operating Systems. These kits contain lecture materials, PowerPoint presentations, videos, white papers, labs, and more that can be used for classroom presentations.

Find Higher Education and Teacher resource kits to help you engage your students.


Find additional faculty and student resources:


These are the top downloads by faculty and teachers from the
Faculty Connection Resource Center:

1. Windows Phone Programming in C#

2. Introduction to Programming Through Game Development Using Microsoft XNA Game Studio

3. Windows Operating System Internals Curriculum Resource Kit (CRK)

4. A Comparative Analysis of Cloud Computing Environments (简体中文)

5. Programming with C# and XNA 0.5: Jump Start

6. A Lap Around Microsoft Expression Blend®

7. Learn Programming with XNA

8. Expression Web 4 Quick Start Tutorial: Beaches Around the World

9. Введение в современные веб-технологии (in Russian)

10. Introduction to Mobile Application Development Using Silverlight (Lecture 3 of 3)


If you have any questions or would like to know more about Microsoft Faculty Connection, please send us an email at fchelp@microsoft.com.

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