Today I attended the first edIT roadshow in Auckland, it was held at the Ellerslie Event Centre which pleasantly had lots of parking available and because of its scheduled start time did not involve an extra hour of wadeing through traffic to get to. 13:30 - Registration
Arriving in plenty of time I wandered up to the second floor and was presented with a 'goodie bag' containing a lanyard, several flyers for the featured products and some free stuff including a micro mouse from Toshiba, a 75g sample of Cyber Clean compound, a couple of free pens and a pack of cards from VMWare. There was also a small bag of lollies waiting on the seats for us from Microsoft. 14:00 - Thinking of placing notebooks in the hands of students? Toshiba presents a toolkit of things to know and consider. It is more than just picking the right notebook.
This presentation looked at the different considerations for laptops for students schemes including procurement, insurance, maintenance and picking the right type of laptop for the job.
Some interesting things that came up was the availability of an assurance program from Toshiba that could be purchased so that damage like droppages could be repaired under the warranty. Having a well thought out SLA with the supplier was also covered and suggestions like having spare easily replaceable parts stored on site and having laptops to switch out with failed ones as part of the original arrangement. Batteries were also discussed and are considered as consumable parts. The Toshiba batteries apparently usually live through about 700 recharges and are covered under a one year warranty. Comparitivly the hp gear has just increased its battery warranty to three years but has also increased the cost. 14:35 - Microsoft in Education – an overview from Microsoft talking about licensing, operating systems, new products, free solutions and much much more
The Microsoft presentation first covered what was included in the Microsoft New Zealand Schools deal - Windows 7 and Office 2010 along with CALS for Exchange, Server 2003 and SCCM
. The rest of the presentation centered around the free offerings from Microsoft for education. The first product covered was live@edu which promoted features such as presence, live drive and Office online. This section was presented by Mark Woods who is Education Manager for MS New Zealand.
The rest of the demos were hosted by Ian Morrish Technical Strategist for MS NZ and covered the products outlined below: AutoCollage 2008
- Which is a pay for program that is free to schools who register and automaticlly builds a collage out of pictures that you feed it. It automatically finds important features in photos like faces and centers the images around these points of interest. Multipoint Mouse
- Allows for the use of more than one mouse on a computer at the same time, this can be used for interactive voting or feedback Pivot | Live Labs Pivot
- This software takes a set of tagged images and organizes them into a sortable filterable pivot chart type that could make filtering through large amounts of images. It takes the source images and runs them through the MS deepzoom engine then it creates an XML file that is read by the program, there is a public api for this so there is the possibility of sourcing the images from something like a web based album or web portal and make them easily searchable in this format. WorldWide Telescope
- This program allows you to navigate through terrabytes of telescope images in a 3D environment in all sorts of spectrums. Photosynth
- Stitches photos together to create a 3D panorama of the images that can be walked through. Kodu
- A game development environment for kids that can produce games runnable on Windows or Xbox platforms. This can use the keyboard or an XBox controller for input.
The features of Photostory have also been integrated into Live Moviemaker Free Video Editing Software | Download Windows Live MovieMaker
. 15:05 - Tea/Coffee and time to meet all of the 9 exclusive vendors that will be showcasing their products/solutions
During the break sandwiches and snacks were served which were quite good, it also gave everyone an opportunity to mingle a little and catch up with the featured vendors. 15:25 - vmware – “Virtually Organised”
VMWare did a few demos of their products including their application visualization solution and, their VDI solution. While the goals of visualization were conveyed effectively the actual description of the process was a little bizarre comparing visualization to "Mike TV" from Willy Wonka's Chocolate factory. 16:05 - Adobe for Education – products, solutions and practical samples
Abobe gave a short demonstration of some of the features of the new CS5 suite including the background aware element removable and exporting features that can create Windows mobile apps and eBooks right out of the creator tools. 16:55 - Xirrus Wireless
The Xirrus wireless presentation was interesting as the product appears to be totally modular with a central mainboard integrating the controller, a Power PC chip and CF card along with a reprogramable FPGA that provides encryption at 100% wirespeed. The radio modules are interchangeable modules that can be swapped out when new WiFi standards are created. The mainboard includes two GB links that can be teamed and the unit draws its required 66 watts of power from a PoE injector. The big thing is the number of clients that are reportedly supported, 512 from the eight radio setup and 1024 from the 16. According to the representative they are even working on active RF jamming technology to prevent intrusion for the military.
Xirrus also offer a free wifi inspector tool here Xirrus: Switching Without Wires - Advanced IT Wi-Fi Networking Tools
for Windows and Mac which could also be useful. 17:00 - Drinks and nibbles – time to network, chat to exhibitors and ask questions
Another break, more food and an open bar were available. 17:30 - Prize draw followed by more drinks and nibbles
The prizes that were given out were:
1x Adobe Creative Suite
1x Toshiba Netbook
1x Accessories pack
Overall the event was a worthwhile way to spend several hours and hopefully it will become an annual event.
Original Event Notification Posted here: http://www.edugeek.net/forums/nz-gen...s-schools.html