Eight+ Windows 8 Must Read Blogs for Educators

Here is a review of my favorite Windows 8 blogs to showcase some of the amazing capabilities of the next era of Windows

Eight+ Windows 8 Blogs for Educators

There are many amazing capabilities in Windows 8 that enable entirely new scenarios for educators and learners.  Because these stories have rolled out over a long period of time, there is no single collection of some of the most interesting for academic community.  This is not designed to be an exhaustive list of everything I love…but puts forth some of the major Windows 8 innovations that will impact the daily activities of education professionals and learners.  Some are simple and straightforward and others are mind-boggling. Enjoy.

Mobility in Windows 8
I use a mobile broadband card to connect my PC on the go. So I am super-thrilled that Windows 8 devices have USB-ports to allow easy connection of my existing mobile broadband service. More than that, Windows 8 lets you roam between Wi-fi networks effortlessly.
Video: http://youtu.be/mMlYEdqQJ7Q

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/01/20/engineering-windows-8-for-mobility.aspx

Making Windows 8 Personal Across Devices
If you have a laptop or desktop computer, you also are likely to have another device for travel or mobility. With Windows 8, Microsoft takes capabilities introduced in Windows 7 to a whole ‘nutha level with personalization settings synchronized across devices using your Microsoft Account.
Video: http://youtu.be/0DpEw2cQ1Eo

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2011/09/26/signing-in-to-windows-8-with-a-windows-live-id.aspx

Windows 8 Sensor Experiences
One of my favorite experiences on Windows 8 are the new sensors required for new Windows 8 devices. These are truly game-changing innovations for the operating system. The introduction of Sensor Fusion solves a host of problems that I experience with current generation tablets. Moreover, it provides a new paradigm for app development.
Video: http://youtu.be/u8gcv0_Xhqg

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/01/24/supporting-sensors-in-windows-8.aspx

Startup Times Are Amazing
This 40 second video is longer than the demo. I admit, Windows startup times may seen boring to most folks. Please indulge me for a moment. I use my Windows PC as my primary business phone with Microsoft Lync. Lync gives me access to Enterprise Voice, Video, and Audio Conferencing. When I am running late for a meeting, I want my PC to boot quickly so that I can jump into a call right after I hit the power button. These performance improvements make using your PC as a primary communications device even more practical.
Video: http://youtu.be/DWArQE2USs4

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2011/09/08/delivering-fast-boot-times-in-windows-8.aspx

Connect Faster with USB 3.0
Almost everyone that uses a computer today has an USB external device connected to it. With Windows 8, we did not abandon all of the USB devices you own and use. We did however make things faster with USB 3.0. This is great for audio and video productions in the classroom…or just freakishly large files.
Video: http://youtu.be/Zgzb3HfE_X0

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2011/08/22/building-robust-usb-3-0-support.aspx

Stay Protected Online
There are lots of predators on the Internet. Not all mobile devices do an adequate job of protecting your privacy, data, and devices. Windows 8 takes a modern approach to online/device security.
Video: http://youtu.be/fG-LbFZw-cs

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2011/09/15/protecting-you-from-malware.aspx

Next-generation Identity Protection
As more mobile devices enter the academic enterprise, the risk of data theft and loss increases. This next video provides a two-fold proposition: 1) it protects corporate data from unauthorized users; and 2) it provides a method to authenticate the identity of students and faculty accessing services through modern mobile devices.
Video: http://youtu.be/anVANPocj1U

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2011/12/14/protecting-your-digital-identity.aspx

Accessibility by Design
Microsoft has a long and commendable history with enabling people of all abilities to use technology. It is a part of our Trustworthy Computing initiative. Windows 8 make human-computer interaction better for next-generation mobile devices.
Video: http://youtu.be/G2VWWydRzz8

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/02/14/enabling-accessibility.aspx

Making Touch Shine on Windows 8 Devices
Microsoft worked hard to make Windows 8 work on existing hardware. However, new hardware requirements for Windows 8 will give you an experience that makes Windows 8 really shine.
Video: http://youtu.be/_WAdPlZQVKM

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/03/28/touch-hardware-and-windows-8.aspx

Making Reading Easier and Beautiful
One of the primary things we do on any computing device is read. Windows 8 takes large strides over Windows 7 to make this simple daily activity even better on Windows 8.
Video: http://youtu.be/0gZsIN_v-m8

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/07/23/hardware-accelerating-everything-windows-8-graphics.aspx

Windows Makes Rich Media Smarter
I have written about DLNA technology before with Microsoft’s PlayTo technology. Windows 8 makes PlayTo easier for sharing and showcasing music and media without a special intermediate connection device. But there is so much more in Windows 8.
Video: http://youtu.be/rLemh_DARmU

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/06/08/building-a-rich-and-extensible-media-platform.aspx

Design Touch Keyboards for Humanity
So much research has been placed into designing Windows 8 for the day-to-day things we do with mobile devices. By paying attention to these details, Microsoft has made the daily activities we use our computing devices easier.
Video: http://youtu.be/idb8fQNjkac

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/07/17/designing-the-windows-8-touch-keyboard.aspx

Windows Starts So Fast
This is an interesting article. Sometimes Windows 8 can boot too fast on new hardware. So, we did something about that…without sacrificing the fast boot experience.
Video: http://youtu.be/XNTtOmXv7c0

Learn more: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/05/22/designing-for-pcs-that-boot-faster-than-ever-before.aspx

So how did you do on your knowledge assessment? What new capabilities in Windows 8 did you discover in this article? Let me know in the comments below.

Windows 8 will be generally available on Friday, October 26, 2012.