Events

3 Not-To-Miss Events This Week at Microsoft New England

CoderDojo

Photo from “Kids Learn to Code” with CoderDojo this past weekend!

With winter here and temps dropping, get inside for some awesome events! Here are three not to miss this week Microsoft New England:

tech-in-motion1) Fireside Chat with HubSpot
Monday, December 15, 2014, 6:00pm – 8:30pm
Twitter: @HubSpot @Tech_in_Motion

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, right? So what better way to celebrate the holidays than by joining Tech in Motion: Boston. We are hosting our first “Fireside Chat” featuring HubSpot! Get out of that chilly winter weather and join us to warm up by the “fire” for great conversation and networking! Vice Presidents, Eric Richard and Brad Coffey, will be discussing the company’s success story, life on the product team, and how they recruit top talent. Stephanie Viccari of MeYou Health, voted the “Best Startup To Work For in 2014″ by the Boston Globe, will be moderating the discussion.

 

altvr2) Boston VR Meetup featuring AltspaceVR
Tuesday, December 16, 6:00pm – 9:00pm
Twitter: @AltspaceVR

Come and experience the future of social virtual reality and collaborative development! Bruce Wooden from AltspaceVR will present and demonstrate their new social platform currently under development. You can find AltspaceVR at http://altvr.com/.

 

coderdojo3) Kids Learn to Code (CoderDojo)
Saturday, December 20, 1:00pm – 3:00pm
Twitter: @CoderDojoCRiver

Parents bring your kids (7-17) and come learn to code. For Free.

We’ll be covering:
Stream 1 Introduction: HTML/CSS and Javascript
Stream 2 Games with Python:  We’ll be diving into Python

For Stream 1 most sessions require no prior experience  (for either kids or parents).

Stream 2 is for kids who have completed Stream 1 or have experience coding in Scratch or some other language (Javascript, C++, Java, Ruby, Python etc.)

Please be sure to bring a laptop. If you need a laptop please let us know in advance: somerville.us@coderdojo.com.

 

Calling All Students, Teachers, Parents, and Engineers — Local #CSEdWeek Events!

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(L-R) Congressman Joe Kennedy completes the first #HourOfCode in Massachusetts at Microsoft New England; CSSparks, students teach kids coding at the Natick Mall; Microsoft Store is offering free #YouthSpark Hour of Code Workshops for kids.

In partnership with Code.org, Microsoft is challenging 100 million youth to participate in the Hour of Code. That means just one hour of learning the basics of computer science. Last year, the Hour of Code reached 44 million students worldwide. This year’s campaign aims to reach a cumulative 100 million students, worldwide. Whether you’re a student, a teacher, or a parent, you can help us reach this goal.

There are 50,000 #HourOfCode Events planned worldwide for #CSEdWeek (December 8-14), and 965 events registered in Massachusetts alone!! That’s 300 more than last year.

Microsoft is supporting a number of activities in Cambridge and Boston during CS Ed Week – we’ve listed some of our picks below.

Need further convincing to take part? Check out these stats and resources via Code.org!

1. Hour of Code Workshops at Microsoft Store – Smart Game Coding (Young Developers ages 8-10 & 11-13)
Monday, December 8 – Friday, December 12, daily at 4pm (+ 6pm on Friday)

Create. Code. Play. Go behind the scenes and learn how to code, program, and play in your own gaming world. You’ll use kid-friendly programming to learn how creativity and problem solving come together to make something all your own. Campers will explore technologies like TouchDevelop and Windows App Studio, and become familiar with the coding environment, as they explore what’s possible when building an app. Register today as camps fill up quickly. This is a two-day camp.

Register at our Boston store at the Prudential Center HERE.
Register at our Natick store at Natick Mall HERE.
Register at our Burlington store HERE.

2. MassCAN CSSparks at Microsoft Store, Natick
Wednesday, December 10 + Saturday, December 13, 6pm-8pm

CSSparks is a student-run organization, where students teach students how to code. Learn more about CSSparks by reading our past interview with them here!

3. Mini-WOW at Microsoft New England
Thursday, December 11, 2:30pm-3:30pm

Showcase of Citizen Schools student work completed during the semester at Microsoft under the guidance of Microsoft volunteer teachers.

4. Museum of Science Hour of Code
Saturday 12/13 – Sunday 12/14, 10am – 4pm

Create your own art robots! Program your way through the Fruit Loops Maze! Play a piano with potatoes or create a game controller! The Museum of Science is presenting its characteristically imaginative take on #CSEdWeek with fun, educational hands-on activities for visitors of all ages. Participate in a variety of DIY projects and engage in a wide range of computer science activities throughout the Museum during the celebration.

For additional events and information, head to masstlcef.org.

To learn more about Microsoft’s commitment to youth and education, visit our YouthSpark Hub or follow us on twitter at @msftcitizenship.

3 Not-To-Miss Events This Week at Microsoft New England

Photo via @carl_4As

The holiday season is all about giving and celebrating the things you love. For us, that’s our local technological ecosystem. Which is why we’re proud to host so many of your awesome events here at Microsoft New England.

Here are three not to miss this week:

1O-zK7wx1) Giving Tuesday
Tuesday, December 2, all day
Twitter: @GivingTues #GivingTuesday

Microsoft is one of the founding companies of #GivingTuesday. After giving thanks on Thanksgiving, then spending money on yourself on #BlackFriday, #GivingTuesday is a global day devoted to giving back to our community. Via givingtuesday.org: On Tuesday, December 2, 2014, charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world will come together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give.

#GivingTuesday at Your Local Microsoft Store: On #GivingTuesday, when you make a purchase at a Microsoft store, you’ll receive a $10 Giving Card that can be donated to a YouthSpark project of your choice at www.globlalgiving.org/youthspark.*

Find your local store: http://msft.it/JxtHpB

CivicTechBOS2) A Conversation on Civic Tech: Urban Infrastructures for Public Health
Wednesday, December 3, 5:30pm – 7:30pm
Twitter: @MSNewEngland @VentureCafe @DistrictHall #CivicTechBOS

How can we apply the creativity, collaboration and innovation that all come together at a hackathon to public health? While data and technology play a key role in tracking the flu and assisting collaboration among researchers and physicians, technology can also be a useful tool in driving wellness and even economic growth in Boston. Hosted by Microsoft’s Innovation & Policy Center – New England and the Venture Café Foundation at District Hall on December 3 (5:30PM – 7:30PM), this conversation on civic technology aims to explore how a city can take an innovative look at public health.

We are bringing together people from various parts of the public and private communities to spark the conversation and then invite the attendees to engage in the discussion. Panelists include:

Register today!

Layout 13) Music on the Brain | Benefit Party Featuring Stan Strickland & Robert Pinsky
Saturday, December 6, 7:00pm – 11:30pm
Twitter: @CatalystConvos

Celebrate our two-year anniversary on Saturday December 6, 2014 from 7 –11:30pm at Microsoft New England in the heart of Kendall Square. Enjoy PoemJazz with two of Boston’s music/brain luminaries – Stan Strickland and Robert Pinsky. Followed by Dancing to DJ Fabulous. Drinks, Sweet and Savory Hors D’oeuvres

7:30 – 8:30 PoemJazz
8:30 – 9:00 Catalyze Yourself! Make your own art/science take-away
9:00 – 11:30 Dance to DJ Fabulous

Catalyst Conversations is devoted to the dialogue between art and science. It’s been two years since we launched Catalyst Conversations and we need to raise some funds to keep it going and make it even better!!

We are thankful for many things – to our host Microsoft New England, our Advisory Board, all the wonderful volunteers who help make our events possible, and to our audience who joins us for amazing conversations between art and science.

A Conversation on Civic Tech: Urban Infrastructures for Public Health

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In October, Microsoft was honored to host the second annual Hacking Pediatrics event. The range of innovative ideas that came out of the event was inspiring: from end-to-end childhood vaccine management to accurate, rapid fabrication of custom tracheostomy tubes for children to better ways to manage asthma and monitor use of inhalers. How can we apply the creativity, collaboration and innovation that all come together at a hackathon to public health?

While data and technology play a key role in tracking the flu and assisting collaboration among researchers and physicians, technology can also be a useful tool in driving wellness and even economic growth in Boston. Hosted by Microsoft’s Innovation & Policy Center – New England and the Venture Café Foundation at District Hall on December 3 (5:30PM – 7:30PM), this conversation on civic technology aims to explore how a city can take an innovative look at public health.

At the fourth in the series of conversations on civic tech, we plan to address the following issues:

  • What role does public health play in the innovation economy in Boston through job creation and industry innovation?
  • How can collection and analysis of data improve services for citizens and patients?
  • What technology exists today to collect, analyze or visualize public health data? And what other technologies do we need?
  • How does city infrastructure – signage and bike paths – enable public health and wellness?

We are bringing together people from various parts of the public and private communities to spark the conversation and then invite the attendees to engage in the discussion. Panelists include:

  • Maia Majumder, Engineering Systems PhD Student – MIT & Computational Epidemiology Research Fellow – HealthMap.org
  • Dr. Snehal Shah, Director of Research and Evaluation – Boston Public Health Commission & Pediatrician – Boston Medical Center
  • Ann Polaneczky, Project Engineer & Project Manager, Hopital Universitaire de Mirebalais, Haiti – Partners in Health
  • Dr. Anne Lusk, Research Scientist – Harvard School of Public Health
  • Nicole Fichera, General Manager – District Hall (moderator)

Register today!

3 Not-To-Miss Events This Week at Microsoft New England

MSFT

Photo via @carl_4As from @4As #CreateTech conference last week.

Fall is officially here! And with the changing leaves and cooler temps comes our biggest season for events here at Microsoft New England.

Here are three not to miss this week:

1) API Management in the Cloud – Boston Azure Cloud User Group
Monday, November 17, 2014, 6:00pm – 8:30pm
Twitter: @BostonAzure #BostonAzure

The API Management helps protect your mission critical systems with authentication, rate limiting, quotas and caching to ease load under pressure. Rest easy knowing that only the partners, developers and applications you’ve authorized have access to your APIs and that those groups are acting in accordance with your policies. In this session Bob Familiar will show you how easy it is to get started with API Management.

2) Science Club for Girls Media Team
Wednesday, November 19, 3:30pm – 6:30pm
Twitter: @SCFG

The Science Club for Girls Media Team explores the field of science journalism. All participants are staff members of the Media Team blog, MadSciMag, and learn how to research and report on science topics through field trips and guest speakers. The team will learn how to write for the web, create infographics, and learn to record and edit photo, audio, and video.

Greater Boston Startup Culture3) Working Well: Secrets Behind FitBit, RunKeeper, Next Jump & More
Wednesday, November 19, 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Twitter: @fitbit @RunKeeper @nextjump @maxwellhealth @DillanDiGi #workwell

You don’t have to be a startup to have a startup culture. Startup culture is about cohesive, high-impact, high-energy, rapidly growing teams. Many of the area’s startup cultures incorporate health and wellness and this event is the ideal place to learn about what innovative things they’re doing, so you can adopt some of these practices too! This event will feature breakout presentations lead by 5 local companies, an exposition area for companies to showcase their health and wellness initiatives, and a snacking area for everyone to sample some of the area’s healthy food and beverage startups’ goods. if you’ve been trying to improve the health and wellbeing of your workplace, are interested in meeting the leaders in this space, or looking to learn how you can personally make your workday more active and productive, this is for you!

Read more about the event and schedule of speakers via the Meetup Page!

 

Our Takeaways from “Privacy, Surveillance, and Rebuilding #TrustInTech” with Brad Smith & Professor Jonathan Zittrain

BradSmith

The technology ecosystem is evolving at a remarkable rate, both in terms of how the technology is changing and how individuals are leveraging that technology in their personal and professional lives. With the rapid global advance of innovations like cloud-based services and increasingly powerful mobile devices, governments are grappling with how the legal and regulatory frameworks appropriately address this technical evolution in a timely fashion.

As a result, striking the balance between technology innovation and the legal implications of said innovation is challenging. Nowhere is this more evident in today’s ecosystem than in the juxtaposition of personal privacy and national security in a post-9/11 and post-Snowden world. Our General Counsel, Brad Smith, joined Professor Jonathan Zittrain of Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society to discuss these challenges and potential ways forward, in an event entitled: “Privacy, Surveillance, and Rebuilding Trust in Tech.”

It is a complex topic, touching on international law, cultural expectations of privacy, and the distributed nature of cloud-based technology, with many other nuances in the space. At the risk of grossly oversimplifying the discussion, I wanted to call out three thoughts—or rather, questions—I took away from the discussion:

  1. With the globalization and extreme interconnectedness of the internet and cloud-based services comes the need to re-think the concept of legal jurisdiction. It’s easy today for an individual to use a service that may be physically located outside of the country in which they reside. Which nation’s (or jurisdiction’s) law applies to that individual using that service, and who gets to enforce that law?
  2. How does government find a way to deliberatively make decisions regarding technology law, given the rapid rate of innovation change? How do we ensure there is time to be thoughtful and critical about potential changes to law, when technology moves so quickly?
  3. Who needs to be at the table when the intersection of law and technology is discussed? Is it policymakers? The tech industry? How are an individual’s rights represented in this discussion? How does this conversation change when technology spans international borders?

It is a fascinating time to be working at the confluence of technology, law and business, and I’m very proud that Microsoft has decided to take a leadership role in raising these crucial issues for discussion.

3 Not-To-Miss Events This Week at Microsoft New England

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Fall is officially here! And with the changing leaves and cooler temps comes our biggest season for events here at Microsoft New England.

Here are three not to miss this week:

Vboston1) The Virtualization User Group November Meeting
Tuesday, November 11, 2014, 6:00pm – 9:00pm
Twitter: @nutanix

The Virtualization group meeting, providing the user community an opportunity to learn about new technologies and other virtualization topics of interest.

Presentations by vendors who provide details and background on different areas e.g. Storage with virtualization, Hyper-V, Cloud Computing etc.

learnlaunch2) Edtech Pitch Night
Wednesday, November 12, 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Twitter: @LearnLaunch 

LearnLaunch Institute and YEP-Boston are excited to co-host an Edtech Pitch Night! Six early stage edtech startups will have the chance to pitch their products to a live audience. A panel of judges will offer the companies feedback and vote on the best pitch. The audience will also get to participate by voting for a crowd favorite. There will be plenty of time to mingle with the edtech community as well as the companies that are pitching.

MIT3) Path of Professorship
Friday November 14, 1:00pm – 7:30pm – Saturday November 15, 8:00am – 5:00pm
Twitter: @MIT

This workshop is for graduate and postdoctoral women at MIT who are considering a tenure-track position in the fields of science, engineering, and technology. The one-and-a-half day workshop focuses on skills, strategies, and “insider information” necessary to obtain a tenure-track position, to succeed in one, and advance to other positions of leadership. This is also an opportunity to network and meet peers.

Attendees learn:

  • Key strategies for applying and interviewing for academic positions
  • The importance of networking and how to manage networking with peers and superiors
  • Insights from deans and department chairs about what to negotiate for once you have the offer
  • Advice from faculty on things you can do now and during your hire to make your tenure-track years as smooth and successful as possible
  • Characteristics of different types of universities
  • Advice on balancing work and life in the 24/7 world of academia

Example Event Agenda from 2013: http://odge.mit.edu/development/pop/rogram/

Congrats to the winners of the first MassChallenge Civic Tech Sidecar prize sponsored by Microsoft: Lengio and Kinems

Congrats to the winners of the first MassChallenge Civic Tech Sidecar prize sponsored by Microsoft: Lengio and Kinems

MassChallenge once again delivered a night of inspiration and innovation at the 2014 Awards Ceremony. Alongside A ceremony honoring Governor Deval Patrick for his commitment to innovation, MassChallenge showcased some of the best innovative minds in Boston and beyond that are truly making a mark in the entrepreneurial scene.

With plenty of startups embracing technology and the innovative spirit, the night was filled with entrepreneurs making a difference. That’s why Microsoft was pleased to introduce the first annual Civic Tech Sidecar Prize, a $50,000 prize for the startup or startups that solve civic challenges through technology. Our own Cathy Wissink was thrilled to announce the winners of the sidecar prize to two organizations paving the way of civic tech through the startup scene: Lengio and Kinems

About Lengio
Screen Shot 2014-11-04 at 4.18.29 PM
Lengio revolutionizes English learning with software that offers personalized English courses built from users’ content: docs, movies, etc. By uploading personal content, users are able to experience language learning through real-life applications, basing learning on the user’s own knowledge and interests. This way, users are learning what they need for their own careers or personal lives, making the transition into English easy.

About Kinems

Founded in 2013, Kinems’ vision is to make special education engaging by proposing innovative games designed based on well proven educational practices using just the Microsoft Kinect camera. At Kinems we know that every child is unique, each with a different set of skills and academic needs. This is why we offer games that can be easily adapted by the teacher, health care professional and parent to the individual needs of each child.

Congrats to the winners of MassIT Government Innovation Competition as well – These companies also get to pilot their products with MassIT.
$25,000 – Astra IDentity, Inc. – High Tech – USA – Mass.
$25,000 – CarKnow LLC – High Tech – USA – Mass.

Thinking Outside the Box: STEM Summit and MassCUE Address How to Bring CS to Public Schools in MA

The technology industry’s demand for graduates with CS skills continues to grow but only .7% of graduates enter the job world with a CS degree. We need to close this gap.

Computer Science education helps students build skills to make them more employable to companies across the state. We continually strive to inspire and encourage both teachers and students to embrace STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) due to this statement. MassCAN has launched fantastic professional development opportunities for teachers, but it will take a few years for each school district to receive the benefits of that development. In the meantime, many schools are using creative methods to bring computer science to their students. The panel I moderated at MassCUE called ‘The Computer Science Gap: Building Teacher Capacity’ was a view into some of the existing successful programs taking place in Massachusetts schools.

Each panelist shared ideas on how to bring computer science to schools, including:

  • Adam Newall, Computer Programming/Math Applications at Pembroke Community Middle SchoolBootstrap World is a curriculum that weaves computer science concepts and game programming skills into Algebra thereby teaching students Algebra and CS at the same time.
  • Doug McGlathery, Computer Science Teacher at Cambridge Rindge & Latin School – TEALS, Technology Education and Literacy in Schools (link: http://www.tealsk12.org/) is a program supported by Microsoft that places industry professionals alongside teachers to deliver the content while the teacher helps with classroom management and over time transition the teaching to the teacher.
  • John Souther, Math Content Director at Mass Insight Education – Advanced Placement computer science as a method to encourage students to pursue academic excellence. http://www.massinsight.org/mmsi/
  • Jim Stanton, Executive Director of MassCAN – Extensive professional development available to MA teachers on Exploring Computer Science, CS Principles, K-5 PD to integrate common core content with CS and more.

On the same day as MassCUE, I, and our General Manager of Technology & Civic Engagement, Annmarie Levins, were excited to participate in the #MASTEMSummit as well.

Annmarie’s intro to the event focused on Massachusetts as a national leader, on need for computer science education, and on the need for collaboration between the business community and the education community to make this happen. In addition to MassCAN, Annmarie talked about the MassTLC Ed Foundation. The Ed Foundation’s mission is to increase the number of students pursuing computing education and careers. Their vision is for all students in Massachusetts to have access to meaningful computing education and understand the principles of computer science and how it applies in the world.

So how can you personally contribute to the efforts to make computer science more pervasive in Massachusetts public schools? You have a HUGE chance to participate in December when Code.org’s Hour of Code events take up the whole month. Hour of Code is during CS Ed Week, December 8 – 14. We are partnering with the MassTLC Ed Foundation and code.org to recruit over 500 teachers and industry volunteers to teach students an Hour of Code. Volunteer here.

Stay tuned to our blog and follow us on Twitter at @MSNewEngland; we’ll be tweeting and blogging about all of the local Hour of Code events coming up!