22 February 2008

Free Microsoft developer tools to students

Microsoft are gearing up to offer free developer software to high school and university students worldwide, in what could be a bold move to capture the youth market and blitz competition such as Adobe Macromedia. Although, according to CRN Australia, the initiative is part of a greater cause to address the skills shortage in the ICT industry.

The "Dreamspark" suite is already available to students in the US, China and parts of Europe and is expected to be released to other countries over the next six months.
The approximate value of the deal for Australian students is $5,000. When broken down, pricing for the products are: Windows Standard Server $909; SQL Server 2005 Developer Edition $84; Visual Studio 05 and Visual Studio 08 $1387 each, Expression Studio $1040; and XNA Creators Club US$99 (approx AU $107).

Read more on computerworld.com.au.

Show us the money!

Some universities are feeling a little deflated in the wake of last year's Federal election, won by Labor's Kevin Rudd on a wave of "knowledge nation" promise.

According to Simon Marginson they have missed the point, it was more about attitude than immediate financial redress for past neglect by the Howard government.
Support will flow when the universities adopt forward-looking commitments to better national outcomes, and structural changes that enable nuanced and strategic university missions, rather than the old one-size-fits-all formula funding.

Read more on smh.com.au.

Update: Students have their say - call for cheaper degrees, more support (SMH, 19 Mar 2008)