Microsoft is bridging the gap between their Live@edu collaboration suite and Moodle. Microsoft Live@edu is a suite for education which gives students email, online storage and collaboration tools. It is highly compared with Google Apps Education Edition.
Microsoft is bridging the gap with a new plug-in that will allow Moodle users to integrate the Live@edu tools.
“It’s a free download that helps address the needs of interoperability and flexible technology choices in education,” explained L. Michael Golden, corporate vice president for Microsoft’s Education Products Group, in a telephone interview. “Quite easily, with one Live@edu login, [users will] be able to utilize all of the flexibility that Moodle presents as a learning management system, along with the collaboration/communication capabilities of Live@edu.” [source]
Further information about the plug-in
Microsoft Live Services Plug-in for Moodle
Moodle site administrators can now include Microsoft Live Services in the list of features provided to teachers and students through Moodle. With the Microsoft Live Services Plug-in for Moodle, students and teachers can use their Windows Live IDs to sign in to Moodle and access Live Services, such as e-mail, instant messenger, and calendar without leaving Moodle.” [read more]
To learn more about this plug-in, discuss it or download it visit the Microsoft Education Labs site.
Along with the announcement of the Live@edu plug-in to Moodle, Microsoft has introduced their Education Labs site. Educations Labs will focus on software and resources for the education world.
I think these new developments by Microsoft is a good thing for the education world. The more “competition” and the more programs out there for the classroom is good for everyone because it forces other companies to keep up and create quality programs.
Our district actually compared Google Apps Education Edition with Microsoft’s Live@edu product last year for student emails and collaboration tools. We ended up going with Google Apps because we thought Google would integrate better with other programs in the future. Also, I believe we would have had to pay for the large number of accounts to be created or imported (I’m not sure exactly what the fee was for).
Although our district will not be using it, I think in Microsoft’s efforts to “join” the open-source world, or to maybe take advantage of it, is mostly a positive thing. However, I do think that Microsoft is thinking more about how to win the Microsoft/Google battle rather than how they can help the education world. It is a business after all, but I’m just saying I won’t be changing my opinion on Microsoft and their willingness to play nice with others anytime soon. I wonder if we will see any reaction from Google Apps? There is already a plug-in for Google Apps and Moodle (Killer App).
Microsoft Integrates Live@edu with Moodle, Launches Education Labs
Download the Live@edu/Moodle plug-in
Live@edu and Moodle: A shameless publicity stunt?