Microsoft Calling Students, Researchers on Android 4.0+ to Test "Sourcerer' App

Introducing Sourcerer app, an early version of Office Insider and Microsoft Garage, the central hub for experimental projects from Microsoft.

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As part of the Microsoft's experimental Garage development projects—a new app called 'Sourcerer' is looking for students and researchers to help test.

"Sourcerer" created under the Office Insider Program is designed to "make the research process easier for students", Microsoft explains adding, "that its ultimate aim is to help students save time, by establishing a "quick and intuitive" flow for research.

The Office Insider team is looking for "20-50 curious minds" to help test the app in its earliest stages of development.

Specifically, they're looking for undergrads, graduates, and PhD candidates as well as full-time researchers who will be actively working through August and September on an academic research project "on any topic, from any department".

Additionally, they must be willing to use the app for a month as part of their research.

To apply to test Sourcerer, follow these steps:

  • Email at externaluserstudy@microsoft.com, and tell why you want to participate.
  • Keep doing your research, and use Sourcerer when appropriate.
  • Fill out a short survey when you install the app.
  • Fill out a follow-up survey two weeks later.
  • After a month of usage, participate in a phone/Skype interview so we can get your feedback on our app.

Eligble applicants will need to have a phone running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich or newer.

In July of this year, Visual Studio Team Services added a SSH task to run "commands" or "scripts" on a remote machine to make it easier to configure Linux servers as part of automated build or release definitions.

Now introduced today, is another task the "Copy Files Over SSH" that allows securely copying files to a remote server.

"The task supports the SFTP protocol and SCP protocol (via SFTP)," the team stated.

This task is currently available as a built-in task on all accounts in Visual Studio Team Services. And, it "will also ship with the next version of Team Foundation Server (TFS) for customers with on-premises installations," added the VS team.

SSH Copy files taks in Visual Studio Team Services

Also, Team Services now integrates even better with Jenkins with added support for Jenkins Jobs, Pipelines, and Artifacts.

The "Jenkins Queue Job" and "Jenkins Download Artifacts" tasks are useful for blending Team Services and Jenkins build and release steps.

Additionally, the new "navigation' experience in Team Services launched today, making it really easy for anyone to give it a try.

This new experience is VERY much a work in progress. To minimize disruption, 'we've disabled it by default for every Team Services user," the company explained.

You must take explicit action to enable it. Each Team Services user can enable it or disable it for themselves.

Some of the big things include…:

  • "The lines of title/nav have been reduced from 3 to 2, giving back more vertical real estate to content.
  • added menus to the top level hub groups to allow you to navigate directly to the hub you want rather than first going to the default hub and then the hub you want. We think this makes navigation more efficient.
  • combined Build & Release into a single hub group because there's so much overlap between them," the team stated.

Let's start with what the nav looks like today. Ignore the "Compliance" hub group – that's an internal extension we use.

new navigation experience in Team Services,

A walkthrough today help deploying an Azure Ubuntu Linux VM Running Apache Tomcat for use with Visual Studio Team Services and Team Foundation Server.

"We will configure the VM to enable the Apache Tomcat Deployment task, the Copy Files over SSH task, and the FTP Upload task (using ftps) to enable deployment of web applications from Team Services and TFS," the team stated.

This walkthrough will show specifically how to setup and configure an Ubuntu (v16) VM on Azure to run Tomcat and other necessary services to support three different and distinct Team Services deployment tasks to enable continuous integration and deployment (CI/CD).

Visual Studio Team Services and Team Foundation Server (TFS) now have at least three mechanisms (i.e. deployment and utility tasks) for deploying to a Linux host or virtual machine (VM).

The Apache Tomcat Deployment task is available on the Visual Studio Marketplace.

Head over to MSDN blog post.

In this week's tips and tricks for Power BI and Business Intelligence—Guy in a Cube addresses some of the confusion around Azure Active Directory and how it differs from local Active Directory.

He reviews three Power BI scenarios where Azure Active Directory can be used, particularly relating to gateways, and explains why it's important.

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