Microsoft gives away free software for students Februarie 20, 2008Posted by MoshutZu in IT si Comunicatii, Stiri.
Microsoft Corp. is giving students free access to its most sophisticated tools for writing software and making media-rich Web sites, a move that intensifies its competition with Adobe Systems Inc. and could challenge open source software’s popularity. The Redmond-based software maker said late Monday it will let students download Visual Studio Professional Edition, a software development environment; Expression Studio, which includes graphic design and Web site and hybrid Web-desktop programming tools; and XNA Game Studio 2.0, a video game development program. The company will also give away SQL Server 2005 Developer Edition and Windows Server Standard Edition.
Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates said the company’s past efforts to arrange educational discounts for these programs limited the number of students who ultimately could use them. DreamSpark, as Microsoft is calling the free software offering, opens up access to many more students. “We give up some revenue, but we gain the fact that we’ll get the feedback of these students, get more courses to incorporate our tools into the programs and get more startups where kids are familiar with Visual Studio, Expression Studio and SQL Server,” Gates said in a phone interview. “It’s a brilliant strategic move on the part of Microsoft,” said Chris Swenson, a software industry analyst with NPD Group. “This is one of the core audiences you have to hit if you really want to make a difference in the rich Internet application market going forward.” The programs are available now to more than 35 million college students. My university already provides a bunch of free software from Microsoft, but this will make things even better!