Cognitive Services, IoT Hubs and Azure Functions… on Mars?!?

Are you interested in getting your feet wet with Azure IoT Hubs, Cognitive Services or Azure Functions?  If so, don’t miss this change to get hands on with some Mars themed challenges in a city near you!

At 05:14 GMT, the Joint Space Operations Network lost all contact with the Mission Mars: Fourth Horizon team as they were conducting routine sample collections on the Martian surface. The cause of the interruption is still unknown.

Your mission is to join us in reestablishing communications between the Earth and Mars.

In this free hands-on event you’ll learn the full capabilities of the Microsoft Development platform while sharpening your skills in a fun, fast-paced environment. Meet our experts, develop your skills, and a get chance to put your development abilities to the test.

Microsoft experts will be on hand to take you through the following topics during the event:

  • Azure IoT Hubs – Learn how to establish bi-directional communications with billions of IoT devices.
  • Azure Functions – Dive into the event driven, compute-on-demand experience that extends the existing Azure application platform.
  • Cognitive Services – Build multi-platform apps with powerful algorithms using just a few lines of code.

Sound good? Find a city near you and accept the mission at


Loving Office 365? Now Hack It!

If Office 365 is your thing, you might want to check out this ongoing virtual hackathon for Office 365. Running from Nov 23rd until March 1st, you might find yourself in the position to win some of over $30,000 in prizes – if you’ve got an idea for an app that uses Office 365 to make you EVEN MORE productive!

Hack Productivity gives you access to the Office 365 APIs for mail, calendar, contacts, photo/video, and files so you can create tech solutions that allow people to do everything they set out to do, and more.

Your time-saving, achievement-producing app will be up for cash prizes, plus some other shoutout-worthy swag:

  • meeting w/ a Microsoft product exec
  • one-year allowance on a premium Office 365 service
  • expenses-paid trip to a Microsoft conference
  • Surface products

There will be lots of support throughout the hackathon, including online office hours, tutorials, and tech tips. So if you’d like to develop something cool (and productive!) check off the first thing on your to-do list: Register & start building your productivity hack @