The other side of #MVP … doing the good … community style, another round of SaferInternet 4 Kids #mvpbuzz #meetbe

child_logoFor once I’m not going to talk technology, but I’m going to talk softskils. Being an MVP has a couple rings to the name: technology experts recognized by community all over the world and locally. But for me being an MVP means more than just technology. It’s all about sharing and adding to the greater good of this crazy little thing called community. Microsoft has this great concept called the Citizenship Program on which interacts with social awareness programs all over the world. In Belgium this program collaborates with organizations like ChildFocus, an organization/ Foundation for Missing and Sexually Exploited Children operates under the name Child Focus, which is a public service foundation.

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This organization also tries to educated children on how to be safe online. For this they work together with Microsoft in order to deliver SaferInternet training. MSFT organizes this twice a year, and on October 22nd, it was S-Day again (sorry it took a while to blog on it, but I was waiting for the pictures)

They’ve been organizing this for already a couple of years, and it’s a great experience for both the children and the people who deliver this training. Besides that I find it also needful, since I’m also a parent and I need to get through that phase too somehow, one day.

The schools I went to visit this time where VBS “de Klimop” in Sint-Gillis-Waas (http://www.vbsdeklimop.be) (in the classes of juf Lieve, juf Ellemieke and juf Ann) and VBS “Sint-Lutgart” in Belsele (http://www.sintlutgart.be) (the class of juf Sofie and juf Veerle) . I therefor would also like to thank these institutions, their teachers and their pupils again for their co-operation in this matter, there I find it very important to provide a fun a safer internet experience to children. It’s a medium which should be embraced and not feared, and if we can guide our children this way we can try to make our digital worlds a little better and safer for everyone perhaps ….

and even the kids know how to say thank you

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Yours truly,

Mike, the most valuable parent ( ;-) )

Use BING … the right way (and so as everything else related to Microsoft (and not only online))

Binglogo-orange_WebNOTE: THIS POST IS BOTH AN HOW TO AND A PERSONAL OPINION, YOU DO NOT NEED TO AGREE  WITH ME

If you’re a Microsoft fan (as I am) and fed up with that one thing that always seems to be more “innovative” than the stuff you use, well then maybe it’s time to explain to people on how to use stuff correctly. I hate Google and am not fond of Apple either, because they always give the intention of being innovative, but they aren’t. And those followers of the latter are the ones resilient to change (cause they like to hipster more than we do I guess). But trust me , the guys from Redmond are more innovative than the SF guys ;-)

Having said that, let’s get to the core of the issue in my case. I live in Belgium, and for most services that’s and issue as such … PERIOD. I mean, come ON! Living in Belgium doesn’t automatically make me a French talking guy (or a Walloon). I speak DUTCH (Flemish, and more precise ANTWAARPS! J). Now why Am I saying this all to you? Well since dino’s ruled the world, the Belgian people have always wanted to use software in their own language on their own keyboards with their own settings. Which is fine, up to some point …. But believe me guys, the software you use is build OUTSIDE of your comfort zone and translated software is always crappy (yes MS also yours, sorry!!)

Since the beginning of time all localized software SKU’s have been issue full or not working the same as their brilliant US originated counterparts (especially Office …. Boy that’s terrible in Dutch). So accept the fact, stop using localized stuff and learn some English J (and with that you’ll get the advantage to understand us, the IT guys, a lot better and easier too J #FTW) Localized content yes, localized software no!!! J

I’m using Bing for quite some time now and believe me the results are way better than the Google ones, and less commercial push too.

Now a lot of people addressed me today on this question : How? (reason was of the nice Halloween site the US created, with some cool interaction on it) Cause I always get redirected to the BE site. Well since any browser looks at your region and also your originated IP (yes it does), it will try to give you the closest possible local version. E.g. if I start up a clean browser or private/pr0n browser session I get this:

It’s bing allright, not going to argue there … but somehow the results aren’t the same as if you’re using Bing us …

It has full HTML 5 interaction features and media available and the main screen can change easily (plus the pictures you’re getting are awesome)

No how do I change these settings not redirecting me always to BE instead of going to the US site? Well easy:

  1. Open a browser, and go to http://bing.com
  2. Then click the small gear in the right upper corner in the browser windows so not next to your home or favorites buttons!

  3. This takes you to the settings page of your Bing search prefs:

  4. Click on the WERELDWIJD(WORLDWIDE) menu item
  5. Choose the Verenigde Staten – Engels / (United States – English) region

  6. That’s it, you will be automatically be redirected to the US site from now on, but except for when you clear your browser history/cache/cookies and when doing a Pr0n/Private mode browser session.

Now you have the power to use your search engine with more feist and power than before. Hey even the Wolfram Alpha engine is now better integrated e.g.

The same applies for any other service online from Microsoft BTW, MSDN and TechNet pages are way better in the US region compared to the European Counterparts. So next whenever you’re buying a new MSFT soft or using it’s online services, try to do it immediately in English and be amazed how smoother things will work.

I know I ranted at the beginning of my post, but please at least give it a try and then, maybe, you’ll also see why I rant J

Yours truly,

The Local MickeySoft Bunny J