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Microsoft

Microsoft Surface Pro Arrives Feb. 9 268

adeelarshad82 writes "According to Microsoft, the Surface Windows 8 Pro will be available for purchase on Feb. 9 in the U.S. and Canada. As anticipated, the Surface Pro will be slightly thicker than the Surface with Windows RT, and will weigh about two pounds. The tablet is powered with an Intel Core i5 processor and 4GB of memory. It also includes an 802.11 a/b/g/n dual band Wi-Fi, a stylus for pressure-sensitive input, dual 720p HD webcams, a full-sized USB 3.0 port, microSDXC slot, and mini DisplayPort. Since the Surface Pro runs Windows 8 Pro, it will work with your corporate infrastructure, as well as any older apps that you used on Windows XP to 7. In terms of pricing, the 64GB version will cost $899 while the 128GB will set you back by $999."
Handhelds

Microsoft Surface Pricing Goes Toe-to-Toe With Apple iPad 521

Nerval's Lobster writes "Microsoft has finally revealed the pricing of its upcoming Surface tablet to a small group of journalists, including Time's Harry McCracken, who wrote in an Oct. 16 posting that the device's 32GB version will retail for $499 (or $599 with the flexible keyboard cover) and the 64GB one for $699 (cover included). Preorders will apparently begin by midday Oct. 16. Microsoft unveiled Surface over the summer but kept the pricing a secret until now. That information vacuum led some to hope against hope that Microsoft would attempt something radical and price Surface extraordinarily low—$199, perhaps—in an attempt to undercut Apple's iPad. While that didn't happen, Surface at least matches its biggest rival's low- and high-end price points. The WiFi-only, 16GB version of the iPad retails for $499, while the WiFi-only, 64GB version costs $699 (iPads with a cellular connection cost a bit more)." A related article at BGR explains why the Surface is Microsoft's latest attempt to re-invent itself.
Input Devices

Microsoft Releases Batch of Windows 8 Input Devices 156

jones_supa writes "To accompany Windows 8, Microsoft has released some interesting keyboard and mouse devices, all of which are wireless and use Bluetooth. The Wedge Touch Mouse is an artful product shaped as an angular wedge, being compact enough for travel too. Wedge Mobile Keyboard follows the style of laptop keyboards and includes a snap-on cover. Sculpt Touch Mouse is more like a classic mouse, but features a four-way touch-scroll strip. Finally, we have Sculpt Mobile Keyboard, which is a lighter version of a classic curved keyboard. All four are on the expensive side, but at first blush seem high-quality."
Windows

Windows Phone 8 Officially Unveiled 414

BogenDorpher writes with news that Microsoft has officially introduced Windows Phone 8. The new version of their mobile operating system will bring support for processors with up to 64 cores, as well as resolutions higher than 800x480 — up to 1280x768. It will also include better support for NFC and microSD cards. One important thing to note is that Windows Phone 8 won't be coming to current Windows Phone devices.
Microsoft

Microsoft Details Windows 8 for ARM 372

MrSeb writes "In an 8,000-word treatise, Steven Sinofksy himself has taken up pen and paper to describe Windows 8 on ARM (WOA) in great detail. There's a lot of good stuff in there, but one point is particularly troubling. Quoting Sinofsky: 'WOA does not support running, emulating, or porting existing x86/64 desktop apps. Code that uses only system or OS services from WinRT can be used within an app and distributed through the Windows Store for both WOA and x86/64. Consumers obtain all [WOA] software, including device drivers, through the Windows Store and Microsoft Update or Windows Update.' It's hard to under-emphasize just how huge a change that is. It's one thing to say that ARM CPUs won't support x86 emulation; something else entirely to split software delivery and installation. Up until now, one of the biggest differences between desktop and mobile operating systems has been the ability to install software. It's true that Microsoft's decision to wall off unapproved software installation is similar to the approach of Android and iOS — but iOS isn't the same thing as OS X. Combining both of these decisions under the 'Windows' brand could be disastrous, not because Microsoft is evil, but because it creates two entirely different user experiences on the basis of which ISA your CPU supports."
Windows

Microsoft 'Ribbonizes' Windows 8 File Manager 951

CWmike writes "Microsoft said today it will 'ribbonize' the file manager in next year's Windows 8, adding Explorer to the short list of integrated applications that already sport the interface in Windows 7. Microsoft's Alex Simons, director of program management, released screenshots of the new ribbon interface planned for Explorer (scroll way down). 'We evaluated several different UI command affordances including expanded versions of the Vista/Windows 7 command bar, Windows 95/Windows XP style toolbars and menus, several entirely new UI approaches, and the Office style ribbon,' explained Simons. 'Of these, the ribbon approach offered benefits in line with our goals.' Plans by Microsoft and others to ribbonize applications have often met resistance. 'We knew that using a ribbon for Explorer would likely be met with skepticism by a set of power users, but there are clear benefits,' Simons said."
Image

Pro Silverlight 4 In VB Screenshot-sm 181

jddp writes "MacDonald is a programmer's programmer, and Pro Silverlight 4 in VB is a model of what a programmer's guide should be. He explains a mass of technical information in considerable detail without losing the big-picture. His clear and concise exposition of concepts and functionality is never confusing or needlessly repetitive. The book's organization is logical, yet the chapters can be read in isolation, as the need or interest arises." Keep reading for the rest of jddp's review.
Microsoft

Microsoft Unveils Windows Phone 7 Lineup 391

adeelarshad82 writes "Microsoft officially unveiled its Windows Phone 7 mobile operating system, announcing that it will be available on a total of five devices in the US. Windows Phone 7 handsets from AT&T and T-Mobile will begin shipping in November, while devices from Sprint and Verizon will be available next year. In all, Microsoft announced nine Windows Phone 7 phones, the remainder of which will be available in Canada, Mexico, the UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Singapore, and Australia. It will debut in some European markets on Oct. 21. While early signs are encouraging for Windows Phone 7, it is being deemed as do or die for the future of Microsoft's business."
Microsoft

Ballmer Promises Microsoft Tablet By Christmas 356

judgecorp writes "Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer told an audience at the London School of Economics, that there will be tablets running Microsoft's Windows operating system available by Christmas. 'We as a company will need to cover all form factors,' he told an audience of students and press. 'You'll see slates with Windows on them – you'll see them this Christmas.' Mind you, if he's talking about the rumoured HP Windows 7 slate, he may not be so pleased when it appears. A recent YouTube video showed a supposed prototype which has been described as a 'trainwreck in the making.'"
Games

In-Game Advertising Makes Games Better? 352

Pretty much every time we hear about a game launching in-game advertising it sounds like a horrible idea that will only serve to detract from the experience. However JJ Richards of Massive wants you to give it a chance, claiming that if done correctly it can not only work, but actually enhance the overall experience. "In fact, according to Massive's research, gamers like ads. Here's the caveat: they have to add to the gaming experience. He describes a game that takes place in Times Square. With no ads, it's not real at all. With generic ads, it's a little better. 'Now imagine Times Square with ads you just saw on television or read in a newspaper—the latest movie release or television show or a new car model,' he said. 'Imagine further that it is up-to-the-minute, whether you played your game today or six months from now. That is much more realistic.' His argument is that gamers consume the experience of ads, not just the ads themselves. 'The ads add to and enhance that experience, and our research shows that it is highly effective for both game play as well as advertisers.'"
GUI

Firefox To Replace Menus With Office Ribbon 1124

Barence writes "Mozilla has announced that its plans to bring Office 2007's Ribbon interface to Firefox, as it looks to tidy up its 'dated' browser. 'Starting with Vista, and continuing with Windows 7, the menu bar is going away,' notes Mozilla in its plans for revamping the Firefox user interface. '[It will] be replaced with things like the Windows Explorer contextual strip, or the Office Ribbon, [which is] now in Paint and WordPad, too.' The change will also bring Windows' Aero Glass effects to the browser." Update: 09/24 05:01 GMT by T : It's not quite so simple, says Alexander Limi, who works on the Firefox user experience. "We are not putting the Ribbon UI on Firefox. The article PCpro quotes talks about Windows applications in general, not Firefox." So while the currently proposed direction for Firefox 3.7 involves some substantial visual updates for Windows users (including a menu bar hidden by default, and integration of Aero-styled visual elements), it's not actually a ribbon interface. Limi notes, too, that Linux and Mac versions are unaffected by the change.
Microsoft

Microsoft Pushes For Single Global Patent System 495

Xerolooper writes "What would the world be like if everyone could enjoy the same patent system we use in the USA? From the article: 'A senior lawyer at Microsoft is calling for the creation of a global patent system to make it easier and faster for corporations to enforce their intellectual property rights around the world.' They have already attracted opposition from the open-source community and the Pirate Party. According to the article, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) will be meeting in Geneva on the 17th and 18th of September."
IBM

IBM Patents Tweeting Remote Control 282

Fluffeh writes "IBM has applied for a patent on a network-enabled smart remote control that sends out a message to Twitter, Facebook or a blog when you start watching a TV show." Hopefully this launches an exciting patent landgrab of devices that are socially enabled. Your car can tweet when you leave your garage. Your dishwasher can tweet when the load is done. Your skillet can tweet when your eggs are burnt. And they say innovation is dead.

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