Review Category : Microsoft

Last week, Microsoft posted a promotional video for Microsoft Surface 2 tablet. The video shown involved the founder of Sweet Loren’s Ready-to-Bake Desserts, Loren Brill, uses one device for everything in her life – Surface 2. She used Surface 2 for her productive work on the go by using Office 2013, Skype calls and more. Today, Microsoft posted another marketing video. This time, Surface 2 is being used by a wedding planner. Ashlee is a wedding planner and someone who pretty much helps turn people’s dreams into reality. Being a wedding planner she plans and executes one of the most important days in a person’s life, and she’s using Surface 2 as her one device to fulfill her passion for helping people write their love stories. Ashlee spends a lot of time on the go and out on location. On a given afternoon she might be out testing cakes or ...

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With the Nokia/Microsoft deal officially closing  on April 25, Stephen Elop has made his triumphant return to Microsoft. Elop is now the executive vice president (EVP) of the Microsoft Devices Group overseeing an expanded devices business that includes Lumia smartphones and tablets, Nokia mobile phones, Xbox hardware, Surface, Perceptive Pixel products, and accessories.  Other Nokia executives joining Microsoft include Jo Harlow, Juha Putkiranta, Timo Toikkanen, and Chris Weber. They will report to Elop for the time being. Elop will be part of Nadella’s senior leadership team which includes Terry Myerson, Qi Lu, Amy Hood, Lisa Brummel, Chris Capossela, Scott Guthrie, Mark Penn, Eric Rudder, Harry Shum, Brad Smith, Kirill Tatarinov, and Kevin Turner. Here is part of the bio: Elop rejoined Microsoft in April 2014 following the company’s acquisition of the Nokia Devices and Services business. As Nokia’s president and chief executive officer from 2010 to 2013, Elop led the company through a ...

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Today, Microsoft released an update (2961887) for Internet Explorer 10 on Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, and Windows RT, and for Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012 R2, and Windows RT 8.1. The update addresses the vulnerabilities described in Adobe Security bulletin APSB14-13. For more information about this update, including download links, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 2961887. The following files are available for download from the Microsoft Download Center: Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows 8.1 (KB2961887) Download the Windows8.1-KB2961887-x86.msu package now.  Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows 8.1 x64-based systems (KB2961887) Download the Windows8.1-KB2961887-x64.msu package now. Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows 8 (KB2961887) Download the Windows8-RT-KB2961887-x86.msu package now. Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows 8 x64-based systems (KB2961887) Download the Windows8-RT-KB2961887-x64.msu package now. Update for Internet Explorer Flash Player for Windows Server 2012 R2 (KB2961887) Download ...

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Microsoft today announced an update to its Windows Intune service to add support for Windows Phone 8.1 and Samsung Knox devices. The previous update provided the ability to deploy and remove email profiles on mobile devices, data protection configuration settings for devices running iOS 7, and the ability to remotely lock or reset a device’s PIN. Today we are rolling out an update to Windows Intune which will provide support for Windows Phone 8.1 as well support for Samsung Galaxy devices supported with the KNOX platform. For Windows Phone 8.1, there are additional device configuration settings, software installation (sideloading) enhancements, selective wipe, support for Web Authentication Broker (WAB) enrollment, and automatic MDM certificate renewal. For Samsung devices which support KNOX, we now support device configuration settings directly through KNOX Standard (formerly Samsung SAFE) as well as through Exchange ActiveSync.   The configuration settings are the same today, and we’re working on releasing ...

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Facing increasing competition from Dropbox, Google and others Microsoft has increased storage from 25 to 1 TB for OneDrive for Business customers: OneDrive for Business storage from 25GB to 1TB per user. All Office 365 ProPlus customers will get 1TB of OneDrive for Business storage per user as part of their Office 365 ProPlus subscription. Microsoft will help organizations migrate data to OneDrive for Business Historically OneDrive for business had been tied to Office 365. However, earlier this month the Redmond software giant started offering OneDrive for business as a standalone product. Microsoft currently has promotional pricing for new customers to OneDrive for business: Introductory promotional pricing: $2.50 per user per month (a 50% discount on standard pricing, $5 per user per month). For customers with Office with Software Assurance (SA) or Office 365 ProPlus: $1.50 per user per month. Source: Office Blog   ...

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The United States Department of Homeland Security has issued advisory for computers users to avoid using Internet Explorer. This is due to a zero day exploit that was recently uncovered. The exploit is believed to affect ALL versions on Internet Explorer (6-11). Users on Windows XP will not receive a patch; the exception are enterprise/government customers that have special agreements with Microsoft which often cost millions of dollars. The advisory asks users to consider alternatives to Internet Explorer. “We are currently unaware of a practical solution to this problem,” Carnegie Mellon’s Software Engineering Institute warned in a separate advisory, that US-CERT linked to in its warning. Cybersecurity software maker FireEye Inc warned that a sophisticated group of hackers have been exploiting the bug in a campaign dubbed “Operation Clandestine Fox.” “It’s a campaign of targeted attacks seemingly against U.S.-based firms, currently tied to defense and financial sectors,” said FireEye spokesman Vitor ...

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Google X is a well known research group within Google that works on special projects directly overseen by co-founder Sergey Brin. Two popular projects include Google Glass and the Google driverless car. A new report claims Microsoft has formed a similar group inside Microsoft dubbed “Special Projects Group in Microsoft Research (MSR).”  The group’s mission is specifically to work on “disruptive technologies that could benefit the company and society.” In addition the new group will address “hard and interesting problems” in the areas of systems, networking, distributed computing, UX design, devices, cloud, mobility, machine learning/artifical intelligence, big data and datacenter technologies. According to the report, the new MSR Special Projects team boss is Norman Whitaker. Whitaker was previously Deputy Director of the Information Innovation Office at DARPA, the U.S. Department of Defense’s research arm and Program Manager for the DARPA Urban Challenge program. DARPA has had close ties to Google in the past and funded projects ...

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The United States Supreme Court has rejected an appeal by Novell without comment. The lawsuit accused Microsoft of illegally protecting its Windows computer operating system from competition 20 years ago by undercutting a WordPerfect. Novell was looking to revive a lawsuit that accused Microsoft of anticompetitive conduct during development of its Windows 95 operating system in 1994. Novell said that, late in the rollout process, Microsoft withheld software components known as namespace extensions so competing developers would have trouble making their programs run smoothly on Windows. Novell said the move slowed the development of WordPerfect, a word-processing program that posed a threat to Microsoft’s Word. Novell, now part of privately held Wizard Parent LLC, argued in its appeal that Microsoft “made its own operating system less attractive to consumers in order to crush competition and protect its operating system monopoly.” A Denver-based federal appeals court threw out the lawsuit stating “antitrust laws rarely impose ...

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Microsoft today revealed more details about the Xbox Originals program in which they there are over 12 different projects are under production. We already know that Steven Spielberg is working with 343 Industries for Halo based interactive content, in addition to this, the man behind Alien and Blade Runner Ridley Scott is working a another Halo based Digital feature for Xbox. The project is expected to be released later this year along with new Halo game launch. When asked about whether Scott Free production is another Web series, like Forward Unto Dawn (a Halo live-action show from 2012), Levin said, “Similar, but higher budget. We’re biting off something a little bigger. We’ll be shooting in Ireland and Iceland. It’s not following Master Chief.” From Venture Beat, Halo embarked on a digital feature a couple of years ago. It was a risk at the time because we weren’t sure how the fans ...

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We’ve been hearing for months about Microsoft’s plans to bring exclusive original programming to the Xbox. Nearly two years ago Microsoft hired former CBS executive Nancy Tellum to lead Xbox Entertainment Studios (XES). Tellum has at least 12 projects she is working on, six are in production, while the other six are still in the earlier stages on the process. The first, premiering on June 13th, will be a  multi-camera, multi-stage interactive live broadcast of the Bonnaroo music festival on the Xbox. Xbox Entertainment Studios has attracted a slew of top Hollywood talent to develop its original programming slate, with names like Steven Spielberg and Ridley Scott attached to two separate scripted projects based on the “Halo” franchise – but that’s only the beginning. Other shows in production include an unscripted series about international street soccer, an original drama about robotic servants in a dystopian world, and a documentary about the search ...

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Microsoft today announced that they are enabling free group video calling to everyone. For the last few years, Skype offered group video calling to Premium users on Windows desktop and Mac and more recently Xbox One. Today, they are making group video calling free – for all users on these platforms. And also, in the future, they’ll be enabling group video calling for all our users across more platforms – at no cost. When not in the office at Skype, I’m part of a cycling team with a group of four local friends. We’re training for a coast-to-coast charity cycling event but spend our weeks in separate parts of the world on business. As planning for our training days is a challenge, we often rely on Skype group video calls to stay connected. Now that Skype group video calling is available to everyone, free of charge, it makes our group ...

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The ConnectED initiative will, within five years, connect 99 percent of America’s students to the digital age through next-generation broadband and high-speed wireless in their schools and libraries. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and companies like Apple, Microsoft, Sprint, and Verizon are already providing their support, collectively pledging to connect more than 15,000 schools and 20 million students by the end of 2015. As part of this program, Microsoft will launch a substantial affordability program open to all U.S. public schools by deeply discounting the price of its Windows operating system, which will decrease the price of Windows-based devices. Microsoft and its partners that includes Acer, Asus, Dell, Fujitsu, HP, Lenovo, Panasonic, and Toshiba will offer school districts to buy Windows-based devices for their students at sharp discounts. Microsoft is donating over $1 billion for this program. Read more about it here. ...

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Last year, Lenovo announced a premium 8 inch tablet constructed of machine-cut aluminum called ThinkPad 8. Lenovo Australia website has revealed that the there is an 10- inch version in the name of ThinkPad 10 which is expected to be announced soon. This upcoming ThinkPad 10 will be powered by 1.6GHz quad-core  Intel Atom processor and can be configured up to 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. It will sport the same full HD 1,920 x 1,200 screen as ThinkPad 8 and will come with an 8-megapixel rear camera and a 2-megapixel front cam. And as you can expect from a business class tablet, it will support Stylus input and you will have LTE version SKUs as well. There will be variety of accessories like keyboard case, dock, and keyboard dock for this tablet as well. We expect the basic SKU of this tablet to start at $499 and will go ...

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In addition to the project on mechanical keyboards that can detect gestures, Microsoft Research has also demoed another project at ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems 2014 related to new vision based system. This project is called RetroDepth, and this system can accurately sense the 3D silhouettes of hands, styluses, and other objects, as they interact on and above physical surfaces. The main highlight is that it can be setup using cheap and simple methods. We present RetroDepth, a new vision-based system for accurately sensing the 3D silhouettes of hands, styluses, and other objects, as they interact on and above physical surfaces. Our setup is simple, cheap, and easily reproducible, comprising of two infrared cameras, diffuse infrared LEDs, and any off-the-shelf retro-reflective material. The retro-reflector aids image segmentation, creating a strong contrast between the surface and any object in proximity. A new highly efficient stereo matching algorithm ...

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The 2dn gen Microsoft Surface Touch Covers already supports gesture in them. But, you have to perform the gestures on the keyboard. This new project from Microsoft Research will allow you to perform gestures over the keyboard without even touching them. Such user experience is enabled by low-resolution matrix of infrared (IR) proximity sensors between the keys of the mechanical keyboard. Watch the video demo above. We present a new type of augmented mechanical keyboard, sensing rich and expressive motion gestures performed both on and directly above the device. A low-resolution matrix of infrared (IR) proximity sensors is interspersed with the keys of a regular mechanical keyboard. This results in coarse but high frame-rate motion data. We extend a machine learning algorithm, traditionally used for static classification only, to robustly support dynamic, temporal gestures. We propose the use of motion signatures a technique that utilizes pairs of motion history images and a random ...

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You may recall our reporting on the Atari documentary which is being exclusively produced by Microsoft for the Xbox.  The documentary team ran afoul of the New Mexico state government which put the planned excavation on hold.  But these issues how now been cleared up and the public is invited to see the dig. Xbox One: Atari Documentary Dig Which Was Earlier Put On Hold By The State Government Now Approved Atari Documentary Dig Put On Hold by the State Government An Xbox original documentary series is telling the story behind Atari’s alleged burial of millions of unsold “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial” game cartridges in a small town in New Mexico three decades ago. An excavation to find those games was carried out April 26. Spectators were invited to watch the unearthing to see whether the burial is urban legend or fact. The story goes that in 1983, Atari, faced with ...

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