Bill Gates' mysterious new company

Posted by sumeethevans on October 23 2008, 4:22 AM. Posted in Bill Gates.

Just months after his Microsoft farewell, Bill Gates is quietly creating a new company -- complete with high-tech office space, a cryptic name and even its own trademark.Public documents describe the new Gates entity -- bgC3 LLC -- as a “think tank.” It’s housed within a Kirkland office that the Microsoft co-founder established on his own after leaving his day-to-day executive role at the company this summer. Is this Bill Gates’ next big business? A Gates insider gives an emphatic no  -- saying it’s not a commercial venture but rather a vehicle to coordinate the software mogul’s work on his business and philanthropic endeavors. However, bgC3 will also oversee Gates’ personal pursuit of breakthrough ideas in science and technology. The insider said the goal isn’t necessarily to create new companies, although ideas could be passed along to Microsoft, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation -- or others – as it makes sense.Whatever the ultimate role of the company, the circumstances surrounding its creation provide a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the new era of Gates’ life.State records show that the company, originally called Carillon Holdings, was established in March 2008. It formally changed its name to bgC3 in early July, 10 days after Gates left his full-time job at the company he built into an industry giant. He remains Microsoft’s chairman and continues to work part-time on projects.

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Announcing Service Pack 2 (SP2) for the 2007 Microsoft Office System

Posted by sumeethevans on October 23 2008, 4:20 AM. Posted in Office 2007.

We’re pleased to announce that Service Pack 2 (SP2) for the 2007 Microsoft Office system is expected to be released in the near future.  Although we aren’t yet announcing the exact release date, it will fall between February and April of 2009.

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Historically, we have waited to communicate details about service packs until their release (or very shortly before).  As we communicated with SP3 for Office 2003 and SP1 for the 2007 Office System, we will be taking steps to increase transparency and visibility into the Office servicing model at the request of our customers.  To that end, we would like to start sharing some details into what will be included in SP2 for the 2007 Office system.  This is by no means an exhaustive list of everything included in this service pack and we will share more details prior to the final release, but we want to start communicating to customers what they should be aware of at a high level. 

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To be fair, this is not the first time we have talked about SP2.  Several months ago, we announced that we’ll be further demonstrating our increased commitment to interoperability by including support for Open Document Format (ODF), XML Paper Specification (XPS), and Portable Document Format (PDF) in SP2.  In addition to those file format additions, some other highlights that you’ll find in SP2 include:

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For Office Desktop Programs:

·         Improved Outlook Calendaring Reliability<o:p></o:p>·         Improved Outlook Performance<o:p></o:p>·         Enabling Object Model support for Charts in PowerPoint and Word<o:p></o:p>·         Improved cryptographic functionality by supporting all cryptographic algorithms offered by the operating system<o:p></o:p>·         Improved functionality in Excel’s charting mechanism<o:p></o:p>·         Ability to ungroup SmartArt graphics (and as a result, the ability to add animations to them in PowerPoint)<o:p></o:p>·         Ability for Visio to export UML models to an XML file compliant with the XMI standard<o:p></o:p>·         Tool that enables the uninstall of Office client Service Packs<o:p></o:p><o:p> </o:p>

For Servers:

·         Performance and manageability improvements to variations in Enterprise Content Management (ECM) including STSADM commands for repairing links between source and target pages<o:p></o:p>·         Improvements around processing status approvals from Office Project Web Access into Office Project Professional 2007<o:p></o:p>

·         Improvements to read-only content databases and index rebuild timer jobs in Windows SharePoint Services 3.0

 

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Identity Integration Feature Pack for Microsoft Windows Server Active Directory with Service Pack 2 (SP2)

Posted by bink on October 23 2008, 1:16 AM. Posted in Identity Integration.

Identity Integration Feature Pack for Microsoft® Windows Server™ Active Directory® with Service Pack 2 (SP2) manages identities and coordinates user details across Microsoft Active Directory, Active Directory Application Mode (ADAM), Microsoft Exchange 2000 Server, and Exchange Server 2003 implementations. Using Identity Integration Feature Pack, you can combine identity information for a given user or resource into a single, logical view. Identity Integration Feature Pack also automates the provisioning of new and updated identity data, eliminating time-consuming, repetitive administration and the need to manually add, delete, or update identity information, groups, and user accounts.
 
 
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Microsoft and Travelport Team to Help Airlines, Travel Industry Suppliers and Travel Agencies Enrich and Personalize the Traveler Experience

Posted by sumeethevans on October 22 2008, 6:48 PM. Posted in Microsoft Corp.

Microsoft and Travelport today announced they are teaming together to develop an integrated set of services targeted for the travel industry to address challenges faced by travelers, suppliers and travel agents. Through the collaboration, Microsoft and Travelport will explore the development of services designed to improve the traveler experience and to provide airlines, travel suppliers and travel agencies, including travel management companies (TMCs) and online travel agents (OTAs), with new revenue and cost reduction opportunities, broader distribution reach, and improved customer satisfaction and loyalty. The services are slated for the first quarter of 2009.

“In bringing together Microsoft’s rich, interactive technologies with Travelport’s deep marketplace of travel content and informed choice, we are creating a completely innovative solution for the travel industry,” said Geoff Cairns, worldwide managing director of Hospitality at Microsoft. “This will improve the traveler experience with a new level of personalization and change how suppliers, TMCs and OTAs reach travelers.”

In the travel industry, Microsoft is focused on helping airlines and service providers deliver a highly personalized travel experience across all channels and from all devices. This includes helping service providers to better identify travelers, understand their individual preferences and needs, and build a strong emotional connection through all stages of travel.

Travelport is the leader in Web-based travel e-commerce and provides the most relevant, cost-efficient technologies and services available to participants throughout the global travel distribution chain. The company processes 1.1 billion travel transactions per day. More than 63,000 travel agencies, the world’s leading travel suppliers and corporations globally rely on Travelport to drive productivity, lower operating costs and serve millions of travelers throughout the world.

This engagement builds on a history of Microsoft and Travelport working together on innovative technology solutions in the travel space. Previously, the two companies have collaborated to create ground-breaking solutions, such as Travelport’s e-Pricing shopping technology, which was originally developed for Expedia and now benefits all Travelport customers, and Travelport Cache Control, which was developed with Microsoft. Travelport also provides the Microsoft corporate travel booking solution.

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Microsoft SecondLight Makes 'Surface' Magic

Posted by sumeethevans on October 22 2008, 6:44 PM. Posted in Surface.

Take <!-- start ziffarticle //-->Microsoft Surface<!-- end ziffarticle //-->, sprinkle it with fairy dust, and you might have something close to Microsoft's SecondLight, a new technology in the works from Microsoft Research.

The experimental SecondLight technology adds a second dimension to Surface, allowing users to slide "magic lenses" over the display to provide a second surface that can be linked to the first. In one example, Microsoft researchers projected a picture of a car on the Surface display. But add separate, portable pieces of glass that can be moved across the display, and presto! the glasses are transformed into "X-ray specs" allowing a wireframe model to be viewed.

It's all sleight of hand, of course. But if history is any guide, SecondLight will eventually be part of future Surface displays.

The research is being presented as part of the User Interface Software and Technology conference this week. In addition to SecondLight, Microsoft's <!-- start ziffarticle //-->touchless SideSight "touchscreen" for PDAs<!-- end ziffarticle //--> was presented, as well as "tap" and "caress" movements for cell phones<!-- end ziffarticle //-->, plus a a new way to interact with images.

How does SecondLight work? As a trick of the light.

Surface projects images onto a display, and Microsoft hasn't abandoned that with SecondLight; the display still detects and interacts with objects or fingers that touch it.

Full Story At Source (via gizmodo.com)

 

Watch out Apple iPhone, Microsoft SideSight may steal your throne

Posted by sumeethevans on October 22 2008, 6:43 PM. Posted in Microsoft Corp.

Apple’s iPhone popularized touch in the mobile marketplace by bringing a sleek, virtually button-less device to the competitive landscape previously focused on incremental change. Now it’s the iPhone’s turn to worry because Microsoft may be taking interface to a whole new level. The SideSight interprets gestures made by a single finger and executes commands based on the type of motion.

It sure sounds a lot like mousegestures, but taken off the screen and brought into the physical dimension. A direct motion toward the SideSight would be interpreted as a click, while a motion to one side could move through a list of possible selections.

Using touch to interpret commands provides a lot of flexibility for devices like the iPhone. But, to accommodate the ongoing miniaturization trend humans will need a different way to connect with their electronic world, especially if screens shrink to the size of a watch. Here are some other gestures Microsoft’s SideSight can interpret:

By twisting one’s hands appropriately on either side of the phone, objects could be rotated in place. Pages could be panned and scrolled by moving a hand up and down, and Microsoft also proved that text could be entered and edited on the main screen through a stylus while the other hand scrolled the page — a movement that would be akin to the motions a user’s hands would make if he or she were writing on a sheet of paper, according to Gearlog.

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Media Center Gadgets for SideShow released!

Posted by sumeethevans on October 22 2008, 6:42 PM. Posted in Windows Vista.

We've just relased the Windows Media Center gadgets for SideShow!

There are four gadgets – TV, Music, Pictures + Videos, and Now Playing – that let you browse and control your Media Center PC from any SideShow remote control or device, or even a Windows Mobile phone (if it has the platform installed). The gadgets let you browse the TV guide and details, recorded shows, your photos, music (with cover art), and have playback controls to start/stop/record/etc media.

It was a pleasure to work with the SideShow team on this project. Thanks to everyone in the community for your feedback via Microsoft Connect and community sites. We read every comment and used them to make the gadgets better or just used as feedback for the future.

Download locations: Install the 32-bit version Install the 64-bit version

For more details, please see the SideShow blog at http://blogs.msdn.com/sideshow/archive/2008/10/21/media-center-gadgets-for-sideshow-released-available-on-the-windows-live-gallery.aspxDownload At Source

 

November Edition of TechNet Magazine Online

Posted by sumeethevans on October 22 2008, 6:41 PM. Posted in TechNet EDGE.

System Center: Monitoring Windows Server 2008 with OpsMgr 2007As you deploy Windows Server 2008 into your environment, you’ll need a way to manage and monitor its health, performance, and availability. Fortunately, you can use the existing System Center tools you are already familiar with. See how you can use OpsMgr 2007 to manage your Windows Server 2008 assets.

System Center: Using Configuration Manager with Windows Server 2008The release of System Center Configuration Manager SP1 added full support for managing Windows Server 2008 systems, including such new features as server core. Get a quick overview of deploying the ConfigMgr agent and using ConfigMgr to manage Windows Server 2008 systems throughout your organization.

System Center: Granular Targeting in Operations Manager 2007For every monitoring object you build, you must also decide what target to use. Choosing the correct target is critical, but knowing how to go about choosing the correct target is not always clear. Steve Rachui explores various options for correct targeting in OpsMgr and provides guidance for choosing the appropriate method for each scenario.

Windows Server 2008: Presentation Virtualization with Enhanced Terminal ServicesVirtualization isn’t limited to virtual machines and the virtualization of operating systems. Terminal Services has been abstracting the presentation layer of remotely run applications and desktops for years. Take a close look at key improvements to Terminal Services in Windows Server 2008 and get some tips for using these new features.

Windows Server 2008: Tracking Changes in Your Enterprise DatabaseSQL Server 2008 introduces two new features that allow you to track changes more easily and efficiently. Paul Randal examines the new Change Tracking and Change Data Capture features and discusses the implications these features will have for database administrators.

Windows 7 targets October 2009 RTM, retail soon after?

Posted by sumeethevans on October 22 2008, 6:39 PM. Posted in Windows &quot;7&quot;.

Connecting the dots is so fun. Usually I don’t speculate about release dates, especially if the only source is “I heard from my step-brother’s uncle who knows someone who works on Windows”, but I’m pretty confident about this one.

Twitter user “remtiwk” pointed out to me something very interesting yesterday which only today I realized is not just bluff or a mistake. On the ever-changing WinHEC 2008 website now writes “there is not another WinHEC planned before Windows 7 is released”. Wikipedia then confirmed WinHEC was an annual event. This morning, Ed Bott links to an interview which the ASUS CEO is quoted as saying “in the second half of next year we will put Windows 7 on Eee PCs”.

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System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 Released!

Posted by bink on October 22 2008, 6:12 AM. Posted in System Center.

Microsoft is pleased to announce the release to manufacturing (RTM) of System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008 – the next generation of Microsoft’s solution for managing the virtualized infrastructure. A key member of System Center – a centralized, enterprise-class suite of data center management products -- Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) 2008 enables customers to configure and deploy new virtual machines and centrally manage physical and virtual infrastructure from one console. New to this version of VMM is multi-vendor virtualization platform support, Performance and Resource Optimization (PRO) and enhanced support of “high availability” host clusters, among other new features.

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SCVMM 2008 provides a management solution for the virtualized data center that helps enable centralized management of IT infrastructure, increased server utilization, and dynamic resource optimization across multiple virtualization platforms
 
Highlights of System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2008
  • Support for VMs Running on Windows Server 2008
  • Multi-Vendor Virtualization Platform Support
  • Performance and Resource Optimization (PRO)
  • Host Cluster Support for “High Availability” Virtual Machines

Deep Zoom Composer

Posted by vasudev on October 20 2008, 10:40 AM. Posted in SilverLight.

 Prepare images for use with the Deep Zoom feature in Silverlight 2. A tool to allow the preparation of images for use with the Deep Zoom feature currently being previewed in Silverlight 2. The new Deep Zoom technology in Silverlight allows users to see images on the Web like they never have before. The smooth in-place zooming and panning that Deep Zoom allows is a true advancement and raises the bar on what image viewing should be. High resolution images need to be prepared for use with Deep Zoom and this tool allows the user to create Deep Zoom composition files that control the zooming experience and then export all the necessary files for deployment with Silverlight 2...................Download At Source

 

New Windows Live Hotmail Wave3 Screenshots

Posted by vasudev on October 19 2008, 12:50 PM. Posted in Windows Live, Windows Live Hotmail.

 

Today as I signed into one of my Hotmail accounts, I was presented with the following screen saying ‘Your inbox has a slightly new look’

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So I was excited to see my Hotmail account updated about which we have been hearing  since some time. The updated Hotmail is indeed faster, has cleaner and simple looks, new themes in line with other Wave 3 Live products, like the new Windows Live Messenger beta. Updated version has better Contacts control. And more improvements will be coming in the days to come. Such as * Hotmail storage to grow with ones account at reasonable pace, Inbox capacity will automatically increase as you need more space. *IM through Hotmail. *New Calendar features.

Let us check some of the screenshots of new Windows Live Hotmail:

You will have choice of Themes replacing the earlier color schemes making it uniform with other Wave3 Beta Live products.Remember thought that this new updated Windows Live Hotmail is not in Beta. From the Options as you move your Mouse cursor over various themes , the change gets reflected in the interface.

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