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Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3 Coming

Microsoft is planning a beta 3 of IE7 for some time in August, reports Neowin. It will feature problem and bug fixes, not additional features or interface changes. Among them, it will fix problems with CAPTCHA images. It will also add to the RSS reader the ability to mark feed items as read.

June 6th, 2006 Posted by | Applications, General, Internet Explorer | no comments

Windows Live Mail Desktop Gets Gmail-Like Advertising

Microsoft has added to the latest beta of Windows Live Mail Desktop a feature called Active Search, which adds contextual advertising alongside email messages. The feature, powered by Kanoodle ads, analyzes the content of emails and displays relevant advertising on the right-hand side of the program. It also contains a search box, allowing users to run an internet search from within the software (and that features ads by Microsoft AdCenter). Users can turn off the Active Search pane, but will then be presented with the old, untargeted banner ads.

Danny Sullivan points out that when Google started doing this two years ago, there was an uproar and legislation. Either no one cares, or we’ve gotten used to the idea since then. I’ll probably be keeping Active Search on, since my experience with Gmail’s ads is that they are sometimes useful, but, more importantly, they are real easy to ignore.

The WLMD blog has screenshots of the feature, as well as addressing the privacy concerns.

Microsoft also released MSN AdLab, with eleven keyword tools available for advertisers (seven more are coming soon). Read more about it at Search Engine Watch.

June 6th, 2006 Posted by | General, Live, Mail, Windows | no comments

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Microsoft Has Some Top Products, Windows/Office/IE Completely Ignored

PC World has once again released its list of the top 100 products of the year, its always interesting and vaguely defined listing of “tech stuff that is good”. Google Earth is sixth on the list, with appearances by Google Search (#17), Blogger (#33), Google Desktop Search (#47). Oh, and Firefox, an open source project somewhat funded by Google and somewhat run by Google employees, is #12.

On the Microsoft front, the Xbox 360 shows all the way down at number 89. Ouch, and what? How is the hot and popular Xbox rated lower than the floundering and stagnant Blogger? Other Microsoft products: Windows Live Local (#39), and the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 Keyboard (#54).

Other products of note:

  • (#9) – Google Video competitor. Google did not make the list.
  • Apple Boot Camp (#10) – Yes, software to run Windows on a Mac is high on the list, while Windows is not on it at all.
  • Ubuntu Linux distribution (#27) – So, operating systems are allowed. Are you telling me Windows XP doesn’t beat anything on this list?
  • Yahoo Mail (#30) – Gmail and Hotmail didn’t make the list.
  • TiVo (#31) – Okay, how about Windows Media Center?
  • Opera 9 (#48)
  • Yahoo Maps (#56) – Again, no Google Maps
  • Yahoo Music Engine (#73)
  • Yahoo Flickr (#78)
  • Yahoo (#93)
  • Amazon A9 Toolbar (#96)

Oh, and on their top companies of the year list, Yahoo was named Web Company of the Year, Apple the Hardware Company of the Year, while Sony was the Worst Company of the Year.

Hat-tip: Frank at the Google Earth blog, who writes about the list here.

Interestingly, Windows Live Local is listed number 39, Yahoo Maps is listed number 56. But, Google Maps doesn’t even make it on the list – which just doesn’t seem right.


June 6th, 2006 Posted by | Apple, Applications, Firefox, General, Google, Hotmail, Internet Explorer, Linux, Live, Local, MSN, Office, Spaces, Windows, Xbox, Xbox 360, XP, Yahoo | no comments