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Xbox Live Video Expected To See Significant Revenue Growth

Emerging Media Dynamics has issued a report that predicts the future revenue growth of the Xbox Live Video Marketplace, where users can buy TV shows and rent movies for download at a low price. They predict revenue for 2007 to hit $92.25 million, and to increase eightfold over the next four years, achieving an impressive $726 million by 2011. That’s a healthy chunk of the market for offline video rentals, expected to shrink to $6.2 billion by 2010, and a solid health factor that will help bring the third Xbox to market.

January 17th, 2007 Posted by | General, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox Live | no comments

Track The Vista Bus Across America

Take a look on the right:

That’s a Microsoft Gadget that shows you where the Windows Vista bus is right now, thanks to a GPS unit on the bus. The bus shoved off yesterday, and will be going for another week, heading to all sorts of interesting locations. The Gadget is by Donavon West, and here’s the code you can use to put it on your blog right now:

< div style="position:relative;width:130px;height:152px;" >
< script src="" type="text/javascript">
< /div >

Donavon’s blog has all the information you need to put it on, Windows Live Spaces, or the Windows Vista Sidebar.

What else about the bus? Well, the Windows Vista team blog has photos of the inside and outside, and while the outside is cool, the inside makes me want to sign a lease! Leather couches and armchairs, nice TV, and plenty of hookups for anything geeky? I want to live there…

Today, they are at Ohio State university, tonight in Pittsburgh, while yesterday they were in Nashville and Lexington.

January 17th, 2007 Posted by | General, Vista, Windows | one comment

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Will Sinofsky Undo Microsoft Transparency?

Robert McLaws has some interesting thoughts on the fact that Steven Sinofsky, head of the Office division, will be taking over the Windows division any second now, if he hasn’t already. The concern: While Office has been run better than Windows the last half-decade, but it’s also been a tighter ship, where the developers don’t talk about anything until the product is about to hit public beta. If Windows runs the same way, we won’t be hearing as much about the next version for at least another 18 months; even those under NDA will be kept out of the loop.

I don’t like the idea of all the communication we’ve had from Microsoft breaking down and the company being all secretive, so I’m hoping Sinofsky doesn’t lockdown everything. Still, I think Sinofsky would be wise to keep things a little more closed than they have been in the past, as a little more mystery at Microsoft could do wonders for public opinion. Microsoft talked too much about Longhorn development before it was ready, and that is always going to hurt how people feel about the final product.

January 17th, 2007 Posted by | Applications, Corporate, General, Office, Vista, Windows | no comments

Microsoft Marketing Monday Melee

What? I like alliteration, even if I have to been inaccurate. I swear, if anyone tells me it isn’t Monday, I’ll homeboard their ass. But more on that in a few paragraphs…

Let’s take a look at some marketing stuff, by and related to Microsoft:

Microsoft has put out press releases saying Windows Vista will generate $7 billion in new IT revenue for New York State in 2007, as well as $2.5 billion for New Jersey. I wonder how many people feel about these studies linking Microsoft software to new revenue. Do they actually prove anything, and do corporations make their purchasing decisions based on them?

Also, Apple’s got some new “Get A Mac” ads. Everyone already has their feelings on these, so lets just let ‘em roll:

If you want to talk Microsoft marketing campaigns (and you do, as I’ve decided!), here’s the site for the Belgian launch of Windows Vista. According to Miel, they’re renting out the Atomium, a gigantic atom-shaped structure, filling each sub-atomic particle with a different look at Microsoft stuff, including gaming, photo/video editing, Office 2007, TV and movies, and VIP lounge. Take a look at the picture of the Atomium, because if there were a geek heaven, that’s what god’s house would look like.

Miel’s got another post on an Xbox 360 campaign centered on “homeboarding”, which apparently involves snowboarding around your house. It’s such a stupid idea, it’s hilarious, and reminds me of my own recent pastime: Slipping on your dog’s bed and painfully fracturing your ankle (if you have to, ask). Anyway, Microsoft wants you to send in your homeboarding videos, because the best Belgian entries will get some cool prizes. Miel says if you enter, but are not from Belgium, you can post in his comments and he’ll pick a non-Belgian prize winner, too. I might just have to enter.

Here’s the promo video, which shows you what homeboarding is all about:

Video: Homeboarding season is open!

Wicked, man!

January 17th, 2007 Posted by | Applications, General, Humor, Office, Vista, Windows, Xbox, Xbox 360 | no comments

Customize Your Vista Boot Screen Generator


Development Dan has created a simple utility that lets you customize the boot screen that shows up when you boot up a Windows Vista PC. You can choose two images, an 800×600 and a 1024×768 image in up to 24-bit color, and they will fill your screen with wonder and color (or really stupid messages) when you start up. You can use any image you please, so long as it meets the requirements (and Photoshop,, or even Paint can handle it), so start creating!

How to do it:

  • Download the setup file and install, then run the software
  • Save your image as both an 800×600 and 1024×768 BMP (bitmap) file, or use two seperate images
  • Select both versions in the program
  • Save the boot screen file
  • Copy the boot screen file to [WINDOWS DIRECTORY]\System32\en-US
  • If you run into any trouble, it may be User Account Control getting in your way.

(via Bink)

January 17th, 2007 Posted by | General, Vista, Windows | one comment

Microsoft Prepping “Family Pack” Discount For Vista

Word is coming down that Microsoft is planning a cool Windows Vista Ultimate perk: Extra copies of Windows at a good discount. Here’s the deal: If you have Windows Vista Ultimate, you can take the Ultimate DVD and put it into two more computers and get Windows Vista Home Premium for a significantly reduced price, either $50 or $100 (down from $160 for an upgrade and $240 for the full version).

This is a pretty cool perk, and most of the online commentary is missing the point: If you buy a brand new Windows Vista PC with Vista Ultimate installed, you can then upgrade the computers you already have, on the cheap and without a trip to the store, thanks to your new PC. Given the savings, it’s a good deal for buyers, and a good perk that will encourage people to buy Ultimate.

It’s worth noting: Three copies of Home Premium total out to $720, while Ultimate + $100/200 is $500/600, making the Ultimate + 2 Premium bundle cheaper than buying three copies of Home Premium, and you get Ultimate for the third copy. Right off the bat, if you need Vista on 3 PCs, this is a good option.

January 17th, 2007 Posted by | General, Vista, Windows | one comment

Microsoft Buys Israeli Data Protection Firm, Secured Dimensions

secured-dimensions.pngRed Herring reports that Microsoft has bought Secured Dimensions, an Israel-based data protection startup, for a priced rumored to be a few million dollars. Secured Dimensions, a two year old company funded for just $600,000, is already proudly sporting “A Microsoft Subsidiary” on their website, and is in the business of protecting applications from being reverse engineered, cracked or pirated. is the first end-to-end solution to allow software vendors and publishers to protect their .NET applications or services, build dynamic software packages (evaluation and commercial ones), distribute their software to end-users and then monitor their customer preferences and behavior. Optional store-front closes the loop with integrated, on-demand eCommerce and online payment options.

Word is Microsoft may use this internally to protect its own software and assist with development of company products, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they started offering it as an option in future versions of its software development products.

January 17th, 2007 Posted by | Corporate, Developers, General, Security | 2 comments