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Windows Vista Week One Roundup

Here are a bunch of stories about the first week Windows Vista has had in the market:

Microsoft is spending half a billion dollars to market Windows Vista. They didn’t buy a Super Bowl ad, but they are setting a goal of 6.6 billion ad impressions, which would be enough to potentially reach every person on the planet.

One bit of advertising they are already doing is sponsoring ABC’s promos for Lost. The commercials use a Vista-like interface, including Flip 3D, showing off the most visibly cool feature in Vista. Thank god Lost returns this week, I couldn’t wait any longer.

Already, Windows Vista has a bunch of updates in Windows Update. There are 7 fixes, plus Texas Hold ‘Em and Bitlocker Ultimate Extras (and 11 language packs). The later you pick up Vista, the more updates you can expect to come streaming in after an install.

One update that wasn’t available was DreamScene, the Ultimate Extra that brings motion video desktop to Windows Vista. No word yet on when we’ll actually see it.

To show how “cool” Vista is, Microsoft built a “Digital Ice House”, a house made entirely out of ice, except for the PCs showing off Windows Vista. Check out photos by Mark Relph and this video:


Video: Microsoft Canada’s Digital Ice House

The Cult of Mac reviewed Windows Vista running on a Mac, and declared that it actually ran faster, on hardware designed for Macs, than Mac OS. Cool endorsement.

The Origami Experience software has been released for Ultra Mobile PCs with Windows Vista. The software looks like a serious upgrade for UMPCs, another step towards making those tiny PCs worth buying.

Windows chief Jim Allchin retired from Microsoft the day after Windows Vista was released, as expected, ending a 16-year career and a major chapter in computing history. He wrote a humorous blog post explaining what his new schedule will be like post-Microsoft.

The new era of Windows development is already underway, as new chief Steven Sinofsky has made one major change, renaming the next version of Windows. What was previously referred to as Windows code-name: Vienna is now just “Windows 7″, just like Office 2007 was code-named “Office 12″. The reason: To stop the hype associated with Windows development, so next time around the product teams can concentrate on shipping a great product. Less hype should equal a better public reception when we meet the next version of Windows.

7:00 AM: Breakfast with my sons. Ended up doing a product comparison review of the various cereals we had in our pantry. Sugar does beat the natural stuff and my suspicions about the impact of packaging on the post purchase experience were spot on. It turns out the box does matter.

Steve Ballmer was in a Best Buy in Midtown Manhattan when Vista launched, and being Ballmer, that means hilarity ensued. Todd Bishop has audio.

Microsoft held some cool Vista launch-related events in Second Life, and The Register took them, and The Miel, to task for holding some of the events in virtual “gentlemen’s clubs”. I’ve got news:

  • It’s Second Life, and sexual locations are part and parcel of dealing in Second Life.
  • Microsoft is holding events in virtual strip clubs! How is that not cool? You want the company to shed its stuffy image, what better way? Don’t complain, embrace it! Until I see Bill Gates walking his avatar into a virtual strip club, I will not buy a Mac.

The Vista Family Discount is getting off to a bad start, with the product keys not working. They’re fixing it, but the discount is hard enough to get people to sign up for as is. Microsoft should announce a six-month extension, to switch things back into the positive column.

Turns out a simple command line entry will extend a trial version of Vista for an additional 30 days, and you can do it three times, for a total of 120 free days of Vista. You just know some people are thinking, “I only have to wipe my hard drive three times a year, and get Vista for free? Hell yeah!”

Vista’s got its first security hole, technically. Somebody figured out that, since Vista has excellent speech recognition, you can just yell at a Vista PC to make it do whatever you want. Sure, it isn’t a real security hack, since you can’t do anything the user can’t do, and it can’t beat User Account Control, but I guess you could send an MP3 file or set up a tape player and try some nasty things. Considering that speech recognition, even for free in Vista, won’t be widely used, I doubt this hack will get much use.

Bill Gates was on the Daily Show last week, and the appearance was pretty good, with Gates pushing Vista, John Stewart asking inane and irrelevant questions, and some funny stuff in between. Here’s the video, part one:

And part two:

Valleywag pointed out that Gates committed a talk show faux pax, walking off, on-camera, after the interview. I’m guessing big Bill figured, “I have tens of billions of dollars, I’m not pretending to chat with this fake news anchor”.

Here’s a funnier version:

And this:

February 5th, 2007 Posted by | General, Vista, Windows | 3 comments



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3 Comments »

  1. The ice house wasn’t to show cool, it was just to keep the required hardware cool enough for a prolonged demo.

    Comment by Roy Mac | February 5, 2007

  2. Ha! Oh, that’s hilarious. I wish I’d thought of it first.

    Comment by Nathan Weinberg | February 6, 2007

  3. [...] Vista Ice Office (from Digg) – There appears to be a couple more here on this Russian site. From the Digg comments I also found these links: Windows Vista Week One Roundup and The Ice House That Gates Built. According to them: So, about that giant ice house that Microsoft put up in Dundas Square: apparently 270,000 pounds of ice went into the construction of the 1,800 square foot structure, which includes a fully sculpted kitchen, dining room, study, living room, two bedrooms and bathroom all wired-up with televisions and computers (real, as opposed to of the ice variety) running demos of Vista and Office 2007. It’s lucky that the weather has finally decided to act wintery, because expensive electronics don’t tend to get along with melting slush. [...]

    Pingback by Krunk4Ever! » Blog Archive » Dryer | February 19, 2007

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