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Lets Just Do This All At Once, InsideMicrosoft Edition

On the InsideGoogle blog, I did a bit of housecleaning. I’m sick and tired of writing about week-old news, and I think the readers of my blogs deserve up-to-date news and features. As a result, here is every story, leading basically up to today, that has been sitting in close to a hundred browser tabs on my computer.

Enjoy, and I’m getting back to work:

Long Zheng posted this video of Microsoft’s vision of collaboration in 2010:

Video: Microsoft’s Vision of 2010.

Want to take Windows Mobile 6 for a test drive? Microsoft has a Flash demo you can download and see exactly what it looks like in action.

The New York Times is going to start charging for its Reader application, a Windows Presentation Foundation-powered news reader that brings an incredibly powerful and visually amazing way to read the Times. Dopes. Way to blow a chance to bring the Times to a more tech-savvy generation. They really think people will pay a monthly fee for a newspaper that is available free online?

At least it is free for Times subscribers.

Want to preview PDF files in Outlook? Download this!

What is the Zune’s wifi feature useful for? Tracking down Zune thieves, naturally! If there are only two Zunes in an area, and one is stolen, you can use the other to help your buddy out.

Want to select text vertically in Word and other text editors? Just follow Lifehacker’s helpful tip and hold down the ALT key.

Lifehacker also points out a free RSS reader for Windows Vista Media Center and XP MCE.

Todd Bishop has put together an incredible listing of every single major Microsoft blogger he can find, and its so extensive, its scary. I can’t wait for him to finish the OPML, because I am so subscribing. Read his post for links to the Google Co-Op search engines he created for the list.

Microsoft claims it has no plans to buy video game publisher Take 2, but everyone agrees it’d be stupid not to bid. Take 2 makes the Grand Theft Auto series, and if Microsoft bought the company, or at least the GTA franchise, it would have a dramatic effect on Sony’s ability to compete. GTA is one of the biggest system sellers in history, possibly bigger than Microsoft’s own Halo, with more sales than Halo putting a lot of new PS2s in homes.

Rumors are coming out about Apple’s next generation iMac. The iMac is the centerpiece of Apple’s non-portable computer line, but with a built-in screen, it does not appeal to many typical PC buyers (and the Mac Mini is too limiting in the exact opposite respect). Here’s hoping Apple plans a normal PC; I could just buy it!

It has been virtually confirmed that Microsoft will be selling a $480 limited edition black Xbox 360 called the 360 Elite. It will feature a 120 gigabyte hard drive, an HDMI output, all-black accessories, and probably only run a few hundred thousand units. Once it sells out, it may replace the Xbox 360 Premium at $400, in white plastic.

New Line has bought the rights to a Gears of War movie. Stuart Beattie, writer of Collateral and Pirates of the Carribean is attached to write. I hope to god someone does a Crackdown movie.

March 22nd, 2007 Posted by | Apple, Applications, Blogs, Gears of War, General, Media Center, Office, Outlook, Vista, Windows, Windows Media, Word, Xbox, Xbox 360, XP, Zune | no comments

Could Microsoft Give Away Windows For Free… And Make Lots Of Money?

There are (completely unsubstantiated and unfounded) rumors (and frankly, I wouldn’t believe it) that Microsoft is considering giving away Windows Vista Home Basic in Britain. The reason: Value Added Taxes and the exchange rate have made Vista so expensive that almost no one can afford it.

Microsoft would lose more money than it would gain selling Vista at such a high price, by losing customers entirely to rivals, so it would give away Home Basic (and keep being able to sell Office and other software to Brits), and Basic is so “basic” that most people will pay to upgrade it to Home Premium anyway. I can’t believe it, but it is a bold move, and could work better than stiffing customers with the current, awful prices.

Perhaps, in the future, Microsoft could release a free version of every Windows operating system, one that only ran basic software, Microsoft Office, developer tools, and Internet Explorer, and charged money for the regular operating system we all know and use? It would make it a hell of a lot harder for Linux to compete, by basically ceding the basic operating system market to Windows, and making competition only on advanced users (and making it harder for OpenOffice and Firefox to reach cheapskate users).

March 22nd, 2007 Posted by | General, Vista, Windows | 2 comments