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How To Use Unactivated Windows XP

If you don’t activate an install of Windows XP (or if it fails activation because you are a lying cheating bum), there’s a cool way to use that supposedly disabled system anyway. All you have to do is try to use the system and wait for Windows to ask you to activate it. Hold down the Windows Key + U to open Microsoft Narrator, press ALT+DOWN and select “About Narrator…”. Click the hyperlink in the About screen, and Internet Explorer will launch. From there, you can brows the file system and the web, making for a damn good (but not perfect) computer without paying for (and without hacking) Windows.

Tomorrow Times has more detailed instructions, but this is a pretty cool hack. Enjoy!
(via Digg)

December 14th, 2006 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | XP, Windows, General | no comments

Microsoft’s History of Internet Explorer has a history of Internet Explorer that goes all the way up to the present IE7 (well, actually its more than six months behind, but it is close enough). You can read about and see screenshots of Internet Explorer 1 (part of the Internet Jumpstart Kit in Windows 95 Plus!), IE2 (for PC and Mac), IE3 (MIDI support!), IE4 (Active Desktop, blech), IE5 (adding XML support), IE5.5, IE6, IE6 SP2, and IE7. Personally, I can’t wait for IE8, which hopefully has more features over IE7 than Firefox 3 will have over Firefox 2.
(via Digg)

December 14th, 2006 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Firefox, Internet Explorer, Applications, General | one comment

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Demo Windows Sideshow

I had a great time getting hands-on with prototype Windows Sideshow devices, including Asus’ landmark removable device, at the Digital Life show two months ago. Most people who are interested in Sideshow won’t have a chance to see a device until it actually arrives in stores. If you want an understanding of how the interface works and what it is capable of, you’ll be thrilled to try out Microsoft’s completely functional Sideshow emulator, which contains 100% functional code.

For those who have no idea what I’m talking about, Sideshow is a Vista technology for secondary displays/devices. Like the second screen on many cell phones, it is designed to have some of the functionality of the main device, while bringing the convenience of not having to use the main device, in this case a Windows Vista PC. In the best example, the outside of a laptop has a screen and a few buttons, which let you check your email and other functions, even while the laptop is off!

Other Sideshow devices are a screen on the PC box, one at the top of the keyboard, or one on your remote control. Its a great concept, and if manufacturers properly take advantage of it, it will be the kind of amazing feature even Mac fans will have to admit is great. Even the prototypes I saw were so good, I would pay a few hundred extra on my next laptop if it had this feature.

The point is, if you understand where the device is, the only question is “What can it do?” This emulator is the device, except in software. Run it, play with it, and you’ll see all the options. Now just imagine it on the outside of your laptop, detachable even, or on your remote, and you’ll understand the possibilities.
(via Long Zheng)

Another innovative Microsoft technology worth looking at is WPF, which is now capable of 3D objects!

December 14th, 2006 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Vista, Windows, General | no comments

Fall Into Gears Of War’s Mystery Land

Somebody found out, as you can see in this YouTube video, that if you roll just right, you can fall down the Emergence Holes that some baddies in Gears of War come out of. What do you find when you fall? Well, you’ll have to watch it to find out.

(via Kotaku)

UPDATE: Here’s another cool Gears glitch, this time one that somehow lets you vault forward in mid-air. Check it out:

(video by PlayingHaloToday, via GameVideos > Joystiq)

December 14th, 2006 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Gears of War, Xbox 360, Xbox, General | no comments