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MSN Goes Green With New Channel

Microsoft has launched a new website called MSN Green, available at green.msn.com. MSN Green will be a channel for MSN to aggregate news and features on environmental issues from a lot of Microsoft content partners, including articles (from MSNBC, Conservation International, Environmental Defense, Grist.org, TreeHugger.com and Hearst Magazines, among others), plus:

Tools. Interactive tools featured on the channel help inspire people to take a stand on the environment. For example, MSN Green visitors can determine the amount of carbon dioxide their lifestyle produces (the carbon calculator), measure how green they are (the Green-o-meter), gauge their awareness of eco-issues (the Eco-Footprint quiz), and add their name to an online petition to freeze and reduce carbon dioxide emissions (Stop Global Warming Virtual March).

Photos. Galleries of photos culled from around the Web will show, rather than tell, the effects of climate change. Other recurring pictorials will spotlight eco-friendly places to live; how to live a greener lifestyle; and celebrities, politicians and others who are leading the green charge.

Videos. Amateur and professional video clips from MSN Video and partner Web sites will spotlight the environment, climate change and other green topics.

October 31st, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | MSN | one comment



“Gatineau” Analytics Beta Finally Launches

We’ve been hotly anticipating the first public closed beta of codename “Gatineau”, Microsoft in-development website analytics service, and it’s finally here. Invites went out yesterday, and you might already have them.

I’ve be reviewing it right now, instead of just telling you about it, if the invites weren’t tied specifically to the Passport from which you first requested it from, and some screw-up resulted in mine going to the wrong Passport. I’ve got my regular Hotmail, plus one for my business email, and my AdCenter account is part of my business account, but the invite went to my Hotmail account, and now Adcenter won’t accept it. Maybe somebody wants to fix this for me?

Anyway, check out screenshots by Ian Thomas, along with a lot details.

October 31st, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | General | no comments

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MSN Video Has Hulu Channel

Hulu, the News Corp/NBC video content distribution network, has launched, and with it come deals with other websites, including AOL and MSN Video. MSN TV has a Hulu channel, featuring some full length TV show episodes and movies, including 30 Rock, Weekend at Bernie’s, Back To You and such. I’d give a full list if MSN Video worked in any browser I own (including Internet Explorer), but since I can’t, check it out for yourself and let me know how it works out.
(via Jordan McCollum)

October 31st, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | MSN | no comments

SharedView Has New Beta, Joins Windows Live

SharedView, Microsoft’s screen sharing/collaboration software, has a new beta 2, available, of all places, at Windows Live. Apparently, Microsoft wants users to connect SharedView with office document collaborative work and as a Google Docs competitor, so they’ve positioned it at get.live.com. Beta 2 offers up to 15 people connecting with you and viewing your screen and communication between all parties, with improvements in chatting, sign-on and performance.

Get it from here.

October 31st, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Live, Windows, Applications | no comments

Special Halo-ween Games Going On

Halo players, there’s a special treat for you today in honor of Halloween. A new game type, called Infection, is available only today on Xbox Live through 3 am. In Infection, players are either humans or zombies, and whenever a human is killed, he becomes a member of the Zombie team. Check it out, because they’re not sure when or if they’ll bring it back (and it counts as a ranked game).

There’s even a variant where the zombies are a bit slower, but invisible, and another where the humans have very limited ammo and are destined to fail under the zombie onslaught.

October 31st, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Halo 3, Halo, Xbox 360, Xbox | no comments

New Live Maps Includes Transparent Buildings, Business Browsing, and Total Gridlock

The Virtual Earth blog lists ten cool things about the new Windows Live Maps. They include buildings in the 3D mode that turn see-through when you get to close (and send vibration to your Xbox 360 controller if you’re using it).

Also: When you search an area, it gives you a list of popular business categories in that area, sort of letting you just browse the stores.

Also: “Ghost node editing”, which lets you re-drag line segments to reshape polygons you draw on the map (a feature they admit was inspired by Google Maps).

Also: Traffic conditions now show green for good roads, yellow and red for progressively worse traffic, and a new black color for severe conditions under which the cars aren’t moving at all.

Also: Business details that are category specific, like the number of patients seen by a doctor, the price range and class of a hotel, and the average meal price at a restaurant.

Also: KML files are now available for subscribing to Live Maps Collections. KML is the Google Earth format for impormatting map data, so Live Maps is letting you get your data out and bring it to Google Earth, while Google Maps/Earth is keeping everything inside.

There’s so much interesting stuff going on at the Live Maps blog, I had to subscribe to it.
(via LiveSide)

October 31st, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Maps, Live, Windows | no comments



Yes, You Can Make Silverlight Gadgets

Adam Kinney has created an Xbox Live Gamer Tag Gadget, which lets you enter a bunch of Gamer Tags and see who’s online, and click one to see what games their playing and other stats. It’s a fairly useful and well-designed Gadget, but what makes it so good is that the whole thing is built on Silverlight. So, now that we know Silverlight Gadgets work, and work well, imagine how much cooler-looking Gadgets we could be getting in the future.

There’s a demo of it on Channel 9, and you can download it at this link. Make sure you have Silverlight 1.0 installed.

October 31st, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Silverlight, Sidebar, Developers, Vista, Windows | one comment

Zune Gets 1-Click Podcast Subscriptions

With the new Zune Marketplace, users will gain the ability to subscribe to a podcast with a single click, provided a special link is used. If you have a podcast RSS feed, just link to it using this sort of link:

zune://subscribe/?PodcastTitle=PodcastRSSFeedURL

Replace that last part with the URL of your feed, and any user with the software installed can click it to subscribe in their Zune software, even if the podcast isn’t in the Zune Marketplace. If they don’t have it installed, they’ll be prompted to do so, and once they’ve subscribed they’ll get regular episodes automatically downloaded and ready on their Zunes.

If you need an image (or so-called chicklet button) to point to the feed, here’s the official one (and it’s on Flickr, so hotlinking is cool):

October 31st, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Zune, Windows Media | no comments