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[#] Mon Nov 29 2010 14:10:24 EST from Spell Binder @ Uncensored

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I'll have to dig up the article, but apparently a "Star Wars" game is on deck for the Xbox 360 with the Kinect. Complete with light-saber dueling, though I've no idea how it will be implemented.

My father-in-law bought the Xbox 360 + Kinect bundle before Thanksgiving, so I've had a week to play with it on and off. I'm impressed by the voice and gesture recognition, but, in typical Microsoft fashion, there was more, in my opinion, that could have been done.

As a simple example, the voice and gesture recognition only really work from the Kinect hub. Why couldn't Microsoft have provided an update to the Xbox dashboard to allow voice commands and gesture selection to work from there?
Right now, the only Kinect-specific task you can perform from the dashboard is the voice command, "Xbox kinect" to get to the Kinect hub.

Admittedly, I haven't read the manual yet, so there may be more available that I just haven't discovered yet.

I think the true test is going to be in the games that are going to be released over the next year. The same goes for the PS3 Move.
Xbox Binder

[#] Mon Nov 29 2010 14:46:55 EST from triLcat @ Uncensored

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When I played the whitewater rapids game (in the Kinect Adventures pack that came with the machine), I really liked how it played. The feel was great, and it really gets you moving around which means 1. you can no longer blame video games for your sedentary lifestyle. 2. you can't play all day unless you're in good shape.

both are a plus over typical video games. My nephew and I played 2 different games from the adventures set together. They're set up to be cooperative, which was fun. It's the kind of stuff I want for my family. We live in a country where 6-8 months of the year, it's too blasted hot/sunny to play outside safely (I ran the a/c today - and our seasons are supposed to correspond with yours in the US), so it's good to have a way to be active indoors.

I've got complaints, but it's a lot more like what I want than anything I've seen before.

Plus it was an excuse to set up a projector, so now we can show movies anytime.



[#] Mon Nov 29 2010 19:04:08 EST from dothebart @ Uncensored

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hm, playing wii-fit i've always disliked the fact that you need to have a controler in your hand bending your balance while doing stuff on the balance board.

waiting for the WIInect to show up.



[#] Tue Nov 30 2010 03:17:15 EST from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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I rather like the Wii controller. It senses position, orientation, and motion more accurately than something like the Kinect could ever do. What about all the Wii games that you can play sitting down, like Mario Kart? Turning the Wii controller into a steering wheel was brilliant. You just can't do stuff like that without a physical controller.

[#] Tue Nov 30 2010 04:43:20 EST from dothebart @ Uncensored

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the ps3 will do that with lightning bulbs ;-)

i've heard that you need lots of free space for the kinnect in front of your TV; while the wii uses some space too, you can wipe out a little and reduce the needed space by certain technikes...



[#] Tue Nov 30 2010 13:20:26 EST from Spell Binder @ Uncensored

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The Kinect definitely has trouble if there's a coffee table between it and you. When I tried it, it kept thinking my legs were moving, so my avatar appeared to be dancing, even though I was standing still.

[#] Tue Nov 30 2010 14:31:58 EST from triLcat @ Uncensored

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My kinect fitness program thinks my husband is 73cm tall... because there was someone that height moving around at the time... that someone had a tail....

but seriously. coffee table, furniture, it's all gotta go for the kinect. kinect requires much free floor space.



[#] Sun Dec 05 2010 11:19:19 EST from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

Subject: Microsoft releases Silverlight 5, nobody cares

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Microsoft today announced the release of version 5 of its world-beating Silverlight multimedia platform. As a replacement for Adobe's Flash, it is widely considered utterly superfluous and of no interest to anyone who could be found.

"We have a fabulous selection of content partners for Silverlight," announced Microsoft marketer Scott Guthrie on his blog today. "NBC for the Olympics, which delivered millions of new users to BitTorrent. The Democrat National Convention, which is fine because those Linux users are all Ron Paul weirdos anyway. It comes with rich frameworks, rich controls, rich networking support, a rich base class library, rich media support, oh God kill me now. My options are underwater, my resumé's a car crash, Google won't call me back. My life is an exercise in futility. I'm the walking dead, man. The walking dead."

Silverlight was created by Microsoft to leverage its desktop monopoly on Windows, to work off the tremendous sales and popularity of Vista. Flash is present on a pathetic 96% of all computers connected to the Internet, whereas Silverlight downloads are into the triple figures.

"But it's got DRM!" cried Guthrie. "Netflix loved it! And web developers love us too, after all we did for them with IE 6. Wait, come back! We'll put porn on it! Free porn! "

Similar Microsoft initiatives include its XPS replacement for Adobe PDF, its HD Photo replacement for JPEG photographs and its earlier Liquid Motion attempt to replace Flash. Also, that CD-ROM format Vista defaults to which no other computers can read.

In a Microsoft internal security sweep, Guthrie's own desktop was found to still be running Windows XP.



[#] Mon Dec 06 2010 12:34:30 EST from fleeb @ Uncensored

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*chuckle*

I don't care for Microsoft, but I have concerns they'll pull off Silverlight, despite the evidence we see to the contrary.

It has an ability to stream media in ways that are rather compelling.  It can detect bandwidth, and adjust performance for the bandwidth dynamically.  That's not easy to do, but necessary when dealing with phone networks.  Microsoft has managed to infect a lot of phones with Silverlight, from what I've heard, which means it might wind up taking off as a kind of background technology for streaming media.



[#] Mon Dec 06 2010 16:52:23 EST from Ford II @ Uncensored

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I'm having a hard time imagining how silverlight running on/in .net running on windows could possibly function for more than a few minutes on a normal phone battery.

[#] Mon Dec 06 2010 18:44:07 EST from dothebart @ Uncensored

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well, its probably not the c-carpet shit itself i'm woried about, its most probably a bunch of patents.

patents suck.



[#] Mon Dec 06 2010 18:48:40 EST from dothebart @ Uncensored

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ford, the new windows 7 phone just permits apps written in c-carpet.

i'm waiting 2 months hoping to see it still dead in the whater as windows ce 2005 is now.

as the kinnect, I guess (or hope) they somehow miss the reality [space people have available in front of their TVs] on that windows 7 phone shit too,

and that other claw of ms-xchange into our current reality cracks off like that belt of that girl in the start of that silvester stalone movie... cliff-hanger?



[#] Thu Dec 09 2010 15:15:43 EST from Harbard @ Uncensored

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For the first time in maybe 4 months I booted my machine to Windows XP.  Since it has been awhile I decided I should update everything.  Problem:  MS now requires you to have Automatic Updates, Background Intelligent Transfers, and Event Logging enabled.  So I had to go edit the registry to turn these on.  You can't even just start the services....you actually have to change the state to automatically started.



[#] Thu Dec 09 2010 17:42:59 EST from Spell Binder @ Uncensored

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You shouldn't have to edit the registry to do that.

You can set the service states by going to Start -> Control Panel. If you're in category view, Performance and Maintenance. Then Administrative Tools -> Services.

Then just double-click on a service and select the new state from the drop-down.

It is somewhat annoying that three different services need to be enabled.
We use some test equipment here that runs on Windows XP and whenever we get a new unit, I have to go in and enable half-a-dozen services to get it properly configured for our environment.
Service Binder

[#] Fri Dec 10 2010 14:18:14 EST from LoanShark @ Uncensored

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Probably it was listed as "Disabled" rather than "Manual" or "Automatic". If it's set to Manual, it still doesn't start when you boot up, but at least you have the *option* to start it manually.

[#] Fri Dec 10 2010 19:24:55 EST from Harbard @ Uncensored

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Actually...I disabled them myself.  As I intend to update only manually, who needs them stealing CPU cycles?  I use the info here: http://www.blackviper.com/  to configure my dwindling stock of Windoze machines.  I usually endy up with only 8 or so services running.  It really speeds up the machine.  In fact, my laptop is practically unusable with all the auto-updates turned on.  Checking for Windows update, virus checker, driver updates, etc...takes 10 minutes to fully boot.  I finally manged to get Ubuntu to work on it, and now that's all I use unless I want to play a game.

 

Oh yeah, I did not mean I edited the registry...I did use services.msc.



[#] Mon Jan 10 2011 04:16:19 EST from dothebart @ Uncensored

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http://arstechnica.com/microsoft/news/2011/01/windows-on-arm-official-but-leaves-many-questions-unanswered.ars

did they become portable again? not just portable to an old dug old dusty windows-ente branch they refurbished like the xbox 360?

a brand new hardware architecture?

I guess this is one of the reasons why wince 7 did come _that_ late, they moved manpower over to the regular windows team.



[#] Mon Jan 10 2011 10:32:32 EST from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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"Portable" Windows will probably not fare all that well. The real "value" of Windows on x86 (if you want to call it value) is the vast library of packaged software available for that platform. Without that software library, Windows on ARM has no advantage. Mac and Linux both have more titles available. In fact, Windows on ARM could even have a bigger disadvantage when people begin buying "Windows" devices thinking that their "PC" software will run on them, and promptly returning the devices which they perceive "are not Windows compatible after all."

I'm sure Microsoft envisioned a future in which all software was 100% Pure .NET and would run on any device. I would even venture a guess that Microsoft built .NET with the intention of lessening their dependency on the Intel PC architecture. However, it isn't going to happen that fast. Even the Windows ISV's who build with .NET are not building "pure, install-anywhere .NET" packages the way many Java developers do. They're building install packages for Intel PC Windows that happen to include a lot of .NET technology.

[#] Mon Jan 10 2011 18:07:50 EST from dothebart @ Uncensored

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heh, yes I guess thats one of the reasons...

but isn't MSI supposed to be the solution therefore?

i'd like to know the current quota of software they're able to run on the c-carpet interpreter...

at least all that basic shit _can_ run on that...

and with forms they created a rather clever UI framework making it rathe easy to create applications using that...

IMHO up to 90 percent of the stuff younger than 4 years will run on the c-carpet interpreter; while most probably less than 40 percent of it is porteable enough to run on the mono interpreter simply by the means of using driveletters and other windowshizms that mono / the mono host doesn't have...

oh, and vista lowered the bar for responsiveness of UI-Apps, so meanwhile you can create the same userexperience with a descent browser, a crappy interpreter like the sun jvm or the microshit c-carpet interpreter as with a native MFC application.

I guess exceptions count adobe photoshop, acrobat reader and autocad which you won't run on a strong arm anyways?



[#] Mon Jan 10 2011 22:29:34 EST from IGnatius T Foobar @ Uncensored

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Sure, it's straightforward for Microsoft to use the architecture of its development tools to "gently encourage" ISV's to build "pure .NET" applications. And eventually Microsoft will get on the ball and figure out what Apple and Google figured out a few years ago, and what Debian figured out more than a decade ago -- that a package repository (or "app store" as the kids are calling it these days) is a great way to make the installation experience seamless.

However:

What makes people [believe that they need to] stay on PC-Windows is not the big mainstream application suites. You can get word processing and email and photo editing and solitaire and a web browser on any platform as a native app. The problem is those little domain-specific programs that people have, that were written for PC-Windows and are native code and aren't available for any other platform. Those programs are the obstacles that would keep people from moving to ARM-Windows just as much as keeping them from moving to Mac or Linux.

But...

I doubt Microsoft is porting Windows to ARM with the intention of rolling out ARM-powered desktops and laptops. That would be silly. Instead, view this move as Microsoft's admission that the "PC Era" is indeed coming to an end. Microsoft wants to be in on the next generation of computing, where the bulk of the power is behind the glass (either in the corporate data center or in "teh cloud [tm]" -- doesn't matter which).

That being the case, it would make far more sense to simply roll out their new Vista Phone 7 environment on access devices such as tablets and super-netbooks.
The problem is, as some pundits are suggesting, Microsoft cannot live on the single-digit profit margins of the software stacks they sell for consumer electronics. As a corporation they are addicted to the mega-profits they make from selling $100 operating systems and $500 office suites. Allegedly there is some internal strife over this, and the "big Windows" camp is winning.

Microsoft could theoretically make money on the services side, but demand for Azure is almost as nonexistent as demand for Vista Phone 7. If they were smart, they'd build a server package that serves up an entire online office suite that enterprises and service providers could offer to their own subscribers, but that won't happen because it further cannibalizes their sacred cow of desktop revenue. Someone else is going to have to do it first. Heck, a motivated hacker could probably get the already portable OpenOffice/LibreOffice rendering to a remote HTML5 canvas element with just a couple of days of work.

It's a new game, folks ... the platform shift is happening and the leaders are (finally) changing.

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