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The truth about Microsoft Pink

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 29-Apr-2009 21:34

Today we saw lots of rumours around regarding smartphones. In one Verizon would be working with Apple to create an "iPhone lite". In another Verizon would also be working with Microsoft to create an "iPhone killer", dubber Pink.

So what's the truth? I got some information directly from one of the sources within, and basically he says Microsoft is not going into the phone hardware business.

Because of that Microsoft is not building a Zune-specific phone.

The company is actually deepening relationships with hardware partners - I was given a long list of reasons, but it comes down to creating better performing phones that are competitively priced, feature rich, easy-to-use and lustworthy.

There's a lot being done, starting with the upcoming availability of Windows Mobile 6.5 software that will enable OEM partners to build more compelling devices.

But for the moment, Microsoft is not creating a phone.



Telecom Big Year

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 29-Apr-2009 13:52

With all the work done to deliver a new mobile network on time, conform to separation undertakings, and all else, I guess Telecom New Zealand wanted to thank their people... I found this video on YouTube today:








Microsoft Office 2007 SP2 available on Windows Update

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 29-Apr-2009 05:39

As the subject says - use Windows Update to find and download the Microsoft Office 2007 Service Pack 2... Some good improvements in Outlook performance, plus all other updates.

Here is a list of changes for this version:


Changes that impact desktop applications

· Service Pack 2 adds the ability to open, edit and save documents in version 1.1 of the OpenDocument Format for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. These applications now let users save, open, and edit files as OpenDocument Text (*.odt), OpenDocument Spreadsheet (*.ods), and OpenDocument Presentations (*.odp).

· The 2007 Microsoft Office Service Pack 2 is the first service pack to support uninstall of client updates through the Microsoft Service Pack Uninstall Tool for the 2007 Microsoft Office Suite as well as via Windows Installer command line. The Service Pack Uninstall Tool will be available as a separate download.

· Save As PDF/XPS support has been built into the SP2 of these Office applications. Users no longer have to download the add-in separately.

· When many graphic objects are present performance has been improved.

· In many scenarios, expect increased print fidelity of graphical objects.

· Improved interoperability using standard DrawingML markup to describe the visual properties of the SmartArt graphic.

The 2007 Office Suite SP2 has been tested and is supported for Internet Explorer 8. Windows Vista SP2, Windows Server 2008 SP2, Windows 7 and Windows Server R2 will all be supported upon their release.

Access
· The ability to export reports to Excel has been added.

· Fixes for issues with the import data wizards, report printing and previewing, macros, Excel integration, and date filters.

· Updates to Access Developer Extensions are now included in SP2.

Excel
· The charting mechanism has improved robustness and targeted performance improvements.

· A chart object model has been added to Word and PowerPoint.

· Improved printing of graphical content, especially on PCL printers.

Groove
· Improved form tools.

· Synchronization reliability has been improved.

InfoPath
· Increased compatibility between InfoPath forms and other Microsoft products, such as Groove and Outlook.

OneNote
· SharePoint synchronization has been improved which helps reduce the load on SharePoint servers and produce fewer errors.

Outlook
· Performance in startup, shutdown, view rendering, and folder switch has been improved.

· Calendar updates, search, and RSS are more reliable.

· The object model has been improved.

PowerPoint
· Resaving of files is faster.

· Several printer-specific problems have been fixed.

· The Microsoft Office Excel Chart Object Model has been more fully integrated.

Project
· The scheduling engine, Active Cache, and Gantt charts all have improvements.

· There is additional reliability with earlier versions of the .mpp format.

Publisher
· Fixes have been made in the following areas: print preview, compatibility with Internet Explorer 8, e-mail on Windows Vista, and saving to the Content library. 

Visio
· Improved compatibility with other Microsoft products in several key scenarios, such as inserting Visio drawings as linked objects in PowerPoint or Word, exporting reports to Excel, and saving drawings as Web pages for browsing in Internet Explorer 8.

Word
· Fidelity of PDF and XPS output has been enhanced.

· Fuller integration of the Microsoft Office Excel Chart Object Model.




There are also changes to server products in the making.



You are invited to attend the Microsoft Imagine Cup finals in Auckland

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 27-Apr-2009 14:52

Imagine Cup is a competition which encourages students to use technology to transform great ideas into real world solutions every year. Student teams from around New Zealand have come up with solutions to the world’s toughest problems.



This year the final New Zealand event is open to all students and industry professionals. The event is being held at The University of Auckland Business School. Join the event and find out which team will be the ultimate winner and represent New Zealand in the world wide finals in Cairo, Egypt.



For the first time ever, watch the finalists present and demonstrate their unique solution to a panel of influential industry judges live and decide for yourself who should take out the title of Imagine Cup 2009 NZ. Register your place at the finals now and get the chance to win prizes including one of three XBOX 360 consoles at the finals. Everyone is welcome!

What:   Microsoft Imagine Cup 2009 National Finals
Where:  The University of Auckland Business School
When:   Wednesday 29th April 2009, Kicking off at 6:30 P.M.
Register Here:  http://www.microsoft.com/nz/imaginecup09/Finals.aspx



Telecom XT Network launch date confirmed: 13th May 2009

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 27-Apr-2009 09:30

According to Telecom's presence on Twitter the launch date for the XT Network is 13th May 2009 - ahead of schedule.

Telecom New Zealand's new network is based on WCDMA 850MHz, the same frequency used by Telstra in Australia and AT&T in the U.S. This ensures high level of compatibility for roaming customers.



As usual, discussion on Geekzone.



Noteboek by Evelien Lohbeck is virtual reality at extreme

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 27-Apr-2009 09:12

Noteboek (English title: Notebook) is an animated clip of Dutch artist Evelien Lohbeck. More of her video clips on Vimeo...







Alien vs Predator Sky TV ads

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 27-Apr-2009 09:07

It seems Wellington artist Benjamin Parry was asked by through DDB New Zealand to create the artwork for a Sky TV ad campaign based on "Alien vs Predator".

Click the pictures for the full resolution and more details:





Found through Laughing Squid...





Windows XP Mode for Windows 7 brings virtual environment on desktop

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 25-Apr-2009 12:20

This is one of the coolest things I've seen on this new OS: Windows XP as a licensed OS virtual environment running on a Windows 7 desktop - or "Windows XP Mode for Windows 7".




XP Mode consists of the Virtual PC-based virtual environment and a fully licensed copy of Windows XP with Service Pack 3 (SP3). It will be made available, for free, to users of Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise, and Ultimate editions via a download from the Microsoft web site. (That is, it will not be included in the box with Windows 7, but is considered an out-of-band update, like Windows Live Essentials.) XPM works much like today's Virtual PC products, but with one important exception: As with the enterprise-based MED-V (Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualization) product, XPM does not require you to run the virtual environment as a separate Windows desktop. Instead, as you install applications inside the virtual XP environment, they are published to the host (Windows 7) OS as well. (With shortcuts placed in the Start Menu.) That way, users can run Windows XP-based applications (like IE 6) alongside Windows 7 applications under a single desktop.



Polaris uses Google Analytics API to bring stats to your desktop

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 25-Apr-2009 11:39

If you use Google Analytics on your domains then you should know a bit about Polaris Desktop Reporting for Google Analytics.

It is a beautiful application running on Adobe AIR - it means you can have it on Windows, Mac OS and Linux - and uses the just released Google Analytics API.

The application is free for one domain, or US$15/year for multiple domains.

It's a quick way to glance at your analytics stats, with beautiful charts on an browser-independent program.




Windows 7 Release Candidate Update: dates confirmed

By Mauricio Freitas, in , posted: 25-Apr-2009 11:34

A post in the Windows Blog confirms we will be able to download the Windows 7 Release Candidate from MSDN and Technet on the 30th April, and public availability will begin on 5th May.


On behalf of everyone here, I would to thank all of our beta testers for helping us get to this point. You guys have been busy. At the peak of the feedback cycle, we were receiving a “Send Feedback” report every 15 seconds for an entire week. Since then, the engineering team has been busy analyzing the feedback, fixing bugs, and working hard to improve the overall experience. Many of your suggestions helped us refine the new and improved taskbar, the behavior of Aero Peek, Touch, Windows Media Player, and much more.


More information in Windows Blog...



freitasm's profile

Mauricio Freitas
Wellington
New Zealand


I live in New Zealand and my interests include mobile devices, good books, movies and food of course! 

I work for Intergen and I'm also the Geekzone admin. On Geekzone we publish news, reviews and articles on technology topics. The site also has some busy forums.

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If you want to contact me, please use this page or email me freitasm@geekzone.co.nz. Note this email is not for technical support. I don't give technical support. You can use our Geekzone Forums for community discussions on technical issues.

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