E3: Reactions From Microsoft’s Xbox 360 Press Conference

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Jun 7, 2011 in Videogames

Kinect

Earlier today, Microsoft held their Xbox 360 press conference. Many of you were probably expecting a slew of new and exciting titles, and while Microsoft had a number of multi-platform, and console exclusives that may have impressed some, many of you may have left underwhelmed. I have to admit that I joined many of you in yawning through-out and while I applaud Microsoft for once again abandoning the sales statistics in favor of announcing new products, most of them failed to appeal to my tastes. Aside from the handful of you who live for Gears of War and Halo, I have a feeling you may have felt the same.

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Kinect, a Hacker’s Wet Dream?

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Jan 6, 2011 in Tech, Videogames

Since Microsoft’s Kinect hit the market last November, the homebrew community has been hard at work modifying the technology for all sorts of interesting applications. Using open source drivers, developers have created everything from adult-oriented mini-games to musical instruments like a virtual midi drum kit. One such modification makes use of the motion tracking sensors to deliver a 3d shadow puppet show. I’m sure it wasn’t too complicated to devise, but it just goes to show how easily the technology can be adapted for uses outside the gaming environment Microsoft had in mind when creating it.

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7 Ways That Windows Mobile 7 Could Win

Posted by Michael Pinto on Nov 29, 2010 in Tech

HTC Windows 7 Phone

We tend to forget just how quickly things can change in the tech world. For example once upon a time Palm was a dominant player in the space, and by all rights they should still be there. What happened? Well you can blame it on any number of things (poor engineering, marketing, cash flow, etc.) but the reality is that it comes down to good old fashioned hubris. Read more…

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Bing Badly Needs a Misspelling Checker

Posted by Michael Pinto on Aug 16, 2010 in Tech

Bing needs a misspelling checker

I believe very strongly that Google has an unhealthy monopoly on the internet, so for the past week or so I’ve switched all of my browsers to use Bing as the default search engine. For the most part Microsoft has done an amazing job of going from nothing to something to create a great search engine in a short amount of time, however there are still a few things that they need to beat Google. Having been born with dyslexia one of the things I love about Google is that their spell checker is amazing — in fact often when using Microsoft Word I’ll pop out of the program when I can’t get the spelling of a more obscure word. And this is the very sort of feature that not only does Bing need badly, but something that should also be incorporated into the online version of Microsoft Office. Read more…

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Fable 3 Won’t Be Reinventing the Wheel

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Aug 12, 2010 in Videogames

Fable 3 Art

Or more specifically, I should say Peter Molyneux won’t. Known for his penchant for over-promising and under-delivering, Molyneux has gone on record to state that the next title in the popular Fable franchise will focus more on story, and balance, than introducing new features, and gameplay mechanics —  a move clearly designed with casual gamers in mind. While I hardly consider myself a casual gamer, I actually welcome this news, as I’ve quickly grown tired of Molyneux’s incessant need to clutter his games with features that distract me from the point of the game itself.

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Fable 3’s Revolution Through The Eyes of a Chicken

Posted by Tim Sheehy on Aug 6, 2010 in Videogames

Lionhead studios, in conjunction with Microsoft Game Studios, have released the opening cinematic for their upcoming installment of Fable. The third title to date, Fable 3 tells the tail of a kingdom on brink of revolution, its subjects the victim of a tyrannical ruler. This opening cinematic tells that tale in an interesting way — through the eyes of a chicken, doomed to be a served at a royal dinner. While it might show little in the way of potential gameplay, the cinematic certainly doesn’t lack the dark humor found through out the series. Instead, it provides us with an explanation of the plot via a rather clever set of metaphors — in addition to painting a clear picture of the setting itself. The game is currently set to ship for Xbox 360 on October 26th.  Read more…

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Microsoft Office 2010: How To Blow a Product Launch

Posted by Michael Pinto on May 12, 2010 in Tech

The Office 2010 site as seen on a Mac

My belief at this point in time is that Google is what Microsoft use to — an out of control monopoly that must be stopped. So despite the fact that I’m an Apple fanboy at heart I’ve been rooting for Microsoft to get serious about the cloud for a few years now. And frankly I’m also still using Microsoft Outlook as my main email client — so when I heard that Microsoft was rolling out Office 2010 I had to check it out right away. And if you look at the above screen, what I came across was a total failure. Read more…

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Silverlight Success: Riding on Apple or Google?

Posted by Michael Pinto on Mar 20, 2010 in Tech

Silverlight: Will it run on Apple or Android?

In the wake of the Flash is doomed movement I’ve noticed quite a few Microsoft developers who are rooting for Silverlight. Silverlight has two amazing advantages going for it: Firstly Microsoft loves their developers more so than any other company that I’ve ever seen — and then add to that it will become a key tool for making apps for Windows mobile devices. But there’s one major catch to this which is that smart mobile is now dominated by Apple and Google, and that there’s a good chance that they won’t let Silverlight onto their platform. Read more…

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I Hate to Admit It But the Interface for Windows Phone 7 Looks Great

Posted by Michael Pinto on Feb 16, 2010 in Tech

Windows Phone 7 Interface

While I haven’t played with it yet the screenshots I’m seeing of the Windows Phone 7 look great. I’m an Apple fanboy at heart but it’s a wonderful surprise to see that Microsoft didn’t just do an iPhone clone. This isn’t enough to make me switch from my iPhone, however it is enough to make me have second thoughts about switching to Android and it also convinces me now more than ever that Palm won’t live to see the end of the year. From what I’ve read the Windows team has been working on this for 18 months and they decided to focus on the app side of the phone which is their core strength: Read more…

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Microsoft Knows How to Market Smartphones in Korea

Posted by Michael Pinto on Feb 1, 2010 in Tech

Everywhere you look everyone is talking about Apple iPads or Google Nexus phones, but sadly Microsoft seems to be off the radar with their mobile offerings of late. Well maybe just off the radar in the United States because as you can see in the video above in Korea they seem to be having fun getting their message out. I love how the Microsoft icons follow the couple on their date and aren’t afraid to shake it up on the dance floor. Read more…

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Nine 2009 Techie Predictions: The Fanboy Forecast

Posted by Michael Pinto on Dec 30, 2008 in Tech

The Shape of Things to Come (1936): Movie Poster

Year-after-year I’ve watched the usual suspects make their tech predictions, so this year I’ve decided as a fanboy that it was my right to make a fool of myself as much as the next guy. Most people are in a doom and gloom mindset right now, but I’ve always felt that there are opportunities when the going gets tough. In fact my one ambivalent prediction is that somewhere in 2009/2010 someone will start a new company which will become the next big thing. But here’s what I think will be happening with the current cast of characters in the tech scene: Read more…

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