Friday, June 30, 2006

IE7 Beta 3 released

"Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3 is now available for download and includes improvements in reliability, compatibility, user features, and security. Although Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 was layout complete, based on our customers’ feedback, we’ve made some additional changes to the look and feel of the browser. Beta 3 allows users to add the e-mail button back to the toolbar, enables users to reorder the tabs by dragging them to the left or right, and enables horizontal scrolling while zooming."

Try it out

Google Checkout goes live

"Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG) has announced the launch of Google Checkout (, a checkout process that makes online shopping faster, more convenient and more secure for Google users. Google Checkout offers an easy and trusted checkout option that enables shoppers to purchase from participating stores with a single Google login. It also works with Google's search advertising program, AdWords, to help merchants acquire new customers and process all or a portion of their Checkout sales for free. "

Looks like a great service and they have furthermore tied up with CitiBank
to offer additional value.

Source: Google

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Microsoft launches CodePlex open for source development

"Microsoft has officially launched its open source developer website to promote the use of its software engineering technology among the development community.

The CodePlex website has been running in a trial beta format since May and has received more than 100,000 visits worldwide. The initial 12 projects being worked on by developers have grown to more than 30."

Microsoft + open source - two words that are usually not in the same sentence - have a look at Codeplex yourself.


Thursday, June 22, 2006

Microsoft releases new Windows Live IM service

"Microsoft Corp. has launched its newly branded instant messaging system, Windows Live Messenger, the first major release in a wave of online services Microsoft plans to offer to grab a larger share of Web advertising revenue.

Windows Live Messenger builds on top of Microsoft's MSN Messenger -- used by 240 million people worldwide -- and offers free PC-to-PC calls, inexpensive calls to ordinary phones from the PC and video conferencing using Web cameras."

The Live Messenger has been available in Beta for a while and there is not much visible change in the final version 8.0.0787.00 - but surely worth getting the final version.

According to the Windows Live Messenger site you will also soon be able to talk to Yahoo! Messenger users through voice.

Source: Reuters

Monday, June 19, 2006

HTC going solo and launches 3G Microsoft Windows based smartphone

Taiwan's HTC has branched out into building up its own consumer brand, launching the world's first tri-band 3G Windows Mobile Pocket PC [TyTN] and 3G smartphone [MTeoR] under the new HTC brand identity. HTC will continue to support its operator-branded products and OEM partners as a key priority. At the same time, HTC will provide its new branded products to its existing Qtek channels, distributors, enterprise and operators, who do not carry operator-branded products.

HTC is well known in the industry as the company behind many of the most popular operator-branded devices.

The first devices to be offered with HTC brand are the HTC TyTN and the HTC MTeoR. These will be available from late July.

"We're thrilled to see HTC launching the TyTN and MTeoR under the new HTC brand, which further adds to HTC's stellar record of innovation on the Windows Mobile platform," said Pieter Knook, Senior Vice President, Mobile & Embedded Devices Division, Microsoft "These devices are defining a whole new category of phones with a range of entertainment and productivity options. An HTC brand also brings more choice to Windows Mobile customers in a rapidly growing and increasingly diverse mobile market."

The HTC TyTN features Direct Push email technology available with Windows Mobile 5.0, internet browsing, synchronization with Microsoft Outlook Calendar, Contacts and email, and the ability to work on applications in the Microsoft Office suite such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint and viewing PDF documents. TyTN comes equipped with a slide-out QWERTY keyboard and 2.8" colour display with touch-screen. It also features a jog wheel for easy, one-hand operation.

The HTC MTeoR, the world's first 3G Windows Mobile 5.0 Smartphone, is a slim-line candy bar device. It may be small, just 112.4 x 49 x 14.8mm and weighing a mere 120g, but this device is a powerful and "smart" phone. The HTC MTeoR features Windows Mobile 5.0 Direct Push technology for immediate synchronization of email, calendar and notes plus document viewers for PDF, Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

Both devices will be available across Europe from late July.

News Source:

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Bill Gates' e-mail to employees

Sent: Thursday, June 15, 2006 1:41 PM
To: Microsoft and Subsidiaries: All FTE
Subject: My Transition Plans

I wanted to take a moment to share some of my thoughts, as well.

As Steve's mail indicates, I've decided that two years from now, in July 2008, I want to devote more time to the work of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Right now and for the next two years, my full-time job is here at Microsoft, and my part-time job remains the Foundation. Beginning in July 2008, I will switch that, to be full-time at the Foundation, while remaining involved with Microsoft as Chairman and an advisor on key development projects on a part-time basis.

To prepare for this change, we have a well-thought-out transition process. Again, I will continue at Microsoft full-time for the next two years, but over the course of those two years, my day-to-day responsibilities will shift to a team of incredible technical leaders who are already doing amazing things at the company.

I feel very lucky that we've got extraordinary technical leaders at the company, like Ray Ozzie and Craig Mundie, who can step up to assume the roles that I've played. I've known Ray for the last 20 years, and he has created some of the most important developments in the industry. Craig and I have worked together for nearly 14 years, and he's been a technical visionary and a leader on policy throughout his career. With Ray and Craig stepping up, I feel very confident that the technical stewardship of Microsoft is in very capable hands.

And I feel the same way about our business leadership. Our core businesses are strong and we have a clear vision for how we will meet new challenges and opportunities. We just had our first $12 billion quarter, and we continue to generate almost a billion dollars in profit every month. We are about to launch breakthrough versions of Windows, Office and Exchange, which are already generating a lot of excitement.

Six years ago, Steve and I made a major transition when he stepped up to be CEO. He's done a fantastic job by every measure, whether it's the people he's brought in, the new ways he's running the company, or just the objective results - like doubling our revenue in six years. Steve has driven us to make bold bets on things like Xbox, Real Time Communications, business applications, IPTV, and many others including the Live platform. Steve is the best CEO I could imagine for Microsoft - he is changing the company in ways it needs to be changed. He is bringing in new leadership at all levels. And, he is focused on the long-term - making Microsoft a great company not just today but for decades to come.

With Steve's organization of the company into three divisions led by our incredible presidents - Jeff Raikes, Robbie Bach, and Kevin Johnson - we've laid a solid foundation for greater autonomy, agility and entrepreneurial spirit in our product groups. And with the great addition of Kevin Turner as our COO, our leadership team has never been stronger.

Our deep technical strength is one of the key reasons I believe Microsoft is well-positioned for great success in the years ahead. I'm very pleased that in addition to Ray, Craig, David and Rick, Steve has asked J Allard, Bob Muglia, and Steven Sinofsky to play an expanded role in shaping the company's business and technology strategy. And when you consider all of our remarkable Technical Fellows, Distinguished Engineers, all of the brilliant researchers working at our MSR labs around the world, and all the technical people in the business groups, I can safely say that our technical talent has never been stronger or deeper.

Obviously, this has been a very hard decision for me. Microsoft will always be a huge part of my life, and I'm lucky to have two callings that are so important and so challenging.

On a personal note, I know that my work on global health and education issues at the Foundation would never have been possible without the enormous success of Microsoft, so I want to thank you and all of the employees past and present who have contributed so much to this company.

For these last 31 years, I've had the best job in the world. I've worked with some of the brightest and most passionate people in the world. Together, we've built a great company whose products have empowered people around the world.

We're only at the beginning of what software can do, and I'm excited about the impact that Microsoft can have. I'm going to take an extended vacation this summer with my family, but I'll be back in late August and I look forward to working with all of you for the next two years and beyond, to make those dreams a reality.




Saturday, June 17, 2006

Windows Live Favorites V1 released

The Windows Live Favorites team just announced, on their team blog, that WL Favorites V1 has been released. Fresh out of Beta, WL Favorites is available in 37 countries and 11 languages.

Built to compete with such bookmarking services as, Google's Toolbar 4 and Furl, Favorites boasts integration with Windows Live Messenger,, Toolbar, and other Windows Live Services.

As a part of the V1 release, the team has made a bookmarklet available, to make bookmarking with WL Favorites even easier. According to the team blog, other new features include:

Folder Support - See all of your favorites in folders! Click on the small Folder icon to switch between Top Favorites and Folder Views.

Favorite Count - See how many favorites you have stored.

Add Favorites - You can now add favorites directly from Messenger. Click the down arrow next to "Manage" to manage your favorites, add a favorite, or refresh Messenger's list of favorites.

Friday, June 16, 2006

World Cup Results In Google

Do you want to know what are the latest results in the World Cup?

Now all you need to do is just type World Cup in Google and you’ll get the results right away..


Bill Gates retiring from Microsoft

"Microsoft Corp. said its founder and longtime leader Bill Gates will step down from his day-to-day duties at the software giant in July 2008 to focus full-time on his nonprofit foundation. "

He will remain on the board as Chairman though.

Official press release

View a live webcast of the press conference:
56 Kbps, 100 Kbps, 300 Kbps

(1:30 pm PDT, June 15)

You can also view a more casual chat with Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer about Bill's move from Microsoft

Thursday, June 15, 2006

eBay scam

eBay will investigate what it says is a not a ligitimate eBay website set up with a UAE domain (ae). AME Info contacted eBay about the site which uses similar look and feel as the original eBay service - and the response we got was:

"I was able to check the web site and I can verify that it is not a legitimate eBay web site - I assure you that we will be doing some actions regarding this matter"

The eBay logo is also copied - I doubt it is enough to shuffle the colors and turn the "e" a bit - but judge for yourself:

The orginal eBay logo:

- and the UAE version...

Check out the actual site:

Google GBuy, set for release 28th June

"Consumers using GBuy, which is set for release on June 28, will be taken off the merchant's site to complete the payment. This will enable Google to capture e-commerce transaction data, driving more precise targeting in future searches.

"If harnessed, the precision of this targeting could be revolutionary," wrote RBC analyst Jordan Rohan in a report Friday. "

Source: Forbes

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Windows Vista CPP released

Windows Vista Customer Preview Program has been released - you need to log in with your passport account to download it.

The download is an ISO file of Windows Vista Beta 2, which is about 3.5 gigabytes (GB) for the 32-bit edition or 4.4 GB for the 64-bit edition.

You will need:

  • Broadband Internet connection (highly recommended)
  • DVD burner and blank DVD media to convert the download into a bootable DVD that can be used to install the operating system

To begin, please select your country or region from the following list. Download times will vary based on your Internet connection speed. This table shows approximate download times at common connection speeds:

Connection speed:
Connection type:
download time:
32-bit edition (3.5 GB)
3.0 mbps
Fast Cable/DSL
4.5 hours
1.5 mbps
9 hours
768 kbps
18 hours
256 kbps
54 hours
64-bit edition (4.4 GB)
3.0 mbps
Fast Cable/DSL
5.5 hours
1.5 mbps
10.5 hours
768 kbps
21 hours
256 kbps
64 hours

download from here
(servers were busy at the time this was written)

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Microsoft Egypt Nile Theme

An Egypt Nile desktop theme with new wallpaper, animated cursors, new icons, new sounds, and a screensaver has been made available from Microsoft for free download

Google AdWords Editor (beta) released

AdWords Editor is Google's free, downloadable account management application for your computer. Download your AdWords account to your computer, make your changes, then upload your revised campaigns. Benefits and features include:

Navigate your account quickly and easily
• Make
bulk changes to keywords and ad text
• Work offline, then
upload your changes
Copy and paste keywords and ad text
• Circulate
proposed changes and get feedback

Download it from here

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Google Spreadsheet

"Google is today set to launch a Web-based spreadsheet program that will allow people to view and simultaneously edit data while conducting 'in-document' chat, a Google product manager said on Monday.

The launch of Google Spreadsheets puts the search engine in even more heated competition with Microsoft, whose desktop-based Excel spreadsheet program is a standard office tool.

Limited test:

Read more about it:

Monday, June 05, 2006 credit-card numbers stolen

"The names and credit-card numbers of 243,000 customers were on a laptop computer stolen from an employee of accounting firm Ernst & Young, according to sources familiar with the matter., which is owned by Expedia (Research) and Ernst & Young, its auditor, began notifying customers that their information was stolen last week.

Ernst & Young added that the computer was password-protected there was no indication the information had been accessed or misused."

Strange that E&Y decided to report this - perhaps we have not heard the last part of this story yet?

Source: CNN

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Net advertising 'to overtake national newspapers'

"The internet will overtake national newspapers in the battle for advertising spending in the UK by the end of the year, it was predicted yesterday. GroupM, which accounts for about 30% of global media buying, says in a report to be published next month that the internet will account for 13.3% of the £12.2bn UK advertising market this year, overtaking national newspapers with a share of 13.2%.

The figure for web advertising could be even bigger, because the report excludes the estimated £1bn a year spent on "affiliate advertising", which largely comprises adverts placed on smaller websites."

Source: Guardian

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Yahoo launches new video site

"The redesigned Yahoo Video page will include a search box at the top and editorially chosen feature videos that are topical, interesting or popular among viewers. Users can also browse for video by categories or user-generated tags. "

You can upload you own videos to Yahoo! Share original video content, create your own channels, browse media RSS feeds and direct feeds. Judging from the initial comments there most users does not seem too pleased though (the video seems to be Windows Media Player dependent mostly)

Microsoft debuts OneCare security package

The software giant's first security product goes on sale in the US from 1 June and will become available in other countries over the next 12 months.

The product, dubbed OneCare, rolls anti-virus, anti-spyware and firewall programs into one package.

Source: BBC

You can get OneCare here