Satya Nadella: Microsoft building the 'ultimate mobile device'

Sadella-Melbourne

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has again reaffirmed the company's commitment to developing smartphones. Unfazed by its market share dropping beneath 1 percent, Nadella said Microsoft is planning a revolutionary "ultimate mobile device."

Nadella made the comments during an interview with the Australian Financial Review. He visited Sydney last week to address a local developers conference about Microsoft's cognitive computing systems and Azure cloud services.

Nadella outlined his plans for Microsoft's future involvement with smartphones. He suggested the company has stopped trying to rival the established leaders in the field. Instead, Microsoft is working on something for the future that it thinks will give it the upper-hand in the long term.

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Nadella hinted at an "ultimate mobile device" that could give Microsoft a credible presence in the industry. The company seems keen to develop a product with unique capabilities that aren't replicated by its rivals. A key feature that already fits this description is the company's Continuum tech, Windows 10 Mobile's ability to transform itself into a desktop PC at a moment's notice.

"We will continue to be in the phone market not as defined by today's market leaders, but by what it is that we can uniquely do in what is the most ultimate mobile device," Nadella said. "Therefore [with Nokia assets], we stopped doing things that were me-too and started doing things, even if they are today very sub-scale, to be very focused on a specific set of customers who need a specific set of capabilities that are differentiated and that we can do a good job of."

Docker opens up Docker for Windows beta to everyone

DockerHomePage

Programmers and developers have been anxiously waiting for an invite into the Docker application beta since earlier this year. During their announcement video, Docker shared that they had over 30,000 interested parties sign up within hours of the initial announcement. A grand total of 70,000 were able to join the beta to provide feedback and get a hands-on experience with the application. But for those that haven’t gotten in, today they can do so with the open beta announced for Docker on Mac and Windows.

The Docker platform is one of the most versatile means for developers and IT to create and test their application software through multiple devices. Docker boasts that the Windows application will provide better performance and reliability as well as advanced options to change CPU, Memory Usage, and many more tweaks to improve development.

With Docker on Windows, users can expect the same experience they’ve had before with enhancements, including deeper integration of running Docker and native virtualization for the Windows platform. The in-container development makes it possible to auto-update the software within the platform–just a save and refresh after, and the application reflects changes made to the coding without any hassle.

The polyglot environment is a major feature for teams, developers, and organizations that use multiple coding on their projects. Mounted volumes will notify the document when it’s changed. Developers are now able to build applications on a Windows machine without the need to add more frameworks. For example, when a developer writes in Java coding, the application will recognize it as Java coding. The same will occur with other supported languages.

The Docker application for Windows will provide better networking than before with built-in DNS servers and easy use over VPN. It will run with Native Hypervisor Support meaning that minimum specifications require a Windows 10 Pro machine with the latest Hyper-V updates. So what are you waiting for? The Docker public beta can be downloaded from their official website.

Electron 1.0

For the last two years, Electron has helped developers build cross platform desktop apps using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Now we’re excited to share a major milestone for our framework and for the community that created it. The release of Electron 1.0 is now available from electron.atom.io.

electron

Electron 1.0 represents a major milestone in API stability and maturity. This release allows you to build apps that act and feel truly native on Windows, Mac, and Linux. Building Electron apps is easier than ever with new docs, new tools, and a new app to walk you through the Electron APIs.

If you’re ready to build your very first Electron app, here’s a quick start guide to help you get started.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella explains why it doesn't matter if only a handful of people have a Windows phone

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has explained in an interview with BuzzFeed why the company is not concerned about the market share of its mobile operating system, which is about 1.7% globally.

He said the company would be doing a "disservice" to itself by measuring its success solely by market share. "If you think of this more like a graph," he said of how people use products, "these [devices] are all nodes. Sometimes the user will use all of these devices … sometimes they'll use only one or two of our devices and some other platforms — so be it."

For Nadella, this is an important point: The company can work on Windows phones even if no one uses them because people use Windows 10 or Xbox or Office — and they're all one and the same.

"We want to make sure that we are completing the experience across all of these devices," he said.

Read the full interview with BuzzFeed.

How Microsoft deployed Windows 10 inside the company

Unsurprisingly, Microsoft has learned a thing or two about deploying new versions of Windows inside the company over the years.

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By doing an in-place upgrade, Microsoft's IT department deployed Windows 10 to 85 percent of the company's employees within four weeks of its release, and by 95 percent within 10 weeks -- a week ahead of IT's goal.

"The Windows 10 deployment was the fastest company-wide operating system deployment Microsoft IT has ever seen. In-place upgrade deployment using OSD was the key technology that enabled this successful deployment." (OSD. or Operating System Deployment, is a feature of System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager SP1.)

Those stats are according to a technical case study published by the company's IT department earlier this month.

As this is a Microsoft-blessed document, this isn't the place to come for a list of gotchas or things that went wrong. However, there are some interesting "lessons learned" and best practices in the case study -- even for smaller (and possibly larger) IT shops that are planning to deploy Windows 10 at some point in the future.

By doing an in-place upgrade, Microsoft avoided having to manage OS images, like the company did when it deployed Windows 7."Microsoft users really didn't have to do anything. Click, click, install and they were up and running," the case study claims, as applications, data and settings were carried over through the migration.

Because Microsoft scheduled mandatory updates to happen during times that most computers at the company would be connected to the corporate network (such as Tuesdays at noon lunch), there was less impact on the help desk, reducing support costs by roughly 50 percent, the case study claims.

As Windows Insider testers know, Microsoft has been flighting Windows 10 builds inside the company, too, as part of its Windows 10 development/deployment process. The case study notes that Microsoft IT created an early adopter community to test these early builds.

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Inside the company, there are currently a select number of employees on the Canary ring, getting daily builds; the Operating System Group ring (running builds validated by the Canary Ring) and then the broader Microsoft ring (running builds validated by the Operating System Group ring). Prior to Windows 10's initial release in July, there were already 38,000 users, or 40 percent of the company's employees running Windows 10, the case study notes.

"Most" of the computers at Microsoft were running Windows 8.1 before the early adoption phase of Windows 10, though as a result of "a recent Microsoft acquisition" (I believe, after watching this Windows 10 deployment video, a reference to the Nokia handset business), there were hundreds of line-of-business apps that were developed to run on Windows 7 as part of the mix, too.

Microsoft's Windows 95 is 20-years-old today

Windows95

When Microsoft kicked off work on Windows 95 way back at the beginning of the 90s, the company wasn't to know how much of an impact it would have on our lives two decades on.

In one fell swoop the new version of Microsoft's OS brought a swish graphical user interface (GUI) to desktops for the first time and the much vaunted Start menu began life inside the mid-1995 edition of the OS. You only need look at the disquiet that surrounded its removal from Windows 8 and subsequent return inside Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 to realise how influential some parts of Windows 95 still are.

With 20 years under its belt, it's a fine time to have a look back at some of the moments that defined the popular OS which was Windows 95.

Now it’s the new era, Windows10 age.

Survey finds 40% of businesses want to adopt Windows 10 in the first year

windows-10-devicesMicrosoft has big plans for its new Windows 10 operating system, as the company publicly stated it’s aiming for over a billion devices running the OS. Luckily, lots of businesses seem to be quite eager to jump on Windows 10, making that target very achievable.

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According to a recent survey from SpiceWorks, which targeted IT pros and those in the enterprise, a huge number of businesses are very interested in adopting Windows 10. According to this data, 94% of those asked were interested in learning more about Microsoft’s newest OS.

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But the good news doesn’t stop there, as 40% of businesses reportedly want to upgrade to Windows 10 in the first year after launch, with another 33% wanting to jump onboard in the following 12 months. But why is there so much excitement surrounding the new OS? According to the survey respondents, the return of the Start Menu is a huge deal, topping the list of desired features. That, combined with the extra security that Windows 10 brings, as well as the free upgrade and the convenience of going through Windows Update seem to be the most popular reasons to adopt the new operating system.

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Of course, all of this assumes that Windows 10 won’t suffer from any major failures or compatibility issues and that the launch goes off without a hitch. In fact, there a bunch of problems that IT pros fear, seen above, and if any of these prove to be real issues, Windows 10 adoption may suffer.

That being said if this data is correct, it could be a huge win for Microsoft, and Windows 10 might be the most successful product in the company’s history. Not only does the Redmond giant make most of its money out of the enterprise, but if adoption ends up being as high as this survey suggests, it could be a huge vote of confidence in the company’s new way of doing business.

VoIT-Rise-Windows-10-Final.pdf (2MB)

IE loses stranglehold on the enterprise as Chrome makes major inroads

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Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE) is about to lose the one market it's had locked up for decades: the enterprise.

According to research firm Gartner, enterprise usage of Chrome will surpass that of IE by the end of this year. In 2016, Google's browser will dominate corporations, with about two-thirds of enterprise users running Chrome as their primary browser.

That prediction flies in the face of longtime assumptions that even as consumers deserted IE for alternatives like Apple's Safari, Chrome or Mozilla's Firefox, IE remained an unassailable fortress in business, where Windows rules and entrenched line-of-business Web apps demand IE.

"Enterprises had to stick on IE8 because Microsoft supported only one version of IE on a system," said Gartner analyst Michael Silver in an interview, referring to business reliance on the older edition for intranet browsing and running aged apps. "They couldn't get IE11, which forced them into putting another modern browser on devices."

Increasingly, that other browser has been Chrome.

Gartner estimated that by year's end, Google will be the No. 1 primary browser in corporations, edging IE by a few percentage points. Next year, Chrome's enterprise usage will surge from 43% to 65%, while IE's will plummet from 47% to 28%.

That's a sea change.

But Microsoft's fighting back with Edge, an overhaul of IE that will ship as the default browser in Windows 10. Repeatedly dubbed a "modern browser" by Microsoft, Edge can run alongside IE11 on the same device, a first for Microsoft. In a recently published report for clients, Silver and his Gartner colleague David Smith said Edge was Microsoft's answer to the "realization of the market of today."

"Microsoft needs a second browser for those who need both a modern and legacy browser on the same device," Silver and Smith wrote of the Redmond, Wash., company's revamped browser strategy.

While Edge will play the part of the "modern" side of the equation -- Microsoft's answer to Chrome's infiltration of the enterprise -- IE11, which will also be included with Windows 10, will play the "legacy" character.

Windows and OS X are malware, claims Richard Stallman


Linux GNU firebrand Richard Stallman says Windows and Apple's OS X are malware, Amazon is Orwellian, and anyone who trusts the internet-of-things is an ass.

In a column for The Guardian Stallman preaches to the non-technical masses about the evils of proprietary software and vendor lock-in, and how closed-door coding facilitates clandestine deals with nation state spy agencies.

"What kinds of programs constitute malware? Operating systems, first of all," Stallman testifies.

"Apple systems are malware too: MacOS snoops and shackles; iOS snoops, shackles, censors apps and has a backdoor.

"Even Android contains malware in a nonfree component: a back door for remote forcible installation or deinstallation of any app."

Stallman references a a Bloomberg report in saying Microsoft "sabotages" Windows users by disclosing vulnerabilities to the NSA before patches are released.

It isn't just Windows and MacOS – we think he means Apple's OS X – that Stallman brands malware: Barbie dolls, smart TVs, and cars also earn his ire thanks to the potential for marketers to secretly pry on a child's worst fears or listen in to lounge room conversations.

Stallman makes a valid if perhaps less hyperbolic point; that many commercial software houses are notoriously focused on time-to-market and at best bolt security checks on at the end of development, if at all.

The dash for cash also means patching is patchy. Vendors rarely pay much attention to shuttering security vulnerabilities created as a result of the bolt-on security ideology, and pay less still to discovering holes in their products.

There are of course many exceptions, with large and small organisations running bug bounties and working to harden code.

Yet the problem is bad enough that governments have universally kept crosshairs fixed on hackers who exploit, rather than developers who push out dangerous code.

Open source produce is not immune from vulnerabilities, but its inherent transparency means flaws are more likely to be found and fixed. It also makes the prospect of inserting sneaky backdoors into code a decidedly riskier proposition since it may be more easily found.

We may love our malicious smart phones, social networks, and internet-connected devices, but resistance, Stallman says, is not futile.

"It is fashionable to recognise the viciousness of today’s computing only to declare resistance unthinkable. Many claim that no one could resist gratification for mere freedom and privacy. But it’s not as hard as they say. We can resist:
  • Individually, by rejecting proprietary software and web services that snoop or track.
  • Collectively, by organising to develop free/libre replacement systems and web services that don’t track who uses them.
  • Democratically, by legislation to criminalise various sorts of malware practices. This presupposes democracy, and democracy requires defeating treaties such as the TPP and TTIP that give companies the power to suppress democracy."

Kindle Collection Manager: gestisci le tue collezioni

Kindle Collection Manager è un semplicissimo programma per Microsoft Windows che ti consente di gestire bene le tue collezioni di ebook sul Kindle, esattamente come Kindlean. La differenza è l'aspetto grafico ma dal punto di vista delle funzioni sono praticamente le spesse.

Kindle Collection Manager


Puoi scaricare da qui il pacchetto di installazione KindleCollectionManager_v0.5.3.zip (789,53 kb)

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