Microsoft unveils Xbox One: the ultimate all-in-one home entertainment system — from microsoft.com

Excerpt:

REDMOND, Wash. — May 21, 2013 — A new vision for the future comes to life today as Microsoft Corp. unveils Xbox One , the all-in-one gaming and entertainment system created for today and the next generation. At Microsoft headquarters in Redmond, Wash., the company showcased how Xbox One puts you at the center of all your games, TV, movies, music, sports and Skype.

“Xbox One is designed to deliver a whole new generation of blockbuster games, television and entertainment in a powerful, all-in-one device,” said Don Mattrick, president, Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft. “Our unique, modern architecture brings simplicity to the living room and, for the first time ever, the ability to instantly switch across your games and entertainment.”

With Xbox One, games push the boundaries of realism, and TV obeys your commands. Say “Xbox On” to launch your personalized Xbox One Home screen, discover what is popular on TV or see friends’ latest gaming achievements all using the most natural interface — your voice. The more you interact with Xbox One, the more it gets to know you and learns what you like.

 

From DSC:
Here’s the item I find particularly interesting (emphasis DSC):

  • Skype for Xbox One.
    Specially designed for Xbox One, talk with friends on your TV in stunning HD, or for the first time ever, hold group Skype calls on your TV.

 

Apple Inc. (AAPL), Google Inc (GOOG), Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN): Ecosystems are widening moats — from insidermonkey.com

Apple smartphone strategy: It’s the ecosystem — news.investors.com

The strength of Apple’s ecosystem remains its greatest asset and will secure customers and profits despite slowing growth and margin dips — from tbrnewsommentary.wordpress.com by Beau Skonieczny, Analyst
iPad continued to fuel growth and healthy margins for Apple despite headwinds

 

From DSC:
Those of us working in the tech side of the house know how difficult it is to navigate this space. The targets are always moving, and determining which tool to go with has changed through these last few years.  It used to be about individual tools (and sometimes still is).  But increasingly, one needs to fly at the 50,00-foot level and ask how the ecosystems are playing out and how an individual tool fits into a greater ecosystem or platform.  Some ecosystems that come to my mind right now include: Apple, Google, Amazon, and Microsoft.

 

 

 

Microsoft releases next-generation Office 365 for business and education

Excerpt:

REDMOND, Wash. — Feb. 27, 2013 — Microsoft Corp. today announced worldwide availability of a major new update to its Microsoft Office 365 services for business. Microsoft’s most complete Office cloud service to date has new features and offerings tailored to the needs and budgets of small, medium-size and large organizations. In addition to updated Microsoft Lync Online, Microsoft Exchange Online and Microsoft SharePoint Online services, business users can now get the rich Office applications they are familiar with, on up to five devices, delivered as an always up-to-date cloud service. Office 365 features enhanced enterprise social capabilities with SharePoint and Yammer today, and Lync-Skype connectivity for presence, instant messaging (IM), and voice by June. The new Office 365 service is available today in 69 markets and 17 languages and will be available in an additional 20 markets and 16 languages in the second quarter of this year.

The new basis of competition and the superiority of ecosystem economics — from visionmobile.com by Michael Vakulenko

Also see:

The changing landscape of app discovery — from visionmobile.com by Andreas Pappas

.

VisionMobile - The changing landscape of app discovery

 

Also see:

 

DeveloperEconomics-Feb2013

 



Also see the following infographic from
OnlinePhDPrograms.com

Making Money with iOS Education Apps

Grad student turns heads in Norwegian schools with technology-charged pedagogy — from beditionmagazine.com by DC Brandon; with thanks to brian k (@iEducator) for posting this on Twitter

Excerpt:

Salerno says using video games in the classroom is a sure-fire way to get students excited about learning. She used the example of a social studies unit that students are taught in Norwegian schools. In one particular unit, they usually read a textbook chapter about famous explorers. In the game-based version of the unit, textbooks may be used but are not relied upon.

So how does she incorporate video games into a social studies lesson?

She uses a Microsoft product called Kodu, although she says there are many other software products that could be used, like Minecraft and Little Big Planet.

She breaks the unit down like this (from the perspective of a student):

  1. Choose an explorer to profile
  2. Research the explorer’s history online and in textbooks
  3. Create game map (games require planning to be successfully built)
  4. Create game details and missions, mark out important plot points
  5. Build world
  6. Build in characters and plot in the form of missions
  7. Demo game to classmates on “gameday”

 

Also see:

ECAR2012

 

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Example slides from today’s presentation:


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 ECAR2-2012

 

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ECAR3-2012

 

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 ECAR4-2012

 

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ECAR5-2012

 

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ECAR6-2012

 

 

From DSC:
I also support one of the questions which, paraphrasing, asked, “Do you pulse check students’ expectations?

 

Tagged with:  

Living room wars — from tnl.net by Tristan Louis

Excerpt:

Control of the TV screen is seen as a major step in the next iteration of computing. The field can be divided between hardware manufacturers, content providers and end-to-end players who are looking to provide a complete solution. The net result is that while everyone is trying to get into every other player’s field, the emerging winners may not be the ones who grab most of the headlines.

Also see:

  • The four screens — from tnl.net
    Excerpt:
    The battle for digital supremacy is increasingly being waged on 4 different screens, with much of the focus in the computing industry being focus on 2 of them. When one looks at the expanding field, however, the dynamics may be radically different than expected.

 

Addendums/see:

 

 

From DSC:
What might H2O-like functionality look like on a Smart TV?

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H20 from Harvard Law

 

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From DSC:
What educationally-related apps could something like ScreenBee address?

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From DSC:
Eventually, this will lay a solid foundation for what I’m calling “Learning from the Living [Class] Room.”

 

Also see:

  • HEVC is game changer for multi-screen and IPTV
    Excerpt:
    There is an industry consensus that HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding), the draft compression standard, will have a dramatic impact on the industry thanks to its ability to eventually halve bit rates compared to MPEG-4 AVC (H.264), the current encoding Gold Standard that it will complement but ultimately succeed. And as with all encoding, if you create sufficient extra coding efficiency to halve bit rates then you can also choose to leave bit rates the same but double picture quality, or turn the bandwidth/quality dial to any point in between. Encoder vendors are working towards deployments of the new codec as early as next year, probably starting with multi-screen TV services and fixed line IPTV.
    .
  • Indra Sistemas SA : Connected TV: Gateway to the job market for the disabled
    Excerpt:
    Thanks to this standard, researchers of the Visual Telecommunications Application Group (G@TV), through the Indra-Adecco Foundation Chair, are developing a television platform in which people with various disabilities can access services such as distance learning and job offers. It will also enable employers and the public to obtain information about disability and the integration of the disabled into the workforce.

Microsoft announces Windows 8 and Surface tablet

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Microsoft unveils Windows 8, Surface tablet — from finance.yahoo.com/Reuters

Excerpt:

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp launched its new Windows 8 operating system and Surface tablet on Thursday in a bid to revive interest in its flagship product and regain ground lost to Apple Inc and Google Inc in mobile computing.  “We’ve reimagined Windows and we’ve reimagined the whole PC industry,” Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer told Reuters Television.  Windows 8 devices and the company’s new Surface tablet, which challenges Apple’s popular iPad head on, go on sale at midnight on Thursday.

Microsoft’s Windows 8 Test: Courting Consumers — from WSJ.com by Shira Ovide

Excerpt:

The software giant on Thursday formally introduced the touch-oriented overhaul of the operating system that powers nine out of every 10 computers in the world and goes on sale Friday. Microsoft’s new Windows 8 is widely viewed as a test of whether the PC-era kingpin can become a factor in new-wave mobile devices—not just tablets but convertible devices that can operate in clamshell or slate-style modes.

 

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From DSC:
Entertainment-related ecosystems now…but educationally-related ecosystems could be coming up next…

The future of Microsoft’s Xbox? Interactive “TV” — from readwriteweb.com by Mark Hachman
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The future of Microsoft’s Xbox appears to be moving briskly toward interactive TV,
based on a high-profile hire of CBS Entertainment’s former television chief and the
launch of two interactive TV “programs” that tap into Microsoft’s Kinect peripheral.

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1.5 million homes cut the cord in Q1 2012 — from videomind.ooyala.com by Greg Franzese

Excerpt:

Americans continue to gobble up online video, watching almost 35 hours a week across all connected screens.

Nielsen’s Cross Platform Report for the first quarter of 2012 found the average TV consumer is watching six fewer minutes of traditional television per day, but overall viewing continues to grow as more people watch TV content online. (Our Online Video Index data shows a similar trend, as people watch more movies, sports and TV shows online.)

50 interesting ways to use Skype in your classroom — from edudemic.com by Jeff Dunn

Excerpt:

I’m a so-so fan of Skype. I’ve used it on an infrequent basis and have had more than a few dropped calls. Audio and video alike. However, it’s a cheap way to make long distance calls and seems to work better over wi-fi and the video quality is improving on a regular basis. So therefore it’s probably a great tool for the classroom. But how can you use Skype to do more than just make calls? Well, there’s a pantload of interesting ways! Check out these fun ideas:

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From DSC:
And for “Skype on steroids”, consider using Blackboard Collaborate:

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Blackboard Collaborate - Skype on Steroids

 

 

From DSC:
I created this graphic, so I ask for
mercy from you lawyers  at
Microsoft and/or at Blackboard! 🙂

 

 

Also see:

 

8 things to know about the new Microsoft Office  — from inc.com by Christina DesMarais

Microsoft starts integrating Skype into Office — from techcrunch.com by Frederic Lardinois

Next version of Microsoft Office puts emphasis on subscriptions with Office 365 — from techcrunch.com by Frederic Lardinois

Licensing is the Achilles Heel for the new Microsoft Office — from techcrunch.com by Alex Williams

Microsoft’s new Office: The cloud finally takes center stage — from cnet.com by Mary Jo Foley
A public preview of Microsoft’s coming Office 2013 client is out today. But Office 365 and SkyDrive are the real stars of the new Office show.

New Microsoft Office taps into the cloud — from cnet.com by Lance Whitney
Like Windows 8, the new version of Office will let you sign in with an online account, providing you with the same settings across different devices.

The new Microsoft Office — in pictures – from cnet.com

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http://news.cnet.com/2300-10805_3-10012965-15.html

 

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New Microsoft Office to embrace Windows 8 touch-screen tablets — from cnet.com by Lance Whitney
Demoing the applications in the new Office suite today, Microsoft emphasized the ability to integrate with Windows 8 using taps and other touch-based gestures.

Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 to be bundled on all Windows RT tablets

Hands On: Microsoft Office 2013 and Office 365 — from PCMag.com by Jill Duffy

New Microsoft Office ropes in Skype, Yammer, SkyDrive — from gigaom.com by Barb Darrow

What the new Microsoft Office gets wrong — from fastcodesign.com by Austin Carr
Microsoft unveiled a preview of its latest version of Office, and the design is a schizophrenic mess. Here’s why.

Office 15: Microsoft’s Best Bet For Beating Dropbox, iCloud, Google Drive — from FastCompany.com by Austin Carr
With one billion Office users worldwide, the newest upgrade to Microsoft’s productivity suite could give the company a significant hold on the cloud, which Gartner estimates will become a $149 billion industry by 2015.

 

 

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