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May 4, 2007

Microsoft Weekly Miscellany, May 4, 2007

Posted by David Hunter at 2:19 PM ET.

Judge tells Microsoft to pay up in Alcatel-Lucent patent case. There won’t be any $1.5 billion checks any time soon though – just more legal maneuvering.

Microsoft Poised to Rule Entertainment, Devices World according to Robbie Bach at least. eWeek needed 3 articles to encompass his full rendition of “High Hopes“. Related: Microsoft fails to impress during Bach’s MIX07 keynote. Too bad the developers walked out, because they missed The Economist’s Andrew Rashbass who was both the life of the MIX07 party and the specter at the feast.

Only slightly more illuminating than Bach was Steve Ballmer’s interview with USA Today, but he certainly has a jones for the iPhone which led some to wonder about his math.

Pink Zune Now Available to the Rest of Us. Yep, that’ll do it.

Yahoo wins eyeball auction. I guess Google and Microsoft can’t win them all and it’s surprisingly a bigger deal than you might think since Comcast is the largest US ISP and their customers actually use the homepage.

Japanese Government to Embrace Linux – $10B worth of systems in 2007 and it’s $17B if you count local governments.

Microsoft to Challenge $75.5M Attorney Fee in Iowa Class-Action Lawsuit, but only the $0.5M part since they already agreed to the $75M.

Vista angst fodder

Update 5/8: MSFTextrememakeover provides the requisite corporal punishment for the Robbie Bach interview mentioned above in Microsoft’s $6M+ (Per Year) Man.

Filed under Alcatel-Lucent, Antitrust, Apple, Argo, Conferences, Coopetition, Executives, Legal, Linux, MIX07, Microsoft, OS - Client, Open Source, Patent Lawsuits, Patents, Robbie Bach, Steve Ballmer, Windows Vista, Yahoo, Zune

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April 27, 2007

Preview of Microsoft announcements at MIX07

Posted by David Hunter at 7:40 PM ET.

CNET’s Martin Lamonica has some buzz about what Microsoft will be announcing next week at their MIX07 conference:

Microsoft next week at its Mix07 conference plans to detail more generous business terms for partners to use its Live online services and to open up new application programming interfaces for Windows Live Spaces.

The company will allow outside developers–which can be at commercial enterprises–to build mash-up applications that generate up to one million unique user visits at their sites per month for free. Beyond that, Microsoft will charge 25 cents per user per year or look to establish a business relationship where it can deliver online ads to those sites, company executives said.

In addition, Microsoft will provide APIs to photos or contact information for its Windows Live Spaces users if they give permission. Windows Live Spaces is Microsoft’s social networking site where people can post blogs, share photos and other information.

The goal is to drive traffic to Microsoft’s Web properties and entice Web businesses to use Microsoft products and services, executives said.

In the face of all this leaking, the folks at Microsoft’s Windows Live Dev News blog are gritting their teeth and suggesting that will have all the details on Monday.

Meanwhile, InfoWorld’s Elizabeth Montalbano reports that sources say that Microsoft will also be announcing that portions of Microsoft’s Silverlight “Flash killer” will be open sourced in order to better compete with Adobe. Microsoft had already promised that a Silverlight beta would be released at MIX07.

Filed under Conferences, MIX07, Microsoft, Silverlight, Technologies, Windows Live, Windows Live Spaces

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April 17, 2007

Microsoft christens Flash killer as “Silverlight”

Posted by David Hunter at 11:12 AM ET.

Microsoft has launched its WPF/E “Flash Killer,” first announced a year ago, complete with a jazzy new moniker:

April 15, 2007 — Today at the 2007 National Association of Broadcasters conference (NAB2007), Microsoft Corp. unveiled Microsoft® Silverlight™, a new cross-browser, cross-platform plug-in for delivering the next generation of media experiences and rich interactive applications (RIAs) for the Web. Early supporters of the new platform include Akamai Technologies Inc., Brightcove Inc., Eyeblaster Inc., Limelight Networks, Major League Baseball and Netflix Inc.

Microsoft Silverlight, previously called Windows® Presentation Foundation Everywhere (WPF/E), integrates with existing Web technologies and assets to provide higher-quality experiences with lower costs for media delivery. Delivered to end users through a seamless, fast installation, Silverlight offers consistent experiences to both Macintosh and Windows users on a variety of browsers including Internet Explorer®, Firefox and Safari.

Microsoft’s broader development platform and additional details about Silverlight will be shared in the keynote presentation at Microsoft’s upcoming Mix07 conference, April 30 in Las Vegas. Microsoft will also release the beta for Silverlight during the Mix07 conference. More information about the Mix07 event can be found at

As is well known, Silverlight offers a subset of the the Windows Presentation Foundation technologies introduced with Vista along with Windows Media Video (WMV), Microsoft’s implementation of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE) VC-1 video standard, combined in a runtime that will allow cross platform rich media Web applications. (See Tim Sneath’s top ten list of reasons why you might want to use Silverlight for the technical sales pitch.)

As I have observed previously, at this point Silverlight is just another browser plug-in, but Microsoft has high hopes as indicated by the extra effort they made in branding it. Not surprisingly, Adobe (the owner of Flash) cast doubts on Microsoft’s cross platform commitment.

Filed under Adobe, Conferences, Coopetition, Digital Media, General Business, MIX07, Marketing, Microsoft, Silverlight, Technologies, WPF, XAML

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