NASA’s Got Game
NASA has announced a partnership with Microsoft in a revolutionary new tactic to get the public more interested and involved in the space program: the Mars Rover Landing game on Xbox. The game takes players through the various stages of what a true Martian landing would entail, including the delicate trajectory adjustments and careful instrumentation monitoring required to enter the atmosphere of the red planet. The game will be released as a free download via Xbox Live this week.
YouTube Loses Face… Literally
YouTube announced on its blog recently that it is implementing a new feature that will hopefully get some of the more photo-shy users out there posting videos: face-blurring. The tool, while not quite perfect, allows the faces of people in the video to be obscured to preserve anonymity such as when you want to post the events of a child’s sporting event without broadcasting the identities of those children to the world.
Windows 8 Release Date Set
Microsoft has finally announced the release date for its upcoming Windows 8 operating system: October 26th, 2012. On this date, new PCs will be available for purchase pre-loaded with the new OS and purchasers of the system through Microsoft’s upgrade programs will be able to install it as well. Windows Server 2012 and Visual Studio 2012 are entering the manufacturing phase at the same time as well, with officials stating that the new server platform should be available to customers by September.
The ‘Mother of All Smartphone Software Patents’ Goes to Apple
Apple has been recently granted a staggering 25 new patents this week, but one of them in particular has smartphone enthusiasts fearful of the repercussions. The patent revolves around Apple’s touch-based graphical interface for all sorts of standard smartphone applications and it could spell disaster for many Android platform devices in the years to come as the all-touch interface pioneered by the Apple iPhone has become mainstream.
Microsoft’s Skydrive Could be a Dark Cloud
Microsoft is leading the way on integrating multiple applications and systems with Internet-based cloud storage services, particularly it’s very own Skydrive system. While a centralized storage compartment for all your commonly accessed files and data might seem very useful at first glance, some users have experienced serious issues with Skydrive’s terms of service. Microsoft has the ability to monitor any data stored on their cloud servers and reserves the right to revoke the privilege of using the service (as well as any other Microsoft services they may subscribe to) to anyone they find in violation of their terms. Before taking advantage of such a service, you may want to consider if it is worth the risk of losing access to it before you sign on.