This weekend I took some time late last night after everyone went to bed and I had finished clearing up most of my mail backlog (apologies to those of you who rec'd a mail from me over the weekend with some new request or a belated reply).  As noted, it was a busy day making a snowman. As I I Tweeted and noted to our Hawaiian friend, Kirk: given a choice, the boys would rather be making sand castles in Hawaii instead of snow forts.

It's still cold, colder even than it was last night:

Local weather for Redmond, WA: Cloudy and 25°F, Feels Like 17°F, 14 Dec @ 9:00PM PST (which still feels like zero).

One of the emails I sent last night was to our friend, Beth: I do love her Techmamas blog.  It's one of "50 of the world's top bloggers" according to HP (which just gave away a bunch of gear in the "HP Magic Giveaway" http://tinyurl.com/6alc8m) along side such respected folks as Amit Agarwal, Chris Pirillo, John Obeto, Long Zheng and the irrepressible Ian Dixon.  I sent her links and more information on the Windows Live Wave 3 launch as I finished setting up my Windows Live page and raved about it over the last holiday weekend.  I like the new features in Photo Gallery, Movie Maker, Live Mail and Live Writer. Brian Hall announced last month...

People sometimes ask me “What is Windows Live?” and “How does that relate to Hotmail, Messenger and Photo Gallery?” Historically, people have had entirely separate e-mail, IM, and sharing solutions – with different contact lists and totally different tools. But we’re now at a point where we can go beyond siloed communication tools that don’t work together – and start to integrate the best of them together with one contact list. In Windows Live, we’ve been working towards this for a while, but with this upcoming release, we’re taking a huge step forward in providing an integrated personal communication service – integrated across Windows Live and across other services on the web.

Quite simply, our goal with Windows Live is to help keep your life in sync. We do this by giving you great tools for communicating and sharing with the people you care about most. We help you bring together all of your digital stuff from across the web. And we optimize your experiences for where you are – on your PC, in Outlook, on your mobile phone, and on the web.

So, when can you get the new Windows Live and what does it include? In September, we released a set of beta programs for your PC. These programs will come out of beta soon - they’re the Windows Live Essentials. We also started rolling out updates to Hotmail customers. Over the coming months, we’ll release additional updates, as well as many new programs and services that we’re launching for the PC, web, and mobile phone.

Millions of you are already using the betas of our PC programs and have been providing us with great feedback. We’re hard at work on finalizing these products, and we’ll soon be releasing the final versions of Windows Live programs for your PC, known collectively as Windows Live Essentials. The Essentials include Messenger, Photo Gallery, Movie Maker, Mail, Writer, Toolbar, and Family Safety.

On the web, we’ll be updating Hotmail, Spaces, Calendar, SkyDrive, and Windows Live Home – your dashboard to what is happening across Windows Live. We’re also introducing new profile, groups, and photos experiences on the web.

More info is also included on the Team blog in a recent post on The new face of Windows Live on the web.

Here’s a good overview of the Windows Live for mobile introduction from the Live team.

Liveside.net’s includes an intro on the Live Wave 3 launch here.

“… include the release of new services such as Windows Live Groups, Photos and Profile as well as the significantly updated Home and Mobile offerings.”

And the review on PC Magazine's site – the only thing that PC Magazine dinged Live on was a lack of Exchange server support.

Now, to finish tracking down the presentations requested this weekend for review.  Have a good week ahead.

Tags: Microsoft, Your questions, Windows Live.

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