You know a technology is hitting the mainstream when the Wall Street Journal writes about it. AJAX is getting a lot of press right now and I'm still excited about the user experience it delivers to our new site at www.live.com and the new Hotmail UI.
There is a pretty cool article by Jesse James Garnett on this technology on Adaptive Path with a cool diagram of how it works.
We announced last week our intention to acquire media-steams.com - another sure sign of the importance of VOIP going forward (as if you needed it!).
"VoIP is exploding," Bill Gates, Microsoft's chairman and chief software architect, said at the San Francisco event. "We want to enable the software richness on the PC to connect out to traditional PBXes."
Having worked closely with our mobile devices group over the last 4 years and helping to bring Windows Mobile Smartphone in to the world, it's going to be interesting to see how this develops with increasingly more people mobile and with devices like the iMate SP5 smartphone having WiFi built in, the reality of VOIP is getting a lot closer. When WiMax rolls out and phones support that technology, the landscape for mobile operators should become quite crowded with ISP's starting to offer voice services and more.
If you haven't heard, this was a BIG announcement this week by Microsoft that signals our intention to provide more hosted services. For the first time in 3 years I have changed my homepage - to www.live.com - it's just a cool, clean and very useful site. I imported my OPML file so I can now browse my favourite RSS feeds from anywhere, I can drag and drop "gadgets" to lay out my page the way I like....and, it's just.....cool. It's encapsulated by this:
"Windows Live is based on one simple idea: that your online world gets better when everything works simply and effortlessly together. So all the things you care about online - your friends, the latest information, your e-mails, searching the Net - all come together in one place. Windows Live is a brand new Internet experience designed to put you in control. And this is just the beginning-you'll see many more new products in the coming months."
Meantime, Office Live is desgined for small businesses with up to 10 employees - by providing a web site, domian name and email accounts for free. More on that soon.
BG being Bill Gates - check it out!
Bill was in town (London) last week and on great form. We get to see him present a reasonable amount both live and via recordings etc and it's always great when he does live Q&A from the audience. The BBC also got to interview Bill where he talked about some similar things such as competing with Google, Sony and others. Bill must have dashed about a fair bit last week as he also spoke with The Guardian and when I got the tube on friday I was pretty shocked to see that Bill was front page in the Metro!
There has been a lot of dicussion about Office 12 and PDF recently and also the XPS format (aka Metro) - XML Paper Specification. Jeff Bell has a lot more info on his blog
I'm still getting my head around XPS but the notion of being able to exchange documents in a final form and having many applications (and OS'es) be able to natively view and print them sounds cool. Check out the Metro fact sheet