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Yesterday I received an email from 360desktop announcing their long awaited beta release. I fired up my download manager and downloaded the small file.

In case you are wondering what 360desktop is?

360 thumb 360desktop: Not so great after all..

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The computing industry that as we know today is changing very fast into one in which everything we need can be accessed online. Microsoft is onboard with this new computing paradigm popularly known as “Cloud Computing” which folks at Redmond more like to call it as “Software + Services”.microsoft logo thumb Live Mesh v.s. MobileMe : Tech. Showdown!

For the past several years, Microsoft founder Bill Gates has always emphasized in his various keynotes and speeches on how important a role a Windows PC plays as the center of everyone’s digital life. Sure people have moved beyond the PC with connected devices, and has engage with others online, but the PC was always at the center. When you think about it, putting a PC in the center of our lives.. it makes a lot of sense … but the trend now is changing, people now are more looking for these portable form factors that utilize Internet that work  online in ways that, as it turns out, don’t actually require Windows or traditional PCs.

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Live Maps team has updated maps of Beijing just in time for the upcoming summer Olympic games at Beijing.beijing thumb Live Maps updated just in time for 2008 summer Olympics in Beijing

Here is the full list of updates courtesy LiveSide:

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Are you looking to share with your friends what you are running on your computer? or do you want to know what software does your friends run or which one do they use the most? Look no further than Wakoopa!

Wakoopa is a social networking site that monitors the software’s which run on the members computer.

The Wakoopa service has a small application that runs in the background on a user’s computer. The application gathers the information about open software and games, and then publishes the information to their profile on Wakoopa’s web site.

Wakoopa also allows you to share your software usage and your opinions about software. Recently they have also started a widgets section through which you can share your usage with your friends on popular social networking sites such as Facebook, My Space, Live Spaces, Orkut, and more in the form of Badges, Signatures and Cards. Read More »

A couple of days ago, I received a mail from Microsoft Connect which confirmed me as a private tester for Microsoft SQL Server Data Services. While I am still exploring this new service, I just thought of guiding all those interested in this service in order to help you get started with SQL Server Data Services a.k.a SSDS but first up, what is SSDS?sql server 2008 thumb Getting started with SQL Server Data Services

At this years MIX, Microsoft unveiled SQL Server Data Services as a direct competitor to Amazon SimpleDB. SQL Server Data Services  is a web-facing utility-based service designed for businesses and developers that need scalable, highly available, secure and easily programmable on-demand data storage with robust database query capabilities. The platform is built upon existing Microsoft SQL Server relational database technologies. So basically it’s a cloud-based repository service that will offer APIs that enable storage in the cloud.

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 I just randomly came over this Windows Live site which looks like a technology preview of an upcoming feature to Live Maps. Windows Live Maps already offers Bird’s Eye View but by having a close look at this site, it looks to me that a “Drive-through” kind of a feature is coming to Live Maps very soon. Check out the preview here Windows Live Maps Technology Preview

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Last week I reviewed MSN Toolbar which is built using Silverlight technology. Today morning I noticed a slight change in the toolbar as it got updated automatically. The toolbar now features local weather forecast which in my opinion is a very nice touch and adds more value to the toolbar. The Windows Live search portion has also been updated. Previously we could only search for Web, Images, Video, News, Maps & Local from the toolbar but now more options have been added so now we can also search for Products, QnA and xRank.

msn toolbar thumb1 Silverlight based MSN Toolbar gets updated.

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We have already covered about the legacy of Bill Gates here but I just thought I should add something about the man who I idolized for the larger part of my not so long life.

So here’s is to the man who changed the way I interact with computers!

For many, Bill Gates and his company Microsoft would more be remembered for the evil-doings and monopolization which led to their domination on desktop PCs but for me Bill Gates is a business man in a true sense of word. He truly knew the art of doing business. He broadened the company’s range of products,  and then pushed it so aggressively that it led to the the domination and success of his products. Bill Gates predicted “a computer in every home and on every desk”….and today its indeed in every home & on every desk and over 90% of those run Windows. So for me Gates will be remembered as one of the best-known business men and one of the best entrepreneurs of the personal computer revolution.

ms thumb Bill Gates   The End of an Era

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Do you use toolbar with your web browser?

Toolbars for me are the thing of the past. Gone are the days when I used to try toolbars from Google, Microsoft, Yahoo or AOL to be able to have features such as tabbed browsing, searching from the browser etc because back then such features were not a standard part of any of the available web browsers. Later Google, Microsoft, Yahoo and likes started pushing these toolbar just to get more market share in search as their respective search engines were built into the toolbars. This resulted in toolbars getting bloated with unnecessary features which halted our web experience. This was the time when I stopped using toolbars

Then came Opera and Firefox who in their newer versions of browsers added tabbed browsing, built-in search as the standard feature of their web browser. Microsoft later too added these features as a standard in Internet Explorer 7.

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The IE team at Redmond HQ of Microsoft has send a fancy little cake to Mozilla’s Montain View HQ as a good gesture to join in the celebration of the release of Firefox 3.

firefoxcake30 thumb Microsoft sends cake to Firefox team

Well what can I say about this? Didnt expect this coming from Microsoft. I was very surprised when I got to know that IE team also sent in a cake when Firefox 2.0 was launched.

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