Microsoft and Atari brings back classic games

Written by AboKevin on . Posted in Games, Internet Explorer, Microsoft

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Microsoft and Atari have teamed up to bring back old classic arcade games in your browser. While the site will work in any browser, you will have ad-free versions if you are using Internet Explorer. The games have been designed for multitouch, but works just as fine with a keyboard and mouse.

I have taken some screenshots of the games so that you can get an impression of what’s going on. I myself was taken back to yonder years with Asteroids. I still vividly remember the Asteroids arcade machine that I played a video game on for the first time around the time I was 10 years old. Memories…

 

 

 

 

If you want to try them out yourself, head over to this website. Enjoy!

 

Oh and a second thing; after trying the oldies but goldies out, take a look at these two videos;

 

 

 

 

Internet Explorer 9 Beta is here!

Written by AboKevin on . Posted in Internet Explorer, Microsoft, Screenshots, Tips, Windows 7;

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Today, September 15th 2010, Internet Explorer 9 Beta went public. And the only way to sum up my first impressions is – wow – IE is back in the game. I have been using Google Chrome for the last year. I like its simple user interface and speed, compared to IE 8, which became slower and slower to me. IE 9 on the other hand is slick, slim and fast.

I will test the browser more thoroughly in the weeks to come, and will for now only show you some screenshots with my comments after a few hours use. For more in debth information Ed Bott and Paul Thurrott have both written up their impressions after a few weeks use and both articles are really worth reading.

 

If you want to download the beta yourself head on over to the beautyoftheweb.com site to get the bits;

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Underneath are a few screenshots I have taken that shows IE 9 Beta in action;

 

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The IE 9 Beta site that welcomes you after installing it

 

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My homepage setup in IE 9 Beta with the LastPass add-in and the Favorites bar.

 

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My Hotmail inbox with the taskbar preview of all the tabs showing at the bottom.

 

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IE 9 Beta allows you to pin tabs to the taskbar, and for sites to make spesific jump lists for their sites. Paul Thurrotts’ winsupersite.com already has that functionality enabled as seen on this screenshot.

 

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The open new tab displays this page. Yes, there is definitely something similar to Chrome here, and I am pretty sure that a lot of people will compare IE 9 Beta to Chrome due to this and the general layout of the browser. It still feels different in all the right places.

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Like in Chrome you now search directly from the addressbar. But unlike Chrome the more secure option is default and you have to actively select to turn on search suggestions – which means that your keystrokes are transmitted over the net.

 

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Here I have locked the Favorties pane on the left, and here I am missing one of my simple but favorite UI solution from IE 7 and 8; the little blue arrow that pops up on the right side of your bookmarked links which enabled me to with just one click open the link in a new tab. Here I either have to right click and then choose “open link in new tab” or hold down CTRL while clicking the link – Microsoft – please bring back the blue right arrow.

 

To sum it up; Impressive and a total redesign of Internet Explorer. It is fast, it is good looking, it has great integration with Windows 7 and it really looks promising going forward. I have already made it my default browser and it will be interesting to see how I feel about it after more regular use of it. If you are using some other browser, it being an older version of IE or one of the competing browsers like Firefox or Chrome you ought to test this one out – you will be positively surprised

 

Two thumbs up!

European distribution of Windows 7 to be released without Internet Explorer!?

Written by AboKevin on . Posted in Antitrust, European Union, Internet Explorer, Microsoft, Opera, Opinion, Windows 7;

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In January the European Union stated that Microsoft most likely broke European antitrust laws since they were bundling Internet Explorer with their Windows Operating System. Today cnet news’ Ina Fried broke the story of Microsoft’s response to the EU; they will release a version of Windows 7 aimed for the European market without IE in it. As Microsoft themselves states it in their leaked memo;

"To ensure that Microsoft is in compliance with European law, Microsoft will be releasing a separate version of Windows 7 for distribution in Europe that will not include Windows Internet Explorer," the software maker said in the memo. "Microsoft will offer IE8 separately and free of charge and will make it easy and convenient for PC manufacturers to preinstall IE 8 on Windows 7 machines in Europe if they so choose. PC manufacturers may choose to install an alternative browser instead of IE 8, and has always been the case, they may install multiple browsers if they wish."

The whole case is so stupid in so many ways, and I have the following comments;

  1. This antitrust case comes at a time when there has never been more competition in the browser market than there is now. Firefox, Google Chrome and Safari are all doing very well, thank you very much. While IE had a market share that hovered around 90 % 5 years ago, it barely brakes 70 % today – and is on a steady decline.
  2. The main complainant in the case, Norwegian Opera Software, is (of course) not happy with Microsoft’s solution, saying that it will “not restore competition in the marketplace”. There are a lot of Opera fans out there, especially in Europe, but obviously not enough to make much of a dent in the charts when it comes to market share. But how come this browser is not gaining, while the other choices are? Might it be that the other products are perceived as better?

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  3. If the European Union accepts this solution from Microsoft (which is not entirely sure) who thinks that PC manufacturers will actually provide a PC without a browser on it? And if they install one, which one will that likely be – IE most likely. Google might have the money to persuade manufacturers to bundle Chrome, but in no way does Opera Software have that money available. And what about retail versions of the OS? Does this imply that you go home with your copy of Windows, perform an upgrade or clean install only to have an OS with no internet browser at all? (This of course leads to the rebirth of internet browser CD install disks – back to the 90’s :-D) Stupid, stupid, stupid.
  4. In 2009 an internet browser is integral to any operating system. Apple Mac OS X without Safari? If this legal battle had taken place in the 90’s I could have understood it, but not now. The world has changed and the thought of having an operation system without an internet browser is just stupid. How in the world would you get on the net? You couldn’t even download a competing internet browser! As I have stated above there is more competition in this market than it has ever been, and Safari, Google and Firefox seems to be gaining market share at the cost of Internet Explorer every day. There obviously is no need for an antitrust case since the market seems to be functioning just fine.
  5. My last point: I am deeply sorry for this embarrassing legal battle instigated by a Norwegian Company (and we are not even members of the EU!).

What are your thoughts on this issue? If you reside in Europe will you purchase a European Internet browser free edition of Windows 7, or will you do as I will, get the US version?

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