Microsoft 

Because someone had to make the first Cortana smart speaker

Because someone had to make the first Cortana smart speaker People often stop after Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant when rattling off the list of smart assistants. Cortana really gets no love at all, outside of stories about Windows 10. The oversight can be chalked up, at least in part, to the fact that AI has been mostly desktop-bound. It’s true that Microsoft has launched Android and iOS apps for the assistant, but while all of the excitement in the space is happening on mobile and smart speakers, no one’s…

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Microsoft 

Microsoft appeals to power users with the Surface Precision Mouse

Microsoft appeals to power users with the Surface Precision Mouse Once upon a time, Microsoft had a whole line of gaming hardware under the Sidewinder brand, and while they never really put much of a dent in Razer or Logitech, they put out some decent mice (the X3 “might serve as a good introduction to multiple DPI settings for your mom or dad,” I wrote in 2010). I’m glad to see they’re returning to that advanced-mousing heritage with the Surface Precision Mouse. Of course, you can never know if a…

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Microsoft 

Microsoft Surface Book 2 is a well-rounded portable powerhouse

Microsoft Surface Book 2 is a well-rounded portable powerhouse It’s well past time to put to rest any doubt surrounding Microsoft’s hardware ambitions. Over the past few years, the company has transformed the Surface line from boutique proof of concept to one of the more innovative and forward-looking PC brands on the market. The Surface Book is one of the best examples of the line — released in 2015, it was quickly embraced as one of the best laptops on the market. Microsoft took the wraps off the Surface Book…

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Microsoft 

Microsoft looks to iOS and Android for its path forward in mobile

Microsoft looks to iOS and Android for its path forward in mobile Between the release of Windows 10 Fall Creators Edition and the announcement of a new Surface Book, today’s Microsoft news was firmly focused on the desktop. But as the company works to build its future ecosystem, it’s keenly aware that no play in the space is complete without a mobile strategy. What shape that strategy will take, however, has been pretty unclear in the wake of Windows Phone’s long, drawn-out death. Earlier this month, the company appeared to pronounce…

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Microsoft 

Minecraft now lets you export your creations in 3D — but only on Windows 10

Minecraft now lets you export your creations in 3D — but only on Windows 10 Minecraft players will now be able to easily save their in-game creations as 3D models. A new update adds the capability, but it’s among the few features that can only be enjoyed by players on the Windows 10 edition of the game. The feature was teased in a beta a couple months back, but is now a main-branch feature for the game. Exporting is done by putting a special block down near your sculpture, house…

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Microsoft 

Microsoft’s Windows 10 breaches privacy law, says Dutch DPA

Microsoft’s Windows 10 breaches privacy law, says Dutch DPA The Dutch data protection authority has concluded that Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system breaches local privacy law on account of its collection of telemetry metadata. The OS has been available since the end of July 2015. Personal data being harvested by default by Microsoft can include the URL of every website visited if the Windows 10 user is browsing the web with Microsoft’s Edge browser (and has not opted out of full telemetry), as well as data about usage of all…

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Microsoft 

AWS and Microsoft double down on deep learning with Gluon, a simplified ML model builder

AWS and Microsoft double down on deep learning with Gluon, a simplified ML model builder AWS and Microsoft may be arch rivals when it comes to competing for business in cloud storage and services, but when it comes to breaking ground in newer areas where volumes of data make a difference to how well the services work and creating systems that are easier to use, collaboration is key. Today, the two companies announced a new deep learning interface called Gluon, designed for developers of all abilities (not just AI specialists)…

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Microsoft 

Microsoft and AWS could be the strangest cloud bedfellows yet

Microsoft and AWS could be the strangest cloud bedfellows yet Today hell did not freeze over, but something remarkable happened. Microsoft and AWS announced they were working on a project together. Project Gluon is an open source, deep learning project for building, deploying and managing machine learning models. It’s worth noting that AWS and Microsoft compete fiercely in the cloud market. In fact, they each have artificial intelligence toolkits that they are trying to sell customers, yet in this instance they saw it in their mutual best interest to work…

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Microsoft 

Microsoft just purchased all of GE’s newest Irish wind farm capacity for the next 15 years

Microsoft just purchased all of GE’s newest Irish wind farm capacity for the next 15 years Microsoft signed an agreement with GE today to purchase every last bit of the wind energy from GE’s brand-new 37-megawatt Tullahennel wind farm located in County Kerry, Ireland for the next 15 years. This is a big deal on several levels. First of all, it means Microsoft will be using a clean energy source to power at least some of its cloud data centers in Ireland. That will likely result in a lower energy…

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Microsoft 

Cortana will now interrupt your Skype chats

Cortana will now interrupt your Skype chats Microsoft’s virtual assistant Cortana has finally arrived in Skype. Announced at last year’s Microsoft Build 2016 event, the assistant’s integration was also previewed when the company released an overhauled, Snapchat-inspired version of its mobile messaging app this summer. But Cortana for Skype wasn’t ready at that time. Now, the feature is live, offering users in-context assistance during their chats, as well as the option to message Cortana directly to ask questions or get help with a number of other tasks. It’s unclear why…

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