Items tagged with Software

There are few pieces of software as ubiquitous as Microsoft's Office, and given its prominence for the past two-and-a-half decades, it's a hard ruler to overthrow. But that notion doesn't tame the likes of Google. In fact, the company's come forward about its plans to dethrone Microsoft Office, and nab at least 80% of its business. Now that's what we call ambition. Google's Microsoft Office chase began ten-years-ago with the launch of its Google Apps platform. Today, Google Apps has become a solid all-in-one solution for businesses wanting to move most of their data and services to the cloud, such as email, storage, and so forth. Since 2007, Google's Docs service... Read more...
The Grand Theft Auto franchise is still making Take-Two Interactive bookoo bucks, with the latest installment -- Grand Theft Auto V (GTA V) -- having now sold more than 45 million units on console, including 10 million on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The game has yet to launch for PC -- it was originally supposed to debut on Windows on January 27, 2015, but was delayed until March 24. Sales of GTA V contributed to $531.1 million in revenue for Take-Two's fiscal third quarter ended December 31, 2014, on a GAAP basis, along with net income of $40.1 million, or $0.42 per diluted share. On a non-GAAP basis, revenue came to $954 million, with net income reaching $211.6 million, or $1.87 per diluted... Read more...
When engaged in war, it's of utmost importance to keep plans and secrets secure. On the other side of the coin, it's likewise important to do what you can to gather intelligence on the opposition -- something quite difficult given the obvious fact that the opposition is also doing its best to keep its secrets, secret. But lest we forget that there are sometimes much easier ways to get information you need. Sometimes it can involve social engineering of the most modest levels, because after all, the bearers of this important information are still human. Hackers targeting the Syrian opposition (an investigation pinpointed Lebanon as the source of the attacks) managed to gather its enemy's secrets... Read more...
There's a weird issue affecting some Office 365 and OneDrive users, myself included, but what's even worse is the way it's being handled by Microsoft's online support system. I'll get to that in a moment, but first let's discuss the problem at hand, which is that some users recently ran into a problem getting Word 97-2007 Document files (*.doc) to upload to OneDrive. I first encountered the issue last week, and after successfully syncing many Word 97-2007 Document files for months prior, I suddenly encountered an error message that prevented me from uploading my files to OneDrive. "SAVE AGAIN  We need to refresh your file with updates. Click Save to try again," the error message reads. Unfortunately,... Read more...
Don't worry, it's not at all creepy that we know you've been playing a lot of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare on your gaming platform of choice. We haven't been peeking in your window or anything like that, though we did spy some data from NPD Group, a popular consumer market research firm which just posted a bunch of game related statistics, including the top 10 highest selling retail games in the U.S. for 2014. CoD:AW took the top spot, though it wasn't the only CoD title to make the list. So did its predecessor Ghosts, the tenth main CoD game. Given the popularity of these titles (Ghosts raced to $1 billion in sales in just 24 hours when it was released in 2013), it's not surprising to see... Read more...
There's no denying that Android is the dominant platform in the mobile world -- market share figures from different sources all tip the scales heavily in the open source operating system's favor. However, market share is only part of the equation. The other part is profits, and according to analyst Chetan Sharma, global profits in the Android hardware sector dropped in 2014 by half compared to the year prior. This is notable because it's the first year there has been any kind of significant drop in Android hardware profits. And that's not a knock against the mobile OS, though it is a reflection of how the market is playing out. Image Source: Flickr (samthor) It's also worth pointing out that Samsung shoulders... Read more...
Today is your last chance to score games on Steam at discounted prices as part of Valve's Steam Holiday Encore Sale, a special promotion in which it brought back 40 of the most popular deals for a very limited time. It kicked off on December 31, 2014, and runs through today, ending at precisely 1 PM EST. In other words, better get a move on if you want to stack your Steam library!And don't worry, we feel your pain of being tempted by sale after sale, only to end up with a Steam library that's bulging with games we've still never played. The thought process is always the same, "These prices are too good to pass up! I'll buy these games now and play them later." Of course, later always gets here... Read more...
It's the beginning of a new year, one that's already being highlighted by a flood of recent Tizen-based smartphone launches. Oh wait, that didn't happen. Drats, we were cautiously optimistic that Tizen could make a splash in the smartphone sector, and while that's still possible, Samsung is switching focus for the time being to make Tizen a staple of its Smart TV lineup. Not just one or two models, either. Instead, Samsung announced that all its Smart TVs in 2015 will come with a new platform built around Tizen, which the company hopes will spur a bunch of app releases. "Building our Smart Platform around Tizen is a groundbreaking step towards a much more intelligent and integrated... Read more...
Windows 8 wasn't the hit Microsoft hoped it would be, and while it could have ignored all the haters and made sure that its next Windows OS would follow in 8's footsteps, it's instead decided to be wise about things. As we've seen multiple times over the past couple of months, Microsoft really wants to make sure that Windows 10 is the best Windows OS ever. After all, it's gone as far as to skip over an entire version number to distance it from the debacle that was 8. And, I have to admit; I'm really looking forward to it. Today, those looking forward to Windows 10 can add another reason to the pile: Microsoft will be including a brand-new... Read more...
Rather than debate what's good or bad about Windows 8, let's just all agree that it failed to capture the collective audience that Microsoft hoped it would. Despite big ambitions, it was just last month that Windows 8 and 8.1 combined finally overtook Windows XP in market share, though it still resides on less than two out of 10 desktops, according to data from Net Applications. Our point? There's a lot riding on Windows 10, which we'll learn more about during a scheduled event on January 21, 2015. Microsoft has begun sending out invitations to members of the press to join the company on its Redmond campus where it will discuss the next chapter of Windows 10. Several Microsoft bigwigs will speak... Read more...
If you've been patiently and eagerly awaiting the launch of Assassin's Creed Unity, the good news is the game is now available. Whether you find it fun and entertaining is another matter entirely. Some users and review sites are reporting graphical glitches, performance problems, and other annoying bugs, and as it were, Ubisoft's share price in Europe plummeted 9 percent after the game launched. Are the two related? Yahoo Finance seems to think so, saying that Ubisoft would have been better served by delaying Assassin's Creed Unity the way Take-Two Interactive does with its popular Grand Theft Auto franchise. The site added, "The market has noticed the poor response today and punished the company... Read more...
When you spend $3.2 billion acquiring a company, it's good form (and business) to do something with the newly acquired asset after the fact. That's how much Google paid to absorb Nest and its line of smart, connected thermostats and smoke detectors, and after six months since completing the deal, there's a major software update available intended to make its smart thermostat even smarter. One of the big features of Nest is its Auto-Schedule function. Using this feature, the thermostat learns the temperatures you like and then sets them automatically. With the 4.3 software update that's now available, Google fined tuned its algorithms to save more energy and make things even simpler. The result... Read more...
Earlier this year, Google acquired a company by the name of Songza. Now, we're seeing some fruits of the integration. Playlists have become awfully important for all music apps, from Beats to Rhapsody to Pandora. And now, Google Play Music is joining the fun with curated music stations that respond to whatever it is that you're presently doing. The only major catch? It's just available to All Access members that pay a monthly subscription fee, so those who use the free version of the service won't be able to partake. Here's a description of what's new, right from Google itself: "If you’re a Google Play Music subscriber, next time you open the app you’ll be prompted to play music for... Read more...
Digital assistants have always been a little creepy, but their helpfulness generally outweighs any odd feelings you may have about Siri, Cortana, and Google Now. This week, the last of that bunch gained a few new tricks, and they're ones that you may very well be able to take advantage of soon. The updated Google Now enables you to have even deeper conversations with it about places and businesses. For example, you can say: "Ok Google, show me restaurants near my hotel," and it'll do just that. Then, you can follow up it by asking to see the menu of any on the list. Once you've decided, Google Now can also handle reservations so long as the eatery is in OpenTable's directory. When you’ve... Read more...
Google may be an archrival of Apple, but you know what they say: keep your enemies closer. The search giant has never shied away from producing excellent apps for the iOS ecosystem. After all, a Google user on an Apple phone is still a Google user. In a bid to continue to expand its footprint in the Apple App Store, Google has just published a "News and Weather" app for iOS that combines two of the most commonly used scenarios on a smartphone into a single, tailored app experience. The News and Weather app works on iPhone and iPad, but the visual cues are straight from Android. It's an interesting dynamic, but it looks pretty snazzy even on Apple's newest version of iOS. For avid Google users,... Read more...
As the latest Far Cry 4 trailer tells it, "The meek shall inherit the Earth my friend, but only the well-armed have a chance to survive in Kyrat," the fictional Himalayan setting that's been ravaged by war. But don't fret over your weapon selection, Ubisoft Montreal is making sure to include an assortment of lethal instruments that you can use to dispose the life from your enemies. The 2min44sec trailer is packed with violence as your guide talks about how you can rain fire on your enemies with destructive mortars or kill them silently and stealthily using auto crossbows and deadly Kukri knives for close quarter combat. Other weapons covered in the trailer include a Vector SMG .45 ACP, MG42 machine... Read more...
Technically speaking, IBM stuck a fork in Lotus 1-2-3 over a year ago when it announced the once popular spreadsheet's EOL (End of Life). IBM picked June 11, 2013 as the last day it would market the most sought after spreadsheet program of the mid-1980s, but also vowed to continue supporting the program up through September 30, 2014, or last Tuesday. That day has come and gone, officially marking the end of an impressive 31-year run. Think about that for a moment -- this software's been available and supported for over three decades dating back to when computers in the home were the exception, not the norm. Lotus 1-2-3 is even older than The Simpsons, the longest-running American sitcom, animated... Read more...
As we slowly march towards a future where scenes from Minority Report and Transcendence feel more like reality and less like science fiction, Microsoft Research is unveiling a data-drive crystal ball of sorts. It's a project emerging from the Microsoft Prediction Lab, where laypeople are encouraged to make predictions about upcoming events. The company's calling it a game for now, but the implications are far greater. As of now, the interactive demo highlights the team's pursuit of forecasting technologies; namely, they're looking to intelligently collect data, keep billions of related likelihoods consistent, and convey complex quantitative information usefully. The team points out that in election... Read more...
At the risk of getting people's hopes up, the web is quickly filling with reports that Microsoft is planning to offer Windows 9 (codenamed Threshold) as a free upgrade for Windows 8 users. The original source of the rumor comes from an Indonesian-language website quoting Andreas Diantor, President of Microsoft Indonesia, as saying that Windows 8 device owners will receive the new operating system as a free update. Sounds good, doesn't it? Whether or not it's true remains to be seen -- several sites have used the word "confirmed" when referencing the foreign report, and while we're keeping out fingers crossed, we think it's better to remain cautiously optimistic than to consider this a done deal.... Read more...
Consider this your friendly reminder that we're fast approaching Microsoft's cutoff date for providing its hardware partners with copies of Windows 7 Home Basic, Home Premium, or Ultimate to pre-install on new systems. Once October 31, 2014 (Halloween) comes and goes, OEMs like Dell and Hewlett-Packard can still sell whatever inventory is left of PCs running any of those three versions of Windows 7, but they won't be able to order any more copies. If you're bothered by this, take solace in the fact that Microsoft's arbitrary end-of-sales deadline doesn't apply to Windows 7 Professional -- Microsoft hasn't yet announced when it will stop selling copies of Windows 7 Pro to OEM partners, so for... Read more...
It feels like just yesterday that we were investigating the ins and outs of Windows 8, and already, enough time has passed that a new version of Microsoft's flagship desktop/laptop operating system is imminent. Windows 9, code-named Threshold, may end up dropping the number on its end altogether. At this point, Windows itself is a pretty powerful brand, and some analysts think that Microsoft may allow it to stand on its own when it's released to the public "early next year." The name change also highlights Microsoft's acceptance of the fact that we're truly living in a post-PC world. As mobile and computing fuses together, we're likely to see the "Phone" dropped from "Windows Phone" and the numbers... Read more...
After blowing out both of my knees, at least one of which is still in need of more surgical repair, I find it's safer and generally easier on my body (though not always my sanity) to drop dimes and take it strong to the rim in basketball simulations than it is to hop back on the blacktop. That's one of the reasons why I'm looking forward to NBA 2K15 by 2K Games. And the other? Face mapping technology. I'm short, white, and like to pretend I still have an athletic build. Creating an in-game character with those traits is pretty easy, but even after tweaking the hair and goatee, the resemblance is always minor at best. That won't be the case in NBA 2K15. According to an AP report, the developers... Read more...
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