Microsoft announced that its next version of the Xbox One S won't have a disc slot. Instead, you'll download everything instead.Xbox One S All-Digital Edition won't be able to play them. Or Blu-Ray movies for that matter.What I don't get, after taking a moment to digest this news, is how little the new Xbox seems to do for anyone who might decide this weird console is for them.It's not smallerIsn't the idea of getting rid of a disc drive supposed to be about shrinking the footprint? The Xbox One S (which debuted back in 2016) doesn't look any different, and it's bizarre. I'd love a super-small Xbox to put on my mantle, or tuck under a TV, like a Mac Mini for gaming. This isn't it. Heck, isn't it basically the same size as the far more powerful Xbox One X?It's not less expensive (really)Okay, the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition is $249, which is $50 less than the Xbox One S. And Microsoft's Lawrence Hyrb has promised that, even if the Xbox One S goes on sale, the Xbox One S All-Digital … [Read more...] about Microsoft’s disc-free Xbox One S: what’s the point?
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Super Bowl 53 has come and gone and, for me at least, there was one clear highlight. This Microsoft commercial:After the Gillette ad "controversy" late last year, where a certain subset of men got irrationally angry at a razor commercial, a friend of mine said something that stuck with me. He said, if you feel any sort of extreme way about an advertisement designed to sell products, you're a mark. You should know better. But I couldn't help falling completely in love with Microsoft's Super Bowl ad. Essentially a commercial for Microsoft's Xbox Adaptive Controller, this ad follows up on an earlier ad from the Christmas period, which highlights young kids with limited mobility playing video games.It's incredible. It tells the story of kids with limited mobility and their love for video games. All kids love video games and if you're a person with limited mobility, video games can often provide a pathway to experiences that are often difficult in the real world. But in some cases, … [Read more...] about Microsoft’s moving Xbox ad was the best thing about the Super Bowl
Mike Luckett is a lifelong gamer. He started at the age of 5 nearly three decades ago, joining his older brother who was playing the original Super Mario Bros. on the Nintendo Entertainment System. Within a few years, he was playing games like Id Software's 1992 Nazi prison break shooter, Wolfenstein 3D, and the followup sci-fi hit Doom. Over the years, Luckett collected lots of consoles, including 1988's Sega Genesis, 1994's Sony PlayStation, 2005's Xbox 360 and 2017's Xbox One X. One of his favorite games was Vectorman, a shoot-'em-up adventure in which you're a robot in the future protecting Earth from an uprising of evil robots. But that all changed after the accident. Luckett had been deployed overseas and working ordnance logistics for the Army in Iraq from 2010 through March 2011, when he came home. A few months later, in August, he was driving a motorcycle when things went wrong. The accident severed his C6 spinal cord, leaving him unable to use his legs. While … [Read more...] about Microsoft’s new Xbox Adaptive Controller puts disabled players back in the game
In June 2010, two players demonstrate how the Kinect Sports game uses the controller-free motion-detection in Microsoft Kinect. See more video game system pictures. Michal Czerwonka/Getty Images Microsoft Kinect is poised to shake up the video game console experience. Announced and demonstrated as Project Natal in June 2009, Kinect seems almost magical the way it can "see" every movement of your body and reproduce it within the video game you're playing. Plus, it recognizes your face and voice so it can pick you out in the room and know who you are, even if you're playing with a group of friends. November 2010 marks Kinect's historic and anticipated release as a new addition to Microsoft's Xbox 360 product line. As it turns out, Kinect isn't magical at all. It's a highly innovative combination of cameras, microphones and software that turns your body into the video game controller. The name Kinect is inspired by the words "kinetic," which means to be in motion, and "connect," … [Read more...] about How Microsoft Kinect Works
Four years after becoming head of the world's top software maker, CEO Satya Nadella invites us to an inside look at One Week, a giant employee fest the company launched at its Redmond, Washington, headquarters to inspire new ways of thinking about their jobs.It's not the rah-rah atmosphere that marked annual employee meetings under his predecessor, Steve Ballmer. Nadella, who worked at Microsoft for 22 years before becoming CEO in 2014, opted for an event that includes a hackathon, science fair and nonprofit fair. It's a way to get employees charged up about what they can do to help the world around them. That might not seem particularly novel, except it's Microsoft we're talking about. This is the company that helped popularize PCs, then went on to make billions of dollars from Windows' monopolistic hold over desktop operating systems. It's also the company that earned a reputation for ruthless politics — both in the PC industry and its own workplace. Nadella acknowledges … [Read more...] about Microsoft’s CEO on helping a faded legend find a ‘sense of purpose’