Monthly Archives: September 2008

ZUNE 3.0

<Hijacked from Mike Gannotti–Thanks, Mikey!>
 
Zune 3.0 launched this morning and everyone, even those with original Zune devices (yes we upgrade even the oldest of our devices unlike some other makes who often force you to buy a new device to get the latest shiny features) can update their devices to get the latest features. Even if you dont own a Zune device you can still download the software to get the latest in multimedia entertainment, podcast subscriptions, and the online social experience. Oh yeah…. and you can use the Zune software to subscribe to my own video postings here at Michael Gannotti on SharePoint + (see the icon on home page right hand side) You can also use the new Zune software in tandem with the Podcasting Kit for SharePoint.

New features with Zune 3.0 include:

Device features:

  • New capacities
    We’ve added 16GB and 120GB devices to the lineup, both with a glossy black front and a black metal back.
  • Buy from FM
    Hear a song you like while listening to the radio on your Zune? Your device will identify it, and download it the next time you sync.
  • Browse Zune Marketplace wirelessly
    Download music directly to your Zune: at home, at a café… wherever there’s a wireless hotspot.

    Zune has partnered with high-speed Internet access provider Wayport to let customers wirelessly shop Zune Marketplace on their player at more than 9,800 McDonald’s restaurants across the U.S.

  • New Zune Originals
    Even more designs for you to personalize your Zune.
  • Zune Channels
    Combining the best features of podcasts and playlists, subscribe to channels by Billboard, The FADER, and radio stations like KROQ and KEXP.
  • Games
    You can now play games on your Zune! Devices come preloaded with Texas hold ’em and Hexic.
  • Audiobooks
    One of our most-requested features is here: audiobooks on your Zune, from Audible.com and OverDrive.
  • Clock
    You’ll never again wonder what time it is.

    Read more about Zune players in our User’s Guide.

Software features:

  • Mixview, Just for You, and Now Playing
    Dynamic representations of your collection, as well as artist and song recommendations based on what you and other members of the Social are listening to.
  • Rich search functionality
    Zune software will offer you suggestions as you type, helping you find the name of an artist or band even if you don’t know the correct spelling.
  • Social in the software
    Set your favorite tracks, update your profile, change your status, and search for other Social members — all from within the software.

    Read more about Zune software in our User’s Guide.

Social features:

  • Windows Live Messenger integration
    See your Windows Live Messenger contacts in the Social, and invite them to join with a click of the mouse.
  • New reputation badges
    Get recognized for being a top reviewer or top forum poster.
  • E-mail notifications
    Get a weekly digest of your friends’ activities and real-time notifications of new messages and comments.
  • More play data
    In addition to number of total plays, now see how many times a track has been added as a favorite or sent to a friend.

    Read more about the Social in our User’s Guide.

Head on over to the Zune site to learn more.

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My Political Lean – Obama v McCain

I have voted in every Presidential election since 1984 with the exception of 2004.  I have voted either Republican (GOP) or Democrat (DEM) with the exception of 1992 and 2000.  I have campaigned for a DEM and I have hung posters for a GOP candidate.  The ordinary person would find this interesting or maybe stupid.  Why don’t you just vote one way?  Are you a DEM or GOP?  Are you a conservative or liberal?

<sigh>

In my totally elitist, arrogant opinion:  Stupid voters vote party only and not issue.  I ONLY vote issue.  It’s the only thing that matters.  Abortion is an issue.  Taxes is an issue.  Military is an issue.  Welfare is an issue.  Political parties will craft policies to deal with issues.  So the way I see it is :  which candidate is putting emphasis on the issues that are important to me?

1984 – I voted for Mondale because I perceived him to be honest with his election-killing statement about taxes.  PLUS, he had the guts to put a female on the ballot with him.  HONESTY was big with me, so he got my vote.

1988 – I voted for Dukakis.  I campaigned for Dukakis.  The issue with me was the national debt.  I HATED Jesse Jackson’s upstaging and it almost drove me to the other side.  But I stuck to my guns and voted DEM.

1992 – I voted for Perot.  His campaign is what convinced me to only vote for candidates who have a PLAN.  He had a plan, he had character.  He was the choice for me.

1996 – I voted for Dole.  NAFTA disgusted me.  His demeanor disgusted me.  He was soft and spineless in the face of the biggest terrorist acts on American soil at that time.

2000 – I voted for Harry Brown.  Bush didn’t have a plan.  Gore was a stooge…invented the internet…OMG….had no plan

2004 – I was out of the country and I didn’t register for early voting…I probably would have voted third party again.  Kerry didn’t have a plan and Bush didn’t either.

 

So here we are in 2008.  Neither has a plan for the issues that are important to me.  Healthcare is important but neither has a plan.  Obama keeps talking about how important it is, but hasn’t presented a plan.  Oil prices are important to me, but neither has a plan.  I am undecided and am very worried.  I don’t vote AGAINST anyone, that is silly to me.  I need to find something that the candidate, in fact, will do and that I agree with.

Talk to a younger guy at the gym last night.  He asked me who I was going to vote for.  I said, "I’m undecided.  You?"

"I’m going for Obama."

"Really?  Why?"

"Because I believe he’s for the younger generation and we need a change"

"A change from what?"

"From Bush"

"Aren’t we getting that anyway?"

"If McCain wins, I feel we’re just getting four more years of Bush"

"Why?" 

He sat and thought for a moment and then just shrugged his shoulders, "I don’t know", he said.

I asked, "What is it about Obama that you like?"

"Well, I think he represents the up and coming generation" (I recognized that from what he said before and thought to myself…this man has no idea).

I told why I was still undecided and that Obama really has nothing to offer, but that McCain INFURIATES me.  Not that he is four more years of Bush (don’t really know what that means exactly) but I don’t like certain things that he as done.  I can’t point to anything that Obama has done that I like *or* dislike (except the fact that he didn’t vote on anything until he started campaigning and I view that as a bad thing).  I could see the wheels turning in his mind and the realization that he really didn’t know why he wanted to vote for Obama.  He still was going to vote for him regardless, and I understand that.  I really do.

My thirteen year old daughter and I were putting together my new smoker-grill and we had a chat.  I asked her who she would vote for if she were voting.  She said, "oh…I don’t know.  I’m leaning toward McCain."

"Why is that?" I asked.

"Well–he’s more experienced than Obama and if we get into trouble he’ll know what to do more than Obama".

"What are your friends saying?"

"Everyone is saying "Go Obama!"

"And how does that make you feel?"

"It’s OK.  Everyone should have a say.  I just think McCain is better.  Who are you going to vote for?"

"I’m undecided."

"Oh..hahahaha…you should vote for McCain, Dad."

"Really?  Let me tell you why I don’t like him first…"  I proceed to tell her.

"Ohhh.  hmmm…"  she says.

"Did that change your mind?" I ask her

"No.  I still think McCain is better.  We don’t know what we’re getting with Obama".

Oh, if only most adults could think like my thirteen year old daughter…not that she is voting for McCain, but that she can honestly think and assess without emotion what her choices are and without FUD clouding her judgement.

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Google’s Chrome Browser–impressive, but not ‘WOW’

So just like any other technophile, I go to download the latest craze — the new browser from Google known as ‘Chrome’.  Fast download and installation.  Lots of options.  Good, good, I like so far.  It gets all of my favs from IE and even its history–cool.  Then I go to my Live Spaces site (http://slickrickistheman.spaces.live.com) and this is what I see:

image

 

hmmm…I say to myself.  The photo section is MUCH better as it shows all of my albums.   But–there are things missing; COOL things missing:

clip_image001

So my buddy and former office mate BBaer says, "That’s the problem with any browser, depends on their individual interpretation of "standards" as defined by the W3C".  This is a correct statement and it actually is true for a lot of other things, not just browsers–but that is a subject for another post on another day.  But dude…what Chrome is missing is simple iFrames and imbedded HTML…basic stuff.

With all of the hoopla and people saying "OOH" and "AHH" I don’t see it.  Maybe someone will blog on why the browser is so cool.  I like it, but I’m not feeling the "ooh".

SharePoint runs faster in Chrome, but–we run into the same problems with rendering.  I’m sure they will get worked out–hey, it’s beta.  Definitely cool, but definitely not ‘WOW’.

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