In some great news from Mac Mojo, the Office for Mac team blog, it looks like Windows Live Messenger for Mac will receive a major update sometime early next year. The biggest new feature update will be AV support for the personal client, which means users will be able to participate in cross-platform audio and video chat using the personal version of Microsoft Messenger for Mac. They are also working on additional features for the personal Windows Live Messenger client and are on track to preview some of the new implementations at Macworld in January at the MacBU booth. The … Read more
Charitable causes are getting hit hard these days, but the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, formed by the eponymous Microsoft founder and his wife, announced Thursday the donation of nearly $14 million. About half, or $6.9 million, is going to two U.S. organizations promoting broadband connectivity, and another $7 million has been awarded to fight a parasitic illness that threatens millions of people in developing countries.
Updated 9:35 a.m. PST with comment from Microsoft.
Microsoft's Live Search team is losing its general manager, Brad Goldberg, who reportedly is heading to the investment world.
Seattle-focused Web site TechFlash reported late Tuesday that Goldberg will become CEO of the online business at Chicago-based Peak6 Investments. Microsoft told TechFlash that the impending departure of Goldberg was "amicable."
Replacing Goldberg early in 2009 will be Microsoft veteran Mike Nichols, who previously worked in strategic partnerships and search engineering, the report said.
Representatives of Microsoft and Peak6 were not immediately available for comment early Wednesday.
Later … Read more
Microsoft plans to open Office to other file formats, a move the company hopes will placate government and business concerns about document interoperability.
Describing this as a step to foster greater transparency, Microsoft intends to document how it incorporated Open Document Format support into Office 2007 Service Pack 2, which is still in beta. That product is expected to ship sometime in the first half of 2009.
(You can read the notes on how each element of the specification was implemented at the Document Interoperability Initiative Web site.)
An unpatched security hole in Internet Explorer that is being exploited affects all versions of the browser, making it more serious than originally believed when it was first publicized two days ago, Microsoft says.
Microsoft is investigating reports of attacks against a new vulnerability in IE but said in an update to a security advisory issued late on Thursday that all versions of IE are potentially vulnerable.
The company recommends setting the Internet zone security setting to "high" and using access control lists to disable Ole32db.dll to provide the most effective protection against an attack.
"Our … Read more
Editor's note: This is part of a series of stories about the recession's effect on the tech industry.
After nine months of searching for work, Ben Klausner thought he'd finally caught a break when he landed a contract gig in September doing security work for Microsoft's cloud computing project.
Just a month after he started, though, he learned his contract was ending. Now Klausner, a 55-year-old former IBM worker finds himself again out of work. And the prospects for employment look even dimmer than they were before the Microsoft job.
"It was frustrating," he … Read more
For more quarters than I can remember now, Microsoft's server and tools unit has been the company's shining star. While desktop Windows and Office still provide the bulk of revenue and profits, it's the server business that has been the fastest growing of Microsoft's big businesses.
That may continue to be the case, but in an interview on Tuesday, Microsoft's server and tools boss, Bob Muglia, said that the business is definitely feeling the heat from the global economic slowdown.
"Servers are probably growing flat, 1 (percent), 2 percent sorts of numbers," Muglia … Read more
Hot on the heels of launching its Web news-tracking service Political Streams, the Live Labs team at Microsoft has released a tool called Thumbtack. Similar to Listas, a previous Microsoft Live Labs project, Thumbtack lets users grab chunks of information from Web pages and store it in the cloud.
These chunks of information can be tagged and strewn about canvas pages as self contained ecosystems of content. Users can go in to edit them at any time and invite others to view their work. There is, however, no real-time collaboration, meaning that your collection can be shared, but not worked … Read more
Microsoft will have a bunch of stuff to show at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, but a rumored ZunePhone won't be one of them, according to sources familiar with the company's plans.
Instead, much of CEO Steve Ballmer's focus will be on talking about Windows 7 from a consumer perspective. Microsoft is pushing to have Windows 7 done in time for the holiday 2009 shopping season, so that means this CES is Ballmer's best stage to tout its benefits.
While the desktop operating system will be front and center, sources say to expect Ballmer to … Read more
A major Yahoo shareholder is reportedly pushing for the company to renew discussion with Microsoft for a deal over its search business, CNBC reported Wednesday.
Ivory Investment Management, a hedge fund based in Los Angeles that owns 1.5 percent of Yahoo, is expected to release a letter Wednesday outlining its plan, which could result in as much as $15 billion from Microsoft, CNBC said.
Officials from Ivory could not immediately be reached for comment.