Read everything here: Microsoft changes default Flash behavior in Windows 8 and RT
Microsoft’s official announcements say the change is based on an ecosystem that has gotten better at developing Flash content. But I suspect the real reason is more pragmatic. This behavior was confusing to users and frustrating to developers. For Windows RT in particular, it had a devastating effect on some sites, which simply wouldn’t work, and the fact that you can’t install an alternative browser on RT eliminates that workaround. And at this point in its life, the last thing Windows RT needs is another reason for potential buyers to reject it.
When it came to the Xbox, the befuddling feedback continued. “We were told we couldn’t call it the Xbox because X is the letter of death,” Fries remembers. “We were told we couldn’t make it black because black is the colour of death. I was like, isn’t the PlayStation black? Rules that apply to you as an outsider don’t necessarily apply to insider products.”
A very long but amazing reading. From Wesley Yin-Poole at Eurogamer: Why Xbox failed in Japan.
What is really RT in Windows RT? Hal Berenson shares his thoughts with us and they are really interesting:
The name Windows RT wasn’t chosen to convey a message about Windows moving to ARM processors. Nor was it chosen to convey that it was a Tablet OS. The name appears to have been chosen primarily for one reason, it is an operating system devoted to running Windows RunTime apps. It splits the mainstream Windows product into two families. Windows for running Win32 “desktop” and Windows RunTime applications and Windows RT that drops the legacy Win32 application support. Windows RT is Microsoft’s go forward client operating system, while Windows is the operating system Microsoft will need to keep selling and enhancing for a transition that will last a decade or more, but it will eventually be considered a legacy.
Read the whole article here: There is no ARM in Windows RT | Hal\’s (Im)Perfect Vision.
Things are changing fast at Microsoft and its developer tools. Expression Studio is fading out and the future of Silverlight is also a big question. Hal Berenson, a former Distinguished Engineer at Microsoft, explains some things. I copy two parts to get an idea:
The Web also allowed another platform competitor to emerge, Adobe. Adobe’s Flash, AIR, and Flex represented another serious threat to Microsoft’s platforms. Applications written using them were platform independent, and Flash itself had gained enormous market share as the only practical way to create rich media experiences on the web. Moreover, Adobe’s business model was the exact opposite of Microsoft’s. Whereas Microsoft provided development tools primarily in order to sell runtimes (e.g., operating systems), Adobe gave away runtimes in order to sell tools. Adobe also specialized in entering the application lifecycle much earlier than Microsoft, establishing dominance in the design tool space.
One of the first things to note about the iPhone was that Apple made development tools available for free. At the same time Microsoft was requiring mobile developers to purchase one of its premium versions of Visual Studio such as Professional. For Windows Phone to succeed Microsoft was going to have to give away tools for mobile development. Second, Apple eschewed any kind of plug-ins for the iPhone browser and designed the rules for the App Store to ban generic runtimes like those of Adobe. As it turned out the iPhones huge success would end Adobe’s run at becoming a platform vendor.
Read the whole article here: Putting Expression Studio’s demise in perspective | Hal\’s (Im)Perfect Vision. And also read the comments from Scott Barnes and Sparkler below the article. They both work (or worked) for Microsoft and provide more details. Very interesting details…
UPDATE: The security update is now fixed and everything works fine.
We have seen many problems during the last years with updates and patches but this one is really strange. After the security update KB2753842 was applied on 12/12/12, programs that use the vector “side” of fonts cannot show characters of specific fonts that used to work perfectly. You can see the font in the font list, you can select it but the font doesn’t work. This happens with programs like CorelDraw, Adobe Flash, Expression Design etc. Word, InDesign and programs that use the font as bitmap work fine.
Microsoft identified an exploit with the GetGlyphOutline() API call, made a change and everything collapsed. The 12/12/12 date would leave an entry in computer history… So, we are waiting for a fix on this. If you just remove the security update and reboot, things are back to normal (but we are still open to a possible hack). The problem appears on Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, Server 2003, 2008, R2, 2012 (even Windows 8 RT) and some OpenType or TrueType fonts (not all of them).
Instructions to remove the update:
- Click on the “Start” button, click on “Control Panel” and then double-click on the “Add/Remove Programs” icon.
- Click the “Show Updates” check box at the top of the window and wait for the list of installed updates to appear.
- Click on the update you wish to remove, click the “Remove” button and then restart your computer. The update is now successfully removed from your computer.
Don’t forget to change the automatic updates to manual otherwise it will be reinstalled. As soon as there is a fix for this issue, you can change updating to auto.
A few facts from the latest Microsoft’s shareholder meeting. Things are probably different than presented by part of the media industry (and the stock brokers who control the information)…
- In the first month of availability, 40 million Windows 8 licenses were sold.
- Windows Phone 8 is available for a few weeks with only a couple of devices in some markets and is selling 4 times more phones than last year.
- Xbox sold more than 750,000 consoles in US during the Black Friday sales while there was a major launch by Wii U.
- Several Windows 8 “metro” apps have passed the 1 million downloads mark.
- There are already 1,500 certified Windows 8 PCs – most of them haven’t reached the market yet.
- Windows Phone Store has more than 120,000 apps, and soon 46 of the top 50 apps that people use will be available. I think it’s enough to start with…
- Halo 4: record setting $220 million opening!
- Outlook.com has reached 25 million active users in less than four months since its availability.