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Windows 7 Information Officially Revealed!

200°
326w ago - With Vista struggling Windows 7 it's the OS on everyone's lips at the moment. It could be set for an early release in Q4 2009. Chris Flores, from the official Windows Vista Team Blog brings us up-to-date.

Flores has conceded that Microsoft is working on Windows 7, but has stated that this is normal in the Windows OS cycle. "...we started working on Windows Vista even before we released Windows XP. So naturally, we've been thinking about the investments we made in Windows Vista and how we can build on these for the next version of Windows," he said.

This time around Microsoft has taken a new approach with Windows 7 by strategically sharing information with key partners. While this has already begun, neither Flores or Steven Sinofsky, Windows and Windows Live Engineering SVP, in a chat to CNET, would be drawn on a firm release date for Windows 7.

Sinofsky stated that they didn't want another five year wait as was the case with Windows XP and Vista, and it was more likely to be three years between the day Windows Vista went on sale to the day Windows 7 does. If you do that math, that would still mean start of 2010, but not far off late 2009. The possibility of an early release is still alive.

Flores has also confirmed that Windows 7 will be a major release. It...
 

Wii cracked with no Hardware Mods!

400°
326w ago - Victories are inevitable in the technology war between platform holder and hacker/pirate. No matter how clever the former are the latter will always catch up.

This has always been so. Once a system is cracked the floodgates open as the word spreads on the interweb.

Now the Nintendo Wii is cracked, supposedly so it can become an open platform for homebrew. But what it means is that the pirates will exploit the same loophole so they can steal people's work instead of paying for it. So the Wii will become even less worthwhile for third party publishers.

"The Twilight Hack is currently the only safe, public way to run homebrew on an unmodded Wii. The Twilight Hack is achieved by playing a hacked game save for The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess which executes a homebrew elf file, boot.elf, on an external SD card. Examples of such homebrew elf files can be found on the Homebrew apps page."

This is a sad event for every game professional because their work will now be stolen, if they work for the Wii. But even if they don't there will be less revenue coming into the industry and so less money for development salaries, which will impact on everyone. With the Nintendo DS, the Sony PSP and the PC (for boxed games) already owned by the pirates there are less and less ways for...
 

PlayStation Portable Still King in Slow Sales

50°
326w ago - Another week has gone by, which means we should take another look at the situation of hardware and software sales in Japan. Research firm Media Create has again posted the numbers for the week that ended on May 23 and we'll be serving up a bit of analysis alongside the figures.

Both hardware and software sales registered a drop in the analyzed interval, but the latter suffered much more than gaming consoles in terms of sales. The PlayStation Portable seems to have an iron grip on the first spot in sales, with a bit over 70,000 consoles sold, which registered as both a win and as a loss, because it sold over 19,000 units less than in the previous week.

The Nintendo Wii dropped even more, somewhere around 41,000 thousand, with over 25,000 units less than in the previous week, but it made it on second place, while the DS came in third, with a smaller drop than any of the top three consoles and sales of around 35,000 units.

The PlayStation 3 and the PlayStation 2 from Sony have almost equal sales, of 7,701 for the first console and 7,022 for its last generation cousin. They both sold more than the Xbox 360 from Microsoft, which only managed to move 1,298 units during last week.

The week will be remembered as the moment when the Nintendo Wii managed to cross the 6 million sales barrier,...
 

How many FLOPS are in Game Consoles?

50°
326w ago - Analyst Opinion - Floating Point Operations Per Second - FLOPS - one of the more obscure processor performance indicators, and one of the oldest ones.

Over time, it has been modified with prefixes such as M (mega), G (giga), T (tera) and will soon get a P (peta). "Tera" describes a million millions - one trillion (1012) - which is a whole lot of anything whether it is cycles (Hertz), bytes, dollars, or FLOPS.

Recently I was asked how many TFLOPS are in all the game consoles shipped to date. There are two answers to that question. You can look at it from the perspective of all the game consoles built and you can look at this question with specific consoles in mind.

Let's look at the combined TFLOPS rating of all game consoles, which actually provides two answers as well. If you count central processor FLOPS then you have one answer and if you count the FLOPS potential of the GPU and add it to the CPU's FLOPS, then you have the second answer.

This second version is controversial since the FLOPS of the GPU aren't used in computations and some therefore claim that the GPU should not be counted as it simply represents a theoretical number. Others argue that GPUs are used in computation - the computation of shader operations. Both sides, however, agree that there isn't...
 

Microsoft: Blu-ray not taking off

100°
327w ago - Once again, Microsoft has squashed rumors that a Blu-ray drive for a refreshed Xbox 360 may be in the works. The company believes that DVD will remain the more important optical format at this time and that the real format battle may be fought online.

An article published by Home Media Magazine earlier this week quoted Shane Kim, head of Microsoft Games Studios, saying that while Blu-ray "provides some visual boost for people who want a physical HD format", Microsoft does not see "that format taking off, in general." Consequently, Kim stated that Microsoft is not working on "any type of Blu-ray disc add-on for the Xbox 360."

These quotes somewhat contradict a steady stream of rumors coming out of Taiwan, suggesting that a Blu-ray Xbox 360 is set for a September launch. However, according to Kim, the DVD format is still going strong and offers a better value proposition in an Xbox 360 that sells for substantially less than the Playstation 3 at this time.

Home Media Magazine indicated that Microsoft may put much stronger focus on its Live platform than on thinking a new optical drive. Kim told the publication that the "digital distribution business is one of the reasons Microsoft is so keenly focused on Sony, and not Nintendo" in this current state of the console battle....
 
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