Posts Tagged ‘future’

postheadericon Man Shoots At Vehicle Burglar, Gun Confiscated And Future Unknown

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MD — A man may well be charged after he decided to open fire on three young men — two juveniles and one adult — who broke into his car in the middle of the night.

Only one of the thieves was wounded, but the vehicle owner was made to surrender his handgun to police. Although that’s not an uncommon occurance with any defensive shooting, whether this shooting was justified is very much in doubt.

As NBC 4 reports:

Officers investigating a report of a theft from a vehicle in the 14000 block of Twig Road in Silver Spring about 3:20 a.m. were flagged down by a man who lives on Rossiter Court. He told police he confronted three people breaking into his car and fired several shots at them… An 18-year-old man with a non-life-threatening gunshot wound to his lower body was taken to a hospital, police said.

Officers determined he was one of the suspects shot at by the Rossiter Court resident. Officers also arrested two male juveniles who are charged, police said.

“Those two juveniles have been charged with theft-related offenses,” Montgomery County Police Officer Rick Goodale said. “The adult has not been charged. Those are still pending.”

The 18-year-old man hasn’t been charged because he is still hospitalized. The man who fired at the suspects surrendered his handgun to police.

“He fired multiple rounds at these suspects for breaking into cars, and you have to be accountable for all of those rounds,” Goodale said. “One of those rounds could have gone through a house and hit an innocent party.”

He has not been charged with a crime. That remains under investigation.

It borders upon ridiculous how often it needs to be clarified — very, very rarely will authorities back you if you shoot someone for breaking into your car if that’s all they do.

If your car is occupied or after confronting the thieves they escalate the situation, it’s another story. Think of it this way — having your car broken into is at the very least a massive inconvenience, and at the very most a costly theft.

It’s an outrage that such a thing could happen to you — I’ve certainly had my car broken into before — but their doing so doesn’t constitute a threat to your life or the loves of others in and of itself.

Be smart and play it safe, folks. The last thing on God’s earth I want to do is write a story about how you wound up in jail because someone decided to charge you for pulling the trigger under murky circumstances.

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Concealed Nation

postheadericon Surveillance, cybersecurity, and the future of privacy in The Circle

If surveillance, cybersecurity, and privacy are things you think about a lot, you should find The Circle interesting viewing.

The post Surveillance, cybersecurity, and the future of privacy in The Circle appeared first on WeLiveSecurity


WeLiveSecurity

postheadericon Xbox introduces future of gaming beyond console generations and without boundaries

A speaker is seen at the Xbox E3 2016 Briefing Rehearsal on Sunday, June 12, 2016 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Casey Rodgers/Invision for Microsoft/AP Images)
Microsoft debuts new Xbox One family of devices, Xbox Live features and biggest lineup of games in Xbox history on Monday, June 13, 2016 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Casey Rodgers/Invision for Microsoft/AP Images)

LOS ANGELES — JUNE 13, 2016 — Monday at the Xbox E3 2016 Briefing, Microsoft Corp. unveiled a new family of Xbox One devices, a host of new Xbox Live features and the biggest lineup of games in Xbox history. Head of Xbox Phil Spencer underscored the Xbox team’s commitment to building a future of gaming beyond console generations and inviting gamers to play without boundaries.

Xbox is working to bring Xbox Live to all devices and networks — PC, console, virtual reality and mobile — to create a unified experience where all gamers are welcomed, respected and supported. The new Xbox Play Anywhere program lets gamers buy a game once and play it on both their Windows 10 PC and Xbox One console with shared progress, game saves and achievements. Every new Microsoft Studios title shown at the Xbox E3 2016 Briefing will support Xbox Play Anywhere, with more titles on the way.

“Gamers have never had more choice in how and where they play,” Spencer said. “We are bringing our biggest games lineup ever to Xbox One and Windows 10, uniting gamers across networks on Xbox Live and expanding the Xbox One family of devices with the addition of Xbox One S and “Project Scorpio” to give gamers more choice in how and where they play. There’s never been a better time to be an Xbox gamer.”

Introducing the Xbox One family of devices

The new lineup of Xbox One hardware and accessories delivers unprecedented choice and level of personalization for gamers. All Xbox One devices will play current and future Xbox One games as well as titles in the Xbox One Backward Compatibility program, and all accessories will work across every console in the Xbox One family as well.

  • Xbox One S. Debuting a sleek new design and “robot white” color, the new Xbox One S is the smallest and most compact Xbox ever. The 40 percent smaller console has an internal power supply and supports 4K Ultra HD for Blu-ray movies and content streamed from partners like Netflix and Amazon Video. High Dynamic Range (HDR) support for video and gaming delivers richer, more luminous colors in games like “Gears of War 4.”1 Available for preorder beginning today and in stores starting August 2016:
    • 500GB Xbox One S is $ 299/249 pounds/299 euros
    • 1TB Xbox One S is $ 349/299 pounds/349 euros
    • Limited launch edition 2TB Xbox One S will be available in select markets for $ 399/349 pounds/399 euros
  • “Project Scorpio.” Coming holiday 2017, “Project Scorpio” will be the most powerful console ever created, with 6 teraflops of GPU delivering a premier console gaming experience including true 4K gaming and high-fidelity virtual reality. “Project Scorpio” will join the Xbox One family and coexist alongside Xbox One and Xbox One S and all of your Xbox One games and accessories are compatible.
  • New Xbox Wireless Controller. We’ve enhanced comfort with a textured grip and introduced a sleek, streamlined design in white. Added Bluetooth radio gives you easy wireless connection to your Windows 10 PCs and tablets.2 The new Xbox Wireless Controller will be available worldwide starting in August for $ 59.99/49.99 pounds/59.99 euros.
  • Xbox Design Lab. Now fans can create their own official, one-of-a-kind Xbox Wireless Controllers with more than 8 million color variations to customize the controller body, D-pad, thumbsticks, ABXY buttons and more. Each controller is handmade to order and shipped directly to fans. Xbox Design Lab is open for orders now in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico for $ 79.99 through http://www.xbox.com/xboxdesignlab. Laser engraving is also available for an additional $ 9.99.
  • Xbox Elite Wireless Controller – “Gears of War 4” Limited Edition. A pro-level controller designed in collaboration with The Coalition, the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller – “Gears of War 4” Limited Edition features laser-etched claw marks and a battle-weathered design, telling the survival story of a confrontation with the Swarm. Available in very limited quantities in early October for $ 199.99/199.99 euros/159.99 pounds with pre-orders starting the week of June 13 at select retailers.

Uniting gamers through Xbox Live

The goal of Xbox Live is to cultivate a safe, fun and reliable online community, where all types of gamers are welcome, respected and supported. Team Xbox announced a slew of new features to break down barriers between gamers playing on different devices and make gaming more accessible for all.

  • Clubs on Xbox Live. A new way to connect with gamers and create private communities with people who have similar play styles, personal interests and values.
  • Looking for Group on Xbox Live. Like a “want ad” for multiplayer, Looking for Group on Xbox Live is the easiest way to seek out players who are available — and qualified — to jump into your multiplayer match right now.
  • Arena on Xbox Live. A new online tournaments platform designed for everyone, from novice to aspiring pro, Arena on Xbox Live brings competitive gaming to Xbox One and Windows 10 devices. Sign up for tournaments directly through the Xbox UI or the Xbox app and play for prizes and bragging rights.
  • Cross-play. Gamers on Xbox One and Windows 10 can now play select multiplayer games together. “Gears of War 4,” “Forza Horizon 3,” “Sea of Thieves” and “Scalebound” all support cross-play between Xbox One and Windows 10 PC, and now “Minecraft” players on iOS, Android, Windows 10 phone and Windows 10 devices can all join together in cross-device multiplayer fun.
  • Cortana on Xbox One. We’re bringing the popular digital assistant Cortana to Xbox One, featuring familiar voice commands available on Windows 10 devices and new gaming-specific scenarios for Xbox One. Cortana will initially launch on Xbox One in the U.S. and U.K. with additional markets coming soon after.
  • PC games (Win32) in Xbox Live. With the Xbox update coming this summer you’ll see the top PC games on Xbox Live, with more added every month. Use the Xbox app to see what PC games your friends are playing, view game clips and upload your own, and message and voice chat with friends across games.
  • Language Region Independence. Based on overwhelming fan feedback, we’re enabling Language Region Independence to give gamers even more control over their Xbox experience and how they engage with their Xbox One. Language Region Independence gives gamers the freedom to choose any supported language on Xbox One, regardless of their location.

Biggest lineup comes to Xbox One and Windows 10

Xbox premiered a wide range of games launching in 2016 and beyond for Xbox One and Windows 10, including a mix of exclusives, blockbusters and independent games through the ID@Xbox program.

  • “ARK: SURVIVAL EVOLVED” (FIRST ON XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10). The wildly popular indie game from Studio Wildcard has sold over 1 million copies on Xbox One via Game Preview, and is soon coming to Windows 10. Stranded naked, freezing and starving on a mysterious island, you must hunt, harvest, craft items, grow crops and build shelters to survive. Learn how to tame, train, breed and ride dinosaurs and primitive creatures living on the ARK as you forge new paths across the beautiful open world in this large-scale survival game. Team up with hundreds of players online, play split-screen locally or brave the island on your own.
  • “BATTLEFIELD 1” (ELECTRONIC ARTS). Featuring some of the largest, most dynamic battles in FPS history, experience the dawn of all-out war across war-torn France, in the sand dunes of the Arabian Desert, and in the skies over London — only in “Battlefield 1.” Join in massive 64-player battles and experience unexpected Only in Battlefield moments during a time where the old world was destroyed, giving way to the new one. Play it first, exclusively on Xbox One with EA Access beginning Oct. 13. Available worldwide on Xbox One and Windows PC on Oct. 21, 2016.
  • “DEAD RISING 4” (WORLD PREMIERE). Developed by Capcom Vancouver, “Dead Rising 4” marks the return of photojournalist Frank West in an all-new chapter of one of the most popular zombie game franchises of all time. With an unmatched level of weapon and character customization, ambitious new features including new zombie classes and EXO Suits, “Dead Rising 4” delivers a heart-pounding experience as players explore, scavenge and fight to survive in an epic open-world sandbox. Available Holiday 2016 on Xbox One and Windows 10.
  • “FINAL FANTASY XV” (SQUARE ENIX). “FINAL FANTASY XV” is the highly anticipated action RPG and 15th mainline entry in the iconic “FINAL FANTASY” franchise. Set in an enthralling world where fantasy meets reality, players will join Crown Prince Noctis and his comrades on an epic journey of brotherhood, love and despair as they unravel Noctis’ destiny and take up arms against the nefarious Niflheim empire. With a captivating cast of characters, breathtaking visuals, open world exploration and action-packed real time combat, “FINAL FANTASY XV” is the ultimate “FINAL FANTASY” experience for fans and newcomers to the series. Available worldwide for Xbox One on Sept. 30, 2016.
  • “FORZA HORIZON 3” (XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10 EXCLUSIVE — WORLD PREMIERE). The best-selling racing franchise returns with “Forza Horizon 3.” Race and explore the rugged wonder of Australia with your friends in over 350 of the world’s greatest cars as you win millions of new fans and build the world’s greatest automotive festival. As the new boss of the Horizon Festival, you can modify every aspect of race events, and how you get to the finish is up to you. Available worldwide as an Xbox Play Anywhere title on Sept. 27, 2016.
  • “GEARS OF WAR 4” (XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10 EXCLUSIVE). A new saga begins for one of the most acclaimed video game franchises in history. After narrowly escaping an attack on their village, JD Fenix and his friends Kait and Del must rescue the ones they love and discover the source of a monstrous new enemy. “Gears of War 4” returns the franchise to the dark tone and intensity of the original and includes split-screen and online co-op, the next generation of the five-player favorite, Horde Mode, 60 frames-per-second Versus multiplayer, and stunning visuals powered by Unreal Engine 4. Available worldwide as an Xbox Play Anywhere title on Oct. 11, 2016.
  • “GWENT” (WORLD PREMIERE OF CLOSED BETA ON XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10). “Gwent,”the hit card game from CD PROJEKT RED’s game of the year — “The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt” — is now its own standalone collectable card game. Inspired by player feedback, with new rules and mechanics, “Gwent” puts players and their style of play, and not only their cards, in the center of the action. In “Gwent,” You are the Wild Card.
  • “HALO WARS 2” (XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10 EXCLUSIVE). The best-selling console real-time strategy (RTS) of all time is back! Developed in partnership by 343 Industries and Creative Assembly, “Halo Wars 2” is an action-packed RTS on the biggest Halo battlefield ever. Get ready to lead armies of Spartans and other Halo fighting forces like Warthogs, Scorpions and exciting new units in a brutal war against a terrifying new enemy, The Banished. Available worldwide as an Xbox Play Anywhere title on Feb. 21, 2017.
  • “INSIDE” (FIRST ON XBOX ONE). Developed by Playdead, “INSIDE” is the long-awaited follow-up to 2010’s groundbreaking digital hit “Limbo.” Featuring Playdead’s trademark dark art, emotion and game craft, this adventure puzzler ships June 29, 2016, and is available for pre-order now. To celebrate the launch, “Limbo” will be free to all Xbox players from June 13‒20.
  • “MINECRAFT” (REALMS AND ADD-ONS). Mojang and Microsoft showcased cross-device multiplayer between iOS, Android, Samsung Gear VR and Windows 10 devices, made possible with Monday’s launch of the “Friendly Update” for “Minecraft: Windows 10 Edition” Beta and “Minecraft: Pocket Edition.” With Xbox Live and the “Minecraft Realms” service, Windows 10 and mobile Minecraft players can host their own multiplayer worlds on private, cloud-based servers and play with friends 24/7, even when the original world creator is offline. Starting today, players with Xbox Live accounts can try “Minecraft” Realms on mobile and Windows 10 free for one month through the “Minecraft” app. The team also announced new game add-ons coming this fall that will let players modify their in-game worlds to customize key game elements and create their own maps and minigames.
  • “RECORE” (XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10 EXCLUSIVE). From legendary video game creator Keiji Inafune and Armature Studio LLC, the team behind the “Metroid Prime” series, comes “ReCore,” an action-adventure game masterfully crafted for the modern generation. Play as Joule, one of the last remaining humans, and forge friendships with courageous robot companions to lead them on an epic adventure through a mysterious, dynamic world. Available worldwide as an Xbox Play Anywhere title starting Sept. 13, 2016.
  • “SEA OF THIEVES” (XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10 EXCLUSIVE). Developed by Rare, the legendary creators of “Perfect Dark” and “Banjo-Kazooie,” “Sea of Thieves” is an immersive, shared world adventure game filled with pirates, unexpected dangers and loot for the taking. Be the pirates you want to be, share adventures with friends, and set your own rules, roles and goals in a world where every sail on the horizon is another crew of players with unknown intent. “Sea of Thieves” offers an experience that will evolve over time, landing in players’ hands early and growing based on feedback from the community.
  • “STATE OF DECAY 2” (XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10 EXCLUSIVE, WORLD PREMIERE). The next installment in the fan favorite “State of Decay” franchise immerses you in an all-new multiplayer zombie survival fantasy. Players work together to build lasting communities where choices made shape an interconnected world and form a unique experience every time. Available worldwide as an Xbox Play Anywhere title in 2017.
  • “SCALEBOUND” (XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10 EXCLUSIVE). From critically acclaimed developer PlatinumGames Inc. and renowned Game Director Hideki Kamiya, “Scalebound” brings epic adventures and battles at enormous scales across the beautiful and dangerous open world of Draconis. Customize main hero Drew and your dragon, Thuban, to suit your playstyle as you battle legions of soldiers and massive monsters solo or cooperatively with up to three additional friends on Xbox Live. Available worldwide as an Xbox Play Anywhere title in 2017.
  • “TACOMA” (FIRST ON XBOX ONE AND WINDOWS 10). It is the year 2088, and humanity has taken to the stars. You step aboard the abandoned space station “Tacoma,” the facility’s Augmented Reality technology your only connection to the crew that once lived here. What happened to them — and what role did the station’s AI overseer, ODIN, play? Discover the truth in “Tacoma,” Fullbright’s follow-up to the genre-defining story exploration game “Gone Home,” when it comes to Windows 10 and Xbox One next year.
  • “TEKKEN 7™” (BANDAI NAMCO ENTERTAINMENT INC.). An engrossing story intertwines the past, present and future fates of fan-favorite characters in “TEKKEN 7.” Known for revolutionizing the fighting genre through both its hard-hitting gameplay and diverse cast of characters, “TEKKEN 7” introduces enhanced fight mechanics alongside a slew of new combatants to ensure that your next fight won’t ever be your last. Available worldwide for Xbox One in early 2017.
  • “TOM CLANCY’S THE DIVISION– EXPANSION I: UNDERGROUND” (UBISOFT®). Dive into the underbelly of New York to save what remains in Underground, the first expansion for “Tom Clancy’s The Division.” Explore the randomly generated mazes of subways, tunnels and sewers to fight deadly enemies and recover powerful loot. Experience an all-new incursion and find the latest weapons, gear and more. Available first on Xbox One and Windows PC beginning June 28.
  • “WE HAPPY FEW” (FIRST TO CONSOLE ON XBOX ONE). Developed by Compulsion Games, “We Happy Few” is coming to Windows 10 and Xbox One this summer. In a dystopian, mod 1964 England that lost World War II, the citizens of Wellington Wells are taking a happy drug called “Joy,” and living in denial of their grim existence and a terrible past. Can you survive among them once you stop taking your Joy become a “Downer?”

Pre-order now at your Microsoft Store or local retailer

With more than 100 retail locations across the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico and Australia, and through microsoftstore.com, fans can begin pre-ordering their favorite games and select accessories and hardware from this year’s Xbox E3 2016 Briefing right now. For a list of Microsoft Stores, visit https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/store/locations/find-a-store.

Other news

For additional news throughout E3 week, tune in live to Xbox Daily: LIVE @ E3 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT on Tuesday and Wednesday, and go to https://news.xbox.com.

More details about Xbox One, Xbox One games and the latest Xbox news at Xbox E3 2016 Briefing can be found at https://news.xbox.com.

Press releases and media assets can be found at https://news.xbox.com/media (and relevant content can be found by clicking on Select Category).

Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) is the leading platform and productivity company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, and its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.

Multiplayer on Xbox One requires Xbox Live Gold subscription (sold separately).

1 4K streaming with select apps, see Xbox.com. HDR functionality available with supported games and TVs. Some apps require app provider-specific subscriptions and/or other requirements.

2 Windows 10 Anniversary update required.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at https://news.microsoft.com. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at https://news.microsoft.com/microsoft-public-relations-contacts.

News Center

postheadericon ProtonMail: Encrypted key to a more secure future

Encryption is “key” to a more secure future, ProtonMail’s co-founder and CEO Dr. Andy Yen has told We Live Security.

The post ProtonMail: Encrypted key to a more secure future appeared first on We Live Security.


We Live Security » Languages » English

postheadericon The women of ENIAC and the future of women in tech

In 1942 six mathematicians were selected to program a machine that would help the US army calculate complex wartime ballistics tables. They helped to create ENIAC – one of the world’s first ever electronic computers. They were also all women.

The post The women of ENIAC and the future of women in tech appeared first on We Live Security.


We Live Security » Languages » English

postheadericon Microsoft unveils the future of Windows

SAN FRANCISCO Sept . 30 , 20 14 Microsoft Corp. on Tuesday unveiled its next Windows operating system, Windows 10, and gave a first look at an early technical preview for the PC available Oct. 1. The announcement highlighted advancements designed for business, including an updated user experience and enhanced security and management capabilities. The company also introduced the Windows Insider Program, kicking off its largest-ever open collaborative development effort to change the way Windows is built and delivered to best meet the needs of customers. Program participants will receive the technical preview of Windows 10 and a steady stream of builds through the development cycle to use and give feedback on.

“Windows 10 represents the first step of a whole new generation of Windows, unlocking new experiences to give customers new ways to work, play and connect,” said Terry Myerson, executive vice president of the Operating Systems group at Microsoft. “This will be our most comprehensive operating system and the best release Microsoft has ever done for our business customers, and we look forward to working together with our broader Windows community to bring Windows 10 to life in the months ahead.”

Windows 10 : f amiliarity and c onsistency a cross d evices

Windows 10 adapts to the devices customers are using — from Xbox to PCs and phones to tablets and tiny gadgets — and what they’re doing with a consistent, familiar and compatible experience, enabling even greater productivity. Windows 10 will run across the broadest range of devices ever from the Internet of Things to enterprise datacenters worldwide. Microsoft is also delivering a converged application platform for developers on all devices with a unified app store. Developers will be able to write an application once and deploy it easily across multiple device types, making discovery, purchase and updating easier than ever for customers.

Windows 10 : d esigned for the c hallenges of m odern b usiness

Windows 10 builds nearly everything that businesses need right into the core of the product — including enterprise-grade security, identity and information protection features — in ways that can reduce complexities and provide better experiences than other solutions. One area of advancement is in the work Microsoft has done with user identities to improve resistance to breach, theft or phishing. Windows 10 will also help advance data loss prevention by using containers and data separation at the application and file level, enabling protection that follows the data as it goes from a tablet or PC to a USB drive, email or the cloud.

Management and deployment have been simplified to help lower costs, including in-place upgrades from Windows 7 or Windows 8 that are focused on making device wipe-and-reload scenarios obsolete. Businesses will also have the flexibility to choose how quickly they adopt the latest innovations and influence continued improvements. In addition, organizations will be able to customize an app store specific to their needs and environment. The intent is an app store that will allow for volume app licensing, flexible distribution, and the ability for organizations to reclaim or reuse licenses when necessary.

Technical p review PC p roductivity

The early technical preview of Windows 10 demonstrates new levels of flexibility, navigation and familiarity through the Windows experience. Features include these:

  • Expanded Start menu. The familiar Start menu is back, providing quick one-click access to the functions and files that people use most, and it includes a new space to personalize with favorite apps, programs, people and websites.

  • Apps that run in a window. Apps from the Windows Store now open in the same format that desktop programs do. They can be resized and moved around, and have title bars at the top allowing users to maximize, minimize and close with a click.

  • Snap enhancements. Working in multiple apps at once is easier and more intuitive with snap improvements. A new quadrant layout allows up to four apps to be snapped on the same screen. Windows will also show other apps and programs running for additional snapping, and it will even make smart suggestions on filling available screen space with other open apps.

  • New Task view button. The new Task view button on the task bar enables one view for all open apps and files, allowing for quick switching and one-touch access to any desktop created.

  • Multiple desktops. Instead of too many apps and files overlapping on a single desktop, it’s easy to create and switch between distinct desktops for different purposes and projects — whether for work or personal use.

Open and c ollaborative d evelopment

The introduction of the Windows Insider Program demonstrates Microsoft’s continued commitment to working closely with customers to help shape the future of Windows. Windows Insiders will be able to give feedback on early builds of the product throughout the development cycle. The program will include various ways for Windows Insiders to engage in a two-way dialogue with Microsoft, including a Windows Feedback app for sharing suggestions and issues and a Windows Technical Preview Forum for interacting with Microsoft engineers and fellow Insiders. More information on the Windows Insider Program and the technical preview can be found at http://preview.windows.com.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services, devices and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

Microsoft News Center – News and Announcements from Microsoft

postheadericon Houston school district invests in the future of its community with Microsoft

REDMOND, Wash. June 3, 2014 — Houston Independent School District (HISD), the largest school district in Texas — seventh largest in the U.S. — has purchased Microsoft solutions to help prepare students for the digital world. With a large majority of students from low-income families, HISD is making strides in improving the broader community by transforming each student’s learning experience and providing technology to students who otherwise couldn’t afford it. Microsoft technology helps HISD improve student outcomes, solve privacy concerns and amend manageability worries that plague many other education technology implementations. Microsoft Office 365 and HP Elitebook Folio 9470m Ultrabooks running Windows are helping to support HISD’s more than 14,000 students and 1,200 teachers in the first phase of its PowerUp initiative to transform how teachers teach and how students learn.

“Educating our kids is important, but having our parents and community understand digital awareness is imperative to their success,” said Lenny Schad, chief information technology officer at Houston Independent School District. “The entire community is behind our PowerUp initiative; we’re partnering with restaurants, churches, YMCAs and apartment complexes to install wireless infrastructures so students can access the network from anywhere, since we know many of our students do not have Internet access at home. Meeting our goal is all about community participation.”

HISD is providing Office 365 to faculty and staff, and planning to roll it out to students at no additional cost using the Student Advantage benefit. This will help to improve communication and collaboration across the district. In addition to the Office productivity suite, as part of the PowerUp initiative, 65,000 high school students will receive HP laptops running Windows once the devices have been fully implemented over the next three years to further enhance personalized learning for students. Microsoft’s commitment to student data privacy and belief that student data should not be mined by second parties for ads helped HISD meet federal and state requirements, and feel confident the technology they are providing students uses sophisticated safety and security technologies and is easy to use virtually anywhere, anytime.

HISD has taken a unique and deliberate approach to its deployment. In the adoption year, the curriculum leads, campus leadership and professional development teams were first to receive the devices so they could implement technology strategies for the upcoming year. Three months later, all teachers received their devices and became familiar with them for a full semester before the district provided devices to all students. After the holiday break, the digital environment and culture had taken shape, and students at 11 high schools in the district were given the laptops, allowing them to engage in a more meaningful and 21st-century way for everyday learning.

“This deployment process was unique because teachers were given the opportunity to teach their students with just pen and paper during the first semester, and then see them the second half of the year on a digital platform,” Schad said. “Teachers tell us that students are blowing them away; artistic, writing and other skills come out of the woodwork when you allow students their own path to learning.”

After just one year of transformation, the district is optimistic about the future and is confident students are gaining new skills and experiencing new opportunities that will help them excel in their path from graduation into college or career.

“You can’t help but feel good when you see students’ faces as they open their laptops, or when you hear from parents and grandparents how grateful they are that this technology — something they’d never be able to afford on their own — has been provided, because it’s so important to their students’ futures and education,” Schad said.

Other districts in the Houston area using Microsoft solutions to improve student outcomes include Clear Creek Independent School District, Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District, and Klein Independent School District.

More information about how organizations are turning to Microsoft technology is available on the Microsoft Customer Spotlight newsroom.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Note to editors: For more information, news and perspectives from Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft News Center at http://www.microsoft.com/news. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/news/contactpr.mspx.

Microsoft News Center – News and Announcements from Microsoft

postheadericon Microsoft Office showcases future of work

LAS VEGAS — March 3 , 20 14 Microsoft Corp. kicked off its SharePoint Conference 2014, highlighting new ways Microsoft Office 365 will enable people to accomplish more with new experiences for users, developers and IT pros. In a keynote speech to approximately 10,000 customers and partners, Microsoft Corporate Vice President Jeff Teper showcased innovation that brings together the power of the cloud, enterprise social, big data, machine learning and mobile capabilities into an experience made personal for every Office 365 user. These new technologies will enable a networked way of working together in teams, in groups and across organizations that can result in better customer responsiveness, collaboration, information sharing, discoverability and more.

“Today, the world has become a giant network where connections make information more relevant and people more productive. Most companies, however, are not working like a network, which we believe is vital for their ability to improve collaboration and respond to customers, competition and market changes,” Teper said. “The new Office 365 experiences powered by cloud, social, mobile and big data technologies enable people and teams to find the right connections and most relevant insights to get more done.”

Delivering on this vision, Microsoft showcased new innovations for end users, developers and IT pros coming to Office 365 in the near future, with an emphasis on the trusted platform fundamentals of security, privacy and industry compliance.

For end users, Microsoft demonstrated new personalized experiences that integrate social capabilities throughout Office 365, to help people spend less time trying to find information or looking for people working on similar projects and more time getting things done. Powering these new user experiences is the Office Graph, a new Office 365 intelligence fabric that remains unseen to the user but is constantly analyzing content, interactions and activity streams and mapping the relationships using machine learning to intelligently connect and surface the most relevant content to each user. These new experiences include the following:

  • Oslo (code name). A new application powered by the Office Graph and code-named “Oslo” was previewed onstage. It uses personal interactions and machine learning to surface a view of the most relevant, timely information for each individual using Office 365 across SharePoint, Exchange, Lync, Yammer and Office.

  • Groups. Groups is a new feature unifying people, conversations, calendars, emails and files across the Office 365 suite, enabling a seamless collaboration experience across applications. Creating a Group anywhere in Office 365 will automatically provision a corresponding Yammer conversation feed, calendar, document library and inbox where members can collaborate and work as a team. Just like in Yammer, Groups are open by default but can be made private if necessary, enhancing discoverability and sharing.

  • Inline Social. Microsoft is bringing the power of social collaboration and conversations to everyone by offering Inline Social experiences throughout Office 365. The first experience planned for introduction is the ability to have social conversations inside documents stored in SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business.

  • Office 365 Video Portal. Today, Microsoft previewed the new Office 365 Video Portal to support upload, storage and discovery of videos in a secure manner. Businesses will be able to categorize videos into channels for specific business needs and stream them on mobile devices, with all of the video compression, optimization and rendering work done by Office 365.

“Many organizations struggle with bringing together their content creation, collaboration and core business applications,” said Alan Lepofsky, vice president and principal analyst, Constellation Research. “Today’s Office Graph and ‘Oslo’ announcements describe an integrated future that could greatly improve the way Microsoft Office 365 users will get their work done, with easily discoverable insights about important activity across their organizations that personally affect or may be interesting to them.”

With more than 3.4 million Office and SharePoint developers and counting, Microsoft also announced investments that open more doors for customers and partners to build contextual productivity solutions across browsers, PCs and mobile devices. On the Office 365 platform, developers can build integrated solutions and mobile apps to reach today’s leading businesses.

  • Exciting mobile possibilities. Today, the release of Office 365 SDKs for Windows 8 and Android will help developers build mobile productivity solutions powered by Office 365. Windows and Android developers can now connect to Office 365 data and services, including files, calendars, contacts, tasks and email.

  • Seamless Office 365 integration. Enhancements to Office 365 APIs for PowerPoint and Outlook give developers the control to build new, sophisticated solutions. PowerPoint presentations can be extended to surface poll or survey data directly within a deck, and Outlook Compose apps offer helpful insight alongside an email as it is written.

  • Robust APIs. In a continuation of Office 365 API growth, new APIs for files, people, email, calendar and tasks bring new light to the service with an intuitive, open- standards approach. The APIs also feature popularly requested enhancements, including self-service site provisioning and support for OneDrive for Business file actions.

  • Sharing power. Office 365 documents that include app information can now be more seamlessly activated by recipients. PowerPoint apps travel into the PowerPoint Online experience, allowing customers to share their favorite apps in a more viral way. Later this year, Office Online will bring similar capabilities to Excel.

For IT pros, Microsoft announced new capabilities that enhance Office 365 security and privacy, giving IT pros the tools they need to help protect their organizations. In addition, with the Office 2013 and SharePoint Server 2013 Service Pack 1 release, it is now easier than ever for organizations to take advantage of Office 365, whether that means making a comprehensive move to the cloud, adopting a hybrid deployment, or making a gradual transition through easy on-ramps such as OneDrive for Business and Yammer.

  • Dataloss prevention. Microsoft demonstrated new data-loss prevention capabilities for Office content, enabling organizations to manage, track and audit content, while not getting in the way of user productivity.

  • OneDrive for Business. In April, businesses can purchase OneDrive for Business (formerly SkyDrive Pro) as a stand-alone SKU providing secured file, sync and share in the cloud with all the benefits of integration with Office. Also, with SharePoint Server 2013 Service Pack 1, Microsoft introduced new admin controls to “turn on” OneDrive for Business in the cloud directly from the SharePoint Server 2013 admin console. This enables customers to keep their on-premises infrastructure intact, while still getting the benefit of cloud-based file storage and sharing.

  • Easy SharePoint social transition to Yammer. In Service Pack 1 Microsoft is making it easy for IT pros to replace the out-of-the-box SharePoint Server 2013 social experience with Yammer. Through simple controls in SharePoint Server 2013 central administration, IT can choose to activate Yammer, redirecting users to the organization’s Yammer network.

More information about today’s news can be found on the Microsoft Office blog.

The SharePoint Conference 2014 is the largest Microsoft SharePoint event in the world, offering developers, IT professionals and executives a range of presentations, workshops, Q&A sessions and networking events. More information on the news at the event can be found at the Microsoft Office virtual pressroom.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

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