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Microsoft Brand Strategy

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Written by markusw

November 9, 2008 at 5:23 am

Upcoming Travel Plans

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The past few weeks have been packed with school, work, and fun.  Just in the past weeks I have gone to New York City, Seattle (x2), but it looks like the upcoming month will be even more packed with trips, exams, and other things.

I just wanted to briefly outline some of my travel plans for the next few weeks; give you an idea of what I am up to besides school ūüôā

  • Thursday and Friday (10/25-26) I am in Portland, Oregon, meeting with companies in an attempt to get this year’s Portland Trek (01/08) up and running, as well as attending the Portland Alumni Board Meeting.¬† Besides Kryptiq, Nike, and Regence, I am also hoping to get in with Adidas for an hour or so.
  • Monday through Thursday (10/29-11/2) I am in Spokane retaking a bunch of exams that I am missing due to my travels – keep in mind I am a student first and foremost ūüėČ
  • Thursday and Friday (11/8-9) I am in Seattle to meet with companies in the area (again) to plan the Seattle Trek, which takes place on 01/10-1 and to attend the Seattle Alumni Chapter Board Meeting.¬† Microsoft, Boeing, Amazon, Starbucks, Ameriprise, Xversity, WaMu, Google, and Paccar are just a few of my meetings.
  • Thursday through Sunday (11/15-18) I am in San Fancsisco and San Jose meeting with companies and employers (incl. CNet.com CEO Neil Ash and Cisco Systems SVP Howard Churney) to plan the San Francisco Trek (03/19-21).
  • Tuesday (11/20) I am in Seattle to meet with Washington Mutual and a quick break over Thanksgiving.

Then, it looks like I may even have a life and stick around here for a while until mid December when I am off to

  • Seattle on 10/13 for another Board Meeting, and
  • 10/15 when I am going home to Hamburg, Germany for Christmas break

Written by markusw

October 23, 2007 at 2:50 pm

Live@edu update

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I was just going through my portfolio positions at TD Ameritrade and came across a newwire from Microsoft (MSFT).  This morning Microsoft annouced a series of new additions to the Live@edu offer (recall: this was the product I managed this summer).

Live@edu will be one of the first programs to integrate the new Office Live Workspace into its service lineup.  It appears like there are already several universities involved in an early adopter program, including: Ball State University, DeVry University, Florida Community College at Jacksonville, Indiana University, Kentucky Community and Technical College System, Michigan State University, University of Illinois, the University of Pennsylvania, Rio Salado College of the Maricopa Community Colleges, University of Washington and Vanderbilt University.

Also, in addition to Office Live Workspace, Live@edu is also pushing the available storage space for all accounts to 5GB, up to 1 GB of password-protected online storage space, automatic e-mail reply, and IP address whitelisting, which keeps e-mail messages sent from university mail servers from getting caught in spam filters.

Since Live@edu launched in March 2005, more than 400 schools from more than 30 countries have chosen the Live@edu suite, including Bryant University, San Jose State University, South Dakota State University, the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Arts and Sciences, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business and William Carey University. The most recent school system to “go Live” is City University of New York (CUNY).¬† I wish I could take more credit for this, but the team of people working on thie project is absolutely fantastic!!

Travel update

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Hi all,

quick update on our travels to New York City.  We left Spokane this morning at 5:30 am and took the first flight to Minneapolis.  Every went smoothly until we got to the Twin-Cities (BTW, my first time in this part of the country).  However, when we left Minneapolis our plane was clearly experiencing some technical difficulties.  The front wheel would not retract and after several loops over Minneapolis, the pilot informed us that we will be dropping the other set of landing gears (due to the problem on board we had to literally drop the gear, causing a substantial shake-up and noise level to the cabin).  We continued to fly with lowered landing gear over Minneapolis for two hours burning fuel and ended up landing back on the same runway.  Unable to steer, we came to a halt in the middle of the runway and waited for the firetrucks, EMTs, and police cars to catch up to us.  We were tugged back to the gate and waited for a replacement plane.  Of course, it goes without saying that we were substantially delayed getting into JFK.

Northwest, our carrier for the flight, did a fantastic job in providing a replacement plane for us and getting us back off the ground very quickly.  The pilot, also, did a good job of keeping us updated and informed of what was going on.  My only complaint, our stewardess, that was in a VERY, VERY grumpy mood for the remainder of the flight.

Anyway, we are in New York City now and I am looking forward to our first day in the financial district tomorrow.

Halo 3

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So, I had a chance to play Halo 3. WOW, what a game.  The graphics are amazing. Stunning quality and a great fluidity.  Of course there are some funky new vehicles included.  Two that I tried where the chopper (a weird combo between a motorcycle and a drill-like looking thing).  Also there is a mongoose which you can think of as a one-man warhog, or beach buggy. 

Realistically, it was to be expected that the graphics are even more amazing and that there would be a series of new weapons and vehicles.¬† But, what really fascinated me where two new game features called “Forge” and “Theater.”¬†

Forge enables you to enter multiplayer maps and alter them to your liking.¬† You can add more¬†weapons, or remove them from the playing¬†field, or you can move them around the area.¬† So, if you¬†get bored of playing the very same map you can completely revamp it, adding some more exciting little details ūüėČ

The¬†Theater, however, is by¬†far the best new feature of Halo 3.¬† After completing a game, you can select the theater from the main menu.¬† Basically, what you now have access to is a recording of the game you just¬†played.¬†This isn’t your ordinary instant replay, though.¬† Because in addition to being able to experience the game again from the Master Chief’s head cam you can also cycle through the other players in the game and experience their viewpoints. The coolest mode is when you detach the camera altogether and with the help of your two thumb-sticks and the back buttons begin flying around the ENTIRE game absolutely free.¬† You are not bound to the area right around your player and can move anywhere you want.¬† Fly up high and watch the battle from up above, or do what I did.¬† Fly ahead of your own player, spot that next enemy, zoom in on them, listen to their conversation, then spin around and watch from their perspective how your own player approaches and makes the kill. WOW!!

I have never seen anything quite like this and all-in-all this is once again an addicting little game.  The level of detail, the speed of the game, and the absolutely mind-boggling new theater function drew me in completely.

Written by markusw

August 16, 2007 at 6:41 am

The iPhone is getting too popular

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From the Secret Diary of Steve Jobs:

By now you’ve probably seen reports like this one about the supposed cutbacks in iPhone production. It’s hurting our stock today, which is never a good thing. But hear me out. The reports are true. We’re cutting back production from 9 million units to 4.5 million units. It was my call, and let me explain why I made it. iPhone is getting way too popular. The wrong kind of people are buying them. Every fad-crazy idiot in America is getting one. (See photo above.) But the whole point of iPhone — of all our products, really — is to offer a product that not everyone can have. A product that makes you different, and unique, and special. A product that makes you smarter and, well, better than other people. Can’t do that if everyone has one, right?

We figured we could keep things under control using our usual overpricing strategy. Who in their right mind was going to shell out 600 bucks for a friggin phone, right? Especially if it lacks all sorts of features that people really want. Just to be doubly sure we put it on the AT&T network and gave it an unbearably slow wireless connection so that Web browsing is practically impossible. Well, much to our amazement, it turns out there are just loads and loads of people willing to spend 600 bucks on a feature-lite phone as long as it has one crucial feature, which is our Apple logo on the outside. Who knew?

Well, demand is just so strong that I’ve had to slam on the brakes before things get out of control. Apple faithful, listen up. There is nothing to worry about. Honestly. iPhone, like all our products, including Apple TV, is a huge super dooper smash hit. Too big, actually. That’s why we’re cutting back production. Make sense? Of course it does. And hardly anybody is returning them. Seriously. There really are not a lot of people who bought one just because all their friends were getting them and they just wanted to check it out and now are returning them because the novelty wore off and the call quality kind of sucks and the keyboard blows and they already have an iPod and they like their BlackBerry better for email. Okay? That’s really not happening. I mean it. Peace out.

Written by markusw

August 7, 2007 at 8:18 am

Washington DC – Part 4 (final)

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Today was the second and final day of Campus Technology Summit.  Once again we had trouble getting good foot-traffic to the booth, but I actually opened a second booth in the larger exhibit hall.  We got to send people our way from there.

mid-day we had Kenneth Pierce, the IT Director from the University of Texas – El Paso present to customers in our hospitality suite about his experience implementing Live@edu for the students.¬† The attending crowd was very¬†interested and asked several compelling questions about the technical aspect of¬†Live@edu as well as the student’s perception of the email system.

Sadly, this day was very hectic as I had to leave mid-afternoon to catch a flight to Germany.  I am now sitting in Dulles airport with only a few minutes to spare before boarding.  I will be off blogging for a few days while traveling to Germany.  Cheers!