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Can Microsoft finally make the stylus go mainstream?

The concept of the stylus as an input for computing has been around for a long time, with people dragging items around the screen with a pen and scribbling in digital ink. Microsoft first attempted to popularize the approach with its original Tablet PCs a decade ago. The rise of screens and the iPad pushed… Read More

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Microsoft: Windows 8 to hit the market at end of October

Windows 8 is on track to be released to computer makers the first week of August, and it will be generally available to end users at the end of October, the company announced this morning — giving the first official release timeline for the most significant overhaul of the company’s flagship product since Windows 95…. Read More

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Windows 8: What Microsoft needs to prove this week

For better or worse, the upcoming week is shaping up as one of the most pivotal in Microsoft’s history. Over the span of a few days, the company’s top executives will try to persuade some of their toughest and most important audiences — consumers, businesses, software developers and investors — that it has what it… Read More

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Google Chromebooks: The past or future of computing?

Google’s Chromebook computers are making their debut in stores this week to mixed reviews. With instant-on startup, all-day battery life and lightweight web apps, they seem to be what many of us want in a computer. Or maybe they’re what we wanted two years ago, before the iPad and Android tablets, and the promises of… Read More

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How it works: AMD’s new Accelerated Processing Unit

Here’s one for the silicon geeks. At a conference in Bellevue this morning, AMD introduced its new Fusion A-Series Accelerated Processing Units — new types of processors, known as APUs, that combine a CPU and graphics processor on a single silicon die. Speaking to the crowd, AMD corporate fellow Phil Rogers compared current models of computer… Read More

Can Amazon dethrone the iPad?

IDC cuts PC forecast as iPad, Kindle and friends take toll

The IDC market research firm today reduced its forecast for PC shipments for 2011 to 4.2 percent, from its previous projection of 7.1 percent. IDC cited factors including an “increasingly conservative economic outlook” but also explained that alternative devices have taken much of the momentum away from the low-priced, “mini-notebook” computers that helped to fuel the… Read More

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Are iPads mobile devices? A few experts weigh in

Are iPads and other tablet computers mobile devices? That was one of the lively discussions today at the MobileNorthwest conference in Seattle. Starbucks director of mobile K.C. MacLaren got things rolling in a morning keynote when he said that tablets are not considered mobile devices in his mind given their large form factor. MacLaren’s remarks led to… Read More

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Revenge of the iPad? PC market tanks in first quarter

New numbers this afternoon from the IDC research firm show worldwide PC shipments falling 3.2% during the first quarter — the first year-over-year quarterly decline since the end of the Great Recession. The firm had previously expected 1.5% growth in the worldwide market. The picture was even worse in the U.S., where shipments were down… Read More