- Wired: Detroit Auto Show a Leaner, Greener Affair
Sounds like it’s going to be a lot quieter this year. It will be very interesting to see what this show looks like when it’s toned down. Maybe more like Cleveland’s huge, yet typically unexciting, show? But, still, 51 new cars vs. 58 last year. That’s not too shabby considering that eight manufacturers are skipping the show altogether. I’m guessing that Chinese automakers (with their hilariously bad car designs) get to have Porsche’s, Nissan’s, and Land Rover’s floorspace upstairs. A changing of the guard. Or something like that.
- Ars Technica: Microsoft trains next-gen coders with XNA’s Kodu.
So at PDC there was this demo of something called Boku. Well, it looks like they’ve changed the name to Kodu. Cute. Maybe they thought the BoKu drink people were going to sue them. I know that I always get programming languages and boxed juice-like products mixed up. Anyway, the Boku demo was the hit of the otherwise boring Microsoft Research keynote. Here’s a junky video from the keynote that gives a small idea of how cool this system is. And Long Zheng got a more detailed demo when he visited Microsoft recently. Unfortunately, it sounds like we still have a while to wait before it ships. (Aside: All Microsoft related posts on this site must start with the word “So”. If you’ve ever visited Microsoft, you’ll understand.)
- And here’s another very interesting product from Microsoft Research: Songsmith. It lets you sing a tune to the computer and the computer figures out an accompaniment to play behind your song. I’ll definitely be downloading the demo.