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• Monday 4 December 2017 - LENOVO G460 Battery www.all-laptopbattery.com

On the search side, Cortana will now show up right in the revived Start Menu bar on Windows 10 and will direct a lot of internet searches to Bing, as Windows 8.1's built-in search does now. For smartphone users, the demonstrations showed Cortana taking up the whole screen and displaying voice commands, which can presumably be edited if the software mishears a command.Microsoft was keen to stress that there's still a lot of development work to do on Cortana. Some of the features on display today won't be in the preview builds available to developers for five months or more. But voice control is going to be a key part of controlling computers, in Microsoft's view.Tom Oberheim has pursued a similar philosophy with his Marion Systems products in the 1990s and more recently with the SEM line. Sadly, unlike Dave Smith, he has been unable to negotiate the return of the Oberheim brand name from Gibson who bought his company when it got into difficulties around the same time as Sequential.Tom Oberheim was showing a new Pro version of his original Two Voice from the 1970s. This synth also benefits from the addition of memories to make sure that, when you find that perfect unique sound, you can save it for all time, even if you have used patch cables to create it.

Moog Music, on the other hand, clearly thinks that memories are for wimps and that real men should should know the settings of their favourite sounds by heart and be able to get them back blindfold. To prove this was the case, it had legendary synthesist Susanne Cianni prove that real women can do it too.Cianni was on the booth daily putting the newly reissued $35,000 Modular System 55 through its paces. The huge “wall of sound” as we used to call it, still sounded as great as it did in the late 1960s, especially when Keith Emerson turned up to give an impromptu performance of Lucky Man (original recording – fun starts at 3'20). But does anyone really want to fight with that much spaghetti any more?Elsewhere, Roland offered the JD-Xi, a hybrid of all its biggest hits featuring: an analogue SH-101-style monosynth; a digital polysynth for pads; a drum machine offering both TR-808 and TR-909 kits; and a vocoder.

This arsenal of sonic sources combined with the on-board sequencer delivers complete workstation to produce dance music featuring all the classic sounds that inspired the genre. There are certain dance music producers who may think that this is all the music device they will ever need in the future.Cortana is also going to be playing a part in another big change that's coming in Windows 10 (one that was widely leaked): Project Spartan, Microsoft's new web browser.Based on what was shown today, you're still going to get Internet Explorer with Windows 10. Microsoft needs to keep it around because of the huge number of legacy applications that are built to work only with it. But its legacy support makes IE clunky and insecure, so Redmond is hoping Spartan is the way forward.In a nutshell, Spartan is a cut-down browser, which Microsoft rather ambiguously said would be optimized for the languages the web is written in today. It's got a much more, well, Spartan look and feel than IE – one vaguely reminiscent of Chrome – and Cortana is tightly integrated.

For example, one demonstration showed a search for a restaurant's website using the browser. The results were displayed as normal, but in the top right-hand corner, Cortana pops up with details including directions to, hours of, and a menu for the restaurant.But Spartan is more than a simple browser. Joe Belfiore, Microsoft's operating systems veep, demonstrated how websites can be annotated and users can add comments using either a keyboard, a pen, or their finger. Then add the ability to share the annotations and you've got something that's really rather useful.When dealing with multiple websites, Spartan builds a reading list in a menu on the right hand side of the screen. This will also download and store the web pages so that they can be read offline, as well as porting them between PC, tablet, and phone.Every copy of Windows 10 will come with an updated Xbox application baked in. The app has been redesigned to show not only available games but also friends, recent actions, and social forums on a single page – but that's a minor tweak.

What's a much bigger deal it that now Xbox and Windows 10 users can play console games with each other online. As long as both players have the same version of the game, they can slay orcs together as though they were sharing the same console.In addition, if you have an Xbox in the house you can stream games to your Windows 10 laptop or PC using the application and even turn the console off remotely. There are limits to this – the Xbox won’t play two games at once and if the game requires a disk it'll have to be installed in the console. Streaming also won’t work outside a LAN. Still, it's still a huge step.The other side of this is that Windows 10 users will be able to stream PC apps to their Xboxes to display them on their TV screens. We're not expecting Excel on the big screen, said Phil Spencer, head of Xbox, but it would be easy to do so.Windows 10 will also make full use of DirectX 12. The new software allows developers to at last get full CPU and GPU control for games and Microsoft claimed that this could lead to a 50 per cent performance boost for some games.Microsoft also threw a couple of hardware announcements into its Windows 10 hoopla. The HoloLens was the star turn of these, but Microsoft also showed off its latest move into big screen computing.The SurfaceHub is an 84-inch 4K screen with compute capability and motion sensors built in. The unit is basically a massive digital whiteboard with pen capability built in, as well as the ability to take data from Windows 10 PCs in the room and display information for annotation and sharing.

Microsoft has a peculiar love for these kinds of big screen systems. It bought Perceptive Pixel in 2012 and both Nadella and former CEO Steve Ballmer have raved about big screens. Everyone else seems iffy on the idea, but SurfaceHub is rather nifty in its way.The system runs a version of OneNote that can be used in either individual mode or as part of a shared data group. The motion sensors detect when someone enters the room and switch the system on, and when everyone leaves it automatically wipes itself after backing The enterprise is yet to come. Wednesday's Windows 10 preview event was mainly about what consumers are going to get out of the new OS, but that's only half the story. Microsoft also dropped some interesting hints about what's coming down the line on the enterprise side.For those who like the idea of public cloud systems, Windows 10 is being constantly tweaked to work with Azure, Nadella said.For those companies that like to keep their data in-house, there will be some major upgrades to Microsoft's server software, he explained, but also for client systems. The hypervisor technology Microsoft has developed on the server side, for example, is now also baked into client versions of Windows 10 and is key to getting the new security lockdowns to work.

The next Windows 10 preview build will be pushed out to developers in the next two weeks and there will be more details on the phones given out at Mobile World Congress in March. Updates on Xbox will arrive in time for the Game Developers Conference the same month.There are no firm details on the final launch date for Windows 10, other than an oft-repeated when it's ready. Given Microsoft's past release schedule, however, autumn looks like a good bet. For those who hanker after the perfect Jean-Michel Jarre sound to play with their Laser Harp, KromaLaser is finally offering a new hardware solution. Until now if you wanted that authentic Rendezvous II sound, you needed to either find an old Elka Synthex on eBay (and probably get it repaired), or run a virtual synth called Synth’x, aka Synthix from Xils Labs on a laptop live.Neither is ideal for live performance, so KromaLaser has announced a 2U rack called KromaSynth which recreates the sound architecture of the Elka Synthex for those sync-sweep sounds that so many people are convinced actually come from the LaserHarp instead of the Elka being triggered by MIDI.

The architecture of the KromaLaser is much cleverer than the original Elka Synthex though. Each voice is entirely contained on an independent card and anywhere between one and 16 cards can be installed in the individual slots. This means if you only want to trigger from the monophonic laser harp, you can save money by only buying one card in the rack. If you want a 16-part multi-timbral system which allows you to set up drones or trigger/sequenced lines to back your performances, you can also do this. The KromaSynth will be fully demoed in the UK next month.It was actually pretty tough to find groundbreaking technology at NAMM this year. The only truly unique thing I saw was a new product from Roger Linn, founding father and patron saint of drum machines. Now that beatboxes have been fully absorbed into workstations and computer sequencers, Roger has come up with a new MIDI controller. Called the LinnStrument, it doesn’t require previous keyboard training to play, yet permits a level of individual expression which few keyboard players ever achieve.

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