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How Microsoft Is Sowing the Seeds of an Augmented Reality Future

By Jonathan Vanian as written on fortune.com
In less than ten years, people will routinely interact with digital graphics and holograms beamed onto the real world.
That’s according to Lorraine Bardeen, Microsoft’s (MSFT, +0.77%) general manager of Windows and HoloLens experiences. Speaking Wednesday at the annual AWE conference for augmented reality in Santa Clara, Bardeen discussed why Microsoft sees the nascent technology becoming the next way people use computers beyond mobile touchscreens or the standard keyboard and mouse.
Opposed to virtual reality, augmented reality technology lets people see digital imagery overlaid onto the physical world. Microsoft refers to AR as mixed reality, and it is still a relatively new phenomenon that generated much interest after the popularity of last summer’s blockbuster mobile game Pokemon Go.
Over the past year, major companies like Facebook (FB, +0.36%) and Google(GOOG, +0.13%) have indicated they will incorporate AR tech in significant ways. Facebook, for example, debuted in April new developer tools and features that lets users apply filters to their photos to add special effects, like cartoonish mustaches.
One way Microsoft is trying to popularize AR tech is by revising its classic Paint app to let people draw and design 3D graphics as opposed to traditional two-dimesional images, Bardeen explained. Getting more general consumers—not just tech professionals—familiar with creating 3D graphics “is a fundamental building block” to popularizing AR because it helps accustom the general public to interacting with 3D content.
This fall, people will be able to project their 3D graphics created via the revamped Paint app onto the real world via Windows 10-powered PCs with standard cameras, Bardeen said. Of course, they will have to view the digital images through their computer’s monitor, but Bardeen said it would help the “hundreds of millions of people” who don’t have the appropriate headsets interact with AR tech.
Bardeen also showed a video of Microsoft’s custom studio, a small enclosure surrounded by 106 cameras being used to create 3D imagery people can embed in their apps. By capturing the motion of a person kicking a soccer ball or even a llama slowly walking, Microsoft can then convert those images into digital graphics that people will be able to see overlaid onto the real world with HoloLens or certain Windows 10 PCs.
Bardeen added businesses could use these stock images for purposes like “fan engagement” or “corporate training” similar to how they use traditional stock photography.
However, Microsoft’s HoloLens AR headset that beams digital imagery onto the physical world is not available to the general public. Right now, it is only available for developers or businesses for $3,000 and $5,000. Although Bardeen did not say when Microsoft plans to sell the HoloLens to the public, she said new AR headsets released later this year via partnerships with other manufacturers will be “an entry point into this future of computing.”
Some of the companies slated to release these headsets by year’s end include Dell and Lenovo, although none of the companies have said how much they will cost.

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As one of the biggest, brightest and friendliest IT companies in Southern California we want you to take advantage of our free security assessment or just request a quote for managed services. We can even work on your behalf to get appropriate projects funded by Microsoft. Call Managed Solution at 800-790-1524.


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thyssenkrupp transforms its home mobility solutions business with Microsoft HoloLens

As written on blogs.microsoft.com
With its customized stair lifts, thyssenkrupp has long helped people with physical limitations live comfortably and independently in their homes. Until recently, the process of selling, designing, building and installing the lifts was time-consuming for the company, with a laborious system of labels, cameras and manual data entry.
But with Microsoft HoloLens, thyssenkrupp is revolutionizing its home mobility solutions business, making the process faster, easier and more helpful for customers.
“With this partnership with Microsoft, thyssenkrupp will transform homes to make life better,” says Thomas Felis, vice president of innovation at thyssenkrupp Elevator Americas. “That is a game changer.”
Mechanized stair lifts must be customized for individual staircases, requiring precise measurements that used to contribute to long delivery times.
But today, a thyssenkrupp salesperson can use a mobile HoloLens solution to quickly measure a staircase during an initial visit and automatically share data with manufacturing teams and accounting systems via Microsoft Azure. Sales reps can also now show customers a visualization of what the lift would look like in their home, helping them feel more confident in making what can be an emotional decision.
“Selling, manufacturing and then installation — it all takes quite a while,” says Inge Delobelle, CEO of thyssenkrupp Access Solutions. “People need a quick solution. With HoloLens, we started saying, ‘Let’s look at how we can measure stairs differently, so it’s quicker.’ But that was just the very beginning.”
The wearable holographic computer makes it simple to scan a staircase, measure each step and save data. But being able to share data in real-time with different teams has improved the entire process, leading to quicker sales, design, manufacturing and installation. With Microsoft HoloLens and Microsoft Azure, thyssenkrupp now delivers its products up to four times faster than before.
“There’s plenty of potential, and whomever we discuss this with comes up with a new idea, and that’s what’s so great about it,” Delobelle says.
This week, thyssenkrupp and the Microsoft HoloLens team will be at Hannover Messe to showcase digital transformation with mixed reality — and its power to enhance productivity and customer satisfaction.
“Digital transformation reimagines people, data and processes within an organization to accelerate business impact and to create value for customers,” writes Lorraine Bardeen, general manager of Microsoft HoloLens and Windows Experiences, on the Windows Blog.
“Increasingly, that digital reimagination includes deploying HoloLens into core workflows.”


HoloLens and Alexa integrations - managed solution
Adobe unveils new Microsoft HoloLens and Amazon Alexa integrations

By Nat Levy as written on geekwire.com
Adobe is in the middle of its big Summit conference, where it is introducing a variety of new technologies, including tie-ins with the Microsoft HoloLens augmented reality headset and Amazon’s digital assistant Alexa.
Many of these new innovations are backed by the company’s artificial intelligence and machine learning platform Adobe Sensei and the company’s catalog of cloud offerings.
Virtual reality is a big part of Adobe’s newest projects. In the advertising realm, the company envisioned a situation where someone could be standing in the middle of Times Square in New York City with a VR headset on. Based on the individual, various Adobe products such as Sensei and the Adobe Experience Cloud would come together to virtually replace the iconic billboards in the neighborhood with advertisements that might better speak to that person.
The HoloLens project visualizes data and layers it on top of the real world. For example, a retailer could use the technology to visualize sales data, so an employee wearing a HoloLens could see how various items are doing and decide to emphasize the more popular ones in the store. Additionally, retailers could place sensors on items, and see which products are generating the most foot traffic.
Here is a look at how Adobe and Microsoft are working together on virtual reality and retail:
Adobe wants to personalize Amazon’s digital brain Alexa. Alexa is open to third party developers, and Adobe wants to tie in its Experience Cloud to make it possible for consumers to ask Alexa for their reward status for a hotel chain or airline, for example.
Alexa would then use their customer profile data and preferences to recommend promotions or activities that take advantage of those rewards. Adobe said it would be able to do this in a way that protects people’s privacy.

Managed Solution displayed the HoloLens at CalPoly Cyber Security & Awareness Fair


San Diego, CA. On October 25, 2016, Managed Solution participated in the 2016 Cal Poly Pomona Cyber Security & Awareness Fair.  The fair aimed to bring awareness to the world of Cyber Security where our entire world is progressing into an internet connected world.  At the fair students and faculty got to experience a variety of speakers that have in-depth knowledge of the Cyber Security do's and don'ts and experience in the Cyber Security field, a poster contest where students displayed their research of pressing issues in the Information Technology Industry, and a hands-on exhibit that allowed students to experience the world of a typical attacker on Internet of Things products.

At the event, Managed Solution demonstrated Microsoft HoloLens for education to over twenty interested ticket holders.  The President, IT Staff, and select students got to experience the world of mixed reality and try out an application to see how they could learn with mixed reality in the classroom. Faculty and student developers tested the HoloLens for the first time and will be getting their own devices in the classroom in the next few weeks to collaborate on mixed reality application development in the classroom. Managed Solution is excited to work with the future generation of mixed reality developers and stay in touch to share their successes.

Soraya M. Coley, Ph.D., the president of Cal Poly Pomona experiencing Microsoft HoloLens for the first time.

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About Managed Solution

We're technology enthusiasts with a people-first approach. For over two decades, we've witnessed the profound impact that the right technology and support can have on businesses and individuals. Success, to us, is seeing our clients, partners, and team conquer challenges to achieve their greatest goals and build lasting connections. This relentless pursuit of inspiration drives us forward, pushing us to deliver innovative solutions that empower growth and lasting success.

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National Video Games Day Comes to Life with the HoloLens


By Kelly Cronin
In a wave of new technology updates, we have taken notice to a completely unique experience - mixed reality.  In a mixture of augmented and virtual reality, the Microsoft HoloLens brings holograms to life with complete interaction between our fingertips and 3D holographic objects.  One can only imagine the incredible uses for such a tool, but of course we all mostly just want to play with it.  National Video Games Day, on September 12th, is inspiring us to see how the HoloLens is transforming the video game world.  Check out some articles, photos, and videos below to see just how awesome the HoloLens truly is.

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Pokémon Go bringing attention to Microsoft’s HoloLens

The hype over Pokémon Go isn't solely because Team Mystic is the best, it's also because the augmented reality game is changing how we see video games interact with our real lives. Augmented reality is an incredible experience that moves gamers from sitting behind a screen all day to moving around inside, outside, and everywhere in between. The HoloLens is an augmented reality headset - putting the game inside your living room. Imagine catching a Pikachu without your phone in your hand. Epic.

Read the article here >>

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Students demonstrate their HoloLens apps after a quarter of VR and AR design

At the University of Washington, a computer science classroom is equipping their students with HoloLens headsets to let them develop their own apps. One app developed is called HoloScanner, which redesigns the process of scanning a room and turns it into a game that can then be used for other apps. Other apps include augmented reality cooking, a painting app, and more.

Check out the HoloScanner app video and more here>>

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Putting Video Games into your Living Space: Young Conker

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Managed Solution hosts HoloLens event, featuring custom made app

We are just as excited about the HoloLens as you are, so we're sharing the experience. Vice President of Marketing and Engagement, Jackie Weiner, developed a custom-made app for our HoloLens that has objects, games, and videos to interact with.  At our invite-only events, we host a friendly competition among CEO's and other C-Level executives.

Photos from the event are below, and you can check out the full press release here.

Want to get an invite to one of the coolest experiences around? Check out our events page to find an event near you. 

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“The app is awesome! The HoloLens is just fantastic. I was really impressed by the investment that was made into creating this app. The app just blew my mind, and it just shows you how much the HoloLens platform can offer developers."

- Ian Koskela, CIO CD Savoia


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Managed Solution Hosts First HoloLens Event at Ballast Point Brewery

San Diego, CA - Last Thursday evening, Managed Solution, San Diego's fastest growing full-service technology firm, hosted their first-ever HoloLens event, showcasing the mixed reality experience to top-level executives from San Diego's fastest growing companies.  On August 11th, 2016, CEO's participated in a friendly competition featuring a custom-made app by the VP Marketing, Jackie Weiner, at Ballast Point Brewery.
Combining mixed and augmented reality, the Microsoft HoloLens is a one-of-a-kind experience that gives users the incredible balance between the virtual world and reality. At the event,  each CEO wore the untethered, holographic enabled headset and was tested on the execution, retention, and speed of the information received.  The winner of the event was Ian Koskela, Information Officer of CD Savoia, who took home a growler of the beer of his choice.  Runners up took home small growlers and bottles, as well as Managed Solution goodies.
Feedback from the event was outstanding, mainly focusing on the app's incredible development and user experience.  When asked how he liked the HoloLens, Ian Koskela responded with:

"The app is awesome! The HoloLens is just fantastic. I was really impressed by the investment that was made into creating this app. The app just blew my mind, and it just shows you how much the HoloLens platform can offer developers."

Managed Solution is hosting a new HoloLens event in Phoenix, AZ on September 14th (click here for more info), as well as upcoming events in San Diego, LA, and Orange County.
Managed Solution is a full-service technology firm that empowers businesses by delivering, maintaining and forecasting the technologies they’ll need to stay competitive in their market place. Regional Partners with Microsoft & Microsoft’s United States SMB Champions Club West Region Marketer of the Year 2016, Managed Solution provides software migration, hardware, project implementation and managed services for small to enterprise size clients.
Managed Solution was founded in 2002 and was quickly recognized as one of San Diego’s 40 fastest growing companies and the 27th fastest growing IT company in Southern California. With corporate headquarters in San Diego, Managed Solution provides IT services nationwide and was recently recognized as one of the top 10 National Cloud Service Providers.

For more information on the HoloLens and other events with Managed Solution, check out More Holographic Experience.



HoloLens Development Edition Updates

By Alex Kipman as written on blogs.windows.com
In the four months since we began shipping Microsoft HoloLens to our developer and commercial partners, we’ve been absolutely amazed at the innovation shown by the creative people and companies building real solutions using HoloLens. From training aircraft mechanics and flight crews, to helping golf pros and fans get more out of their game, I’m inspired by the experiences you are creating.
In May, we announced the first major software update to Windows Holographic, and today, I’m excited to share our second major update: the Windows 10 Anniversary Update. This is our fastest and most reliable version yet. Some exciting changes are on tap with this release, as well as some new policies making it easier than ever for more developers to create the future of holographic computing.
We’ve also heard that companies are looking for a solution they can confidently pilot and deploy in their enterprises, so today we are introducing the Microsoft HoloLens Commercial Suite, which includes the Development Edition hardware as well as enterprise features for added security and device management.  Check out this video to learn more about the HoloLens Commercial Suite:

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Some of the Microsoft HoloLens Commercial Suite features include:

  • Kiosk mode. With HoloLens kiosk mode, you can limit which apps to run to enable demo or showcase experiences.
  • Mobile Device Management (MDM) for HoloLens. Your IT department can manage multiple HoloLens devices simultaneously using solutions like Microsoft InTune. You will be able to manage settings, select apps to install and set security configurations tailored to your organization’s need.
  • Identity. Azure Active Directory & next generation credentials with pin unlock.
  • Windows Update for Business. Controlled operating system updates to devices and support for long term servicing branch.
  • Data security. BitLocker data encryption and secure boot is enabled on HoloLens to provide the same level of security protection as any other Windows device.
  • Work access. Anyone in your organization can remotely connect to the corporate network through a virtual private network on a HoloLens. HoloLens can also access Wi-Fi networks that require credentials.
  • Windows Store for Business. Your IT department can also set up an enterprise private store, containing only your company’s apps for your specific HoloLens usage. Securely distribute your enterprise software to selected group of enterprise users.
Check out our documentation page for the full list of things we’ve been working on to make HoloLens even better for you.


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