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New “Gears Forever” Trailer Shows The Biggest Gears Yet – Xbox Wire

We’re just a short time away from the biggest Gears yet with Early Access for either Xbox Game Pass Ultimate or with Gears 5 Ultimate Edition, and today while fans eagerly await its release, we’ve got a brand new trailer showing off Gears 5’s five modes.

In Gears 5, there are five thrilling ways to play: the all-new aggressive, high-stakes co-op mode Escape; the competitive Versus mode, featuring nine modes including the all-new Arcade for players of all levels; the deepest Horde Mode ever;  the intuitive Map Builder and the biggest Campaign yet.

Yesterday, we shared news about latest blockbuster partnership in Gears 5 with WWE Superstar Batista making an appearance in Gears 5 as a multiplayer character, donning the armor of the legendary Marcus Fenix. Fans can also look forward to the inclusion of Sarah Connor and the T-800 Endoskeleton from Terminator: Dark Fate and Spartans Emile-A239 and Kat-B320 from Halo: Reach with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate and Gears 5 Ultimate Edition.

Gears 5 early access will begin at 9pm on September 5th in your local time zone. For countries with multiple time zones, the earliest time zone will determine when you can play. For example, North American early access will begin at simultaneously at 9pm ET, 8pm CT and 6pm PT.

Both Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members and Gears 5 Ultimate Edition owners will be able to gear up and take the fight to the Swarm. On behalf of everyone at The Coalition, we’re excited to have fans jump into the world of Gears 5.

For more information on Gears 5 and the Gears franchise, stay tuned to Xbox Wire or follow Gears on Twitter @gearsofwar.

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Author: Microsoft News Center

CAE’s training simulators make us safer – from the hospitals to the heavens | Transform

The birth was seconds away. The mother rested on her back while a medical student sat at the foot of the bed, blue surgical gloves on her hands – a scene common to delivery rooms everywhere. Except the mom was a manikin, her fetus was a manikin and the student wore Microsoft HoloLens.

Using the device, the student looked at the mother’s abdomen and saw a hologram of the fetus inside the womb before it rotated and descended the birth canal. Then, her mixed-reality training session got tricky.

Suddenly, the baby’s shoulders became stuck inside the mother, a risky complication – but an emergency purposely triggered by a classroom instructor. The student had to act fast. She placed her hands on the tiny manikin and gently freed the shoulders, safely completing another digital delivery.

CAE LucinaAR – the first human-patient simulator augmented with HoloLens – simultaneously delivered another digital lesson. The technology comes from CAE, a Canadian company that offers virtual-to-live training solutions to assess human performance, improving overall safety from health care to civil aviation to defense operations.

A medical student practices delivering a baby with the use of a virtual-to-live patient simulator and Hololens.
A medical student practices delivering a baby with CAE LucinaAR and HoloLens.

“CAE operates in three sectors where the stakes are high, where there’s no room for error and where the people need to be properly trained to be ready for unlikely situations that could lead to catastrophes,” says Dr. Robert Amyot, president of CAE Healthcare, one of CAE’s three business segments.

“On-the-job training is dangerous and costly,” adds Amyot, a cardiologist by trade. “So, we train pilots to make flying safer. We train the forces in our defense and security division to make them more prepared for their missions. And we train clinicians and health care providers to improve patient safety.”

By going digital, each of those training regimens is becoming more precise at pegging and addressing human vulnerabilities, says Marc Parent, the CEO at CAE.

In the realm of aviation, CAE guides pilots to prep for potential airborne adversities by using individualized simulations built with artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things (IoT).

A new pilot trains on a CAE flight simulator.
A new pilot trains on a CAE flight simulator.

“Although it’s the safest mode of transportation in the world, pilots have long been assessed in a subjective way,” Parent says. “But now, by leveraging the data that our simulators are giving us – powered by the cloud – we can give them an objective assessment in real time. That’s invaluable.

“When the pilots go into our simulator, we are able to give them personalized insights into their skills, into how they perform different operational practices. This raises their level,” Parent says. “And practice makes perfect.”

Middleware tools demand to peak in 2018, before iPaaS ascends

2018 is a big year for middleware technologies, as revenues peak and cloud alternatives woo customers away from legacy, on-premises middleware suites.

The maturation of cloud, IoT and digital development platforms overall will drive enterprise investments in middleware tools to an all-time high of $30 billion in 2018, according to Gartner. Although traditional on-premises middleware technologies will serve legacy applications for years, enterprise investments in iPaaS and MWaaS will eclipse the traditional market from now on.

Cloud middleware tools are enterprise-ready, which is good news for businesses that require both cloud and on-premises systems to support customers’ and partners’ digital touchpoints and application development.

“Businesses today need flexible, consumable and agile integration capabilities that enable more people to get involved in delivering solutions,” said Neil Ward-Dutton, research director at MWD Advisors in Horsham, U.K.

End of the middleware suite era

MWD Advisors' Neil Ward-DuttonNeil Ward-Dutton

Investment trends signal a shift in enterprise business application development and integration. Revenues for traditional on-premises, ESB-centric middleware suites from such vendors as IBM and Oracle achieved only single-digit growth in 2016 and 2017, according to Gartner.

Meanwhile, spending is increasing for hybrid middleware tools from vendors such as Neosoft, Red Hat, WSO2 and Talend. The iPaaS market exceeded $1 billion for the first time in 2017 and grew by over 60% in 2016 and 72% in 2017, said Saurabh Sharma, principal analyst at Ovum, a London-based IT research firm. Common characteristics of these middleware technologies include an open source base, API integration, loosely coupled architecture, and subscription model.

Saurabh Sharma, principal analyst, OvumSaurabh Sharma

Businesses with on-premises, legacy middleware suites run these applications and do a lot of integration in their own data centers. However, many enterprises are migrating to a hybrid cloud environment and require both on-premises and cloud integration, said Elizabeth Golluscio, a Gartner analyst. These newer vendors replace traditional ESBs with lightweight, open source service busses, largely encompassed in iPaaS offerings.

Costs, flexibility drive iPaaS adoption

Businesses’ shift away from traditional, on-premises middleware technologies is driven by lower costs, an inundation of new technologies, new digital business integration requirements, and faster time-to-integration particularly for SaaS applications. “Cloud integration platforms are now mature enough to deliver these flexible and speedy integration capabilities,” Sharma said.

The era of perpetual licensing of expensive, on-premises integration middleware on a per-server basis is fading fast.
Neil Ward-Duttonresearch director, MWD Advisors

The cloud middleware subscription fee model aligns enterprises’ costs with usage and return. “The era of perpetual licensing of expensive, on-premises integration middleware on a per-server basis is fading fast,” Ward-Dutton said.

In the past few years, businesses were inundated with new technologies like AI and IoT, as well as shifts in enterprise architecture and explosion customer touch points. “To consolidate the middleware tools required to support and glue all of these things together, enterprise IT has to evaluate cloud middleware,” Golluscio said.

Don’t muddle through middleware modernization

In evaluations of cloud middleware tools, don’t give in to the lure of one-size-fits-all products, Ward-Dutton said. First, get buy-in for hybrid projects from the IT team. In a business with a long history of enterprise middleware use, specialists may fiercely protect their roles. IT organizations with mature DevOps teams have an advantage because new integration models enable more open collaboration across different roles and require smooth teamwork.

To plan a middleware modernization project, determine the desired state of integration architecture, and account for the integration requirements of digital business processes, Sharma said. Create integration competency centers (ICCs) to facilitate the adoption of self-service integration tools and cloud middleware platforms. Then, plan to gradually migrate appropriate integration processes and workloads to cloud-based integration services to deliver greater agility with a lower cost of ownership.

Overall, the key theme in middleware modernization projects is API-led integration that uses both API management and service-oriented and microservices architectures to expose and consume REST APIs. Focus on adopting API platforms to implement API- and design-first principles and enable the rapid creation of APIs that can effectively meet the specific requirements of end users.

What You Need to Know Before You Go to Microsoft Inspire – Microsoft Partner Network

Connect with Julie@juliegolding

Julie Golding

Microsoft Inspire is less than a week away. I hope you are as excited as we all are. It promises to be an incredible week of learning, networking, and celebrating partnership.

In the remaining days before you leave for Las Vegas, Nevada we suggest you double check your travel arrangements. It’s also a good time to review your personal conference agenda in MyInspire and confirm that you’ve added the sessions you want to attend by using the session scheduler. We also recommend using the MyInspire meeting scheduler to send meeting requests to other partners or Microsoft employees with whom you most want to connect. There will be over 16,000 attendees at Microsoft Inspire, all with busy schedules, so advance planning is the best way to ensure you don’t miss anyone.

Here are some additional tips and reminders to help you have a productive and enjoyable Microsoft Inspire experience.

Download the MyInspire mobile app

MyInspire is available in a convenient full-featured mobile app. Download the app for either Android or Apple IoS and manage your personal agenda while on the go at the conference. You will also receive updates from the Microsoft Inspire planning team and be able to access helpful maps and floor plans of conference venues. Be sure to add your LinkedIn account information to your profile in the mobile app so you can see which attendees you’re connected with on LinkedIn. To do so, go to the Attendee Directory in the app and select Connections.

Review the Know Before You Go guide

We strongly recommend that you download and save a copy of our “Know Before You Go” guide, the single most comprehensive source of information about everything related to Microsoft Inspire. It covers a wide range of topics, including arrival and check-in, conference badges, transportation, session and event schedules, venue logistics, Wi-Fi connectivity, safety and security, and much more. The guide also includes descriptions of the different session types and information on the that will be a big part this year’s conference, made possible by the first-ever co-location of Microsoft Inspire and Microsoft Ready, the annual Microsoft sales, technical, and marketing fiscal year kick-off. These experiences include the Wednesday Corenote at T-Mobile Arena, where Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella will address a joint audience of partners and Microsoft employees, and our eagerly anticipated One Celebration at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, where attendees from both events will come together for an evening of food, fun, and entertainment by an internationally renowned eleven-time Grammy Award winner.

Ready, Set, Be Inspired

After months of planning, preparation, and anticipation, we can’t wait to see you in Las Vegas, Nevada, for Microsoft Inspire, where the world will meet to transform business. We’re very excited about the huge range of sessions built around this year’s key themes of Innovation, Partnership, and Leadership, and our amazing line-up of industry-leading speakers. Microsoft Inspire is also the best place to make connections and establish profitable relationships with fellow partners, Microsoft employees, and conference vendors and sponsors. The co-location of Microsoft inspire with Microsoft Ready will create more opportunities than ever before to make meaningful connections with the global Microsoft community to accelerate the digital transformation and success of our shared customers.

See you soon at Microsoft Inspire!


Xbox at E3 2018: Everything You Need to Know – Xbox Wire

With E3 less than two weeks away, we’ve got some new details on what Xbox has got going on for the biggest gaming event of the year!

We’ll be kicking things off with our annual Xbox E3 2018 Briefing, which you can watch live beginning on Sunday, June 10 at 1:00 p.m. PDT. During the briefing, you’ll have a chance to check out everything from in-depth looks at previously-announced games to trailers for our unannounced titles coming in 2018 and beyond. You can watch the Xbox E3 2018 Briefing live beginning at 1 p.m. PDT on June 10 on the official Xbox Channel on Mixer, or on the Mixer app for Xbox One and mobile. Viewers logged into Mixer will be eligible for a special MixPot full of digital content – stay tuned for more details.

As was the case last year, the Xbox E3 2018 Briefing on Mixer will be offered in six languages: English, German, French, Italian, Spanish (LATAM), Portuguese (LATAM), and includes support for English Closed Captions. To select an alternate language, click the “cog” button within Mixer to view the available list. We’re excited for fans all around the world to join in on the Xbox E3 2018 Briefing festivities.

You’ll also be able to catch a live stream of the briefing on the Xbox Twitch ChannelYouTube, Twitter, Facebook Live or on the big screen at your local Microsoft Store.

We’re also very happy to announce that we’re partnering with cross-platform entertainment media brands Fuse and FM to bring the Xbox E3 2018 Briefing to cable and satellite subscribers in the U.S. and Canada at 1:00 p.m. PDT (or 4:00 p.m. EDT for you east coast dwellers!). The Briefing will also livestream on Fuse.tv and an encore presentation will air on FM at 9:00 p.m. PDT (12:00 a.m. EDT).

Be sure to hit up Fuse.tv to find out where you can watch Fuse.

This year will mark the first year that Inside Xbox will be airing during E3. Inside Xbox will air Monday, June 11 at 3 p.m. PDT and will feature a livestream full of exclusive announcements, game demos, interviews, giveaways and more.

Mixer at E3 2018

Mixer is the best place to catch all of the action from this year’s E3. From Saturday, June 9 to Friday, June 15, tune in at www.mixer.com for the latest news, gameplay, exclusive interviews and more. For fans attending E3 in person this year, we’ll have a dedicated Mixer booth located in the South Hall of the LACC, where you can get hands-on with new titles, watch the live broadcast each day, and catch your favorite Mixer Partners streaming live from the show floor. We’re also happy to announce a special showing of HypeZone Live featuring a new battle royale experience. Players can compete to see if they can make it into the HypeZone and walk away with some sweet swag.

Enjoy the Xbox Experience at the Microsoft Theater

This year, we’re excited to call the Microsoft Theater our Xbox home base for the week of E3.

On Tuesday, June 12 and Wednesday, June 13, E3 Expo Badge holders will have the opportunity to experience our brand new Xbox Experience at the Microsoft Theater during expo hours. Featuring a diverse lineup of blockbuster games and experiences, including many of the titles shown in our briefing, attendees will have an opportunity to experience hands-on why Xbox is the best place to play.

Whether you love first-person shooters, action-adventure games or the latest independent darling, the Xbox Experience is the place to be this E3.

Visit the Xbox Official Gear Shop

For the first time, come and visit the Xbox Official Gear Shop by Microsoft Stores in the Xbox Experience at E3. Fly your gaming colors and show off your fandom for Xbox and award-winning franchises like Halo, Forza Motorsport, and Gears of War as well as limited edition designer collaborations. We will have more information on this exciting new initiative over the coming weeks.

Celebrate E3 at Microsoft Store

Check out your local Microsoft Store on timing and details to watch the Xbox E3 2018 briefing taking place on Sunday, June 10, and participate in Forza Motorsport 7 tournaments for a chance to win Xbox One themed prizes.

If you are in Los Angeles, we’ve also got a special event taking place at the Microsoft Store at Westfield Century City where we are celebrating E3 with USC Alum and now Tennessee Titans cornerback Adoree’ Jackson on Sunday, June 10. Visit Microsoft Store for more information and timing.

Finally, for fans planning to attend in person, we recommend you take a look at E3’s updated security protocols to ensure you have an optimal experience.

Be sure to head on over to the Xbox E3 Online Experience for more information and details on what we’ve got going on for the week.

Here’s to a great E3!

Asus ROG GL702VS Gaming Laptop, i7 7700, GTX1070, 16Gb Ram, 256gb SSD, 1tb HDD, GSync 17inch

Selling my gaming laptop that was purchased in December as I was working away a lot, I am purely based in the office now so have no need for it any more.

Great laptop, plays everything smoothly. Never run off battery, always plugged in, always kept in anti dust sleeve it came in when not in use, then put safely in laptop rucksack. No dents, marks, scratches or dead pixels. Will perform clean install before it goes

Complete with original packaging, Razer Kraken 7.1 v2 headset, Razer…

Asus ROG GL702VS Gaming Laptop, i7 7700, GTX1070, 16Gb Ram, 256gb SSD, 1tb HDD, GSync 17inch

Asus ROG GL702VS Gaming Laptop, i7 7700, GTX1070, 16Gb Ram, 256gb SSD, 1tb HDD, GSync 17inch

Selling my gaming laptop that was purchased in December as I was working away a lot, I am purely based in the office now so have no need for it any more.

Great laptop, plays everything smoothly. Never run off battery, always plugged in, always kept in anti dust sleeve it came in when not in use, then put safely in laptop rucksack. No dents, marks, scratches or dead pixels. Will perform clean install before it goes

Complete with original packaging, Razer Kraken 7.1 v2 headset, Razer…

Asus ROG GL702VS Gaming Laptop, i7 7700, GTX1070, 16Gb Ram, 256gb SSD, 1tb HDD, GSync 17inch

Asus ROG GL702VS Gaming Laptop, i7 7700, GTX1070, 16Gb Ram, 256gb SSD, 1tb HDD, GSync 17inch

Selling my gaming laptop that was purchased in December as I was working away a lot, I am purely based in the office now so have no need for it any more.

Great laptop, plays everything smoothly. Never run off battery, always plugged in, always kept in anti dust sleeve it came in when not in use, then put safely in laptop rucksack. No dents, marks, scratches or dead pixels. Will perform clean install before it goes

Complete with original packaging, Razer Kraken 7.1 v2 headset, Razer…

Asus ROG GL702VS Gaming Laptop, i7 7700, GTX1070, 16Gb Ram, 256gb SSD, 1tb HDD, GSync 17inch

Announcing the general availability of Azure Event Grid

Modern applications are taking maximum advantage of the agility and flexibility of the cloud by moving away from monolithic architectures and instead using a set of distinct services, all working together. This includes foundational services offered by a cloud platform like Azure (Database, Storage, IoT, Compute, Serverless Functions, etc.) and application-specific services (inventory management, payment services, manufacturing processes, mobile experiences, etc.). In these new architectures, event-driven execution has become a foundational cornerstone. It replaces cumbersome polling for communication between services with a simple mechanism. These events could include IoT device signals, cloud provisioning notifications, storage blob events, or even custom scenarios such as new employees being added to HR systems. Reacting to such events efficiently and reliably is critical in these new app paradigms.

Today, I am excited to announce the general availability of Azure Event Grid, a fully managed event routing service that simplifies the development of event-based applications.

  • Azure Event Grid is the first of its kind, enabling applications and services to subscribe to all the events they need to handle whether they come from Azure services or from other parts of the same application.
  • These events are delivered through push semantics, simplifying your code and reducing your resource consumption. You no longer need to continuously poll for changes and you only pay per event. The service automatically scales dynamically to handle millions of events per second.
  • Azure Event Grid provides multiple ways to react to these events including using Serverless offerings such as Azure Functions or Azure Logic Apps, using Azure Automation, or even custom web hooks for your code or 3rd party services. This means any service running anywhere can publish events and subscribe to reliable Azure Events.

We make it easy to react to Azure native events and build modern apps anywhere, on-premises and cloud, without restricting you to use only our public cloud services. This is unique to Azure Event Grid.

Here is how it works:

[embedded content]

In the days since we announced public preview, we have seen many customers find innovative uses for Azure Event Grid and we’ve been blown away by all the great feedback from customers and the community. 

  • Qutotec used Azure Event Grid to rearchitect their hybrid integration platform:

“Azure Event Grid enabled us to simplify the architecture of our cloud-based enterprise wide hybrid integration platform, by making it easy to reliably respond to events and changes in the global business data without polling.”

– Henri Syrjäläinen, Director of Digital Enterprise Architecture, Outotec Oyj

  • Paycor unified their human capital management applications using Azure Event Grid:

“Event Grid empowers Paycor to provide a unified experience to our customers, across the suite of our human capital management applications.  It becomes the backbone for an event driven architecture, allowing each application to broadcast and receive events in a safe, reliable way.  It solves many of the operational and scalability concerns that traditional pub-sub solutions cannot.”

– Anthony Your, Director of Architecture, Paycor, Inc.

  • Microsoft Devices supply chain team utilized Azure Event Grid as part of its serverless pipeline to optimize operations and reduce time to market. The details are described in this Microsoft supply chain serverless case study.

Here is what we have newly available since our preview:

  • Richer scenarios enabled through integration with more services: Since preview, we have added General Purpose Storage and Azure IoT Hub as new event publishers and Azure Event Hubs as a new destination (great for event archival, streaming, and buffering of events). IoT Hub adds support for device lifecycle events such as device creation and device deletion which can then be handled in a serverless manner. These new integrations simplify the architecture and expand the possibilities for your applications whether they are in cloud or on-premises. Please see the full current list of Azure Event Grid service integrations for details and the region-wise availabilities. We will continue to add more services throughout the year. 

Event Grid service integrations

  • Availability in more regions: Azure Event Grid is globally available in the following regions: West US, East US, West US 2, East US 2, West Central US, Central US, West Europe, North Europe, Southeast Asia, and East Asia with more coming soon.
  • Increased reliability and service level agreement (SLA): We now have a 24 hour retry policy with exponential back off for event delivery. We also offer an industry-leading 99.99% availability with a financially backed SLA for your production workloads. With today’s announcement, you can confidently build your business-critical applications to rely on Azure Event Grid.
  • Better developer productivity: Today, we are also releasing new Event Grid SDKs to streamline development. Management SDKs are now available for Python, .Net, and Node.js with support for Go, Ruby, and Java coming soon. Publish SDK is now available for .Net with support for Python, Node.js, Go, Ruby, and Java coming soon. Additionally, we have now made it easier to consume events by simply fetching the JSON schema of all supported event types from our event schema store. This removes the burden of the subscriber to understand and de-serialize the events.

With today’s GA, I think you will find that Azure Event Grid becomes a critical component in your serverless application. Go ahead, give it a try with this simple and fun Event Grid Quickstart. Remember, the first 100,000 events per month are on us!

Here are some other samples/tutorials to help you get started:

  • Build serverless applications
    • Use IoT Hub and Logic apps to react to device lifecycle events [doc | video]
    • Instantly pick up and resize images in Blob Storage using a function [doc]
  • Automate your infrastructure operations
    • Appropriately tag VMs as they are spun up and send a notification to your Microsoft Teams channel [doc]
  • Facilitate communication between the different pieces of your distributed applications
    • Stream data from Event Hubs to your data warehouse [doc]

To learn more, please join us for our upcoming webinar on Tuesday, February 13, 2018. 

Register here: Building event-driven applications using serverless architectures.