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Windows Vista Beta 2 Up Close and Personal
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Bundled Applications

Windows has long been criticized for the lack of useful bundled applications (contrasted with Apple's Mac OS X's wealth of useful bundled applications). In Windows Vista Beta 2, Microsoft has included a set of cool new applications. I will highlight some useful ones in the following sections.



Windows Collaboration

One useful bundled application in Vista is Windows Collaboration (see Figure 9).

Figure 9
Figure 9. Windows Collaboration is a collaboration tool

Using Windows Collaboration, you can start a presentation by sharing your desktop with other invited users. At the same time, you can distribute handouts to participants to collaboratively edit or review the handouts (see Figure 10). Windows Collaboration detects participants using the People Near Me functionality.

Figure 10
Figure 10. Windows Collaboration in action

Windows Collaboration will be useful in classroom environments and will be a powerful tool to promote collaborative learning.

Windows Calendar

Windows Calendar (see Figure 11) is a calendaring application that is fully compatible with the popular .iCalendar format (a standard for calendar data exchange). The .iCalendar format was made popular by Apple's iCal application, which is one such implementation of .iCalendar.

Figure 11
Figure 11. Windows Calendar

Windows Calendar lets you import and export calendar information to and from other applications and websites. For example, you can subscribe to iCal calendars.

Windows Defender

Vista Beta 2 ships with the Windows Defender (see Figure 12); it is essentially a spyware detector and protector.

Figure 12
Figure 12. Windows Defender

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