What is an “Algorithm” ?

June 30, 2015

Algorithm – In mathematics and computer science, an algorithm is a self-contained step-by-step set of operations to be performed. Algorithms exist that perform calculation, data processing, and automated reasoning.

An algorithm is an effective method that can be expressed within a finite amount of space and time and in a well-defined formal language for calculating a function. Starting from an initial state and initial input (perhaps empty), the instructions describe a computation that, when executed, proceeds through a finite number of well-defined successive states, eventually producing “output” and terminating at a final ending state. The transition from one state to the next is not necessarily deterministic; some algorithms, known as randomized algorithms, incorporate random input.

The concept of algorithm has existed for centuries, however a partial formalization of what would become the modern algorithm began with attempts to solve the Entscheidungsproblem (the “decision problem”) posed by David Hilbert in 1928. Subsequent formalizations were framed as attempts to define “effective calculability” or “effective method”; those formalizations included the Gödel–Herbrand–Kleene recursive functions of 1930, 1934 and 1935, Alonzo Church’s lambda calculus of 1936, Emil Post’s “Formulation 1″ of 1936, and Alan Turing’s Turing machines of 1936–7 and 1939. Giving a formal definition of algorithms, corresponding to the intuitive notion, remains a challenging problem.

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Source: Wikipedia


What is “Windows Phone” ?

June 23, 2015

Windows Phone – A family of mobile operating systems developed by Microsoft for smartphones as the replacement successor to Windows Mobile and Zune. Windows Phone features a new user interface derived from Metro design language. Unlike Windows Mobile, it is primarily aimed at the consumer market rather than the enterprise market. It was first launched in October 2010 with Windows Phone 7.

Windows Phone 8.1 is the latest public release of the operating system, released to manufacturing on April 14, 2014.

Windows 10 Mobile will succeed Windows Phone 8.1 in 2015; it emphasizes a larger amount of integration and unification with its PC counterpart—including a new, unified application ecosystem, along with an expansion of its scope to include small-screened tablets.

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Source: Wikipedia


What is “Oculus Rift” ?

June 16, 2015

Oculus Rift – A virtual reality head-mounted display developed by Oculus VR. During its period as an independent company, Oculus VR raised US$2.4 million for the development of the Rift.

The consumer version of the product will be released in Q1 2016. Based on the Crescent Bay prototype, it features an improved tracking system that accommodates seated and standing experiences, according to Oculus VR, along with updated ergonomics and a tweaked industrial design. Oculus released two ‘development kits’, DK1 in late 2012 and DK2 in mid 2014, to give developers a chance to develop content in time for the Rift’s release; these have also been purchased by many virtual reality enthusiasts for general usage. Oculus has stated that there will not be a DK3 but will instead release the consumer version next.

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Source: Wikipedia


What is “Windows 8.1″ ?

June 9, 2015

Windows 8.1 – Codenamed Blue, is an upgrade for Windows 8, a version of Windows NT, a computer operating system released by Microsoft. First unveiled and released as a public beta in June 2013, it was released to manufacturing on August 27, 2013, and reached general availability on October 17, 2013, almost a year after the retail release of its predecessor. Windows 8.1 is available free of charge for retail copies of Windows 8 and Windows RT users via Windows Store. Unlike service packs on previous versions of Windows, users who obtained 8 outside of retail copies or pre-loaded installations (i.e.,volume licensing) must obtain 8.1 through new installation media from their respective subscription or enterprise channel. Microsoft’s support lifecycle policy treats Windows 8.1 similar to previous service packs of Windows: It is part of Windows 8’s support lifecycle, and installing 8.1 is required to maintain access to support and Windows updates after January 12, 2016. However, unlike previous service packs, Windows 8.1 cannot be acquired via Windows Update and only accepts 8.1-specific product keys.

Released as part of a shift by Microsoft towards regular yearly major updates for its platforms and services, Windows 8.1 was primarily intended to address complaints of Windows 8 users and reviewers on launch. Visible enhancements include an improved Start screen, additional snap views, additional bundled apps, tighter OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive) integration, Internet Explorer 11, a Bing-powered unified search system, restoration of a visible Start button on the taskbar, and the ability to restore the previous behavior of opening the user’s desktop on login instead of the Start screen. Windows 8.1 also added support for such emerging technologies as high resolution displays, 3D printing, Wi-Fi Direct, and Miracast streaming.

Windows 8.1 received relatively positive reception, with critics praising the expanded functionality available to apps in comparison to 8, its OneDrive integration, along with its user interface tweaks and the addition of expanded tutorials for operating the Windows 8 interface. Despite these improvements, 8.1 was still criticised for not addressing all of the digressions of 8 (such as a poor level of integration between Metro-style apps and the desktop interface), and the potential privacy implications of 8.1’s expanded use of online services.

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Source: Wikipedia


What is “Windows 8″ ?

June 2, 2015

Windows 8 – A personal computer operating system developed by Microsoft as part of the Windows NT family of operating systems. Development of Windows 8 started before the release of its predecessor, Windows 7, in 2009. It was announced at CES 2011, and followed by the release of three pre-release versions from September 2011 to May 2012. The operating system was released to manufacturing on August 1, 2012, and was released for general availability on October 26, 2012.

Windows 8 introduced major changes to the operating system’s platform and user interface to improve its user experience on tablets, where Windows was now competing with mobile operating systems, including Android and iOS. In particular, these changes included a touch-optimized Windows shell based on Microsoft’s “Metro” design language, the Start screen (which displays programs and dynamically updated content on a grid of tiles), a new platform for developing apps with an emphasis on touchscreen input, integration with online services (including the ability to sync apps and settings between devices), and Windows Store, an online store for downloading and purchasing new software. Windows 8 added support for USB 3.0,Advanced Format hard drives, near field communications, and cloud computing. Additional security features were introduced, such as built-in antivirus software, integration with Microsoft SmartScreen phishing filtering service and support for UEFI Secure Boot on supported devices with UEFI firmware, to prevent malware from infecting the boot process.

Windows 8 was released to a mixed reception. Although reaction towards its performance improvements, security enhancements, and improved support for touchscreen devices was positive, the new user interface of the operating system was widely criticized for being potentially confusing and difficult to learn (especially when used with a keyboard and mouse instead of a touchscreen). Despite these shortcomings, 60 million Windows 8 licenses have been sold through January 2013, a number which included both upgrades and sales to OEMs for new PCs.

On October 17, 2013, Microsoft released Windows 8.1. It addresses some aspects of Windows 8 that were criticized by reviewers and early adopters and incorporates additional improvements to various aspects of the operating system.

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Source: Wikipedia


What is “Windows 7″ ?

May 26, 2015

Windows 7 – A personal computer operating system developed by Microsoft. It is a part of Windows NT family of operating systems. Development of Windows 7 started as early as 2006 under the codename “Blackcomb.” Windows 7 was released to manufacturing on July 22, 2009, and became generally available on October 22, 2009, less than three years after the release of its predecessor, Windows Vista. Windows 7’s server counterpart, Windows Server 2008 R2, was released at the same time.

Windows 7 was primarily intended to be an incremental upgrade to the operating system, intending to address Windows Vista’s critical reception (such as performance improvements), while maintaining hardware and software compatibility. Windows 7 continued improvements on Windows Aero (the user interface introduced in Windows Vista) with the addition of a redesigned taskbar that allows applications to be “pinned” to it, and new window management features. Other new features were added to the operating system, including libraries, the new file sharing system HomeGroup, and support for multitouch input. A new “Action Center” interface was also added to provide an overview of system security and maintenance information, and tweaks were made to the User Account Control system to make it less intrusive. Windows 7 also shipped with updated versions of several stock applications, including Internet Explorer, Windows Media Player, and Windows Media Center.

In contrast to Vista, Windows 7 was generally praised by critics, who considered the operating system to be a major improvement over its predecessor due to its increased performance, its more intuitive interface (with particular praise devoted to the new taskbar), fewer User Account Control popups, and other improvements made across the platform. Windows 7 was a major success for Microsoft; even prior to its official release, pre-order sales for 7 on the online retailer Amazon.com had surpassed the previous records. In just six months, over 100 million copies had been sold worldwide, increasing to over 630 million licenses by July 2012, and a market share of 50.06% as of May 2014 according to Net Applications, making it the most widely used version of Windows.

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Source: Wikipedia


What is “Windows Vista” ?

May 19, 2015

Windows Vista – Codenamed Longhorn, is an operating system by Microsoft for use on personal computers, including home and business desktops, laptops, tablet PCs, and media center PCs. Development was completed on November 8, 2006, and over the following three months, it was released in stages to computer hardware and software manufacturers, business customers and retail channels. On January 30, 2007, it was released worldwide and was made available for purchase and download from Microsoft’s website. The release of Windows Vista came more than five years after the introduction of its predecessor, Windows XP, the longest time span between successive releases of Microsoft Windows desktop operating systems. It was succeeded by Windows 7, which was released to manufacturing on July 22, 2009 and released worldwide for retail on October 22, 2009.

New features of Windows Vista include an updated graphical user interface and visual style dubbed Aero, a new search component called Windows Search, redesigned networking, audio, print and display sub-systems, and new multimedia tools including Windows DVD Maker. Vista aimed to increase the level of communication between machines on a home network, using peer-to-peer technology to simplify sharing files and media between computers and devices. Windows Vista included version 3.0 of the .NET Framework, allowing software developers to write applications without traditional Windows APIs.

Microsoft’s primary stated objective with Windows Vista was to improve the state of security in the Windows operating system. One common criticism of Windows XP and its predecessors was their commonly exploited security vulnerabilities and overall susceptibility to malware, viruses and buffer overflows. In light of this, Microsoft chairman Bill Gates announced in early 2002 a company-wide “Trustworthy Computing initiative”, which aimed to incorporate security into every aspect of software development at the company. Microsoft stated that it prioritized improving the security of Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 above finishing Windows Vista, thus delaying its completion.

While these new features and security improvements have garnered positive reviews, Vista has also been the target of much criticism and negative press. Criticism of Windows Vista has targeted its high system requirements, its more restrictive licensing terms, the inclusion of a number of new digital rights management technologies aimed at restricting the copying of protected digital media, lack of compatibility with some pre-Vista hardware and software, and the number of authorization prompts for User Account Control. As a result of these and other issues, Windows Vista had seen initial adoption and satisfaction rates lower than Windows XP. However, with an estimated 330 million Internet users as of January 2009, it had been announced that Vista usage had surpassed Microsoft’s pre-launch two-year-out expectations of achieving 200 million users. At the release of Windows 7 (October 2009), Windows Vista (with approximately 400 million Internet users) was the second most widely used operating system on the Internet with an approximately 19% market share, the most widely used being Windows XP with an approximately 63% market share. As of May 2010, Windows Vista’s market share had an estimated range from 15% to 26%. On October 22, 2010, Microsoft ceased sales of retail copies of Windows Vista, and the OEM sales for Vista ceased a year later. As of March 2015, Vista market share is at 2.11%.

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Source: Wikipedia


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