This article was published on January 18, 2013

This week at Microsoft: Hot patches,, and Graph Search

This week at Microsoft: Hot patches,, and Graph Search
Alex Wilhelm
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Alex Wilhelm

Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected] Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected]

Happy Friday Super Troopers, I do trust that you have been beavering away all week. Stop that.

Hard work or not, it’s time for us to take a look back over the last week of Microsoft news, as we do each and every Friday. Ensure that you are following TNW’s Microsoft channel on both Twitter, and Facebook, and let’s get into the thick of it.

Internet Explorer: patched

This week, an emergency patch was shipped for Internet Explorer to, as TNW reported, “fix a security hole used to breach Windows computers in targeted attacks.” If you have automatic updates on, you should be set, according to Microsoft.

Microsoft took this issue with more speed than usual, releasing notes on a Saturday, and pushing a temporary fix two days later. It’s good to have the issue behind us, completely.

Microsoft told TNW that given the potential for the vulnerability to be abused led to it releasing the patch before Patch Tuesday proper, which underscores how serious it was. Internet Explorer is an improving product, and now it’s a touch safer.


According to user reports, some who move to the webmail product lose their prior email. Quite obviously, this is no small flaw in the product; losing email is the one thing that a webmail provide must not do. From our report out yesterday:

This sort of error is not to be dismissed: much of a person’s digital life is stored in their email history. To lose it could mean to lose everything from concert ticket stubs, to wedding photos, passwords, tax history, exonerating evidence, and other key pieces of data.

Neowin claimed that Microsoft deleted help requests on its forums. TNW asked for comment from Microsoft. The company didn’t get back to us, which is an anomaly: Microsoft quite enjoys telling TNW that is has no comment.

Having no comment is a comment in a sense, as it is expressed. Not responding is abnormal. Accused of censorship, going silent isn’t much of a defense. Microsoft needs to fix this, now, and apologize to its users.

Bing like totally loves Graph Search, guys

Facebook announced Graph Search this week, a radical shift in how the company lets its users sort through their social graph, to use the term. If you haven’t yet been given access, wait patiently, it is coming.

That said, Bing now plays a smaller role on the social network. Facebook was long a key relationship for Bing, as it put its search results in front of the faces of many who might otherwise not have used it, and it boosted the number of queries that Bing took in as a whole.

Microsoft, naturally, is spinning the situation to its favor:

As part of this product, our two engineering teams worked together to advance a unified search experience. That means that when people want to search beyond Facebook, they see web search results from Bing with social context and additional information such as Facebook pages. […]

Over the next several weeks our two teams will continue to experiment and innovate towards our shared vision of giving people access to the wisdom of their friends combined with the information available on the web.

What is a win for Microsoft in this situation is that, yes, it does get to keep status in Facebook; Facebook doesn’t appear too excited about sorting the world’s data, instead focusing on its own. So far, at least.

Also this week, Bing better built Facebook into its sidebar feature, bringing more content from the social network to its search platform. If Bing and Facebook were dating, Facebook just told Bing it wants to see other people, whilst Bing just sent it roses. We’ll see where it goes.

Office 2013 pricing

Office 2013 pricing leaked this week, shedding light on what subscriptions will cost for the average folk. Expect to pay around $100 per year for your family to have Office on your various devices.

It’s important to keep in mind that Microsoft is selling Office in both a box, and as a service:

Microsoft is moving its old-school products to new-school business models, and is currently in the period of transition. For this reason, the firm is selling both Office In A Box and Office: The Service for the time being.

And that will do us, folks. So get stretched out and ice a beer and realize that you have done enough work for one week. Get some rest.

Top Image Credit: Ben Lakey

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