Paper brings your sketches to life (hands-on)

As CNET's Mary Jo Foley reported earlier today, former execs associated with the nixed Courier dual-screen tablet from Microsoft have joined together to make an elegant sketchpad and ideas app.

Paper, by developer FiftyThree, is free and offers only a handful of features initially, but it's just enough to make you want to sample some of the in-app purchases for more tools.

Upon launch you're presented with a welcome screen that outlines the simple set of tools. A tap opens a book, and swiping horizontally lets you turn the 3D pages. The feel of the app is very fluid, and it even accounts for your swipe momentum, so a stronger flick turns several pages until they slow to a stop. Details like these make the simple interface impressive, even without many bells and whistles. From there you simply tap on a page to start editing.… Read more

Former Microsoft Courier team members launch iPad apps

The spirit of the Courier -- Microsoft's dual-screen tablet that never made it to market -- is alive and thriving...on the iPad. And a number of members of the disbanded Courier team are the ones keeping it so.

FiftyThree Inc. -- the developer of a new content-creation app for the iPad called Paper -- is led by a roster of former Microsoft Courier and Xbox designers and developers. Another new Courier-like app launched this week from Tapose, a company backed by former Microsoft Courier champion J. Allard.

Courier was the dual-screen tablet that was being developed as a … Read more

The iPad app that will remind you of Microsoft's old Courier project

Tapose, the iPad app that aims to mimic much of the content creation capability of Microsoft's ill-fated Courier tablet, just won approval from Apple to be sold in iTunes.

Two years ago, Microsoft cooked up, then killed, Courier, an innovative tablet concept that might have rivaled Apple's iPad. Unlike the iPad, though, Microsoft's sleek, two-screen tablet was designed for content creation, not consumption. Architects, for example, could have used Courier to sketch building plans on one screen while trawling the Web for inspiration on the other.

Last November, CNET detailed the inside story of how Microsoft killed … Read more

Buzz Out Loud 1565: Google is falling apart, iPhone battery fix is coming, and Apple gets a Spanish smackdown (Podcast)

On today's show, how Google biffed the Gmail app big-time, RIM is the saddest little wounded puppy you ever did see (and hear), and CNET News' Jay Greene joins us to talk about his two-part series on Microsoft killing the Courier tablet and what it means for the company's future. Plus, when the heck is the Galaxy Nexus coming? Seriously, now?

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How Windows 8 KO'd the innovative Courier tablet

Pitting product groups against one another is almost as much a part of Microsoft's culture as complaining about the employee review system or grabbing a free soda from the employee kitchens.

Win that Darwinian battle and your group can often find itself at the heart of Microsoft's next big product push. Lose, and you can only hope that all of your technological achievement eventually finds its way into some product in some form.

Last year, an innovative tablet concept, borne from the consumer braintrust at Microsoft, was being incubated. The vision of Courier, as the tablet was known, … Read more

The 404 937: Where we shoot the Courier (podcast)

Today's show begins with a history lesson on the fate of the Microsoft Courier tablet and its possible reincarnation with a modified version of the Windows 8 operating system.… Read more

Why Microsoft killed the Courier

AT&T gets its first LTE smartphones this weekend, Google Reader is integrated with Google Plus, and we learn more about the death of Microsoft's Courier tablet project.

Links from Tuesday's episode of Loaded:

Why Microsoft killed the Courier AT&T's first 4G LTE smartphones Next generation Nook Color New Google Reader design Buy and sell jobs on Coffee and Power Subscribe:  iTunes (MP3)iTunes (320x180)iTunes (HD)RSS (MP3)RSS (320x180)RSS HD

The inside story of how Microsoft killed its Courier tablet

Steve Ballmer had a dilemma. He had two groups at Microsoft pursuing competing visions for tablet computers.

One group, led by Xbox godfather J Allard, was pushing for a sleek, two-screen tablet called the Courier that users controlled with their finger or a pen. But it had a problem: It was running a modified version of Windows.

That ran headlong into the vision of tablet computing laid out by Steven Sinofsky, the head of Microsoft's Windows division. Sinofsky was wary of any product--let alone one from inside Microsoft's walls--that threatened the foundation of Microsoft's flagship operating system. … Read more

High-end iPad bag: Booq Cobra Courier XS review

Carrying an iPad a year ago involved searching for the perfect bag, and the problem back in 2012 was that many bag makers hadn't figured out the iPad yet. Flash forward to mid-2011, and the iPad 2 and original iPad feel nearly ubiquitous--so, too, do iPad bags. Finding one that matches the iPad's sleek styling is a harder challenge, and one the Booq Cobra Courier XS meets while still offering ample storage in a small package. $145 is a lot to pay for a small bag, but it's hard to do better if you're looking for a sturdy, stylish, practical triple threat. In fact, over the course of our time using this model, we haven't found much better.

Related links • Searching for the perfect iPad bag • Booq Boa Squeeze review

The Booq Cobra Courier XS feels in some ways like a microminiaturized version of the Booq Boa Squeeze, a backpack we loved back in 2009.… Read more

3D desktops

It is high time I started blogging about Loaded content because goodness knows I have more to say about the day's tech news than I can fit into a 4-minute show. So here goes. I'm going to try to do these daily so that you can click the links that are pertinent to the stories that I discuss and ring in with your own comments, if you see fit. 

The most recent news in today's show is the Google acquisition of Bump Technologies. A 3D desktop? Will we really be able to change our behaviors to … Read more