Microsoft Live Mesh, mashups,web 2.0
Looking for the scoop and details surrounding what is promising to be “an open, comprehensive and accessible platform that enables developers to tackle increasingly complex problems no matter the device, connection or experience.” Yes, it is Microsoft's LiveMesh -- believe it or not. Microsoft launched their mashup service called LiveMesh earlier this week at the Web 2.0 expo in San Francisco. Remember the debate as to whether LiveMesh would match up? The question was whether or not LiveMesh would be the typical Microsoft product that follows Microsoft protocols instead of web protocols and frequently is totally Microsoft focused. Well, once again, time will tell in regards to this question. Currently, the service is only available on PC, but Microsoft has made promises that it will soon be available on both Mac and mobile. So much for being able to, “seamlessly connect all your computers and mobile devices together on the go.” They are currently in what they are calling a "Technology Preview", which pretty much translates into beta and the interface is in English only.

LiveMesh In Action

For those of you on PC now and those keeping fingers crossed that Microsoft holds good on their promise, let’s take a look at LiveMesh in action. LiveMesh creates a “mesh” folder on your desktop in which each of the computers in your network will appear. Any data placed in the folder is immediately available across the network. It includes a “virtual device” which is accessible from anywhere and has a 5GB storage limit.
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At this point some of you may be wondering why the hype? There are other services and programs that you can do this with. You are correct but there are some features here that the others don’t have. “Fly Out” Mesh Bar for Windows Explorer The Mesh Bar gives you additional information about the Live Mesh folder, such as user activities and notifications. So in addition to having your devices “work together,” you can also stay up to date with any changes.
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Two Desktop Variations LiveMesh contains two live desktop variations. The first is the Live Desktop and the second is the Live Remote Desktop. The two differ a bit. Live Desktop allows you to access your desktop from anywhere using a browser. With Live Remote Desktop you can directly access and control other devices within your mesh. So, if you need to access and control your home PC, it’s no problem. With one click from any device in your mesh, you’re in control. These are just some of the features of Microsofts LiveMesh. For now it seems to be approaching what they promised with a seamless integration of multiple devices, but again it also seems to be Microsoft centered. Holding to the hope that it will expand beyond just PC, LiveMesh does create a visually pleasing environment that has accessibility like no other single program does. You can accomplish what LiveMesh accomplishes without using it; but you would have to use a number of disparate tools, it would require you to segment your time even further to run all the apps separately and it would require financial resources that some just may not have (or may not want to spend). LiveMesh provides all of this one pleasing, seemingly easy to use environment. Take the tour today!