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World Cyber Games are Coming!

Microsoft introduced two new online services to its Windows Live line-up on Tuesday and said it plans to release more Web offerings this year to beef up its Internet strategy.

Windows Live Photo Gallery is a new version of the photo application found on Microsoft’s two most recent operating systems, Windows XP and Windows Vista. It simplifies how people can share photos on their Windows Live Spaces site, Microsoft’s social networking platform.

The sharing feature of Microsoft’s new Photo Gallery is similar to how users can publish pictures from Apple Inc.’s iPhoto application to the company’s .Mac online service.

Microsoft said it is open to eventually letting users post to other photo sharing sites such as Yahoo’s Flickr, if it can establish common protocols and standards with those Web sites.

Windows Live Folders will provide up to 500 megabytes of online storage in the United States in a limited test release. Microsoft said it will gauge usage during the test release and possibly add more capacity if needed.

Microsoft sees Windows Live Folders as a way people can share documents, but not necessarily a place where users can back up all the files on a computer hard drive. [24×7]

World Cyber Games are Coming, but First the Industry’s Most Casual
In 2007, Seattle will be at the center of the e-Sports world as the World Cyber Games Grand Final will square off in the Emerald City in October. First founded in 2000 to promote global harmony through e-sports, the WCG has grown steadily ever since. Behind the slogan “Beyond the Game” and with contestants from more than 70 countries expected to participate in this year’s event, the World Cyber Games has developed into a true global phenomenon with arguably the largest prize amount at stake.

For those who can’t wait for a game day face, the Casual Game Association will hold CGA Seattle from July 17-19 in downtown Seattle. This year’s event which returns to Benaroya Hall will feature addresses by Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Chief Peter Moore, PopCap Games Director John Vechey, and Steve Youngwood of MTVN Kids. A very special guest will be Nolan Bushnell, arguably the father of home video games. [24×7]

Comcast Named in Top Three ‘Best Companies to Work For’ in WA State
Washington CEO Magazine
named Comcast among the top three “Best Companies to Work For” in the state last week at an awards ceremony in downtown Seattle. Comcast is Washington’s leading provider of cable, entertainment and communications products and services.

“To be recognized as one of the top three ‘Best Companies to Work For’ by Washington CEO is quite an honor and a testament to Comcast’s dynamic team. We pride ourselves on acting like a small company with a family atmosphere even though we have more than 3,000 employees in the state,” said Len Rozek, Regional Senior Vice President, Washington. “With the hard work and dedication of our employees, we’ve created a company that Washington residents look to first for the technology that connects them to what’s important in their lives.”

Washington CEO Magazine received nominations from hundreds of companies, including Comcast. Approximately 1,000 Comcast Washington state employees were surveyed for the award. The ranking is based on the satisfaction of Comcast’s employees and the Washington CEO judging panel. [24×7]