Pictured above is a 16GB Zune HD (the accordion’s there to act as a nice stand and prove that it’s actually in our possession). It’s quite nice, the navigation system is both simple and clever, and the browser experience is nothing short of amazing – I spent a little time surfing with it last night and kept saying “If only they had a plan to put this into Windows Phone…”
The Zune HD is not yet available in Canada. We have one because IT Pro Evangelist Rick Claus made a quick run down from Vancouver (where we are for the TechDays conference) into the U.S., where they’re available (although very hard to find – people are snapping them up).
This Zune could be yours. There’s a plan in motion as to how that will come about, so watch this space…
Hey, it looks like I’ve got some potential reading material for the holidays! O’Reilly’s just released their new book, Learning XNA 3.0, an introduction to Microsoft’s 2-D and 3-D game development framework for the PC, Xbox 360 and Zune. Here’s an excerpt from O’Reilly’s description of the book:
Written by an experienced university-level game development instructor, Learning XNA 3.0 walks you through the framework in a clear and understandable step-by-step format. Each chapter offers a self-contained lesson with lots of illustrations and annotated examples to help you master key concepts. Once you finish the book, you’ll know how to develop sophisticated games from start to finish.
Learn game development concepts from 2D animation to 3D cameras and effects
Delve into high-level shader language (HLSL) and introductory artificial intelligence concepts
Develop three complete and exciting games using 2D,3D and multiplayer concepts
Develop and deploy games to the Xbox 360 and the Microsoft Zune
While teaching XNA to beginning game developers, author Aaron Reed noticed that several key concepts were difficult for students to grasp. Learning XNA 3.0 was written specifically to address those issues. With this book, you can test your understanding and practice new skills as you go with unique "Test Your Knowledge" exercises and review questions in each chapter.
The book, when purchased from O’Reilly, comes in several formats:
Dead-tree format (that is, an actual paperback book): US$34.99 (currently CAD$44.06) / £24.99 in the UK
Ebook (PDF, EPUB and Kindle-compatible “Mobipocket” format): US$27.99 (currently CAD$35.23)