Well, not really outer space, but close. Microsoft has chosen to take Xbox where many companies have been going as of late; to the cloud! During Microsoft's E3 2011 press conference, it was announced that Xbox LIVE will begin implementing cloud features such as game saves and profile recovery. This means traveling with your Xbox LIVE profile will be easy-peezy, and much less of a hassle than either dealing with the dreadful 'Gamertag Recovery' or saving your profile along with all of your game data onto a dedicated USB stick.
I'm loving this direction, as I have two Xbox consoles in my house I play on, and carting profiles/saves back and forth is a huge pain in the red ring. Also, friends will now have easier access to their accounts without junking up my consoles USB ports with portable media. Everybody wins!
In addition to the knockout cloud announcement, Microsoft was getting busy in other ways. Like introducing another dashboard update?! That's right kids. It seems like Xbox LIVE gets a visual makeover every year, so why not another this fall? Long gone are the days of the blade, replaced now with a nice and simple interface reminiscent of the Windows Phone OS or the newly announced Windows 8 look. Microsoft seems to be following the footsteps of Apple by creating one unified look across all of its platforms, which ain't a bad thing, especially considering that this new look is actually quite snazzy.
Also announced are Xbox Live Beacons. It's an odd sounding feature that lets your network know what game you want to play. Then, you'll receive an instant notification when one of your friends has fired that game up. Sounds kind of silly, but sure, whatever. Must be useful if your friend list is at max capacity. Then again, if you're maxed out on XBL friends, you're probably exclusively playing one of either Halo, Gears of War, or Call of Duty. Beacons don't sound as awesome as bacon, but really, what does?
Expect more, such as YouTube and Bing search (through Kinect voice commands), increased Kinect support, and many more additions that have either flown under the radar, or I don't feel like writing about. Don't judge me, I'm pressed for time dammit. The latest Dashboard update will go live later this year, giving you plenty of time to save up for a Kinect.