Microsoft code names
June 18, 2007, 4:38pm PDT | Length: 00:04:20
ZDNet Editor Mary Jo Foley reveals Microsoft's code-naming scheme and offers insight on future products.
Hi, my name is Mary Jo Foley. I'm the editor of the AllAbout Microsoft blog on ZDnet. Today I'm going to talk to you about a subjectnear and dear to my heart: Microsoft codenames. Yes, I am the "CodenameQueen" at Microsoft. As someone suggested, I should have that on my businesscard. I don't yet, but I thought I'd use today to show you something that I doknow about, which is how Microsoft used to name their products by codenamefamily.
In the not too distant past when you wanted to figure outwhat Microsoft had coming in a product group, you would just try to figure outhow the codenames fit together. For example, the Windows client family. We knowthere are a number of code names -- Whistler, Longhorn, Blackcomb, andCreekside -- in that family. Can you guess what they all have in common?
Whistler was Windows XP, Longhorn was Windows Vista.Blackcomb is the next version of Windows, which I call "Windows 7."Creekside is the little known codename for XP Starter Edition, the product thatMicrosoft sells overseas to developing countries. So, have you guessed yet whatthese have in common?
Yes, indeed! They are all skiing resorts in BritishColumbia. Having to do with that theme, given that the Windows team likes tospend their vacations up on Whistler Mountain, Blackcomb, the Longhorn Saloon,where they have many a drinking party, and Creekside, the gondola station onWhistler Mountain.
Now, let's go to development tools. The development toolfamily has a theme going here with Whidbey, Orcas, Rosario, and Hawaii. Again,can you figure out what's common among these codenames?
Whidbey was Visual Studio 2005. Orcas is the codename forVisual Studio 2008. Rosario is the codename for Team Foundation System, thenext version after Orcas. And Hawaii, we think, is Visual Studio 2010, althoughMicrosoft won't confirm that.
Again, can you figure out what's common here? Yes, islands.All islands, especially the San Juan Islands. Whidbey and Orcas are San JuanIslands off the coast of Seattle. Rosario is a retreat center on Orcas Island,and Hawaii -- as anyone who knows Microsoft knows -- is a favorite destinationfor vacation for the rainy Seattleites.
On the Windows CE front, we have a different theme goinghere. We've got Talisker, Jamison, McKendrick, Macallen, and Yamazaki. Can youfigure out again what's common among this theme? If you were figuring outWindows codenames you'd try to.
Talisker was the codename for Windows CE 4.0. Jamison was CE4.1. McKendrick, CE 4.2. Macallen, CE 5.0, and Yamazaki, CE 6.0. Any guessesfrom any of the drinking members of our audience? Yes, indeed! Single malts isthe answer. You can tell what the CE team was doing when they were working ontheir code.
Well, those fun days are over, because Microsoft's decidedthis was too much information for us codename watchers. We're now moving intoan era of number codenames. As we've talked about before, Windows seven is thenext version of Windows, followed by -- yes -- Windows 8.
On the Office side of the house, where they've been relyingon numbers already, we've got Office 12, which was the last version of Office.Now, we're going to Office 14 in 2009. As you'll notice, there is no Office 13.Yes, Microsoft is a superstitious bunch.
So from now on, I hear from my sources, we're going to aworld where all the codenames are basically places. Yep, that's where we'regoing to see Vienna, Monaco, Fiji, you name it. Any beautiful vista, that willbe your codename going forward. Not very much fun anymore for a codenamewatcher like me.