After I wrote “How to create a new Microsoft product - first, choose a name...”, it was rather bizarre to see Hugh Mcleod called a “determined detractor” for actually pointing out that we have boring product names. Of course, the context for the comment provides further proof that our Secret Plan is working:
What's amazing is that Hugh's acidic style and Scoble's measured responses are starting to make me feel for MS. For the first time ever.
Pssst - Hugh! Keep it up, the check’s in the mail!
The blog conversation also led me to seattleduck, written by an honest-to-goodness Microsoft marketing manager. Perhaps more importantly, it led to the realization that I’ve learned more about the day-to-day jobs of other Microsoft employees by reading their blogs than I ever have in formal courses. Hey Scoble, how about we replace all those courses with a couple of hours of Channel 9 videos?
Adi Oltean also pointed out some of the gotchas of product naming in his post “Why the name VSS?”, about the Volume Shadow copy Service:
- Acronym conflicts (VSS is also Visual SourceSafe)
- Forced acronyms (it used to be just Volume Snapshot Service – now they’ve squashed “copy” in there but still call it VSCS)
- Leftover terminology (the word “snapshot” hasn’t been totally expunged from all documentation)
- Human inertia (people still use the old terms and have to be “kindly discouraged”)
And remember how I mentioned that Heather Leigh’s blog is a great place for folks who care about names? Lo and behold, she’s posted a hot Microsoft job advert for a Brand Manager!