PC Magazine interviews "the team behind Windows" on its twentieth birthday


PC Magazine interviewed "the team behind Windows" in commemoration of Windows' twentieth birthday. The article's author talked with Bill Gates, Charles Simonyi, Jeff Raikes, Ray Ozzie (huh? He didn't even work at Microsoft until April 2005! How could he have been part of "the team behind Windows"?), Jim Allchin, Brad Silverberg, David Cole, Yusuf Mehdi, Joe Belfiore, and Chris Jones. Ten managers. Apparently "the team behind Windows" doesn't include programmers or testers.

For some reason, the media often identify Hillel Cooperman (a Product Unit Manager) as a programmer, and whenever this happens, we always make a point to assign him a nasty bug to fix.

Comments (18)
  1. John Topley says:

    When did you start working on Windows, Raymond?

  2. Marvin says:

    What did you expect given your corporate policy of never giving programmers any credit anywhere? One won’t find your name in any about box anywhere. The end result of this policy is that the only people visible to outside world are managers that talk to journalists, analysts etc.

    Isn’t it funny that a makeup artist in a second rate movie gets more recognition than programmers who wrote, say, Word.

  3. PatriotB says:

    Nice to see that the 20th anniversary of Windows is getting some attention. Unlike the 10th anniversary of Windows 95, which (aside from this blog and a few other places) pretty much went unnoticed.

  4. bart says:

    programmers, who are they? :)

  5. Travis Owens says:

    Didn’t anybody tell you? Programmers aren’t worth the spit thrown upon them!

    Just kidding, but I love the idea of sending Hillel code to fix after he’s been credited as a programmer. This joke would be even funnier if he had claimed he was a coder.

  6. alex@zoosmart.us says:

    no credit in about boxes? What about the easter egg in excel, when you find your way through the maze you get to see pictures of the programmers who worked on excel?

  7. Frank says:

    Raymand, this community does know who is the team behind windows, and you all have our sympathy and appreciation for your work.

  8. Mihai says:

    "One won’t find your name in any about box anywhere."

    Take a look at the About – Credits in Acrobat 7.

    More than 700 names listed (and is right there, visible, not hidden in some Easter egg).

  9. Marvin says:

    "What about the easter egg in excel, when you find your way through the maze you get to see pictures of the programmers who worked on excel?"

    Well, this reminds me of one of my favorite books. There somebody commented that if earthlings didn’t want to see their planet destroyed, they should have looked more carefully at the demolition plans, which were on display at the local planning department in the nearby solar system of Alpha Centauri…

  10. Derek says:

    Mihai, that’d be a valid point if Microsoft made Acrobat, but they don’t.

    alex, if the credits are embedded in an easter egg, they hardly count as credits. As I understand it, the easter eggs which have made it into final products weren’t exactly corporate-approved.

  11. Mihai says:

    "Mihai, that’d be a valid point if Microsoft made Acrobat, but they don’t."

    I know. Just comparing Adobe with MS :-)

  12. Dave says:

    Solitaire mentions Wes Cherry (I love the bug in sol that lets you tack on as many points as you want…)

  13. PatriotB says:

    Hey, at least Microsoft *has* program/product/project managers. I used to work as a developer for a software company that has about 2000 employees. We had no managers, just develeopers… made things quite difficult.

  14. I hate to be the bearer of bad tidings... says:

    …but adding an easter egg is "immediate grounds for termination." http://blogs.msdn.com/larryosterman/archive/2005/10/20/483110.aspx

  15. Tim Smith says:

    In the game industry, full credit is given to programmers. I’m credited with working on Jade Empire even though I spent a week looking at database issues with the internal toolset and a weekend cutting the compile time of the toolset in half.

  16. Aaargh! says:

    "What did you expect given your corporate policy of never giving programmers any credit anywhere?"

    That’s the official policy at Microsoft ?

    I always assumed it was because the *programmers* didn’t want their names in the credits out of shame. I sure as hell wouldn’t put "I worked on windows ME" in my resume.

  17. Marvin says:

    I sure as hell would be proud of *working* on Windows Me. What I wouldn’t be proud of is being the executive who decided to produce it in the first place.

    BTW does anybody seriously read the crap PC Magazine prints about software? They are somewhat useful for hardware reviews but the software articles are either written by very ignorant people or by people very well paid by certain vendors.

  18. hillel says:

    I’m pretty sure nobody will be assigning me any bugs any time soon. I have a relatively limited toolset to apply to any problem sent my way (won’t fix, by design, non-repro, etc.). :)

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