Microspeak: North star

I noted it in the interview with the Defrag Tools show, but I’ll make a proper Microspeak for it. Today’s term is North star. This term rose quickly to prominence in October 2015. My research suggests that it had been simmering below the surface for about a year. For example, here’s an isolated citation from…

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Microspeak: move the needle

The phrase move the needle is part of general business jargon, but it is very popular here at Microsoft. You need to know what it means, and more importantly, you need to be willing to throw it around yourself in order to sound more hip and with-it. In general business speak, move the needle means…

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Microspeak: DRI, the designated response individual

Someone sent a message to a peer-to-peer discussion group and remarked, “This is critical. I’m a DRI at the moment and have some issues to fix.”

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Microspeak: Stretch goal

Recall that Microspeak is not merely for jargon exclusive to Microsoft, but also for jargon that you need to know. A project will set some goals, which are things it intends to accomplish. It may also set stretch goals, which are things it hopes to acomplish. If you fail to achieve a stretch goal, your…

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Microspeak: Light up

In Microspeak, a feature lights up if it becomes available in an application when run on an operating system that supports it. The idea is that you write your application to run on, say, Windows versions N and N + 1. There is a new feature in Windows version N + 1, and new functionality…

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Microspeak: landing (redux)

In a meeting, my colleague Martyn Lovell said, “The plan is shifting and hasn’t landed anywhere yet.” This was generally understood to mean “The plan is shifting and the issue is not yet settled.” I don’t know if this is true Microspeak, or Martyn was just making up a little metaphor on the fly. But…

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Microspeak: Redlines

To the outside world, redline can mean to mark something for removal, or it could mean the maximum safe speed of an engine. But in the world of Microsoft design, the term redlines (pronounced as if it were written as the two words red lines, but the accent is on the red) refers to a…

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Microspeak: Line of sight

I first encountered this term in a meeting I attended. Q: We would like to be able to reverse the polarity of the neutron flow without requiring a reboot. A: Yes, that is something we’ve been thinking about, but we don’t have line of sight to having that feature before the end of the month….

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Microspeak: All-up

In other words: All-inclusive.

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