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Top 10 Reasons Windows Slipped

Zack Urlocker
Sunday, October 01, 2000

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Tick tick tickBy now its obvious that the schedule for the next major release of Windows has definitely slipped. Or as they say in marketing, research has shown that customers are willing to wait longer for software that doesn't corrupt their hard disk if they double-click too fast. While we're waiting--and unless someone stops me--we might as well amuse ourselves with my top 10 reasons that Windows has slipped. You can feel free to reuse these excuses the next time your boss wants to discuss the schedule on your project. Ready? Here's...

Reason Number 10

The Usability Lab has reported that the mouse is not as intuitive as previously believed. It turns out that the focus group was made up entirely of dBase programmers, all of whom requested a dot prompt. Estimated impact on schedule: three months--more if they use 3-D drop shadows. Don't we have some C-prompt code lying around that we could reuse?

Reason Number 9

Microsoft Project is still recalculating. Sure, it took an extra 60 days to map out the milestones, but now we can see why the product has slipped by... 60 days. Heck, maybe there's still time to order some Pentiums to speed up the recalc.

Reason Number 8

Since the World Cup we can't get localization on track. The Italian, Swedish, and German versions have slipped, apparently because they're all too depressed to work. The good news? International versions for Brazil and Colombia will be finished a month early, though the Colombians do seem awfully jumpy these days.

Reason Number 7

The cab lines at PC Expo were really long. Everyone talks about how bad Comdex is, but believe me, we lost a lot of time at PC Expo. And the hot dogs were expensive. This stuff adds up.

Reason Number 6

The marketing managers are still reading Crichton's book "Disclosure." You sure this thing is fiction? Lets face it, the guy had it coming. What was he doing taking off weekends?

Reason Number 5

R&D is still working on an ISlippage OLE interface. Due to the lack of good OLE servers, R&D has added the ability to embed technically nonexistent applications by using the ISlippage interface. Containers that use ISlippage will work fine if and when the server applications ship. Want us to convert this to OCX? Increase the slippage factor by another six months so that we can write a spec.

Reason Number 4

One word: Stacker. It seems that when you convert a Stacker driver to Double-Space and then upgrade to Double-Drive while running the Norton defragmenter, all your subdirectories get sent to the Department of Justice. Our recommendation: Ignore this for now.

Reason Number 3

Somebody decided to ship with documentation. Apparently, some users still read this stuff. The good news: We got the page count down by 50 percent, and everyone likes the new four-point font. Plus, we're getting a great deal on magnifying glasses.

Reason Number 2

We're still working on the CD-ROM ConfigWizard. The CD-ROM was fine until we tried to read from it. Then it complained that it needed 635Kplus a three-year non-compete clause and a five-percent stake in Starbucks. BTW, we're considering the name AUTOEXEC.WIZARD. Sort of an upgrade, ya know?

And The Number One Reason . . .

Quake for Windows is that good. The marketing people have started making this weird snorting noise and keep talking about a new, more powerful user interface for the next version. Better not tell them what BFG stands for.

About the author
Zack Urlocker is a pseudonym for a Silicon Valley software executive. His parents still don't know what he does for a living.

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