Longhorn Gets a Name

The next version of Windows has been given an official name: Windows Vista.

This is, of course, a preposterous appellation.

I’m guessing that Microsoft intends to connote the following definition of vista within the minds of PC users

“An awareness of a range of time, events, or subjects; a broad mental view.”

But a vista is also “a distant view or prospect, especially one seen through an opening, as between rows of buildings or trees.” The question in this case is who has that view: the Windows user or Microsoft. “Longhorn” was bad enough, suggesting “long shot” — as in Microsoft trying to encourage PC users to upgrade their OSes when most are wedded to Windows 2000. But is it entirely a good idea for Microsoft to use a word that insinuates distant results rather than functionality? This is a bit like conjuring up an image of a beautiful mountain that one cannot climb — which has been, for the most part, my experience with Microsoft products.

Who were the marketing geniuses who came up with this?

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