Microsoft Gives Clippy the Ax

By Timothy Dyck  |  Posted 2001-05-14

Clippy (officially clippit), along with his merry band of Office Assistant friends, has bitten the digital dust and will not be included in the upcoming Microsoft Office XP product line.

Touted as a major usability advance in Microsoft Office 97 and still present in Microsoft Office 2000, Clippy has succeeded in leaving users of two generations of Microsoft Office products seriously bent out of shape.

The demise of Clippy, bitterly described by an Office user at my place recently as "condescending and pedantic," is unlikely to be rued by many.

Of course, the irony of Microsofts touting the removal of a central feature of the current Office release as the central feature of the next release is stunning. With this strategy, no Microsoft developers will have to write new Office code again. Microsoft has a tongue-in-cheek site on Clippy at

Perhaps the supremely annoying Office clipboard, which keeps interrupting my work to tell me it can hold only 12 items, can be blindfolded and tied to the post next.

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