Here at Microsoft Watch, it was a tough choice. Should it be "Top 10 Reasons Microsoft Is Still a Monopoly"? Or the "Top 10 Hires Microsoft Made in 2005"? (Too hard.) The "Top 10 Most Important Microsoft Defectors"? (Easier.) "Top 10 Justifications for Throwing Caution to the Wind by Continuing to Use Internet Explorer"? Or maybe "Top 10 Odes to .Net Developers"?
In the end, we chose the more well-traveled "year in review" path—but with a twist. We opted to itemize the 10 Microsoft-specific developments that gave us the biggest jolt in 2005. (And having watched Microsoft for more than a decade, this Microsoft Watcher doesnt surprise easily.)
In no particular order, heres our list:
2. MS "gets" RSS: While some folks were less than overjoyed that Microsoft was tinkering with the "little orange RSS box," Microsoft ended up looking like a company with a clue when it came to outlining its companywide RSS strategy in 2005.
RSS support will be built into not just Internet Explorer 7.0, but also Outlook 12 and Windows Vista itself. Almost all Microsoft Weblogs and sites have RSS feeds now. RSS is gospel in Redmond these days.
3. WinFS bits go out early: For some strange reason, the Redmondians refused to admit they shipped the Beta 1 bits for WinFS (the Windows File System) earlier than they originally said they would.
Microsoft maintained that WinFS Beta 1 was right on time. On time or early, we were stunned when the actual code debuted in late August.