Friday, July 20, 2007

The man who created Windows

Contrary to popular belief, the omnipresent Windows operating system does not owe its existence to Bill Gates, Paul Allen or the development team at Microsoft. The man responsible for giving us Windows was actually a marketing expert called Rowland Hanson.

Work on the OS had started after Gates had seen a demo of Visi Corp's software called Vision, which featured a graphical user interface (GUI), at Comdex, in 1982, and had decided that Microsoft would also come out with a GUI based OS. Gates and the development team referred to it as 'Interface Manager' and the name struck, at least until Hanson was hired to develop a marketing campaign for the product. He was unimpressed by the rather geekish 'Interface Manager' and proposed that the product be named 'Windows', as the user saw a number of 'Windows' on the screen that contained the tools and files they needed to work with.

And the rest, as they love to say, is history. Had it not been for Hanson, 'IM' would have been an abbreviation for an operating system rather than for Instant messaging!


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