Thursday, May 18, 2006

Vistify Me

eWeek says:

For those who wish to take advantage of all of Vista's new features and run a full-blown version of the forthcoming OS, a so-called Premium Ready PC will require at least a 1GHz processor, 1GB of main memory and 128MB of graphics memory, along with a graphics processor that meets numerous requirements, those familiar with the plan said.

To be sure, Vista will run on most PCs produced in the last several years. So-called Vista Capable PCs, Microsoft is expected to say, will require an 800MHz processor, 512MB of RAM, and a DirectX9 capable graphics processor, the sources said.

Most recent PCs meet Vista Capable requirements. But in order for Vista to display its most advanced features, namely its three-dimensional Aero interface, a PC must meet Microsoft's Premium Ready guidelines, the sources said.

Forced upgrades are brutal.Windows Vista
But they say that we'll be able to use Vista without upgrading our
computers, just not be able see its true colors (at least on half of the
machines being used today.) Who did that spreadhseet at MS? Maybe this guy,
The six Windows Vista variants are: Windows Starter 2007; Windows Vista Enterprise; Windows Vista Home Basic, Windows Vista Home Premium, Windows Vista ultimate, and Windows Vista Business.

Also on the list are two additional releases, Windows Vista Home Basic N and Windows Vista Business N. The "N" releases are those which do not include Media Player.

Microsoft currently offers six core Windows XP SKUs: The line up includes XP Home, Professional, Media Center, Tablet PC, and Professional x64, and Windows XP Starter. (Microsoft also offers "N" versions of its XP Home and XP Professional releases, as stipulated by the European antitrust regulators.)

With Vista, there will not be separate Tablet, Media Center or x64 SKUs, said Barry Goffe, director of Windows client product management. All of the planned Vista versions, except Windows Vista Starter, will be available in both 32- and 64-bit flavors. All SKUs will integrate Internet Explorer 7.0, the new Vista desktop search, parental controls and Windows Defender antispyware technology. And all of the Windows Vista business SKUs will embed features designed to appeal to small/mid-size businesses (SMBs), Goffe said, obviating the need for a separate Vista small-business variant.

The new line up is "more focused on how people will use their PCs, rather than around hardware types," Goffe explained.

I wonder if that'll be true next year at this time. More and more people I thought were PC have Macs now.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Managing attention

My client this week is attending the largest conference in their industry. For this, I have been preparing materials and redesigning their website. As happens sometimes at the last minute with websites, software didn't come through in time (they aren't a start-up remember) and we missed the launch. Yet all of the executives and materials are at the conference. And the website launch goes into a list of Post-Conference Tasks. There is no contact form, no tracking, no optimized keywords, the list goes on. My demand generation dream just turned into a nightmare. I half want to go to the conference and tell everyone I see, yes I'm the marketing manager but that's NOT my design. Yes I have materials to send to you on their products. No, they won't look like anything you've seen from the company. Yes there is an 800 number, but no we can't post it yet. For a moment, I miss the light stepping start-ups, get-it-done-now environment. Not the 4 page change control document I was given here, which, funny enough, doesn't change a darn thing.

Ok, you see me. Now what?As a marketeer, managing the attention you are lucky enough to draw up is important. Digging up the interest is only half the war. What happens when the eyes or ears or fingers eagar to click the next exciting thing are sitting in front of you? I learned some lessons last week at the OnHollywood conference put on by Tony Perkins in this regard, after some kind words were wrapped around a spot-on critisism of me, that managing attention is something I could do better. Always have a backup plan, always be considering your offline channel mix, always use licensed software if your customers will be touched by your services and listen to smart people who say smart things.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Consumer solice

For all colonies who are dependent on gasoline. Updated every evening. Find the lowest gas near you by zipcode.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

AlwaysOn pre-conference mixer

This is Vincent who provided me a sober conversation about some of the challenges of software building.

More commonly discussed at this conference (, this being the last day, has been the power of advertising and marketing and it's role beside software development, adoption and all of the journalism surrounding technology. The most fantastic discussion thus far and by far was with David Nordfors ( This current focus within journalism and within the ever-growing grassroots, user generated media is to me the most interesting thing happening in the industry.

I guess there are other discussions of interest right now, we still see content management or advertising conferences. But I feel a real fire inside the media meshing; the large, powerful and sometimes threatened traditional journalists and the perhaps more street aware, tapped in but less committment-oriented bl-/vl-/phloggers (photo bloggers).

I had the pleasure of speaking a bit with Steve Gilllmoore*, who let me know I am part of a great number of people who consistently and inconsistently mispell his name. Every time I meet this guy, I seem to leave the wrong impression. I can only hope he knows there is a best of me to be appreciated.

* At least I'm going to spell it like no one else does.