I just downloaded and installed the latest update to my blogging tool of choice – Windows Live Writer. This version is the first to drop the "beta" moniker, but I don’t like the new name. I was kind of hoping that Microsoft could avoid the "year names" with their Windows Live products.
MSN Messenger and Windows Live Messenger have never used the year in release names, and I hope it stays that way. If we can’t have more creative names, then I’m happy with a version number. A version number conveys the same information as a year (which release is newer) while at the same time not sounding out of date the following year (when it may still be the latest release).
I know some people don’t like it, but Apple’s use of codenames in the actual marketing for OS X is pretty cool. Anil’s point is good – the name "Leopard" should appear in the actual product itself. Still, "Leopard" is much more creative than "10.5". Of course, version numbers shouldn’t disappear, as they do serve a useful function.
Separating the product name from the release name could do wonders for Microsoft’s notoriously horrible product/release names. The product is "Windows Live Writer" or "Office", the release could be so much more than "2008" or "2007". They’ve started to do this with consumer editions of Windows it seems, with XP followed by Vista. Why not for other products?
Read: Writer Zone