MICROSOFT ENDS 2008 WITH A CRASH

A heartwarming story for the end of 2008! On December 31 every owner of a 30Gb Microsoft Zune woke up to a crashed device that couldn’t be started. (The Zune is Microsoft’s competitor for the iPod. Only 14 people own them, so this isn’t all that significant except that it makes Microsoft look so deliciously boneheaded.)

After reports of the glitch started flooding in to Gizmodo and other gadget web sites, Microsoft started scrambling for an answer and eventually turned up a software bug related to leap years. The official answer: avert your eyes, don’t ask a lot of questions, and put the Zune away until January 1, when it will be okay again.

Final snarky note from the New York Times (which Microsoft really deserves after this):

“On a more encouraging note, the various versions of Microsoft’s Windows
operating system, which power PCs in millions of homes and corporate cubicles,
appear to have made it through the last day of 2008 just fine.”

It’s the first day of 2009. My wish for us all is that we will have fewer stupid software bugs and fewer crashed gadgets, and more services that help us achieve our goals and enjoy our lives.

Happy new year!