Windows Vista delays explained

A blog post on Microsoft's developer network reveals some interesting insight into the delays that have plagued Windows Vista over the past few years. With irreverent prose and a liberal use of bold tags, Microsoft Tablet PC developer Philip Su explains how serious management problems and an overly complicated code base have made Vista development slow and difficult to control.

To illustrate the slowness of Vista development, Su points to Vista's estimated gain of 10 million lines of code over Windows XP. Divide up 10 million lines across the five-year development time and 2,000-strong developer team, and the average Vista developer is only estimated to be producing around 1,000 lines of code every year—significantly below the average for software developers in the United States, which Su says is 6,200 lines a year.

What's more, the Windows team retains "the whiff of a bygone culture of belittlement and aggression," according to Su. Developers are frightened to communicate delays to project managers, and project managers aware of delays are unable to get a proper response from higher-ups. "Figure out how to make it work" is quoted as a typical response from one of the Vice Presidents overseeing Vista's development.

Update: The blog post has been removed, so it must be the juicy truth, right? You can see a mirrored copy here

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