Anyone who owns a computer or has ever used one is aware of the Microsoft Company. From its origins as a startup in the 1970s to taking over the world in the 1990s to its current reinvention under CEO Satya Nadella, Microsoft has a long history. Here are 10 things you probably never knew about the biggest name in the business.
1. How Microsoft Got Its Name
Bill Gates sent a letter to Paul Allen back in 1975, in which the word Microsoft was mentioned for the first time. Gates wrote the name “Micro-Soft”, a combination of microcomputer and software. Microsoft later lost the hyphen in 1976 after the company was officially registered.
2. Microsoft is the Creator and Owner of the Xbox Games Console
The name ‘Xbox’ is an abbreviation of ‘DirectX Box’. DirectX is the crucial software used for Microsoft Windows to make intense game graphics.
3. Brian Eno Composed “The Microsoft Sound”
Pioneering musician Brian Eno was the musical brains behind Window 95’s start up tune, called “The Microsoft Sound.” The influential musician, who has worked with the likes of David Bowie and U2, compared the process to “making a tiny little jewel.” Other musical trivia from the launch of Windows 95 is, of course, the use of The Rolling Stones “Start Me Up” in the ad campaign.
4. Microsoft Celebrates Anniversaries With M&Ms
All companies have their little in-house traditions, and Microsoft is no exception. Each anniversary, a Microsoft employee is expected to provide one pound of M&Ms for every year they’ve worked.
5. Microsoft Has a Huge Art Collection
No, we’re not talking about Clip Art. Microsoft is one of the largest corporate collectors of artworks with over 5,000 contemporary pieces. Most of the works are on display at Microsoft’s campuses, as the company believes that art in the workplace reduces stress, increases productivity and encourages discussions and expression of opinions.
6. Pizza is the favorite food at Microsoft campus.
Microsoft offers free beverages and candy to its staffers. Pizza is the top pick of food, though the cafes have no shortage of food options.
7. The Microsoft campus is booming with bunnies.
The story goes like this. One day, someone dumped a bunch of bunnies off on the campus – probably bunnies that were no longer wanted after Easter – and one thing led to another. Today, the Microsoft campus is home to many lucky rabbits.
8. Bill Gates and Steve Jobs Once Worked Together
In the earlier years of their two companies, they collaborated on creating software for the first Macintosh computer and the two men got along well. However, things changed when they each began creating software that was in direct competition with each other.
9. It is impossible to create a Folder Named CON in Windows
Windows operating systems are filled with quirks and Easter eggs. One of the strange quirks found in Windows is the fact that you simply can’t create a folder named CON. Try it and let us know if it is true in the comment section below.
10. The First Smartwatch Was First Made by Microsoft
The company was ahead of time and the market usually just wasn’t ready for their products. Microsoft created the first smartwatch, way back in 1994. The watch was co-produced with Timex and was called Timex DataLink 150. It featured a tiny LCD and was able to connect with Windows PCs to download various data, such as appointments.