WOES: A catchy new acronym for Windows, Office, Exchange, and SharePoint, and Microsoft’s new willingness to play with others

Icons for Windows, Office, Exchange, and SharePoint, captioned with 'WOES: Windows - Office - Exchange - SharePoint'

WOES, a clever coinage for the suite of technologies essential to TPS report writers everywhere — Windows, Office, Exchange, and SharePoint — is the creation of Brent Simmons, who developed the iOS note-taking software Vesper with John “Daring Fireball” Gruber, and before that, the notable Mac applications NetNewsWire and MarsEdit, both of which have been passed on to other developers.

Simmons came up with WOES while writing about his take on Microsoft’s new CEO, Satya Nadella, who comes from the Server and Tools Business (STB) group, and was a key player in Microsoft’s cloud play with Azure. Here’s the relevant excerpt, where he coins WOES while talking about Microsoft’s new willingness to play well with others:

Creating services for iOS apps doesn’t sound at all like the Microsoft I used to know. Using Node.js and JavaScript doesn’t sound like that Microsoft. The old Microsoft would create services for their OSes only and you’d have to use Visual Studio.

There’s still a lot of the old Microsoft there, the Windows, Office, Exchange, and Sharepoint (WOES) company. It’s most of the company by far, surely. (I just made up the acronym WOES. It fits.)

But in the Azure group, at least, there’s recognition that Microsoft can’t survive on lock-in, that those days are in the past.

Even if you don’t choose to use Microsoft’s cloud services, I hope you can agree on two things: that competition is good, and that Azure’s support-everything policy is the best direction for the future of the company.

I can’t properly mention TPS reports in an article on Hump Day without including that scene from Office Space, so enjoy: