About

I'm Mike Pope. I live in the Seattle area. I've been a technical writer and editor for over 35 years. I'm interested in software, language, music, movies, books, motorcycles, travel, and ... well, lots of stuff.

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He had to comfort himself with the firm conviction that most of what he objected to in the world at large was not the result of people reading the wrong books, but rather of not reading at all.

— Richard Russo



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Blog Statistics

Dates
First entry - 6/27/2003
Most recent entry - 6/2/2024

Totals
Posts - 2654
Comments - 2677
Hits - 2,669,935

Averages
Entries/day - 0.35
Comments/entry - 1.01
Hits/day - 349

Updated every 30 minutes. Last: 8:16 PM Pacific


  12:54 PM

This post is a pretty direct rip-off of an email thread started by my friend John G. But I've thought about doing this before, really I have.

Anyway. NPR listeners, and possibly other patrons of the airwaves, get to hear every morning the brain-twisting slogan that is as good a wake-up call as any alarm. Per John's transcription, the smooth-voiced baritone reminds us every morning:

Microsoft: Your potential inspires us to create software that helps you reach it.

Many folks have scratched their heads at this one, and I believe that this is even an improvement from the original. Fact is, that slogan is just plain hard to parse. For me, for example, it takes some work to reconnect that lonely pronoun at the end with its antecedent.

But comes then the challenge: how can this be phrased in a way that's less loopy? John takes a stab and says:

Microsoft: Our software: inspired by your potential.

But he admits that this corrupts the meaning of the original. My attempt:

Microsoft: We're inspired to write software that helps you reach your potential.

But ditto.

What say ye?

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