Thank you very much for the warm reception. It is humbling to see the amount of interest and enthusiasm for the blog and for Windows.  We've been digesting all the comments (lots of mail is going around internally about specifics) and I've been going through my overflowing inbox (I can't reply to every message, but I have been replying)!  Thank you.  The most popular question/comment is about "signing up for the beta".  We will be up front and very visible with any pre-release software programs that you can opt into.  Promise.

As we begin our discussion of building Windows 8 on this blog, two housekeeping topics are worth a post before we start talking about building Windows 8 and the product. We want to be up front about the writing on this blog and provide a view on comments.

This blog is 100% authentic “engineer written” and not a marketing or communications effort. We do not have ghost-writers, editors, or any process that attempts to sanitize the words of folks on the team other than some basic copy editing.

This has the benefit of giving you truly authentic posts that directly reflect the passion of those developing the product. It also means that this blog is not written by professional writers. Some posts will go into a lot of detail. Posts by different writers will all have different “voices.” We ask that folks not be critical of the writing, keeping in mind the direct approach we are taking—I promise you that every writer will take personal comments, well, personally.

We had a long discussion about how to handle comments for Building Windows 8 (“B8”). Our experience with the Engineering Windows 7 blog ("E7") comments was mostly positive, but a non-zero number of folks abused their direct access to both email and comments. Let's keep the comments in the spirit of the community and avoid using comments for unrelated topics.

Of course, the primary goal of this blog is to have a two-way dialog, so comments are an important part of what we’re looking for with our blogging efforts. So we opted for the commenting mechanism already used by thousands of MSDN blogs—anonymous comments are permitted, and they appear without moderation. This blog platform employs some minor security measures and a spam filter that we do not control.

That means we are seeking out comments. Everyone on the Windows team will be watching for comments and is looking forward to the dialog. When participating, we will work to make sure Microsoft employees represent themselves as such, especially indicating if they work on the area Windows being discussed. We ask that press (those that write, blog, tweet professionally) identify themselves accordingly as well.

Things we hope to see in comments:

  • Lots of on-topic, good, interesting thoughts on Windows and the posts on B8
  • Focus on the content of the post and not just the topic in general—seek out the details
  • Dialog that is respectful and fun

We reserve the right to delete comments or otherwise edit what has been said. Things that will get comments edited or deleted:

  • Offensive or abusive language or behavior as determined by a community standard
  • Misrepresentation (i.e., claiming to be somebody you're not) — if you don't want to use your real name, that's fine, as long as your profile name isn't offensive, abusive, or misrepresentative
  • Repeatedly posting the same comments or agenda, or attempting to fit a specific topic into every post, no matter what we blog about
  • Blog-spam or link-abuse of any kind

We hope these rules will keep the discussion lively and on-topic.

--Steven