A (Microsoft) Code Name a Day: Magellan

I'm resuming my Microsoft Code Name a Day series that I started in December 2006. The goal: To provide the back story, each day in August, on one of Microsoft's myriad code names.

I'm resuming my Microsoft Code Name a Day series that I started in December 2006. The goal: To provide the back story, each day in August, on one of Microsoft's myriad code names. Some of these code names might be familiar to Microsoft watchers; others (hopefully) will be brand-new.

Microsoft code names offer some great clues about the Redmondians’ development priorities, not to mention a better understanding of which future Microsoft products fit together, from a strategy standpoint. And not every product group is moving to boring, numbered codenames (like Windows 7 and Office 14).

Without further ado, let the codename games begin.

Microsoft code name of the day: Magellan

Microsoft code name of the day: Magellan

Best guess on what it is: A "scientist workbench" under development by Microsoft's Life Sciences unit

Meaning/context of the code name: Microsoft has used the "Magellan" codename at least once before.  Its Office 2003 Small Business Accounting program was codenamed "Magellan."

Back story: From a recent Microsoft presentation on Magellan: "'Scientist Workbench' is a solutions toolkit. This solution will consist of product technologies, architecture framework best practices, solutions integrator for installation and domain expertise, and ongoing support." The Workbench makes use of a variety of Microsoft foundational technologies, especially Office 2007 and SharePoint Server 2007.

Additional info: The Magellan Workbench is focused on drug discovery. The intended user base is biologists, chemists and other pharmaceutical customers. Microsoft is pushing into the healthcare vertical in a variety of ways; this seems to be yet one more.... Got a Microsoft code name you’ve been wondering about? Send it my way and I’ll do my best to track down some leads on what it might be.

And if you want to keep track of the full month's worth of Microsoft code names I end up posting, bookmark this "Microsoft Codenames" page. You can also check out this video-whiteboard I did recently on Microsoft codenames.