One wouldn’t expect a huge controversy over the built-in games in Microsoft Windows; most of the time, problems in the US arise from people spending too much time playing Solitaire. But there is an included game in Windows that has caused problems internationally, Minesweeper. David Vronay, Research Manager at Microsoft discusses on his blog the issues that Microsoft went through trying to make Minesweeper more palatable for countries where landmines are an ongoing issue. Part of the solution investigated involved turning the mines into flowers; this would turn out to require a long, cascading set of changes to support this. The attention to detail paid to a simple included game that has been a part of Windows for so long gives a little insight into the complexity of decisions that had to go into every part of Windows Vista.
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