Windows XP: 2001-2014

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This evening Windows XP will be taken off life support and pass into the ether of magnetic media. Loved by millions across the globe, XP will be missed by many. The child of Windows ME and Windows 2000, Windows XP joined the robustness of a 32-bit NT kernel with a friendly consumer interface, and proved to be greater than the sum of its parents.

In its early years, Windows XP was frequently derided as “garish” or “cartoonish,” but its tenacity eventually won over the hearts of millions. XP experimented in the mobile space with Windows XP Tablet Edition during its adolescence, which ultimately was a growing phase for the young OS that didn’t work out as expected. During a journey of minimalism, XP crammed itself onto pint-sized netbooks that gave people half as much to carry, but took four times as long to launch anything.

While well-loved, XP was a bit shy. Getting to know it closely required greeting it with a 25 digital alphanumeric code. However, if engaged too frequently XP would often shut down and pout, refusing to cooperate unless you talked to its parents on the phone in Redmond. Windows XP spent much of its life on a quest of rediscovery. Every two or three years, it would go on a spiritual journey of service, packing a care package of renewed faith in the form of three Service Packs—each with things to love, and things to hate. Despite it all, XP always tried its hardest to please.

Windows XP is survived by two children, Windows 7 and Windows 8. XP also has a child called Windows Vista; however, they were estranged. XP is also survived by two cousins, Windows RT and Windows Phone. The family has requested that in lieu of sending flowers, mourners consider adopting one of XP’s children, Windows 7 or Windows 8. A memorial service will be held at Redmond, Washington.

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