In a post yesterday on the Longhorn developer blog, Microsoft asks for customer input on some networking features Microsoft is considering including in Longhorn, the next generation of the Windows operating system:
[…] The Microsoft network product team is investigating ways of resolving peer-to-peer connectivity problems in Longhorn, and we would like to get customer feedback to help validate some of the design proposals.
Today, there are many situations where users are unable to run such functions as remote assistance, voice/video conversations, and many other peer-to-peer functions because of firewalls, NATs and other network configuration problems. Our goal is to build networking technology into the operating system that will overcome many of these problems, allowing these peer-to-peer scenarios to "just work."
Feedback will be through participating in an online survey.
This is a great example of a company directly seeking meaningful input from its customers in its product development planning. Given the technical focus of the input requested, it’s not the type of request you’d expect to see fanfared in mainstream media. Instead, Microsoft has used a highly appropriate communication channel – the relevant developer blog.
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