My name is Paul Donnelly. I’ve been around the halls of Microsoft for a while now which has given me the chance to work on lots of great products and with our customers that use them. I’m a member of the Windows PC Ecosystem Team where I get to work on engaging with Windows enthusiasts.

In fact one of the best parts of my job over the years has been getting to interact with technology enthusiasts – the power users and “technorati" who apply their creativity and intelligence to make fantastic experiences happen with all sorts of products in the Windows ecosystem. The ones who think “wouldn’t it be cool if I could…” and then figure out a way to do it. Enthusiasts are the folks who are not just content to be at the next-level, but like to push the edge of today’s technology to create new and compelling experiences, and in many ways, are the perfect audience for what we do on the PC ecosystem team.

As a member of the PC ecosystem team, a part of the Windows engineering team that works with our partners that create hardware, software and PCs, I get to work with people that help make these amazing things possible. I will have the opportunity to share with you details about how some of the coolest Windows products came to be and what you can do with them.

People on our team work with component makers to develop the specifications and capabilities for PC parts that will make Windows shine. These are the makers of everything from chips and touch panels, to storage devices, and more. This work focuses on the engineering details of components, so they will work best with Windows. By understanding our partner’s design goals, we can work together and ensure the system “lights up” with Windows and showcases an incredible user experience.

To help make sure the ecosystem is filled with great devices and gadgets that enable you to do cool things with Windows, we collaborate with device makers to bring you everything from DirectX 11 compatible video cards to big screen TVs with Play-To built right in. Still others focus on helping developers write great software for Windows, developing apps that show off the best the platform has to offer. We work with the industry and help our partners develop products that extend Windows, making it do more and go further. Windows offers a great experience all by itself, but the real fun happens when you start connecting cameras or streaming video to your TV or music to your wireless speakers!

One common thread across the PC Ecosystem team is that everyone works together to ensure there are lots and lots of systems, devices and software that have passed the testing requirements to get the “Compatible with Windows 7” logo. The logo is an easy way to find products that are certified to work great with Windows.


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As Brandon said in his introductory post, we wanted a place on the Windows blog where we could highlight the features and products that you can use to take your experiences to the next level. We wanted a place where we could showcase the incredible things going on in our enthusiast community; this is our place where we can show the world some of the cool and amazing things that can happen when you unleash the power of a Windows PC in and around your home.

As I come across some of these products or learn interesting details about their development I will bring the stories to you here at the Extreme Windows Blog where some of our smartest, tech-savvy customers are sure to be found.