On Tuesday, February 13, Microsoft will host a Windows Whistler event at the rock 'n' roll-themed Experience Music Project (EMP). The hour-long event will feature several Microsoft executives, including Bill Gates and Jim Allchin, and although Microsoft hasn't said so, I think we can expect to learn the final names of both Whistler and Office 10 by this date. Given the name of the rollout location, it's safe to bet that Microsoft will apply the "XP" (eXPerienced) label mentioned previously in WinInfo Daily UPDATE to both Whistler and Office 10. Windows XP and Office XP: Are you experienced? It's unclear whether Microsoft will apply year tags to these names; reportedly, Bill Gates himself nixed the 2002 tag for Office.
Also, expect Whistler Beta 2 to be formally launched on or before the February 13 event. Contrary to reports, Whistler Beta 2 won't introduce a new Luna UI. As discussed on the SuperSite for Windows, Whistler's UI debuted a long time ago. Whistler's UI is fairly malleable, with a new skinning feature that supports almost infinite UI possibilities. Whistler also lets users choose between the classic Start menu seen today in Windows 2000 and Windows Millennium Edition (Windows Me) and a new Start menu that collects commonly used tasks into a single, easy-to-access location.
Whistler will ship in home- and business-oriented desktop editions this fall, with server versions expected 90 days after that. I'll have an enormous amount of information about Whistler Beta 2 when it ships, so stay tuned.