When I first saw this post and the lone picture, I was simply dumbfounded. What da hell? Are you for real? Seriously? Wow… wow… simply wow. Who was the brainiac who thought this -- in any way -- would be a good idea? I literally fumbled for words.
I jumped around a few sites to learn more. I also clicked up the chain of referring sites, including "Carl J's" Flickr collection of 45+ pictures of the parade. It includes, of course, the RIP picture, as well as shots of a hearse or two.
However, after looking through the rest of the collection, I found it helped put the RIP procession in visual context -- a lone parade float in a chain of tributes, some of which are at Microsoft's expense. Note the old affixed cell phones and two stuffed and cooked turkeys riding aboard the beaten-up Windows Mobile 6.5 Mustang in cart. Its "Overhauled" banner suggests it's headed to the Chip Foose garage, for what follows this stuffed turkey mobile is a beautifully rebuilt black Mustang that's clearly undergone a bare-metal restoration.
The other pictures remind me of a local community parade; a bit of a pub-crawl or "social", as bdkennedy1 observed. A sea of smiles, singing and self-congratulatory pride. A corporately polished Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade it certainly ain't. Nor is it tight like a Rose Bowl marching band. More like a lot of people having fun and blowing off a whole lotta steam after passing a major development milestone (or finishing my school exams). No doubt when finished banging their heads against the wall, I'm sure MS PR teams won't sleep much this weekend while they prepare a response playbook. Release bad news on a Tuesday; good news on a Thursday; and, use Friday to bury a story.
If you haven't already seen the 45 pictures from Carl J, you might consider giving them a once over and see if it tempers your WTF. It adjusted mine.http://www.flickr.com/photos/trioculus/
Did this RIP picture define the parade? I don't think so.
Could this be the defining picture? You decide, naturally.
Is it prophetic in some way? Time will bear witness… as, too, will AI.