Today's NY Times Technology article Microsoft Counting on a Twist to Make Zune Shine in Shadow of iPod strongly plugs the Zune as a new and innovative iPod alternative. "[T]he Zune can do something that no other player, including the iPod from Apple, can claim: it can locate other Zune players and wirelessly exchange content - music and pictures, for starters - with a few touches of a big shiny button."
Just when you think that the Times, paper of record, is simply drinking the Zune kool-aid, the article reveals that during the hot summer days at the Zune's development offices the devteam had to choose between lights and air conditioning, in a place that was like "a start-up company...with very deep pockets." Apparently not deep enough to pay for A/C, though. "A series of brownouts prompted the team to switch from desktop computers to notebook PCs that could be charged elsewhere and operated by batteries." Only time will tell whether the poor, parboiled developers were able to build a successful iPod competitor. The Zune hits store shelves tomorrow.