Microsoft sponsors Firefox!


Photographs credit: “gnell” /

However the money isn’t going towards the Mozilla Corporation. Instead, it’s gone towards an equal if not better cause, the Chengdu Panda Breeding and Research Center. As it happens, Microsoft China has sponsored a pair of Red Pandas, otherwise affectionately known as the “Firefox”, and named them in true sponsorship spirit “Microsoft” and “Unlimited Potential” respectively.

One of these little guys is facing an identity crisis. A subtle joke? Perhaps. But generous nevertheless. :)

P.S.: Here’s a video of these cute little buggers in action at the park. Obligatory “Om Nom Nom Nom”.

Update 2: Similarly to English, “Microsoft” in Chinese is literally translated as “very soft”. Especially with a lack of differentiation between nouns and pronouns in Chinese, it is a surprisingly appropriate nickname.

22 insightful thoughts

  1. @Serb: Yeah I can read a bit of Chinese (forgot a lot of it without practice), but I still speak Chinese.

  2. As a Chinese I have to point out that “Microsoft” is translated into “a little bit soft” or “Tiny and Soft”., but not “Very Soft’

  3. They could came up with more appropriate names like Win Win and Word Word. I don’t want to know Bill Gates children’s names.

  4. @Long and Ryan: Concerning the Chinese name for Microsoft 微软. It is a direct translation of the original English name Micro-soft. 微 for micro, 软 for soft. A direct interpretation of the Chinese name would be “slightly soft”.

    I think the real subtle joke is that Unlimited Potential 潛潛 (qián qián) has the same Mandarin pronunciation as “money money” 錢錢 (qián qián). A good-fortune name. :)

  5. Could you ever imaging Microsoft Firefox 3.5 or Windows Firefox 3.5? That sound really weird but that will increase Microsoft’s profit a lot.

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