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Does Windows Cloud equal Windows Strata?

Web site for Microsoft's Professional Developers Conference briefly lists several cloud computing sessions grouped under the heading "Windows Strata."

A screenshot of Microsoft's PDC Web site, which appears to confirm the Windows Strata name. CNET News

Last week, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer talked about "Windows Cloud"--the company's long-rumored cloud operating system.

At the time, though, he noted that the Windows Cloud name was not necessarily the final name. On Wednesday, an eagle-eyed blogger noticed that the Web site for Microsoft's Professional Developers Conference was listing several cloud computing sessions under the subject heading "Windows Strata." Microsoft has since taken down the Windows Strata references, but not before a number of blogs noted the listing.

In his talks last week, Ballmer quipped that by the PDC, Microsoft might even have a trademark for whatever it was going to call the cloud operating system, which he dubbed "Windows Cloud."

"We'll need a new operating system," Ballmer said in France. "Just as we have an operating system for the PC, for the phone, and for the server, we need a new operating system that runs in the Internet. I bet we'll call it Windows something. We're going to announce it in four weeks. We might even have a trademark by then."

I checked the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Web site Wednesday morning and didn't see anything under the heading "Windows Strata," but that could be just a matter of time. Microsoft might also want to have a chat with these folks.

In any case, Microsoft is expected to detail the new Internet-based developer platform, as well as Windows 7, at PDC, which starts October 27 in Los Angeles.

A Microsoft representative said, via e-mail: "As you know, Microsoft uses internal code names for pending technologies and from time to time they make their way to the public. We're looking forward to talking more about our cloud services platform at the Professional Developers Conference in Los Angeles."

It's not the first time that Microsoft has elected to break news via its PDC session listings. On Monday, I noted that Microsoft had confirmed in one of its listings that it would be making available to PDC attendees a software development kit for its Surface tabletop computer.