If there's one piece of Windows Mobile Professional that's driven us (and likely many of you) bat-poop-crazy over the past few years, it's the little "X" button that might or might not actually exit out of an application. In the earlier days, when RAM was at a premium, this was more of an issue, as we needed to actually exit apps and not just shove them into the background. A functional phone is a good thing.

And so, one of the first apps we'd often install was one that would actually make the "X" button exit the app, as we've grown accustomed to on desktops. We long scratched our heads at this. It just didn't make sense.

Today, it's not nearly as big a deal. But now we're getting an inside look at the story behind the story here, from Mike Calligaro of the Windows Mobile Team blog. And it's a heck of a read, explaining how things progress from the first Pocket PCs. A teaser, if you will:

One thing we did has been pretty contentious. Along the way, we got feedback that users didn’t mind letting us manage the memory for them, but they really wanted a way to say, “I’m done with this. Make it go away.” So we put a “go away” button in the upper right corner of PocketPCs. This button just sends the application to the background. It doesn’t close it. If the system needs more memory while the app is in the background, it’ll close the app. But, if the system doesn’t need more memory, the app will stay in RAM and be ready to come back quickly the next time the user needs it.

Go read the whole thing here. Then weigh in below.