Microsoft Corporation will release a public beta of its upcoming Money 99 Financial Suite software later this month, giving users a chance to check it out for free before it is released in November. Due to hit the Microsoft Web site on August 27, Microsoft Money 99 Beta 1 will include a redesigned HTML-based interface (Side note: When hasn't Microsoft redesigned the interface? We've been using Money since day one and every single version has sported a new interface. Grrr....), tighter Web integration, and a new "lifetime planner" that lets users set longtime goals. Microsoft worked with financial advisors at American Express to add new investment features to Money.

"We wanted to find out how to incorporate \[Amex's\] expertise into our software," said Julie O'Brien, a product manager for Microsoft Money