Friday, December 15th, 2006 is updated

Category: Microsoft, Showcase

Microsoft has updated their main homepage and it has a new navigation style that is very dhtml.

When you click on the right sidebar (or search) results popup in an inline div that you can sort and play with.


Posted by Dion Almaer at 3:50 pm

3.3 rating from 205 votes


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Um…. why? This seems like a great example of something done just because it’s “cool.”

The the thumbnail view is just the detail with slightly bigger pictures and no description. The list view is the same as detail, just without pictures.

And no sorting that I see (not that it would be helpful on these short lists).

Comment by Erik — December 15, 2006

@Erik, I would guess the motivation is more of a image thing that adding functionality. Maybe they are trying to show that Microsoft is a cutting edge company because they use cutting edge technology.

I do like how they have managed to cram a lot of information on to the home page without making it cluttered and confusion.

Comment by Sam Hennessy — December 15, 2006

And yet it still doesn’t validate

Comment by Duncan Beevers — December 15, 2006

That new homepage is pretty slick actually. Well designed, whether it validates or not, it still does look good.

Comment by Andy Kant — December 15, 2006

I’d say the design could be better yet. It feels kinda “airy”.

Comment by Andy — December 15, 2006

That’s awful. It’s like Crystal Pepsi, in web form.

Comment by Brian — December 15, 2006

I like it, very slick. and works well in firefox unlike some of there newer web apps … ie hotmail live.

Comment by Dougal — December 15, 2006

Hmm something new from Microsoft…who would have thought everyone would immediately begin bashing?

Comment by Will Sahatdjian — December 15, 2006

no way….a dHTML page from MS that actually works in firefox!

Comment by Shawn — December 15, 2006

sry, I must bring this up…notice how that’s the only page that actually complies to standards (everything else doesn’t display right in firefox)

Comment by Shawn — December 15, 2006

It looks okay – they just copied the greybox technique and made three “views” for it.

Creativity: 2
Implementation: 8

Comment by Alex — December 16, 2006

not bad, visually… but it lags like hell on my computer for some reason, while moo.fx, scriptaculous, etc do not lag at all. also, like someone else noted, only the front page sports their “new, customer-requested navigation” whereas all the rest of the kazillion pages on their site have the old left-nav.

dont wanna fall in that MS bashing category, but honestly i think they should focus more on making their products better and not so much on how cool their homepage looks, imo

Comment by Corporal Max Sterling — December 16, 2006

It’s amazing how Microsoft can get thier works to a new level of incompetence. I just can’t understand why they don’t create a nice and valid web site. Beauty and validaty are not incompatible, beauty mean valid and valid mean beauty. They still don’t understand that.

Comment by Vincent — December 16, 2006

First impressions from a design and usability perspective, this isn’t bad at all. I particularly like the way the main body content changes on rolling over the left hand links. My first impressions are often wide of the mark but its a fair 7 out of 10 on first view. Validation isn’t the be all and end all, its an ideal not an imperative. I’m pretty fussy about validating my own pages, but only because I’m anal! I don’t expect it from Microsoft.

Comment by smrimell — December 16, 2006

well it looks better than the apple homepage…

Comment by mihd — December 16, 2006

They have the size of their “modality mask” wrong when the “About Microsoft” divwindow is up. It’s created to the depth of the viewport, not the depth of the document. Scroll up and things become clickable. It looks weird.

Comment by Animal — December 16, 2006

The first thing that I see when I visit the page with IE6 is a JS error and the design is not correct – the same problem on This is ridiculous, they don’t support their own browsers. They should add a “get firefox” button. Probably IE7 supports the site correctly, but it’s an IE and not Firefox. Anyway, Opera is supported partially.
The left hand menu could be made better. It’s better to click and not hover an item to see further information.

Fazit: They still don’t support their own products and still don’t know how to mark up and design in a standard compliant way.

Comment by Andi K — December 16, 2006

well it looks better than the apple homepage…

Well, it looks better than the tabs at the top of the Apple site. That shit is years old and hideous. But the rest of Apple’s site is generally very clean and attractive, design-wise, in my opinion.

Comment by Trevor — December 16, 2006

appears to work in opera – – I’m very suprised – – though for all i know half the content is missing.

Comment by Brenda — December 16, 2006

About you guys pointing out it doesn’t validate. So what? Who gives a F**K? Since when are websites judged based on if they validate or not?

Google, Yahoo, Ajaxian, Wikipedia, YouTube etc all don’t validate. And nobody cares. They are still good websites.

Ah yeah, Duncan Beaver, you pointing out that still doesn’t valite, your own homepage doesn’t validate….

Comment by José Jeria — December 17, 2006

Intresting thing is that it works on FireFox :-)

Comment by Adnan Siddiqi — December 18, 2006

Not bad.

But 112 warnings by w3c validator, no errors.

Mainly about & -> & no widths with images and lots of empty spans

Comment by wroxbox — December 18, 2006

Oh come on now … if the page validated, it wouldn’t work in their own browser! ;)

Personally, I don’t give a rats butt about Microsoft’s homepage. They could go offline entirely and I’d never notice.

Comment by DigitaLink — December 18, 2006

@ Adnan: Better working than in IE 6!

Comment by Andi K — December 19, 2006

well, what i can say… it’s buggy :( try to open popup in FF and scroll down, you’ll see where shadow div ends. I can’t believe they have such dumb dhtml programmers

Comment by gram — December 19, 2006

What? No “Beta” next to their logo. I thought that was a standard for Web 2.0 sites! They may have a clean, updated site, but the usability is horrible.

“OK…let’s place the main navigation on the right like bloggers and in a box that looks like an ad. This should draw all the cool kids attention.” Come on!! I’ll admit….it took me awhile before I found it since I automatically block out advert columns. Sometimes blazing a new trail gets you burned.

Comment by Brian — December 21, 2006

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