Microsoft pokes Google - Ooohhhh Pretty Colors! Wednesday, August 22nd, 2007
There are certainly plenty of marks left to make on the computing ability scorecard, but I think we’ve hit a really important milestone with computing functionality as a whole. This point becomes quite obvious to me when we look at competition. Take for instance a personal computer. A great example is the Mac and the PC. Functionality wise they are the same. You can do the same things – browse the internet, send email, word process, store data, work with graphics, etc, and with virtual operating system apps , most everything becomes multi platform.
So where does Apple and Microsoft compete for the “average home PC user”? These days it’s all about vanity! It’s the presentation of the functionally that people are comparing when they do their window(s) shopping, and we all know sex sells. The sexier the hardware gets and the prettier the software is, the more likely that Susie shopper is going to take you home, and she won’t care if you’re running on Vista or OS X.
I was further reminded of this shift when running around in Tafiti (
Though I can type “Prada” in Google and find the exact thing I am looking for, Tafiti gives it to me with a pretty red bow and some soothing eye candy instead of a long list of results jumbled together. Your search results are separated by Feeds, Web, Images, Books, and News visualized and navigated by a carousel of icons on the left, and you can save and name your individual searches be dragging them to a “glass shelf” on the right side of the screen. Expanding the categorical search results is brilliant and the presentation of those results is really slick, specifically the News and the Feeds.
It’s not entirely intuitive at first, and I wouldn’t suggest trying it in Firefox quite yet, It’s definitely not ready for prime time Mozilla. The funniest thing, is the entirely irrelevant tree view. It’s more like a stereogram that you have to stare at for a really long and are supposed to see a picture in the design but can’t quite make anything out unless you try the “averted” focus tactic. Your most relevant results are at the top of the tree, least relevant at the bottom and the tree slowly spins about on a vertical axis while the branches wave up and down as if blowing in a sweet warm search results breeze. The leaves will begin to change color and you fall comfortable to sleep while trying to find the point to all, and instead will simply prove that you really can’t see the forest through the trees.
All in all - it serves a great purpose showing off some cool ways to display and move things around with Silverlight and certainly takes a stab at Google search even though I don’t see it delivering any fatal wounds.
Tafiti means to search in Swahili.