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Comment on Designing search for the Start screen blog

    General discussion

  • This is a response to the following blog post from Steven Sinofsky:

    http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2011/10/18/designing-search-for-the-start-screen.aspx

    Steven: Part of the reason why the Start bar is so successful is that it is always visible.  By forcing users to return to the desktop (now called the Start screen), you're burying functionality and turning a simple one-step process into a more complicated two-step process. 

    Also, have you given any real thought to how you're going to handle the discoverability issue?  Yes, I realize that you said that users "serendipitously" discover search, but I doubt very many people would expect to just start typing on the desktop to launch search. 

    Go to any major web site (Amazon, Facebook, YouTube, eBay, Wikpedia, etc.)  None of them work this way.  Not one.  They all have dedicated search boxes.  Most likely, users are going to scan through all the live tiles until the find the Search tile.  And if they can't find the Search tile, they'll give up in frustration. 

    At the very least, Microsoft should add a Search tile to the Start screen.  This will make it easy for users to figure out how to get to search.  At least until users figure out they can just type at the start screen.

    Tuesday, October 18, 2011 9:59 PM