UX Magazine

Defining and Informing the Complex Field of User Experience (UX)
Article No. 227 October 16, 2007

The New Newsweek.com

Newsweek magazine has launched their new site. Many smart bits throughout.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR(S)

User Profile

Howard Mann is the founder of Brickyard Partners, a business strategy agency based in Portland, OR. Prior to founding Brickyard Partners in 2001, Mann owned a premier international logistics company with over 140 Million in revenue, six U.S. offices and a global network of over 40 agents worldwide.

As that business came under severe pressure from the previous economic downturn and industry consolidation, Howard lead the company out from those treacherous times by returning to the basics that make every business great and completing 6 acquisitions that re-imagined the business so it was highly attractive to buyers. Finding that “secret sauce” did not come easily but has fueled his purpose to help other business leaders to never have to go through what he endured. 

Through real world experience and those hard times in the “trenches” of business he has learned that it is not following the latest fad, copying competitors or adding complexity that makes a business truly great. His pragmatic approach and knowing what it feels like to sit in the CEO/Owner chair is what makes his work so different and effective.

In addition to his strategy, marketing and communications work, Mann coaches a select group of entrepreneurs, CEO's and business owners. His highly focused workshops and keynotes help executive teams take aggressive action to unlock the true potential of their organizations and build remarkable businesses that endure. In good times and bad. Online and off.

Howard is a sought after speaker both in the U.S. and around the world. He writes frequently on his blog about the importance of the basics and reconnecting to the passion that too often gets lost as businesses mature.

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Comments

8
11

I have read through this article, replica handbags
replica bagsI do not understand what it meant ah

12
8

Too many organic, tab shapes — my eye feels like it is on a roller coaster. I do like the ‘TV screen’ of rotating images at the top of the page — compelling use of static photos/images. The lightbox feature on this item is also pretty cool…

12
11

This is just js/ajax overload. It’s like eating too much sugar.

They have thought the interaction through, though. Maybe they should have focused a bit more on prioritization and clarity than “bonus” ajax functions…

It all distracts from the content and makes the site seem a bit gimmicky. I mean who really needs a slider to adjust the date range of “most read articles”?

7
16

Todd and Claus, i would agree with almost everything u say, but “.. who needs a slider adjust…” is not a point once probably they came across with this solution to a users need, and if had no use for you, it could for me.

Related do Ajax, that dos not bother me, if it works fine, and in this case it does. What really should be paid more attention to is the little things like:

1.“video stream automatically” that is not good for low bandwidth users.
2. the smooth borders or “roller coasters tabs and graphic elements” on the page, is really nice, but i don´t think grouping “Home, The Magazine, International Edition” Makes sense at all.
3. it is not clear what is the difference between “lates headlines and latest newsweek.
4. in pages like “http://www.newsweek.com/id/61945”, I missed the breadcrumb, and even mistaken it with information such as “LIVING POLITICS | Howard Fineman”

Well anyway, i think the site is awesome, good team work. Sure some further readings and user testing should and i think will be done.. but it is really nice project.

9
14

My thoughts; The good:
-AJAX seems to be used well in many cases. (preview, e-mail)
-Love the story page’s big font with large leading. Very inviting. Large photos are nice, too.

The iffy:
-Those preview boxes for the stories are great (i’d argue to call them “summaries” as that’s what they are), they let me read some of the story without going to another page. But then again, I’m not going to another page. Ditching them and putting some of that content on the actual page would not only help their content-to-junk ratio but make for a simpler layout.
-It’d be really nice if the RSS feed could be autodetected in the URL bar and not just and obscure link down it the bottom right.
-They seem to have spent some time grouping like elements to reduce clutter. The most impressive is the “social networking” share. No longer are there 50 digg and twitter icons cluttering up the screen that have nothing to do with the content. — Yet as others have pointed out, there’s still conflicts like “latest headlines” and “latest newsweek”
-The “preview and comments” section beneath each entry feels superfluous in its current state. I’ve already argued to kill the preview and incorporate its content elsewhere. So why just comments? They’re not showing how many comments were made, so its not a gauge of popularity and they’re not using the area to indicate the ability to browse images or graphics or a series of articles. So, it’s a modern site I EXPECT to be able to comment, why advertise it now? You haven’t gotten me worked up over your reporting style yet.

The bad:
-All those preview “zoom” icons. They have the color of a section header and they “pop” too much, and just clutter things all to hell. And, wtf, you zoom photos, not stories.
-All those boxes look really awful when the content doesn’t fill the space. And all the shading from the boxes make me look at the left and right column, not the middle one where the stories are. There’s just too many lines, dashed, gray brown, red, smooth, hard angled. My eyes are bleeding. The brown-tan color probably could have been axed all together. — I’m not so much opposed to boxes and colors, but if a design needs them (such as this one) generally you’ve done a poor job structuring the content.
-Sometimes I click a tab and the box changes with no page refresh, and sometimes it refreshes the page and takes me to a new section.

10
11

My thoughts; The good:
-AJAX seems to be used well in many cases. (preview, e-mail)
-Love the story page’s big font with large leading. Very inviting. Large photos are nice, too.

The iffy:
-Those preview boxes for the stories are great (i’d argue to call them “summaries” as that’s what they are), they let me read some of the story without going to another page. But then again, I’m not going to another page. Ditching them and putting some of that content on the actual page would not only help their content-to-junk ratio but make for a simpler layout.
-It’d be really nice if the RSS feed could be autodetected in the URL bar and not just and obscure link down it the bottom right.
-They seem to have spent some time grouping like elements to reduce clutter. The most impressive is the “social networking” share. No longer are there 50 digg and twitter icons cluttering up the screen that have nothing to do with the content. — Yet as others have pointed out, there’s still conflicts like “latest headlines” and “latest newsweek”
-The “preview and comments” section beneath each entry feels superfluous in its current state. I’ve already argued to kill the preview and incorporate its content elsewhere. So why just comments? They’re not showing how many comments were made, so its not a gauge of popularity and they’re not using the area to indicate the ability to browse images or graphics or a series of articles. So, it’s a modern site I EXPECT to be able to comment, why advertise it now? You haven’t gotten me worked up over your reporting style yet.

The bad:
-All those preview “zoom” icons. They have the color of a section header and they “pop” too much, and just clutter things all to hell. And, wtf, you zoom photos, not stories.
-All those boxes look really awful when the content doesn’t fill the space. And all the shading from the boxes make me look at the left and right column, not the middle one where the stories are. There’s just too many lines, dashed, gray brown, red, smooth, hard angled. My eyes are bleeding. The brown-tan color probably could have been axed all together. — I’m not so much opposed to boxes and colors, but if a design needs them (such as this one) generally you’ve done a poor job structuring the content.
-Sometimes I click a tab and the box changes with no page refresh, and sometimes it refreshes the page and takes me to a new section.

10
14

Todd and Claus, i would agree with almost everything u say, but “.. who needs a slider adjust…” is not a point once probably they came across with this solution to a users need, and if had no use for you, it could for me.

Related do Ajax, that dos not bother me, if it works fine, and in this case it does. What really should be paid more attention to is the little things like:

1.“video stream automatically” that is not good for low bandwidth users.
2. the smooth borders or “roller coasters tabs and graphic elements” on the page, is really nice, but i don´t think grouping “Home, The Magazine, International Edition” Makes sense at all.
3. it is not clear what is the difference between “lates headlines and latest newsweek.
4. in pages like “http://www.newsweek.com/id/61945”, I missed the breadcrumb, and even mistaken it with information such as “LIVING POLITICS | Howard Fineman”

Well anyway, i think the site is awesome, good team work. Sure some further readings and user testing should and i think will be done.. but it is really nice project.

10
12

This is just js/ajax overload. It’s like eating too much sugar.

They have thought the interaction through, though. Maybe they should have focused a bit more on prioritization and clarity than “bonus” ajax functions…

It all distracts from the content and makes the site seem a bit gimmicky. I mean who really needs a slider to adjust the date range of “most read articles”?

12
10

Too many organic, tab shapes — my eye feels like it is on a roller coaster. I do like the ‘TV screen’ of rotating images at the top of the page — compelling use of static photos/images. The lightbox feature on this item is also pretty cool…