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Très Ribbon

Jensen Harris presents The Story of the Ribbon. 75 minutes from MIX08 about the entire Office 2007 user interface rebirth. Regarding the presentation, he’s no Steve Jobs, but I forgive him because it’s such amazing stuff.

There are interesting facts around almost every corner, like the fact that the Office team certainly knows how reviled “personalization” attempts were (toolbar collapsing + rafting, collapsible menus), a time lapse video with eye and gaze tracking of a user in 2003 and 2007 trying to find the “Find” menu item (if the 2003 version didn’t have the Benny Hill theme song, it should have), a reasonable explanation for the ‘instant search box’ to find commands not being in there (search is hard to do right in all languages and you have to make up a lot of keywords; plus it’s ‘one more way’ to find something) and a great description of the Office-wide team vs the product teams relationship pre-2007 (more or less “we think you should do this”, “okay, but we’re not going to do that, so bite me”).


  1. Some of the prototype interface concepts are quite interesting. It’s also informative to to see how much effort goes into developing ideas that don’t make it to the final product.

    By http://anoved.net/ · 2008.03.13 03:12

  2. […] Microsoft’s Jensen Harris presents a session about the design process for Office 2007’s user interface(via Jesper). […]

    By Michael Tsai - Blog - The Story of the Ribbon · 2008.03.13 15:24

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