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Preview of New MSN Hotmail 357

An anonymous reader writes "Here is a Preview of a new MSN Hotmail system, using AJAX. Currently in Beta testing." Most interesting is how the user interface more closely resembles a traditional local application. It's definitely a big step in that direction.
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Preview of New MSN Hotmail

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  • Hehe... (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:41AM (#13764729)
    See below for attempts at justifying why Gmail is still better, despite anything Microsoft throw at us!

    Come on, this is just too predictable.
    • Re:Hehe... (Score:4, Funny)

      by TooMuchEspressoGuy ( 763203 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:43AM (#13764748)
      Gmail is better because Google does no evil! And... um... they have Google Earth and stuff!

      Oh, and also, a Microsoft coder bit my sister once...

    • Re:Hehe... (Score:2, Insightful)

      by rovingeyes ( 575063 )
      There is a reason - Microsoft has a tendency to treat every user as novice to the world of computers. Result is a bloatware, which tries to do too many things for you, in of course a cute way. I bet this new version of Hotmail is not going to be much different, of course we have to see it in action; screenshots tell only so much story. I'd really hate if another one of their dogs or a pins try to act cute with me again when all I am trying to do is write a goddamn email.
      • Re:Hehe... (Score:5, Informative)

        by xtracto ( 837672 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:00AM (#13764921) Journal
        Dunno but their Start page [start.com] is quite cool, something like Netvibes but (IMHO) better. Who knows... maybe someday they will offer that service instead of the terrible MSN home page.

        BTW, where are all the ads? One of the (many) reasons for me to stop using Hotmail was the animated ads and banners. I would expect those from a porn site but not from my email account. I am sure those will be there when the service goes open.

        Oh! and on a sligthly OT note, I guess I wont move to Hotmail again... as in my University (somewhere in UK) the IT people blocked the hotmail URL because it was very dangerous hahahaah nice and lovely.
      • Re:Hehe... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by todd10k ( 889348 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:04AM (#13764949)
        There is a reason - Microsoft has a tendency to treat every user as novice to the world of computers

        Seriously, listen to what your saying. Most people are novice user's. They do not know how to untar a file, they do not know what a binary is, or how to compile. they need to learn these things. not everyone has the luxury of being born back in the 70's and growing up while computers evolved beside them.

        I dont mean to be rude, but expecting everyone to be of the same skill in operating a computer is moronic. Also, treating everyone the same is best for microsoft. they have to assume the worst about a user when they give them an operating system: that they barely know how to type, just bought it from dell, and have an AOL connection. if you have a high level of skill with a computer, then you should have the competancy to customise your copy of windows as you see fit.

        • This is precisely what GP was saying, just spun in the other direction. You can't treat all users alike. Fortunately, MOST of the features which are "good for novices" can be turned off. This is not true globally.
    • Re:Hehe... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Bogtha ( 906264 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:50AM (#13764819)
      What I'm wondering is why it took them so long. XMLHttpRequest was invented for Exchange's web access back in the 90s, wasn't it? Why wasn't Microsoft first off the block with public AJAX webmail too?
      • Re:Hehe... (Score:3, Informative)

        by PsychicX ( 866028 )
        Why didn't Google do email years earlier? Why didn't Sun, who as we know absolutely love these sorts of apps, do any AJAX apps?

        The bandwidth, connectivity, and general interest in the internet, as well as the sheer concept of something like AJAX, is relatively recent. It's only recently occurred to people to do this sort of thing at all.
        • Why didn't Google do email years earlier? Why didn't Sun, who as we know absolutely love these sorts of apps, do any AJAX apps?

          Neither of these companies, to my knowledge, were involved in webmail years ago. Microsoft have been running Hotmail for the past seven years, and had AJAX webmail built into Exchange for almost as long.

          The bandwidth, connectivity, and general interest in the internet, as well as the sheer concept of something like AJAX, is relatively recent. It's only recently occurred t

          • Re:Hehe... (Score:3, Interesting)

            by notasheep ( 220779 )
            "Basically, what I'm asking is: Microsoft already did this years ago for Exchange, why did it take so many years (and GMail's launch) for their Hotmail department to follow suit? "

            Simple, most users of OWA are corporate users. Those corporations that deploy OWA can expect their users to have a browser that can take advantage of OWA. You can't roll out a service to millions of home users until you know your customer base (or at least a good majority of them) has the tools to use the service. If you had RTFA
            • Re:Hehe... (Score:3, Interesting)

              by Bogtha ( 906264 )

              You can't roll out a service to millions of home users until you know your customer base (or at least a good majority of them) has the tools to use the service.

              I already considered and dismissed that, for two reasons.

              The fact is, you can use AJAX techniques in a completely backwards-compatible manner, so browsers that can handle it get the new interface, and browsers that can't get the traditional old Hotmail interface. Lots of people with older browsers simply isn't a factor.

              Furthermore, it's

      • Re:Hehe... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Jherek Carnelian ( 831679 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @01:09PM (#13766658)
        Why wasn't Microsoft first off the block with public AJAX webmail too?


        Or the lack of it.

        Until Gmail came along and sexed up the rather stagnant freemail market, MS was happy to keep doing the bare minimum to keep going. See mozilla vs internet-explorer for a similar situation.
    • Can't say for sure whether gmail is still better, but I predict that it will be. Why? Because I got spam messages in my hotmail account before I even used it for anything, while gmail does a stellar job of filtering out the junk in my inbox.

      They can make the user interface as nifty as they like, but it won't solve the problem of why I stopped using Hotmail in the first place.
      • Hrrmmm, lemme guess. Your hotmail account was something like renderhead@hotmail.com. It doesn't take a genius to realize that most people use their usernames as ther free email addy's.

        How would you have Microsoft stop that? Your choice in email addresses is probably what made you a spam target in the first place, not the fact that it was Hotmail.

        Be accountable.

    • Easy... (Score:3, Informative)

      by VP ( 32928 )
      Gmail is better, because it has great localization/internationalization (including, for example, a Bulgarian spellchecker)...
    • Well, we like GMail so much because before it came out, Hotmail Only gave us 2 Megs of space. And pundits like you claimed that 2 Megs are perfectly enough for anyone. All of a sudden, Google gives us a 1000 times more space and pretty well changes the way some of us think about email, customer service, and lack of Microsoft innovation.

      If I decided to raise your salary to a 1000 times of what it is now, I think you'd be a lot more satisfied with me, than with your current employer.

      Also free POP3 is useful a
    • Re:Hehe... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Chyeld ( 713439 ) <chyeld@gm[ ].com ['ail' in gap]> on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:33AM (#13765242)
      Well, I realize it was tounge in cheek, but here's my short list:

      1. Gmailstaff doesn't spam me with messages pimping all those features in GSN that I'm missing out on.
      2. My Gmail account won't go away if I don't check it for a month.
      3. My Gmail account doesn't use a cruddy, intrusive authentication system like Passport.
      4. My Gmail account rarely has spam in it.
    • Re:Hehe... (Score:3, Interesting)

      I don't understand this push to make web based email clients more like email clients on the desktop, as though that is some lofty goal. The only reason I use gmail is because I tried it out, and loved the fact that it wasn't like my desktop email client. I've never used a mail client I liked, and I was thrilled that Google actually took a step back and attempted to reinvent the wheel. I don't use gmail because it is web based, I use it because I prefer its interface.

      That said, I'm not saying everything
  • by GreyWolf3000 ( 468618 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:43AM (#13764749) Journal
    Microsoft makes its money selling windows and office. I don't see that changing because of gmail. This seems more like a pissing contest than anything else.

    I suppose you could make the argument that if in the future software becomes more web-based, it's important to establish as much brand support as possible, because most people will follow the logos they feel more comfortable with.

    • by ZachPruckowski ( 918562 ) <zachary.pruckowski@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:12AM (#13765042)
      Microsoft makes its money selling windows and office. I don't see that changing because of gmail. This seems more like a pissing contest than anything else.

      Yeah, especially considering they are fighting them on size. Not only are they going 2 gig, but according to the article, you can ask for more. (Kahuna does offer a hefty 2 GB inbox...non-abusive users would be able to go above 2 GB without paying for the privilege.).

      Personally, I almost feel like this is a result of Google moving to the desktop. MS didn't seem to react to the idea of a few companies making a lot of money on the Internet, but I think Google's expansion into, well, everything, worries them. I think the purpose of this is to put Google on the defensive.

      I'm not a google fanboy, and I don't hate MS so much that I wouldn't use their stuff if it was the best choice. I think that the two of them competing is great, because I'll wind up with better stuff.
    • There are billions to be made from a set of portals thanks to advertising. Having a monopoly on the desktop helps tremendously in that direction.
      IE was just that, a way for MS to generate traffic, thus revenue, on MSN.
      A new Hotmail will be there just to keep users inside the MS sites loop. Exactly what google is doing with their 10s of services.
    • Currently, MS's development process for hosted apps (MSN, Hotmail, MSN Search, etc.) is moving faster than for PC-based apps and OSes (Windows, Office, etc.).

      It's no secret that MS's product management are using the hosted apps as experiments to see in which direction to take their other applicatons. Go take a tour of the Zimbra email client [zimbra.com] and see if you don't think it's striking fear into the hearts of MS's Exchange/Outlook product managers. Zimbra's not just different--it's obviously superior. MS ne

  • by 8127972 ( 73495 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:44AM (#13764756)
    ..... How tied is this to IE, or by some miracle will it behave exactly the same under other browsers (Firefox, Opera, etc.)?

    The article doesn't seem to give any insight on this.
    • ..... How tied is this to IE, or by some miracle will it behave exactly the same under other browsers (Firefox, Opera, etc.)?

      If you remember GMail, when it was first released, didn't have very good support for other browsers but over time they worked on support for them.

      So, even if this *Beta* doesn't have support and the first public release doesn't either, it doesn't mean that in the future they won't.

      I'm not holding my breath though.
    • They covered this on c|Net yesterday and they said that you have to use Internet Explorer. I'm sure it won't be long before Firefox or Opera is compatible but it is just another attempt by Microsoft to *require* users to use Microsoft applications (or you can always switch to another email service). I don't mind Microsoft that much and this reworked Hotmail looks pretty good and has nice features, but I don't want to be tied to one browser.
    • I have a free account. The size is 250MB and can access Hotmail via Outlook Express using http mail protocol.
  • by plover ( 150551 ) * on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:44AM (#13764762) Homepage Journal
    TFA writes: Kahuna is a huge improvement over Hotmail [...] and GMail, the Google-owned service with which it is clearly competing.

    Wow, I have no idea where he pulled the "huge improvement over GMail" from. This HotMailEx just seems to be GMail with an annoying entry portal page that keeps you from your mail.

    Unless he was talking about how great it is to have a right click menu. Wow, yeah, that's big.

    • by brunes69 ( 86786 ) <slashdot@keirs[ ]d.org ['tea' in gap]> on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:52AM (#13764845) Homepage
      .. and all Firefox users will get dumped into the old clunky interface.

      Nevermind the fact that Google have proven it is trivial to make a useable dynamic interface work in most major browsers.

      • by Bogtha ( 906264 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:19AM (#13765099)

        Nevermind the fact that Google have proven it is trivial to make a useable dynamic interface work in most major browsers.

        Actually, Google proved that it is trivial to make browsers implement the features you want if only you generate enough buzz for a web application that requires them. GMail didn't work in Opera, Safari or Konqueror when it was first launched, but they soon implemented XMLHttpRequest when all the Internet Explorer and Firefox users were talking about how good it was.

        Don't equate "GMail works in most popular browsers" with "Google worked to make GMail compatible". It's more a case of "Google made it work in two browsers and forced the other browser vendors to scramble to catch up by implementing a non-standard Javascript/ActiveX object".

        • A bit false... (Score:3, Informative)

          by brunes69 ( 86786 )
          Safari already had an XmlHttpRequest object when GMail launched. In fact GMail worked if you did UserAgent spoofing. It just was not officially supported.

          And the XMLHttpRequest object was being written in Konqueror before GMail existed. GMail probably helped push it along though.

    • Well, the naming of the site, "SuperSite for Windows" should given people a clue as to the bias. Further poking around the site (read: going to the homepage) shows that the site pretty much discusses only Microsoft upcoming products, from Windows to Xbox360. I'm not insulting the site, or saying it's wrong about this Hotmail update, just that the site is biased in favor of MS, and we need to look at it from that angle.
    • Actually, some right click support wouldn't be a bad addition to g-mail. They already use a dro-down for their actions list.
      The main thing I think needs a change are the check boxes. They may be tried and true but I think its time to retire them. There needs to be a simple click to select, shift+click to multiple select.
      And for god sake, let me organize my contacts into lists!

      As far as which is better, any comparison that misses the "conversation view" analogy in Gmail is not getting the whole picture.

  • It looks nice.

    Still, by far the nicest looking web-mail interface I've seen is:
    http://www.goowy.com/ [goowy.com]
  • SPAM... (Score:3, Funny)

    by vchoy ( 134429 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:46AM (#13764776)
    ...never looked sooo good.
    • ...never looked sooo good.

      Especially when top-posted and sent in quoted-printable, format-flowed, yada-yada format with an advertising footer.
  • Despite everything, it looks quite impressive... almost as good as OWA2003, which is saying a lot.
  • Like in gmail? That is a huge plas and keeps my inbox much cleaner. The MSN looks nice... but still doesn't have what I want/need.
  • by beforewisdom ( 729725 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:48AM (#13764801)
    I see this as a validation of biodiversity and competition. Microsoft( or yahoo ) never would have spiffed up their web mail interfaces without pressure from competition.
  • Looks Fine To Me (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TheFlyingGoat ( 161967 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:48AM (#13764805) Homepage Journal
    I have a Gmail account and use it on occassion when I don't want to use my normal POP3 account. I like some things about Gmail and don't like others. Frankly, I think the comments people post about how Gmail, Yahoo mail, etc are kind of pointless, since people will just use whatever interface they prefer. I'll stick with Gmail since I use webmail so infrequently it makes no sense to change to something else right now.

    Based on the screenshots, it looks like MS has done some pretty cool stuff with this interface. I didn't spend time reading the article, but it seems like some of the features would be hard to implement perfectly across many different browsers (drag-drop support, right-click support). However, if people want to use Firefox or Opera, they have Gmail as an option for web mail.

    MS isn't forcing this service on anybody, and I'm not sure if there's any way they could. So, it's a good thing then. It's got some interesting features that the other webmail services don't have, and as such it's fostering competition. Slashdotters like to talk about having choices... well, this is just one more choice to choose from.

    If you don't like it, don't use it.
    • What bugs the crap out of me is GMail at work. It for some reason hangs(on the red "loading" label) when I choose certain emails(like ones in my spam folder), or try to set up new rules. Why would it do this at work, but not at home? I thought it was through port 80 all the way.
  • by mykdavies ( 1369 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:49AM (#13764815)
    In light of the previous thread about annoying adverts, I particularly like the feature where you can't actually see the body of the email because there are too many adverts on the page (eg see http://www.winsupersite.com/images/reviews/mail_be ta_preview_05.jpg [winsupersite.com])
  • Dear Mr Microsoft (Score:5, Informative)

    by Dam's ( 921393 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:50AM (#13764828)
    Want to make a good webmail ?

    then :
    - no ads every two pixels
    - having servers not slow as hell
    - having the possibility to send attachements not seen at virus everytime !!
    - stop sending your fucking newsletter that I don't want to see !! (or make it blockable !!)
    - more space ?
    • - having servers not slow as hell

      AJAX actually helps with this.

      For instance, when moving an email from your inbox to another folder, traditional webmail has to submit the change, and have the server perform the operation, generate a whole new page (i.e. recalculate the inbox display), and send it back to the browser.

      AJAX webmail simply submits the change, removes the email from the current page with client-side Javascript, and updates the inbox with the single email that appears at the bottom (a

    • - stop sending your fucking newsletter that I don't want to see !! (or make it blockable !!)

      i just added them to my ignore list. Fixed the newletter problem.
  • I don't like the monotonous shading, how about a black inbox with green letters?
  • What I'd like to see is, how that thing works with Firefox and Opera.
    • " What I'd like to see is, how that thing works with Firefox and Opera."

      Yes, I'd like to be able to see things that don't exist, too.

      Kahuna only works with IE browsers.

      The Big Kahuna is a wipeout.
  • This looks like OWA included with Exchange 2003, but with ads. I'm sure it's virtually the same code.
  • Oh the Irony (Score:5, Interesting)

    by caseih ( 160668 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:52AM (#13764848)
    This next-generation kahuna interface makes extensive use of CSS, something IE totally sucks at. I would be interested to hear what the developers have to say about using CSS and these other technologies in IE and compared to Firefox. Pretty much every major web development house I know of develops on Firefox first, then hacks in the crap needed to make it run on IE. MS's team would obviously do it in reverse. I'd love to hear their comments on browser standards and IE 7's compliance with the standards that make this type of web application possible.
  • by McLuke ( 603959 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:53AM (#13764850)
    And how long will it take for MSN to change those 'Mail Beta Tip #x' graphics into obnoxious flash ads? My guess: one week after it exits beta.
  • by ShyGuy91284 ( 701108 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @09:56AM (#13764881)
    No free POP3 access? Then I don't care. And (not to sound like a billboard) if I'm going to pay X a year for an email address, I'd much rather pay about the same to godaddy for a domain and email account in which I have an entire domain at my disposal.
  • by alexhs ( 877055 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:01AM (#13764931) Homepage Journal
    I think that the "messages" column, combined with the folders column (Inbox,...) eats too much width.

    Oh, and the cancel button is too close to "attach" drop-down in the compose mode. Especially in the compose mode : now you've written a long message and want to attach some file... oops !

    Also I hope (naively ?) that those big banners on the top and left are only in the beta version.

    About the name (mail^beta) : Does that mean that MS trademarked the "mail" word ? Are they voluntarily mimicking Google (sorry, "innovating" :) ) by the use of that "beta" ? :)
    • " I think that the "messages" column, combined with the folders column (Inbox,...) eats too much width."

      I'm pretty sure that will be customizable. If UI is not, then Kahuna has big problems.

      "Oh, and the cancel button is too close to "attach" drop-down in the compose mode. Especially in the compose mode : now you've written a long message and want to attach some file... oops !"

      Cancel will require positive confirmation, just like it does in other email apps.

      "Also I hope (naively ?) that those big b
  • It's saddening to see that the massive overhead of a big firm makes it so difficult to come up with a quick response. We're living in a fast world and while Google has the lightweight advantage over biggies like MS. The comment about things being rolled out in phases explains that they have too much on their plate and no wonders all the disgruntled developers are whining all over the net and walking away as well. I'm not sure when kahuna will be out. I've moved over to Gmail long ago (like many many othe
    • lightweight?

      Google has about 4500 employees, Microsoft has 15000. I don't see how 4500 employees makes a company "lightweight". I suppose, it's not the size that matters, it's how you use it:-)
  • by Hollins ( 83264 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:03AM (#13764940) Homepage
    All the screen-shots show a cluttered interface with giant, full-colored banners at the top and right side. Currently, the banners feature links to provide feedback for Hotmail beta. However, they're complete with cheesy stock photos of happy office people, so you get a good idea of how this app will look when MS starts selling this real estate for flash-based ads.

    I switched to gmail a few months ago and it's taken me awhile to adjust to their tag and search paradigm. However, once I got over the illusion of control that comes from tediously sorting mail into folders and learned to rely on search for finding old messages, I became amazed by how much time I used to spend on administrative overhead for emailt. I find myself tagging fewer and fewer messages now. I just dump them into the archive, and seldom have more than five messages in my inbox. Finding old stuff with couple of search terms works beautifully, and replies I receive for ongoing conversations cause the entire conversation to re-appear in the inbox. It works very, very well. I read and respond to email faster as a result, also.

    My biggest gripes with GMail is their poor contact management, but it's been worth the hassle. Also, they've yet to implement a couple of fundamental capabilities, like adding a 'mark as read' action to filters.

    This way of dealing with email was hard to get used to, but turned out to be very liberating.
  • Switch? (Score:5, Funny)

    by milimetric ( 840694 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:04AM (#13764948) Journal
    "On the other hand, it's still early in Kahuna's development, and I don't recommend that anyone switch their production email account over to this service quite yet"

    Hahaha, yeah right, if I have ANY alternatives to the HORRIBLE webmail interface that hotmail is right now, I'll take it, even if it's worse. You know why? Cause it can't get any worse, it can only wrap around and become better.
  • Ugh, I only have a hotmail account in order use MSN.. They changed their policies so that if you didn't log in for 45 days all your old mail got deleted. Wonderful. And being so stingy over two megabytes of disk space. Heh.
  • YAH! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by michaelzhao ( 801080 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:05AM (#13764961)
    More disposable spam accounts!

    But seriously, the new release of MSN Hotmail is meant to compete with Google's Gmail. It probably won't succeed either. The reason? Branding. Hotmail is already known as a cheap e-mail account with little storage space and restrictive rules of how often you must check your e-mail. With lack of archiving features and searchable features in the current Hotmail, many people have a bad taste.

    Microsoft may try to make a new Hotmail, but the corporate branding simple isn't there. My prediction is that they will launch into an expensive advertisment campaign to push Hotmail or even force users to use Hotmail more than they do now by integrating Hotmail with other Microsoft software.
  • ok, its not because this is M$ or something, but what exactly is the fuss around those screenshots?
    doesnt seem to have anything really new and innovative (go figure).
    And that 3 column message-view will definetly suck...
  • Looks very promising. Hmmn, Hawaiian week at MS, then. I hope that Microsoft end up making an extremely good email client from Kahuna. It's not in anyone's interest for it to be a poor client. If Kahuna is good then the competition - Google, Yahoo, etc. - will be obliged to up their game. I guess an important question will be whether these new-generation clients are easy to use in Internet cafes and other public access sites, which often have dubious screens, crappy mice and clunky machines. They won't be s
  • I'm curious if AJAX sites work well over dial-up or dsl connections at the margins of the service area. Lots of developers have broadband connections and may not take into account what the experience is like for people who are still stuck on slow connections. Google Maps obviously won't fly and nobody would expect it to. But what's gmail like over broadband?

    Is there some utility that can clamp your broadband connection so you can test your work as if you were using it from a slow connection?

    I use Excel qui
  • Most interesting is how the user interface more closely resembles a traditional local application. It's definitely a big step in that direction.

    Coincidentally a step in the direction of their other webmail offering: exchange server/outlook webmail [wpi.edu].
  • Microsoft is showing the world that you can have powerful applications in a browser. With all the talks about a webicized office suite which they are scared of this only shows that soon enough we'll have such a thing. MS is between a rock and a hard plate. They can't go on stiffling innovation on the web side of things and whenever they show off web technology it makes people realize more and more that they shouldn't be tied down to their OS.
  • by dantheman82 ( 765429 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:18AM (#13765093) Homepage
    why not create a temp Hotmail account and sign up for a beta [ignia.com]? I'd like to test the new beta with Firefox (and Adblock on) and post my results. It might work well...or not (primarily depending on which team was working on it).
  • by drew ( 2081 )
    Looks to me like nothing more than a minor update to Outlook Web Access. If you like using Outlook, that's probably a good thing. If not....

    Or, as a conversation at my job went not long after I started here:
    Coworker: John down in ops told me they just upgraded to the newest version of OWA on our Exchange server. According to him, it's almost exactly the same as actually using Outlook locally.
    Me: Wait, is that supposed to be a feature?
  • by GoGoGadgetFeet ( 912160 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:20AM (#13765109)
    It was bad enough when they started putting IE inside Outlook windows. Now they've managed to put Outlook inside IE. Fantastic...
  • Anyone have any info on IMAP/SSL support? Webmail is nice, but being able to use Thunderbird/Mail.app/Outlook Express (ugh) is what really makes these free/cheap services nice for Grandma.
  • Lets just wait and see if Hotmail still thinks it makes sense to:
    1. Throw out all your received mail after 30 days unless you jump through hoops. No setting to keep it anywhere.
    2. Throw out all your sent mail immediately unless you check a box each and every time. No setting to keep it anywhere.

    Hotmail is a joke as far as a real mail system is concerned. How could anyone take that seriously?
    The only thing they have done that is good is stripping the active content, web bugs and blinking graphics
    • 1. Hotmail does not throw out mail after 30 days. I've got mail from 1999 in my inbox still with no default change I recall making.

      2. Do some research, all sent items are saved in the new Hotmail. Yahoo used to be the same way.

      I hate when anti-Microsoft zealots let loose without any regard to what makes sense. Some 200 million Hotmail accounts. If one in 10 is active, that's still 20 million users. They don't have a compelling need to switch. The new hotmail looks AWESOME. It's been three years since
  • AJAX help requested (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SamSeaborn ( 724276 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @10:36AM (#13765274)
    Looking at the screen shots, they have sophisticated functionality like drag-and-drag built into this web app.

    Can anyone provide a link to a site that describes how to implement these kind of features with AJAX? Also, an explanation of how Google Maps uses AJAX would be great too.

    Any info is greatly appreciated!

  • ... not. What Slashdot user would use HotMail?! I mean really.
  • by ChocoBean ( 890202 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @11:04AM (#13765541)

    So it looks slightly cleaner. What's with those ugly picture ads still? So you can drag and drop email into folders. Big frakkin' deal: Gmail automatically sorts my mail into folders for me without me having to drag them. It has an info bar that's supposed to protect me from phishing, spam and virus attachments? Well woop-dee-frakkin'-doo, I still think I'd have to block all mail from everyone I didn't manually add to my list if their filter isn't much, much much better. Etc etc etc.

    This really reminds me of your stereotypical "ex-boyfriend". He had been a rather horrid human being, but I stuck with him for a while, out of past affection. The relationship keeps getting worse and worse. Until finally I met someone better who gets all the basics of a relationship right before showing me anything "fancy".

    The new guy didn't bug me with crap, responds to what I need faster, present interesting information/messages to me in a clearer way, and even come up with a few surprises I didn't know was capable for a boyfriend. So months and even years later, the ex comes back and tells me he's changed. That he does this and that now. That he "is the rebirth of " boyfriend-dom.


    No, really, I'm not bitter...

  • by fzammett ( 255288 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @11:18AM (#13765704) Homepage
    http://patcavit.com/2005/09/14/y-mail-beta-impress ions/ [patcavit.com]

    Looks VERY sharp.

    Now, which one wins on FUNCTIONALITY? Dunno. That's obviously what matters most, but if we're going to talk about which looks most desktop-like, I think Yahoo! takes the crown, for now.
  • by macemoneta ( 154740 ) on Tuesday October 11, 2005 @12:30PM (#13766344) Homepage
    The Open Source Zimbra [zimbra.com] AJAX email server/client is news. When MSN develops a commercial application, that's just an advertisement. Well, I guess you can use it as a confirmation that it's the direction email is going, since commercial vendors are deploying the technologies.

"Spock, did you see the looks on their faces?" "Yes, Captain, a sort of vacant contentment."