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Sending a final message to Microsoft about Outlook 2010

Posted by Dave Greiner on July 15, 2009 in Buzz

It’s been just shy of 3 weeks since we launched fixoutlook.org, and it’s safe to say the project has been a phenomenal success. Almost 25,000 people have joined the chorus to send a unified message to Microsoft about their lack of web standards support in Outlook 2010. On top of this, there has been considerable coverage across the web from small blogs to major news sites. We’ve even had some fantastic, thoughtful responses from another member of the Office team (who officially filed a bug about the lack of standards) and a Microsoft MVP.

To bring this great project to a close, we wanted to make sure the Outlook team had a constant reminder of just how strongly we all feel about their lack of standards support. Trending topics on Twitter come and go, we wanted something a little more permanent we could send their way.

The fixoutlook.org Mosaic

In his reply to the fixoutlook campaign, Microsoft’s William Kennedy told us that there “is no consensus” about what standards apply to email and that he’d work with the industry if a consensus arises. Luckily for us, these standards already exist. They’re called web standards.

To make sure William got the point, we figured we’d send him a “consensus” from 25,000 of us, many of who (myself included) are Outlook customers. From this idea, the fixoutlook.org mosaic was born. In a single image, it includes almost all of the 25,000 people who joined us in asking Microsoft to fix standards support in Outlook 2010.

Here’s a preview of the mosaic. You can click it for the full sized version, which is a rather large 20MB and might take a while to download.

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We’ve used the different colored avatars from everyone who contributed to spell out a final message to Microsoft. We figured saying please this time couldn’t hurt our chances.

As I write this, the 2m x 1m mosaic is just boarding a plane on it’s way to Redmond, personally addressed to Mr Kennedy on behalf of everyone who contributed.

To give you an idea of scale, here’s a shot of us holding the mosaic.

A big final thanks to everyone who helped spread the word about the importance of the fixoutlook campaign. On a more personal note, it was a pleasure to be involved from start to finish, and hopefully it will contribute to making life easier for email designers and Outlook users alike.

Update: 17 July A few clever people have taken the mosaic to a whole new level creating zoomable versions you can easily move around in.

It’s interesting to note that all 3 of these projects were built with Microsoft technology.

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