Windows Developer Center Updates for 02/18/2011

This week, I published a blog post on Windows Touch: 3D Manipulation and Custom Gestures in C++.  In that post I covered some interesting nuances with WIndows Touch that Reed Townsend showcased at PDC 2009.  The first key point was creating a "WM_TOUCH message sliding window" which averages touch messages to give a smoother touch experience in some cases.  A second key point was creating custom gestures, in the case of the sample, the gesture was a two-finger tap.  If you're interested in learning more about creating touch-enabled experiences in Windows check out that post, also you might want to check out my post from the last week, Creating Touch Control Frameworks in C++, as well as the brand new Windows Touch Guidance Whitepaper.

Last week, I took a self-critical view at the site I manage, the Windows Developer center, and it certainly ruffled some feathers within my team. There's a really fun allegory that I like to use when thinking about this.  A couple travels over to their friend's house in the afternoon.  The host asks them if they would like some tea.  The man says, "Piping hot please," and the woman says, "Iced."  The host mixes the two requests and gives both his guests some lukewarm tea which neither likes. With that in mind,  I started with some analysis of the existing site content.  The following image shows the homepage for the Windows Client Developer Center with what I view as marketing / mixed marketing and developer guidance content marked in red (the lukewarm tea), getting started content marked in orange, and pure developer resources marked in green.

 As you can see, roughly half of the page content is lukewarm tea which begins to explain how site visitors keep dropping off when they make it to our pages.  The following graph shows a heatmap of where visitors are going once they get into the site.  The top 5 areas for clicking are highlighted with yellow div boxes.

Many visitors are jumping right into the developer resources but many others are jumping into the lukewarm content.  I have a hunch that when people get into the content that's not clearly developer or marketer, they will leave the site and be hesitant to return.

That pretty much sums it up for the week, hope you all have a good weekend! 

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