Posted by: kurtsh | May 25, 2006

COMMENTARY: Windows Live Local & “Collections”

I like this thing.  I’d give it about an 8 out of 10 right now.
Windows Live Local’s new "collections" capability gives me the ability to create a collection of places/locations that I can keep alive as a "work in progress" on the Internet and share with others.  I can enhance the list of places and everyone will be able to get the new locations when they revisit the collection.
Here is my first collection.  It’s a list of Japanese Restaurants that I’ve been sharing amongst friends and co-workers.  Being that I’m Japanese and was raised with Japanese traditions and Japanese food all my life, I like to think I’m something of a authority on the topic.
I have 5 beefs with the software however, and I’ve rolled all of these up the chain.  I’d encourage you to do the same through the Feedback site:  (
    Why is it so hard to expose comments about a location?  The creator’s comments about the location are what add value to the collection – NOT the collection of locations itself.  So what if there’s a list of geographic locations?  People will know how to get there but they won’t know why they want to go there in the first place.  Additionally, these comments should be persistent and well exposed.  I should see them when I hover over the location, or I should at least see them when I right mouse click on the location.
  2. URLs.
    Why is there no easy way to expose a URL for each location to enable people to click to jump to an online review that I’ve written or a place to find more information about the location?  This should be obvious in the same way that comments are obvious and the right-mouse menu would be the perfect place for it.
  3. New/Updated locations.
    If I update a collection, why aren’t the new items tagged as "new" – maybe even with the date/time that it was added?  My visitors need to know what’s been added since the last time they visited.  The whole point of putting this online is so that people can constantly get updated with new changes right?
  4. Zoom Out on every Addition to the Collection.
    Every time I add a new item to the collection, the map zooms out.  What a pain!
  5. Export
    How do I export my location list to something like an Excel spreadsheet?  Or an Outlook Contacts list?  Why isn’t this integration built in?
  6. Alerts.
    Why isn’t this tied into MSN Alerts?  People should be notified of when things have changed on my collection in the same way that people are notified of when my blog changes.
  7. RSS.
    Why isn’t this list an RSS feed?  This list should enable people to subscribe to it and then click on the link to see it geographically.



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