Microsoft is trying to attract professional designers and web developers by releasing new tools to freely express yourself. In line with a series of recent changes and new business strategies, it appears that the sleeping giant has been awoken and is trying a shot gun attempt to bring down their emerging competitors. One industry in which they have been especially dorment is in web design and development, however it looks like they are trying to make a comeback. A new lineup of applications are being released by Microsoft under their new brand name “Expression” (fortunately leaving behind the much hated FrontPage product).
- Expression Web – Design tool to create modern, standards-based sites
- Expression Blend – Design tool to create engaging web-connected experiences for Windows
- Expression Design – Illustration and graphic design tool
- Expression Media – Asset management tool to visually catalog and organize all your digital assets
These products, plus a new site about design at Microsoft make it clear that Microsoft is trying to get serious about design. Clearly none of these applications are revolutionary, making it difficult for them to compete against industry favorites such as Adobe, but it will be interesting to see how much of the market they can win over. Without releasing a Mac compatible version I don’t see them going behond standard home users.