Bye-bye, FrontPage in New Office, Says Microsoft
Posted by Dennis O'Reilly
Wednesday, February 15, 2006, 09:01 PM (PST)
Microsoft will close the book on its FrontPage Web-design program with the release of Office 2007, formerly known as Office 12, late this year.
Microsoft acquired FrontPage in the mid-1990s, and it soon outdistanced Adobe's PageMill and other popular low-cost what-you-see-is-what-you-get Web-creation tools.
FrontPage does serve as the foundation for two different Web-design programs: SharePoint Designer 2007, which is intended for organizations using the SharePoint server-based Web-development platform; and Expression Web Designer, which appears to be outside of the Office application family (it isn't included in any of the Office 2007 bundles, nor is it listed as a standalone Office app the way Project and Visio have been and will continue to be in the new release).
Two New Apps
Two other new apps debut with Office 2007: The Microsoft Groove 2007 collaboration program (formerly Groove Virtual Office); and Office Communicator Web Access, which enterprises use to secure instant messaging.
In fact, most of the new and enhanced features in Office 2007 appear to be designed for corporate IT departments. But then, the same was true of Office 2003, and Office XP, and Office 2000.
Apart from a little mixing and matching of the various Office 2007 versions (Student and Teacher loses Outlook but gains OneNote, for example), few people outside of the IT department will notice many changes. That is, until they open Word, Excel, PowerPoint, or one of their other much-used apps and see the new "ribbon" panel that replaces most toolbars and menus.
But those surprises await the release of the first public Office 2007 beta, which is still a couple of months away.