Mozilla Design Challenge Winners Announced

Jul 21, 2009

The Mozilla Labs Design Challenge competition was looking for new possibilities for browser tab design that was getting somewhat long in the tooth over the years. The winners of the challenge have now been announced.

Honors for Best in Class were awarded in four categories at the Mozilla Design Challenge Summer 09 that had the theme "Reinventing Tabs in the Browser":

  • Innovation -- TabViz
  • Execution -- Collapsible Tab Groups
  • Interaction -- Wave Concept
  • Producible -- FaviTabs

A fifth People Choice award went to the solution with the most votes from the wider community -- CubeZilla.

Screenshot Tabviz
TabViz took first place in the Innovation category.

TabViz, voted the most innovative from Liz Blankenship, Jakob Hilden and Kerry Kao from the University of Michigan, visualizes tabs as a radial hierarchy of opened pages and subpages in the left bottom corner of the browser.

Winner of the Execution category, Collapsible Tab Groups from Martin Polley of Intel in Haifa, Israel, orders a resizable vertical stack of open window tabs on the left side of the screen. The tabs can be grouped by category, collapsed and highlighted for changes. The Interaction category was quite convincingly won by the team of Darby Thomas, Danielle Kanasatab and Alex Mattice for Wave Concept to balance browser performance, tidiness and convenience using tiny chronological thumbnails called "wavelets," grouping them by domain name and splitting screens without a need to scroll.

The Producible category went to FaviTabs from designer Grady Kelly that concentrates on the favicons in each tab and expands and time-lines them in drawers.

Screenshot Favitabs
Favitabs in their expanded view.

CubeZilla, developed by a team led by Faber Ludens, won the People Choice award. The application displays the Web pages on a rotatable Rubik Cube and includes a 3D holographic interface. All the projects are described and some have mockups and videos on the Design Challenge webpage.

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