Tafiti.com Microsoft Uses Silverlight to Make Search Prettier, but No More Useful

Tafiti is Swahili for search, but how that applies the way Live.com Search was wrapped in Silverlight is beyond me.  As an Interface demo, is it is reasonably cool showing you what you could do with Silverlight, but as a practical web application it is a non-starter. 

You get the same results you would from Live.com, in a pretty interface that loads slowly, and requires you to make changes to your browser so that it can us pop-ups.

image

Which maybe I could live with but the Scroll wheel on my mouse won’t scroll the page, meaning I have to do a lot more mousing to get where I’d want to be on the page. 

While the Image search is interesting just because it shows that you can pull images from anywhere into your Silverlight application, it brought my beefy laptop to its knees causing my IE to show 85% CPU usage, and causing my mouse to lag.

I guess my take away is that Silverlight is a powerful tool for building any type of UI you want, but much like the early days of flash you have to pay attention that you aren’t using it just to use it.  This demo is much like Ms. Dewey, Cool for 5 minutes but not what you hope search will evolve to be.