Horizontal in a vertical world

weather.com, the Weather Channel’s site, recently changed their format and appearance. One of the more significant changes was to move from a horizontal layout of their 10 day forecast to a vertical layout (as seen below):

The only problem is that the designers never considered that we’re living in a horizontal screen world. Thanks to Apple, nearly all laptops and now most desktops have monitors (or screens) with a horizontal perspective.

It used to be that I could look at the weather for all 10 days easily on my screen… without scrolling. Now, with my horizontal oriented screens, I have to scroll up and down, and I can’t see all 10 days at once.

Generally speaking, I’ve never understood why monitors went to the horizontal aspect. I realize movies fit the ratio, but nearly every other thing one does with a computer is vertical in nature.

Word documents are nearly always vertical. Excel spreadsheets are often vertical. Design work is vertical, more often than not.

If the computer screen were really optimized for a computer user, they would be taller and thinner.

I don’t have much background on how the DVD and streaming video viewer won out over the practical computer user, but I can’t help but wonder if they made laptops that gave you a choice in screen orientation which one would sell more. Or even if one sold more than the other, would the buyers segment themselves as efficiently as I think they might?

There are some free standing monitors that one can turn on their side, but I’ve not seen a laptop that offered something similar. If there was, I’d be inclined to own that over my current home machines. Which would you prefer?

– My name is Jon Friesch, and I wish I could see this all on one screen.

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