redesign leaves something to be desired … but what?

Hot on the heels of their recent print redesign, my friends over at the Indianapolis Star have just given their website a makeover. The timing, of course, strikes me as funny since my friends over at NUVO are about to unleash a redesigned website as well. (Not that I’m saying there’s any kind of connection.)

Now, I haven’t had a chance to comment on the Star‘s print redesign yet, so let me quickly say that it is almost universally good. Nothing drastic, of course — it’s the kind of thing snooty design nerds would call a “refresh” — but the overall result is a more polished, readable and practical newspaper that retains that quintessential Indianapolis Star quality of standing for nothing at all.

So how do I feel about their web redesign? In a word, ambivalent. Certainly the Star’s old Web 1.0 site was in need of more than a fresh coat of paint and this is certainly a step in the right direction … but my immediate reaction is there’s still a lot of clutter and it’s hard to know what the information hierarchy is supposed to be here. (Although I do appreciate they they’ve apparently built in some flexibility for how much real estate they give to their top story.)