We had to make a bit of room at the top of the page to introduce the new Media Zone and improved navigation bar, so we've changed how a few things work:
At first you might think the new version of BBC Homepage seems pretty familiar, with its modular customisable layout. But take a closer look and you'll notice we've made a number of significant improvements as described above.
Most of the work we've done for this update of the BBC Homepage has been to move the site to a new technical architecture. Back in May 2008 the BBC announced plans to build a new service-oriented architecture, to help us scale our products and services, keep up with ever evolving web technologies and to deliver new features more quickly. The BBC Homepage is one of our first sites to be moved to this new infrastructure.
The new navigation bar will appear across the entire BBC web site - not just the homepage. In order to fit the most popular links onto the navigation bar and allow for consistency across all BBC web sites, we had to keep its overall size down. As a result we have removed the clock from the BBC Homepage header.
However, during the public beta of the new BBC Homepage we had feedback from many users that the clock was sadly missed. So we've built a new and improved Clock module. Like its predecessor the new Clock module takes its time from the clock on your PC. Additionally the new module shows you the time-zone that your clock is set to, and it can also be collapsed to a slim-line clock.
The Clock module is on the right hand side of the BBC Homepage just below the Media Zone. If you prefer, you can remove the Clock module from your homepage by clicking the 'x' at the top right corner of the module.
Topic Tracker is a new module we are trialling, which gives you a unique way to keep up to date with the topics you're interested in. Topic Tracker allows quick and easy access to the breadth of BBC content tailored to your personal interests - from your favourite shows to hot topics and stories. Simply click on an image from the hot topic panel, or search for your own favourite topics. Then select the best match from the list provided and you're set to get frequent updates on your interests.
For example type 'Barack Obama' in the Topic Tracker, choose the best link from the options provided and 'Barack Obama' will go into 'Your Topics' list. Then next time you visit the homepage you'll see the latest BBC content about 'Barack Obama' in the Topic Tracker. If there have been no new stories about Barack Obama in the past 24 hours then the topic will appear at the bottom of the module in the 'Also Tracking' section.
You can add as many topics as you like, and you can expand or collapse the number of stories you see using the arrows next to the topic name. Topic Tracker already offers more than 11,000 topics from across the BBC, and we'll continue to add more topics over time. One of the benefits of Topic Tracker is that we'll be able to see the most popular topics across our audience, allowing us to create a real-time zeitgeist of the hottest topics, as determined by our users.
To add the Topic Tracker module to your BBC Homepage go to 'Customise this page' panel at the bottom of the homepage, tick the checkbox for the Topic Tracker, and hit Save. The module will appear in the top left hand corner of your BBC Homepage, and you can move the module to a different location on the page by simply 'grabbing' the top of the module and dragging into to your preferred location.
Before we started work on this version of the BBC Homepage, we reviewed the content of each module to decide which should be rebuilt on the new homepage. We decided not to rebuild the Teens module on this version of the BBC Homepage as very few people were using the module. Instead we are rethinking how we can better deliver targeted content for the Teens audience on future versions of the homepage.
The other module that is no longer available on the BBC Homepage is Blogs. The former Blogs module on bbc.co.uk had a few problems – not all the BBC blogs were available, and some of the blogs coming through the 'featured blog' section of the module were out of date or not updated regularly. Instead of rebuilding the Blogs module as it was, we are making BBC Blogs available through Topic Tracker. This gives you greater flexibility to follow the blogs that you are interested in, rather than relying on us to program the blogs into a separate module.
To add blogs to your BBC Homepage, follow the instructions above to add Topic Tracker to your homepage. Then add your favourite BBC blogs by searching for the author (e.g. Chris Evans, Stephanie Flanders, Nick Robinson etc) and add them to your Topic Tracker.
There are several ways for you to customise the homepage, including selecting topics of interest or rearranging the layout by dragging and dropping modules.
If you don't like certain modules you can get rid of them by clicking on the X at the top right hand corner, or you can collapse one by clicking on the grey arrow next to the module title so it'll be available in the future. It's easy to add more options to individual modules by clicking the Edit buttons and saving your preferred layout. By using the +/- buttons you can choose to add more or less content to suit your needs.
You can also add or remove modules by going to the 'Customise this page' panel at the bottom of the homepage and then click on your preferred modules to add or remove boxes. When you've chosen your modules, click the Save button. Alternatively, you can use the 'Reset homepage' button in the 'Customise this page' panel at the bottom top right of the page to remove all your previous settings.
After customising the page, save any changes and if cookies are enabled the page will remember all your settings. For more about cookies, see the BBC's privacy & cookies policy.
You may not have realised it, but we've actually rebuilt the homepage on a brand new technical infrastructure, which will allow us to bring you new features, more easily and quickly. However by changing the underlying technologies of the homepage, we weren't able to move across any personalised settings to the new page. On this new homepage you'll start again with the full default homepage experience. But we hope you'll be eager to customise the new page and make it your own. Any changes you make to the new homepage will be saved (via cookies) and will be visible the next time you use the page, just like before.
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Take a look at the full BBC Homepage Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) site. Here you'll find answers to questions on a broad range of topics for all BBC online products and services.
If you can't find what you're looking for, you'll be given the option to contact us with your query. Unfortunately, we won't be able to respond individually to all emails received, however we will read these and will use them to help inform and improve the content of the site.
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