Seth Godin has some interesting thoughts about home pages. The main thrust of his entry is that successful home pages are rare, because they try to strike a nearly impossible balance between:
1, Explaining to the uninitiated.
2. Retraining the veterans.
3. Getting out of the way of the power users.
Godin recommends finding ways of avoiding having users go through home pages. When Squidoo comes out of beta, perhaps we'll see what he means.