Friday, January 20, 2012

Eating Crow and Liking (er, +1ing) the New Gmail

Gasp!  Yes, CA readers, it's true:  About last Friday or so, I decided I would take the new Gmail challenge and dive into the new interface.  In other words, I decided to use the new look for at least a day or two to decide whether I would really get used to it, as I had heard others report they did.

As a former critic of the new appearance, let me say I now strongly prefer it to the old look.  DOUBLE GASP!!  Ironically, one of my biggest hangups became, perhaps, my favorite feature:  The minimalism.

In the new-look Gmail, t's all about the emails, peepers.
That's right, kids, the new interface cuts straight to the email.  Some complain there's too much white space.  I'll tell you what, click on the big gear and select Compact -- that will display plenty of emails.  On the other hand, I really like the "Cozy" density and cringe to think of the stress on my eyes, reverting back to compact-style.

And, talking of white space, here's a further irony:  Getting rid of many "buttons and knobs" (thank you, Arthur Weasley), I feel more comfortable and focused on my email.

In short, when I went back to take a peek at the old Gmail, my eyes felt strained, and I felt stranded in a cluttered garage.

Yes, the old look's more traditional and has less "white space," yet, consider its comparative clutter.
Ahhh.  Now my eyes focus on the email (because, seriously, why would I want to focus on my chat search box, etc.?)
I'll be candid in saying I feel hesitant about the degree of transparency on some themes, like Turf.  Yet, maybe that's just me or, like my conversion experience, simply an initial, gut reaction.

I imagine some might like less turf behind their email.
At the end of the day, users still must opt-in to use the new-look Gmail, and this after about two or three months out of the gate . . .  I'm unsure what the hold up is.  On the other hand, I definitely suggest giving the new look a shot for a couple days and then comparing/contrasting.  I definitely think old habits can die hard, especially in Gmail land (see the comments and be warned of some potty mouths).  So, take a chance, and if you also decide to make the switch, I hope your diet will be crow free, unlike mine.  Provecho!

1 comment:

Christy said...

Yes, crazy to think that I made the switch as well, and am actually enjoying it.