Google+ Gets a New Layout
Everything is in easy reach and you can scroll through your stream and never have to worry about having to go back to the top for the features. Additionally there is word going 'round that all the whitespace on the righthand side of the screen people seem to be complaining about will see other uses; and none of these apparently being for advertising.
Or as I like to call it 'Too Much Whitespace'
On the other the Stream, which is arguably one of the primary features, is now relegated to roughly a quarter your browser's real-estate whereas before it had two thirds of the place to spread out.
On the left you have your main menu options (Home, Profile, Etc.) On the right you have Trending/you may know/suggestions and to the right of THAT you have the chat panel then to top it all off you have Google's black bar, then their BIG GIANT BAR. It's personally feeling a bit cramped.
It's been pointed out to me by Todd Vierling that the second righthand toolbar only triggers when you get roughly at 1280 resolution on your browser window (which I wouldn't have noticed since I'm on ChromeOS right now. Yet when you're approaching but not quite there resolution wise you have a bunch of fugly whitespace.
Also you can get a denser arrangement on the top bars/compact them if your browser window is less than 600 pixels tall. Is there any chance we can have, even if at first only as extensions, ways of hiding things when we don't need them and bringing them back when we do?
Right now the Whitespace of Aggravation seems to serve as a way to let you have a Google Hangout window/camera thing going on while still being able to access your stream. This is nice, but I don't normally deal with Hangouts, so I wouldn't have known about this had i not been browsing through the trending section to see what other people were saying.
Grey TextIt's popped up before, but with the laundry list of changes to the overall layout I've started noticing little things. For example the buttons on the Reply/Comment section of posts is a grey on grey. This is hard to see. Granted I can see this and i have vision problems so it obviously ins't impossible but it's something I"m left wondering who thought this was a good idea. I like being able to tell at a glance and without squinting what things do.
Things I'd Like To See
We have this big thing under each post where on the right side you have photo/video/link buttons, but other than that a big white Nothing. We need buttons for formatting options. Sure i can go figure out what character combos surrounding text does what, but why not at ctrl+ codes like you have from Google docs/every other modern word processor? Those I know without having to think about it.
Then again what I see ultimately is Google+ and Blogger having tighter integration with eachother. G+ for the shortish paragraph or two things, 'What I saw that I like' and all. Blogger serving for longer articles and the like.
Hard to say really how I feel. It's only been a couple hours and as with pretty much every Google product there's a 'release early, update often' mentality at play. What we're seeing is the roughest worst-state of the new look. It'll get better. Of course even if it doesn't there will be thee or four extentions that deal with the new issues inside a week or two.