Sunday, December 18, 2011

Sometimes, less really is less

The new Gmail toolbar (top) versus the old Gmail toolbar (bottom):

Top: new Gmail toolbar Bottom: old Gmail toolbar(embiggen)

Maybe it's just me,* but sometimes words are just plain better than icons. I think this is particularly so in an application that has keyboard shortcuts: the words serve as a mnemonic. And note also how the old toolbar takes up less space, despite having two more buttons.

I'm betting that had I not put the old toolbar under the new one, it would have taken you considerably longer to puzzle out what the buttons in the top one do.

Gmail's 'Switch to the new look' box that appears at the bottom of the Gmail screen, surrounded by a red circle and slash

* It's not. It's really not. Trust me on this.


Don McArthur said...

I think you're just old, with the usual attendant infirmities. Go back to your Yahtzee game. :-)

Brendan Keefe said...

Yeah, that possibility cannot be discounted.

Still, doesn't experience count for anything anymore, you young whippersnapper?

And even if my gripes are due solely to my curmudgeon onset syndrome, can't we agree that the US is getting older as a country, and that we olds have to be catered to at least a little bit by the youngs? I mean, when you think of all we've left them …

Don McArthur said...

Best review your Soylent Green - the young will eat the old. That is our only viable economic solution.

Brendan Keefe said...

Jeez, when I think of everything we've actually left them saddled with, it's hard to think they wouldn't be well within their rights to do exactly that.

(That's what Obama's secret FEMA camps are for, anyway, right? So, moot point.)