It wouldn't be at all surprising if Facebook's response to the bad vibes elicited its latest redesign were straight out of the 1970 comic war movie "Kelly's Heroes." To wit, we give you just one of the refrains from Donald Sutherland's tanker/proto-hippie character, Oddball:Why don't you knock it off with them negative waves...Why don't you say something righteous and hopeful for a change?
So there's a new Facebook app out there, designed to poll users on the social network's latest redesign. The results? Hundreds of thousands have responded. 94 percent give it a thumbs-down. Ouch.
Comments range from "WHY FIX IT, WHEN IT WASN'T BROKE, you will be SORRYYYYYYYYYYY" to "It feels counterintuitive and less technologically advanced than the last layout."
Now, this is clearly not an official vote. Chances are, you're not going to install a third-party polling application with the sole purpose of voicing an opinion on the new Facebook design unless you'… Read more
At Monday's Le Web 3 conference in Paris, Netvibes announced the launch of its latest version which adds support for Google's OpenSocial and Facebook Connect, alongside several new ways to view widgetized content.
The OpenSocial element may be one of the most interesting aspects, as it's now paired with Netvibe's Universal Widget API, allowing developers to create widgets that can pull information from a user's social network. In the example demoed at the conference, Netvibes showed off a weather widget which displayed the user's weather, along with that of their friends. The user didn'… Read more
The redesign makes the site look a little slicker, and certainly accentuates Dropio's "easy to use" mantra. It's also clearly a consumer-oriented product now--in comparison, the old design looks like a back-end content management system. That's good, because the company hopes to appeal to Luddites as well as techies. (For a business model, Dropio offers premium accounts that get rid of the 100MB … Read more
Yahoo and Google aren't the only ones whose Web site changes incur the wrath of users who'd rather things stay the way they were.
Microsoft is discontinuing an option to use Hotmail's older "classic" interface, merging it with a newer "full" design into a hybrid the company says is faster to use than both the predecessors. "With our new combined platform, we offer great performance in all markets by putting the best features from both versions in one well-designed platform. Because of these performance improvements it is no longer necessary to offer … Read more
Yahoo has finished a redesign of its Flickr home page that emphasizes the photo-sharing site's social aspects.
The new home page shows off more of a user's own photos and more from the user's contacts, and it surfaces social activity such as comments on the user's photos, replies to comments the user made on others' photos, and new photos posted to the user's Flickr groups. (See a screenshot below.)
Some people Yahoo selected to test a revamp of its home page aren't happy with their involuntary guinea pig status.
On the blog post from Tapan Bhat announcing the new Yahoo front page, the commentary begins with a number of favorable comments and several requests by people who want to try it out, but soon, the complaints start bubbling up too.
A common complaint is that it's harder for a user to get to e-mail.
"I do not like this. I did not ask for it to be changed. It scares me that you have control over … Read more
MapQuest will begin showing business reviews from start-up Yelp on Thursday, part of a plan to expand from just a mapping site into a go-to hub of local information.
Through the deal with Yelp, MapQuest will get better locally specific content, and Yelp will get more Web site traffic from beyond tech-savvy places such as Silicon Valley that currently are familiar with the site, said Christian Dwyer, MapQuest's senior vice president and general manager.
It may be a little too early to do a roundup of the best redesigns of 2008 like we did last year, but with Thursday's one-two punch of new looks for social sites Twitter and FriendFeed, it's a good chance to take a look back at some of this year's redesigns and talk about what was changed or fixed.
I've picked 10 of my favorites below, listed in no particular order. See also the honorable mentions section at the bottom of the post, which includes content sites or other places that didn't quite make the cut.
Twitter's redesign was a twofold change: one part to simplify the interface, and another to reduce the resources needed to host the site. Now when users hop between various functions it doesn't reload the entire page, meaning a faster experience and less data to serve.
The most interesting part of the redesign is actually something we don't know about. The tabbed interface on the right was apparently set in place to make room for additional features as they become available. It could be the new things from Twitter itself, or the foundation for special developer-created applications users will be able to use without leaving the service.
The "new" Facebook was one of the most drastic changes of any site this year. Like Twitter, tabs took center stage, as did the chat which shares screen real estate with what's essentially the "start" button on Windows. This new menu let users launch networked applications from any page they're on. The change also embraced widescreen displays, making use of the extra room to let users build out the experience horizontally instead of having to scroll up and down.
You can read more about it, and the user backlash, here.
Continue reading the rest of this article after the jump.… Read more
Yahoo on Wednesday started offering Flickr users a new home page for the photo-sharing site that's designed to show off more images and make it easier for people to use the site's social features.
Many people just use Flickr to store and share their own photos, but the site also has social features including groups where like-minded people can share photos, a contacts list to share with particular friends, and comments that can lead to a discussion thread. Much of the redesign aims to spotlight these social features, making them more visible and easier to use, said Kakul Srivastava, Flickr's new general manager. … Read more