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This article was published on April 19, 2012

The Google+ redesign was fine by me, until I clicked the “Explore” button

The Google+ redesign was fine by me, until I clicked the “Explore” button

So it’s been a little over a week since Google+ unleashed its brand new redesign on us and so far I’m a fan. That is, until I clicked the Explore button. I’ll get to that in a minute.

Much has been talked about regarding the extra white space on the site, leaving some of us wondering what will be placed there. A prominent member of the team for the product, Vic Gundotra, promised that there are plans for the white space. That’s cool, I like plans.

However, I’m wondering what in the hell the team was thinking when it released this monstrosity at the top of its Explore page, a page that I tend to visit often:

Don’t get me wrong, I’m by no means a designer nor an expert in user experience, but I would have literally laid on top of the engineers keyboards to stop this from being pushed into production. I’m calling this “the slidey thing”, since there is no other term I can come up with that doesn’t include foul language.

Not only is it humungous, it spins through the same three features without being updated, constantly. Even if Google+ used this space to promote some actual fresh content, I’d still be offended by it.

The worst part is that you can’t even close it. Every single time I visit the Explore page I hope that some designer with their wits about them sneaks an “X” button in there that sends it packing.

Luckily, Google+ has a pretty great feedback system that lets you highlight the sections you’re having issues with. Only problem is that the tool sees the entire bar as separate elements so I wasn’t able to submit it all with my feedback request to “remove it”:

I’m not sure who thought it was a good idea to take up that much space with information that is useful once to users, but I hope that they reconsider. And soon. It doesn’t make me want to “Explore” anything other than another website.