I finally got the new Facebook update

A familiar notification ping summoned me over to Facebook. Hark! You’ve received a comment on your status update! When I clicked in to see what the new comment said, I was hit by the new Facebook design. Since then, I’ve had a couple hours to sit around with it in the background. Here are some of my initial thoughts:

  • The top nav/masterbar feels much nicer in this iteration. Already, I feel like I’ve done less hunting for the right thing to click.
  • Everything feels just a little tight. I don’t mind things being a little smaller, and I totally understand why Facebook took the approach they did, but I find myself longing for a bit more space between and inside of updates on my news feed, even at the expense of taller updates. Even just jumping from 12px to 15px inside of each update feels like a world of difference.
  • Same goes for the text itself — the line-height feels a little too short, so everything feels cramped.
  • I’ve wanted to be able to minimize groupings in my left sidebar for the last couple iterations; now that everything is just a little tighter, I really want to be able to now. Something like this:

    facebook-collapsed-sidebar
    Collapsed sidebar. Only while mocking this up did I discover that I can actually archive the plethora of lists I’m shown by default… but archiving doesn’t seem to actually do anything?

All this said… I am one of those people using a high-end computer with a beautiful retina screen. I’ve been spoiled by large, crisp images and text. A lot of the cramped issues could look better on an average laptop, or a smaller screen. A better test would be to give it a go on my Chromebook and see how it feels in that context. Maybe I’ll check it out when I get home later.

I don’t find the new Facebook update too bad. And, like all changes, I will adjust. Kudos to Facebook for putting the bulk of their users first, and not just going for the design that looked best on a retina Macbook Pro.

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