Google Drive search field redesign

For work, I live and breathe Google Drive. Same goes for my consulting work and teaching stuff.

Today, in my fervor to get some work done, I logged on to Google Drive. Lo and behold…things are a bit more tidied up than usual!

  1. There’s a taller search field with a background color of gray, rather than an outline color with a search field of white
  2. There’s a caret in the search field
  3. Lots of callouts of ‘Drive’ as a distinctive property but maybe I’m finally noticing it more (good job…?)
  4. New CTA button color that matches the company logo. Might just be happenstance, or might be that our awesome IT manager has color sense

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Clicking on the caret in the search bar now reveals…

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I think I may have died and gone to advanced search options heaven.

I haven’t had a chance to dig in to it and use it too much but I look forward to using this, especially in cases where I am sharing and collaborating on files with larger teams. Woo!

Stop reusing designs without considering the user

Form follows function.

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Just because you can reuse a tablet-optimized design on your desktop website, it doesn’t mean you should. Here are some reasons I can identify right off the bat:

  1. Large tap targets are great for tablets and mobile because the primary input method are fingers. However, with increased real estate comes an egregious use of precious screen space.
  2. With the title of “filing cabinets” just as large as the “filter results” section, it’s difficult to understand exactly what is important here. According to the design, they are just as important as one another.
  3. A gridded gallery view is elegant, but depending on the amount of desktop screen real estate it may not provide all of the information and breadth of results as it could.
  4. Has the design of this page followed the understanding of utility of desktop searching? Do users on desktops look for more in-depth results or do they prefer browsing through product possibilities? Which use case does this particular design support, and does it match up with the users’ objectives?
  5. User research has shown that shoppers use tablet technologies as a way to browse and collect potential purchase data, but that the majority of users use desktop technologies to thoroughly identify pieces of information that help inform shopping decisions. Based on the research, tablet designs should not be reused for desktop experiences but should instead be responsive to the users’ needs, as well as hardware. How does this current design support the users’ needs at this stage?

These were just a couple of casual points of consideration while I was spending my morning looking for a nice filing cabinet for my desk:


I’m glad you take my money, Internet

So concise! So clear!

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The design is quite beautiful actually. I know exactly how much I will be charged, and when. The way that the credit card information is laid out is quite elegant. There are two clear calls to action. It even tells me why a monthly charge may have deviated from my usual fee.

It’s the little things that make the big things matter.



Travel timeline information architecture

I know I love on Orbitz quite a bit, but check out the beautiful information architecture of my travel timeline.

I know exactly what time (in local time) of where I will be (city, airport name), which terminal to head to, and the days I’ll be in each city in the case that I forget that I’m many many hours away from home.

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It certainly eases some of the potential scheduling anxieties I will have over the next few months!

Search field inception


I can’t tell what the actual experience delta between these two search boxes. Based on the line break, perhaps one is a top-level search of the top-level pages of their website? And then the second search box is anything under training/consulting/reports/articles/etc?

What’s most confusing is this screenshot was actually taken from a SERP (search engine results page). I used the top-level search field to look up a course name, and then this was the resulting page.

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This search field inception makes me feel like this: