Edit: This article is linked to an article which has recently been posted. Read more about “Facebook redesign: The countdown begins“.
From somewhat of a smallish leak to a full-on development cycle to get it going; Facebook is currently in the process of redesigning the Facebook social network. Whilst it isn’t a full-on re-brand, per say – there will be elements such as the start page, the profile page and feed pages which will change!
Why is Facebook redesigning the site?
Whilst they aren’t necessarily redesigning the entire site; Facebook is changing important sections such as the ‘Profile’ in an attempt to clean up the clutter which is being produced by over 25,000 applications ranging from ‘blood sucking vampires’ to ‘am I hot or not’. We all know how annoying some applications can sometimes be, and in particularly how cluttered up they make our profile look.
Since its creation, Facebook has been a shining ‘beacon’ of “What to do” on a major portal/social network. They got the usability right, the site was easy to use and it even looked simple and clean – the direct opposite of Facebook’s biggest competitor; MySpace. So what happens when developers are allowed to build applications which get in the way of such as mantra of excellent web design? You re-design, of course!
Let’s take a look at some of the proposed changes and what you could stand to lose/gain from them. As always, you can click on the images for a larger-sized view.
The Feed and Wall Tabs
To start off with, as you can see, the proposed change to the main profile page (i.e. when you click on ‘Profile’) is to clear up all that clutter left by all your applications flowing down the left-side gutter of the page as well as in the content area as well.
If Facebook has their way, you will expect to see that sort of change on this page.
The changes to this page include:
- The status message, e.g. “Cheb is now partying”, or in this case “Holly is at school” is shown directly under the profile photo and not directly under the name, as currently is.
- There is now somewhat of a secondary menu/navigation which is tab-structured allowing you to jump to different ‘views’ of your/or someone else’s profile.
- The new view allows you to directly post information such as a link or photo off the sub-section in the secondary nav.
- The ‘Feed’ view, i.e. the current page – above, will combine both the current feed page as well as the wall. What that means is there is no current way to filter either or – and it also means that the normal view, or the ‘Feed’ view will show both; other people leaving wall posts for you and your updates at the same time.
As you can see, no major changes there except that you will be able to remove the ‘Wall’ tab at anytime but the ‘Feed’ tab has to stay put! This makes sense, considering the Feed tab will show both types of inputs – whilst, for good usability, having another tab for just that type of content, i.e. ‘Wall’ is a great idea and kudos to Facebook for setting it up that way.
The new publishing system
The publishing system will be the centralized spot to add a wall post, post a video or photo, as well as post a link to your feed/profile.
I believe that as a user adds new applications which present more ways to post content, such as ‘send a gift’ or anything of the sort, they should be added to the tabs which currently stand at ‘Wall Post’, ‘Video’ and ‘Post a Link’.
Overall, I think this is a great way to combine content into categorically-linked sections. I am not a huge fan of combining the wall posts with the feed, but the structure and navigation for getting to places as well as ‘publishing’ content is possibly second to none! Let’s just say that we can’t even begin to compare it to MySpace!
The applications view
Ahh, where would we be without our much-loved applications? Well, with a wall and notes, I guess! Anyway, the cool news is that there is no way applications are being eradicated or anything – quite the contrary! They will be given their own tab, or view if Facebook has any say in it! Let’s check out the proposed changes:
Hrrmmm! There’s quite a bit to contemplate on this view. Whilst being a working title, I don’t know what Facebook is thinking calling this page ‘Boxes’! I think it was some insider joke or something of the sort, because the first application in the main content area is ‘Family Tree’ with quite a bit of boxes! [Or was it a publicity stunt?!?] *conspiracy conspiracy*
I quite like the idea of zoning out the applications into their own section – after all, it really is those applications that started to clutter things everywhere on Facebook.
The name ‘Boxes’ has to go! No two buts about it. However, what would be cool is if Facebook allowed users to call this what they liked; for example, ‘My Appz’ or ‘My Stuff’ – however, you could see why this would be a problem when people start calling it ‘Fo Shizzle’ or ‘Crack Pipe’ – which absolutely make no sense whatsoever! [Yes, I can be weird at times!]
I think Facebook will eventually just call this ‘Applications’ or ‘My Applications’ – leaning towards the former.
So there you go guys – another design review/did you know style of post! Hope you liked the review and more importantly enjoyed seeing the changes that Facebook should be implementing very soon.
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