what's going on here?

Every now and then I get the itch. Wait, not that itch...I'm using a medicated balm on that bad boy. No my friends, the itch to (over)analyze a design conundrum, put the perplexity through a battery of iterative testing, and emerge with something uniquely different. Hopefully improved. The lab is where these experiments take place, and the results are posted.

you've seen this experiment on:

(As seen on icanbeCreative, DesignModo, and Hongkiat.com) facebook redesign via pseudoroom

View the full-size version here

One of my primary goals was to move the interface toward more of a web app-type presentation. facebook has around 175 million people log in daily; all the repetitive tasks inherent in such usage are conducive to this form of approach. When I was wrapping this redesign up, Twitter's new app-like UI launched, and gave me a moment of Stuart Smalley-like validation.

facebook redesign right column

Some other goals included:

  • opening up the newsfeed column
  • adding "Dislike" functionality
  • regrouping common tasks (icon/nav batches)
  • providing the user some (right column) hierarchical flexibility

facebook's color scheme is, primarily, blue and....blue. Fairly suboptimal from a usability perspective. This color is currently used pretty well, however, to denote where areas of action take place. I wanted to reinforce that by making it concretely clear throughout. x is an area of action, y is static data.

I moved the search field over to the top-right of the header (as I've seen, in doing some research, it's been placed in previous facebook design iterations). This field is deliberately rounded to differentiate from the status update one, which I'm housing on the main task bar. This then updates your current status directly below, which is always visible to you on the home screen. Broadly, I'm using the right column as the "user-specific" one: account name, status update field, profile picture and current status, custom links (which I'm calling "My Facebook"), events, and chat. Each of the units beneath status would also be click/draggable (indicated by the icon), so the user could set their hierarchy in that column as they saw fit.

"Dislike" functionality was a no-brainer to incorporate. I've been waiting to hate on some shit for awhile now. As with "Like", main posts, as well as each individual comment, can be "disliked". Back to chat: I've always wanted an indicator of who might be online in advance of signing in (even with AIM/iChat, for that matter). As I've implemented it, you could mouse-over "x friends online" and see a list of who was currently signed in – rendering how facebook currently displays who has "liked" a comment, via mousing over the count. That way, I can pre-scan for online people I don't want to talk to before logging in. Raise your glass to being anti-social on social media.

View the full-size version here