sab39

... indistinguishable from magic
effing the ineffable since 1977
Dear Google

Dear Google

11/20/2007

It's nice that you've revamped Gmail's UI. The redesign is slick and addresses several of my complaints about the way things used to work. It seems snappier too.

However, it'd be nice if all of this didn't come at the expense of reliability. I use Chat in Gmail an awful lot, even more than I use it for mail, perhaps. In the older version this was as reliable as it could possibly be given the inherent limitations of running inside a browser. If I lost connection, switched my VPN on or off, hibernated and unhibernated my computer, or generally screwed around with stuff, it never seemed to miss a beat.

In the new UI, what I've encountered so far:

  • It NEVER recovers after hibernate. Anything I type or receive after hibernating is invisible to me until I reload Gmail from scratch.
  • Frequently I'll get something from a chat as an offline message, twenty minutes or more after it was originally sent. With no indication whatsoever to myself or the person I'm talking to that a message was lost in the first place. And without me ever having gone offline, or appeared so to the other party.
  • The deal-breaker for me was, in the middle of a conversation, several messages in a row simply disappearing into thin air - as if the person I was talking to hadn't said anything at all. But still showing as present and active through the whole of it.
  • Thanks for giving me the choice to switch back to the old UI - but it'd be nicer yet if you actually honored my choice! Every time I visit Gmail it switches me back to the new version until I can revert it again.

I really wanted to like the newer version. But you need to make it work right first! And in the meantime, don't keep trying to force my hand. I made the choice to switch back for a reason; do you REALLY think that pushing me forward again every time I load the page is going to do anything but annoy me?