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The world’s leanest home page?

Posted by Michael Bloch in web development (Saturday December 5, 2009 )

Google is well known for their minimalist home page and it recently became even leaner.

I don’t use Google’s home page often as most of my searches are conducted using the Google Toolbar. When visiting it this morning, it seemed different and I initially couldn’t figure out what it was.

When the home page loads, it now shows only the Google logo, search box and the buttons. As far as home and landing pages go, it doesn’t get much leaner than that, nor much faster when it comes to page load times.

I’m not sure why they opted to keep the “Lucky” button as it’s probably one of the least important elements on the home page in my opinion.

According to Google, the change was made as the vast majority of people who come to the Google homepage do so to search. Go figure.

But hang on, some of those other links were useful. For example, being in Australia, when I go to, it brings up by default. There used to be a link to go to the USA site.

Not to fear, Google has that covered too. When you move your mouse in the active window, all the previous links fade in. While the new home page won’t cause a new revolution in search, it’s a nice touch and an interesting approach to usability. Google says the feedback they’ve been receiving on the change has been generally positive.

It’s definitely a marked contrast to Bing, which has a full screen image as a background on the home page – but to their credit, the images look fantastic and have been optimized for fast download. Yahoo has also appeared to have headed down the minimalist path – although the changes may have occurred months ago; that’s how often I use it :)


Creating effective landing pages
Page load times – optimizing for speed.


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