How Google is Changing the Game on Browser Based Bookmarks.

If you haven’t been so keen as to notice that little greyed-out star to the far right of your address bar (chrome users), you probably didn’t notice that Google has now revolutionized browser based bookmarks (apparently I’m late on this). The first time I realized that icon (a few days ago, and I know it wasn’t there before), I thought it was an indication that I could not bookmark the particular page that I was on. I thought to myself: “How cool! They actually found out a way to block people from bookmarking pages that were completely unnecessary to bookmark!” (I was on my stats page on Medium.)

In an effort to assure myself of this theory, I decided to click the greyed-out star to validate its capability of not being activated. Suddenly it turned a bright yellow color and a small popup window appeared adjacent to the now coloured-in star. “What the heck is this? What did I just do?” were the thoughts going through my head. I tried clicking the star again after I realized I just bookmarked the page, but this just made the window disappear only to reappear again without changing its status. “The trash can beside the word ‘Bookmarked’ must be how to remove it from my bookmarks!” I clicked it. “Yey, it worked. I’m learning!”

I figured that Google must have made other changes too. But, I didn’t realize them until shortly before writing this very line. In an effort to organize my mess of newly added bookmarks, I went to my bookmark manager. I was greeted with a notice that Bookmarks has an all new look, and I was given a button to click at the bottom of the page to claim that I “Got It!”. After clicking it thumbnails of images for pages that I’ve bookmarked flooded the screen. A rush of relief hit me as I thought to myself: “It looks so modern. So simplistic.” (This is coming from a person who loves organization.) With a separate area for me to scroll through my folders and a viewfinder to its right allowing me to channel my focus on things more intently, I felt the items were in a much more appropriate place than they were before.

This change is exactly the step forward browser based bookmarks needed, at least that’s what I think. All the while they’ve been just a list of links on a screen. But now they have the visual pop and simplistic organization that I strive for in my everyday life. Needless to say, I felt at home! After tinkering around with these new features a bit, I also noticed a fluid navigational experience that was persistent throughout the entire interface. While only being a small perk and not very noticeable, it still adds to that overall simplistic feel of the new UI.

Despite some Chrome users disliking these changes to Google’s bookmark manager, I love them. Whether you like them or not we both know that there will be changes in the future. So, you and I both have the hope of an a better experience than what has already been made with these recent changes.

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