Last year, Google Chrome celebrated a big milestone, and turned 10. I work on UI design, visual design, and content strategy to continuously improve Google Chrome’s web presence, and in September 2018, my team—the Chrome Growth division of Creative Engineering—launched an extensive redesign of the Chrome homepage to celebrate the anniversary.
For the redesign, we focused much of our effort on product education. Chrome is a fast and powerful browser, and the nuances of how it works are inherently technical. …
Words like “clean,” “flat,” and “whitespace” have become banal catchalls for tech-oriented design work. Generally speaking, I no longer find these words effective in communicating the specificity of a composition.
When presenting work and giving feedback, I aim to use language that is descriptive, specific, and clear. Here are some of the words I use:
Words that describe “clean” — meticulous, orderly, organized, rigid, grid-like, structured, polished, precise, finished.
Words that describe “flat” — deconstructed, standard/standardized, normal/normalized, scalable, seamless.
Words that describe “whitespace”— low-density, spacious, comfortable, readable/readability, breathable/breathing room, expansive.
Words that describe “tight” — dense/high-density, cozy, compact, condensed, packed, informative/informational, detailed, intricate, authoritative. …
I’m embedded at Google as a designer through Left Field Labs, an experience design agency. While I approach my 1-year with Left Field Labs, Left Field Labs approaches 10 years of creative partnership with Google. I’ve quickly learned here that Left Field and Google align closely in their design philosophies. One belief in particular stands out to me: creative empowerment.
In its early years, Google, like many young tech companies at the time, held an engineers-do-all mentality. Today, we find ourselves operating in a highly specialized, design-rich environment — where those with capital-D-Designer in their job titles are sometimes seen as the primary agents of creative change. …