We all know that Google is a big fan of minimalism, especially when it comes to its famous homepage, where it tries to keep its ‘word count‘ down to 28 words (actually, it looks like it might be up to around 30). Tonight, Google is apparently experimenting with taking that concept to a whole new level: the site is bucket testing a new effect that hides everything on the Google homepage aside from the search box and Google’s logo, only revealing the rest of the navigation elements with a nifty fade effect when you move your mouse.
There are a few notable omissions from the ‘fade-in’ homepage though — you’ll notice that the site’s “Google Search” and the famous “I’m Feeling Lucky” button are both missing. Update: We’ve gotten another screenshot where these two buttons do appear, so it looks like Google is testing multiple versions.
Don’t feel bad if you don’t have the new, highly streamlined page — this is apparently part of a Google bucket test, which means only a small subset of users have access to it. It’s entirely possible that the new design will never be released broadly too, so don’t get alarmed if you hate it.
Thanks to Elchanan Heller for the tip.