Want To Try WorkFlowy’s New Design?


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We’ve been working for the last month on a redesign of the web and desktop apps of WorkFlowy. Our driving goals have been to get rid of unnecessary distractions, and take the overall feeling of WorkFlowy out of the 90’s. I’ve been using the new design daily for the past few weeks, and I’m delighted by it. It’s clean, fresh, functional. Maybe even a little bit beautiful.

We’ve tested the new design internally and with a small group of users, but we want to open the redesign up to feedback from the broader WorkFlowy community. If you’d like to try the new design, head over to the experimental features page (workflowy.com/features/toggle) and turn it on.

To try it on the desktop app, please turn on the feature at workflowy.com/features/toggle and then download the WorkFlowy Desktop Beta at beta.workflowy.com/downloads.

Try it, and send your reactions to feedback@workflowy.com

This redesign was the primarily the work of Stefano Attardi and Michael Leggett. Stefano is the engineer/designer who joined WorkFlowy recently, and Michael is an amazing designer who has been helping out part time, but whom I haven’t mentioned publicly yet. Michael is a longtime WorkFlowy user with a lot of domain expertise in the productivity space. He led design on Gmail, co-invented Google Inbox and did a ton of other impressive things at Google, and we’re very lucky to have his input.

We hope you love the redesign as much as we do. We’re excited to to keep releasing product improvements and new features, and this redesign will serve as a strong base to build upon.


Workflowy replaces your notebooks, stickies and bloated apps with a simple, smooth digital notebook that makes it easy to get organized and be productive.

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135 Responses

  1. Hi, I just wanna ask that did you guys remove the feature that let you see what date/time you created the item or is it pro only now? I think it was very useful. Thanks in advance!

    1. I still see it, with the new design. Just hover your mouse above the bullet, and it should show you.

      I am a pro user, but I don’t think this would be “pro only” now? ..

      If the issue persists, raise a ticket with them to get it investigated.

      Do you access workflowy directly or are you in a Citrix environment or such? Maybe if you try with your laptop at home you may get a different result?

      1. same issue for me. With the old and new design, time stamp are no more visible. I’m using Edge as Browser

  2. I dislike this new design, I seem to be opted in now not out of choice, I dislike how the page is not fully maximised, and how each new bullet point has no dot at the side of it.

    1. Sounds like you got a buggy version, perhaps you were using the dark theme, which had bugs when we launched

  3. I would like the ability to make the text part of the workflowy document broader. Especially on large screens I have a LOT of white space, and in documents that have very long sentences that is sometimes a waste of space.

  4. There are lots of things to like about this new design like expand/collapse and starring.

    However the font is TOO SMALL and the spacing is too wide. i have to increase zoom to 125% to make it usable (pc browser) and then the lines are so far apart, you can’t get as much on the screen.

    1. I do not agree. I do really love the new smaller “System” font and the huge very comfortable spacing, it looks to me so much better and easier to read than it was before. Nevertheless, if you find the font too small and the spacing too big for your taste, I suggest you do this: go to settings (inside the gear wheel up and right of the screen) and in «font» select “Sans-serif”, that will not only make your render a little bigger but will also decrease the spacing almost to the half. Personally, I find that setting quite ugly and tight haha, but reading your comment I guess you might find it better for your needs.

  5. I kind of like the new design.

    One behaviour change is that I used to be able to search for a tag, then take that tag off a found item, then click back to the search bar and hit enter for a refresh to remove the existing item- I used this for recurring items (which don’t get completed) to take a #due tag off them. Now I have to edit the search text to something else and back again for a refresh; pressing enter again doesn’t seem to do anything. This is okay I guess, but is a slight regression from my perspective.

  6. Congratulations!!!! This new redesign is awesome in so many ways! And so much beautiful! when will be those changes be reflected in the Mac app? Now I only want to use WorkFlowy online until the app updates to the new UI . :p

    1. Update: After tweaking some settings and refreshing, I already have the new design running on the Mac desktop app and also the Chrome version! Whohoo!

  7. First impressions of new design: looks great, so much cleaner, just please utilize the screen space better by cutting down on the excessive whitespace between the nav bar and the very first bullet point/title. This is wasting 10% of vertical screen space, all the time, which in a list app is very valuable. Thanks!

  8. Is there a vision for the left side of the screen? Will there be some kind of function there down the road (tag list, reminders information, etc)?

  9. I’m impressed with the new design of Workflowy but I think you should add an option to have the top bar auto-hide. The fact that it shows the breadcrumb trail even at the bottom of a long list means that it is useful. Unfortunately it also means that it is distracting. Some might like it always present but a lot of people, especially writers like me, are looking for an extremely clean interface to focus on our writing. For intermediate and advanced users there is no reason to have that bar in your face all the time. This can be fixed with an auto-hide feature that can be toggled on or off. When toggled on, the top bar would hide unless you hover your mouse near the top of the screen. When the mouse gets near the top you could have a quick animation drop down. This would give you all the functionality but without the distractions.

    Again, love the look of the redesign, thank you for all the hard work, I’ve been a pro user for years and Workflowy is my favorite piece of software. The new design is a huge step in the right direction. I just hope that the new Workflowy will not abandon advanced users because we our your biggest advocates.

  10. All I want is the option to make the font bigger. Different font sizes will make the world of difference.

  11. I do like new minimalistic design of the app, however using fixed width column for content is, imho, wrong desing choice.

  12. I really don’t see that much difference in the main writing pane (which is a good thing).

    The new toolbar, sure it looks nice enough.

    But moving the breadcrumbs to the left? Big no-no!

    I have a widescreen, and the breadcrumbs over there make no sense. The screen is split into thirds, so the breadcrumbs start 100% of the width of the page to the left. I have to move my mouse aaaaaallllllll the way to the left to navigate, then aaaaaaaalllllll the way back again to start work.

    Please, please, move it back to the center!

    And strangely, the current page is repeated there, which is weird as a) you don’t need to click on it again b) it gets in the way of the current parent and c) if you do click on it and nothing happens.

    The favourites panel seems like it didn’t really get any love. It would have benefitted from a type to filter box, perhaps a way to reorder favourites, and perhaps a preview; dates, item counts, that kind of thing.

    Additionally, the settings page appears to be old. No new styling there, which jars with the new styles.

    The themes are also old, most of which I never really liked and never really used. Seems like a missed opportunity – there are loads of nice colour palettes, code editor themes or markdown themes that could have been used for inspiration.

    Lastly, did this really take a month? Not, a couple of days?

    1. Agree about the breadcrumb placement placed hard left… slows workflow down considerably when navigating around multiple notes.

  13. I miss the lines on the dark theme that gave it a “page” feel. Now it feels like outer space with no edges. I need edges in my life!!!! Aaaaaaa!!!! Somebody keep me from floating away into the dark theme expanse!!!!

  14. Hi! I love this tool and appreciate the re-work but I really loved the old design better. Is there a way I can switch back? Particularly what I miss is seeing the entire hierarchy of links at the top. I use mine for a genealogy and story notes as well as all kinds of other research, so need to be able to bounce up several items in the tree at a time. Is there a way I can turn it back on? Thanks!

    1. Oh hey, I see how to expand the menu and it’s just as easy to use, thanks again. I like it so far.

    2. Yeah, I also dislike what they did to the breadcrumbs (hierarchy of links)… I can often only see the first and last items.. it basically lost its utility.

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