WorkFlowy Has A New Design

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August 14, 2018

Image 2018-08-13 at 12.52.45 PM.png

We’re delighted to launch the redesign of WorkFlowy’s web and desktop apps. We’ve been testing it for a few weeks with a lot of people. We’ve gotten an overwhelmingly positive response, so today we are turning it on for everybody!

The redesign makes WorkFlowy more minimal, beautiful, and usable. The aesthetic is modern and out of the way. In addition, we added a handful of usability improvements, like a favorites viewer that’s actually useful.

As is common with any change, some decisions that many liked did not sit well with others. If you are one of those, good news! Our most controversial changes can be turned off. Here’s how:

  1. Font: We changed to use system font by default, so that WorkFlowy feels more native to whatever platform you are using. If you do not like the new font, you can open Settings and select “Font: Sans-serif” to change it back.
  2. Line spacing: The new font comes with more spacing between lines. If you don’t like the additional space, you can switch back to the original font (see above) and it has the same line spacing as before. We’ll eventually add a setting to let you choose your line spacing independent of your font.
  3. Page Alignment: If you used our previous desktop app, you’ll notice that we changed the alignment of the lists from left-aligned to centered within the window. We do not yet have a way for you to change this back, but we’ll be launching a version very soon that will let you choose the alignment you prefer. Thanks for your patience.

And that’s it! We hope you enjoy the new design as much as we do.

P.S. If you don’t yet have the redesign, just reload the page, or restart the desktop app to trigger a check for updates.

P.P.S. There are a few things – like the design of our dialogs – that we are still working on. Look for more updates soon!

 

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samfurlough
samfurlough
2 years ago

I love the redesign but I wish you had left the undo in place… keep up the good work

Jason Hughston
Jason Hughston
2 years ago
Reply to  samfurlough

Fully agree – undo was a useful feature

Jacob Green
Jacob Green
2 years ago
Reply to  samfurlough

The undo feature is still available. You can find it under the “Gear” menu in the upper right corner of the page. You can also undo with the keyboard shortcut “cmd-z” (on mac) or “ctrl-z”) (on Windows).

Carol B
Carol B
2 years ago

Continue to look forward to mobile changes. -)

>

S
S
2 years ago

Yeah this is a no go for me, now the contents float stupidly in the page without any sense of grounding of space. It’s also horribly bright to look at.

Matt
Matt
2 years ago
Reply to  S

Hear, hear. No framing of the words (or workspace). And all white. :/

Jonny
Jonny
2 years ago
Reply to  S

I too would like a frame added back in. Or at least the option to turn it on.

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago
Reply to  Jonny

We’ll be adding in an option to change the background color, which will add a frame again, and eventually ability to upload a custom background image

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Jonny

The “page” feel is now available under Settings > Theme > Vintage. Thanks!

Dan
Dan
2 years ago
Reply to  S

Agreed. It was really helpful to have the list at the top of the page (Topic 1 > Subtopic 2 > subsubtopic 4)
I know that this got moved into the header now but if your topic headers are long then they get cutoff and you can’t read it anymore. Kind of hard to tell where you are.

Would be great if there was an option to change back to the old version! Thanks for all the hard work, Workflowy is great.

awake
awake
2 years ago

dopeness 👍🏿

Dustin Glendinning
2 years ago

Love it!

Cobalt Cox
2 years ago

Liking the latest changes. Great work and thank you for keeping workflowy alive I use it hourly.

brightnomad
2 years ago

The new design looks great!

Julia
Julia
2 years ago

It’s fabulous, I love it!

globalpopo
2 years ago

would love an option to put up some photos to go with the notes. it can be done to keep the clean image

callihjd
callihjd
2 years ago
Reply to  globalpopo

Agreed! I could see Workflowy being competition for Evernote someday if they added the ability to add media to a note.

Leo Bian
2 years ago
Reply to  callihjd

I do not think so. Media attachments or picture displays are not essential core elements. Keep it simple.

petterbriones
2 years ago

I love the new design, it so great!!!

Kai
Kai
2 years ago

Looks good! Will be good if there’s an option to view the contents in 2 or 3 columns on desktop. Minimise the amount of scrolling required. Thanks!

Leo Bian
2 years ago
Reply to  Kai

I don’t know much about desktop applications. However, if you are using a browser such as Chrome, there is an extension called stylus that does this.

Chdwu
Chdwu
2 years ago

The new design is great for mobile but no good for desktop, don’t like the always-show top bar.

Kevin
Kevin
2 years ago

I love it! Thanks for developing this great tool! I use it every day.

Jason Hughston
Jason Hughston
2 years ago

Overall like the change – steady improvement of the experience

Mak
Mak
2 years ago

Well, as usual, new design – as creepy as possible:-/ What was the reason for example to move “search” from left to right? I hate it…
Why haven’t you leave an option “keep old design” for people who doesn’t like this “modern” UI/UX stuff?

Leo Bian
2 years ago
Reply to  Mak
Christopher Allen
Christopher Allen
2 years ago
Reply to  Leo Bian

Nope. Maybe before it became the default, but not now.

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Leo Bian

The page frame of the old design is now available at Settings > Theme > Vintage

Aleksei
Aleksei
2 years ago

Wow, there are so different comments. For me, changes are pretty good. This is why I love and use workflowy – absolutely no visual noise. each detail is functional. pretty good work.

haokun
haokun
2 years ago

when i hover the cursor at the node, to show the created time is useful.
would you keed the feature please.

Jacob Green
Jacob Green
2 years ago
Reply to  haokun

The created time can now be seen at the bottom of the menu that appears when you hover over a node

Stephen Scaringi
Stephen Scaringi
2 years ago
Reply to  Jacob Green

I never knew that existed, and I’m not sure what it’s showing. It appears to be the created and/or last changed time of a node. Is that right? The label “Last changed” is a bit misleading, because I thought it applied to the node and all its children, but it appears to only apply to a single node.

jpallen211
jpallen211
2 years ago

You’re never gonna please all of the people all of the time, hey 🙂 Overall a move in the right direction, a direction dictated by principles of speed and clean design.

ysf
ysf
2 years ago

i really enjoy the new design. one thing bothers me is the whiteness. it would be nice to have a choice have put a little bit of color. for example having black menu like old version.

i use stylish to color tags, links and notes it would also very nice addition.

best.

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago
Reply to  ysf

yep, we’ll let people customize the color eventually

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Jesse Patel

You can go back to less-whiteness with Settings > Theme > Vintage now. Hope that helps!

Rick
Rick
2 years ago

can i go back ,i just like the original design,the new one is just too white
the new version have no signal for “done syncing”

Gürsu Altunkaya
Gürsu Altunkaya
2 years ago
Reply to  Rick

I also would like that notification back.

Fabio
Fabio
2 years ago

+1 vote for the syncing status at the same page, without us having to click on the gear icon every time. This has been already discussed in another recent topic, as many people would like to see the Save sync status. But so far, nothing has changed.

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago

We’ve brought back the “page” feel of the old design. Settings > Theme > Vintage

Sowerberry Spritzer (@axiom_attic)

The design is swell but scrolling seems not to work at all for me in the web version, I tried on two different computers.

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago

this sounds like a bug. can you email help@workflowy.com?

hasan
hasan
2 years ago

please let windows users to remove menu bar from the desktop client.

Mark Macheta
Mark Macheta
2 years ago

The scroll bar appearing and disappearing is a little weird
https://gyazo.com/96cc06d89f6741cc7c8cd6c50e374995

Simon Joliveau
Simon Joliveau
2 years ago

Thanks for the new design ! A welcome improvement.

On top of the modal dialogs, do you plan on redesigning the “favorite page switcher” also ?
Clicking on the star on the top left of the screen brings a nice new vertical menu, but using the keyboard shortcuts (command+; on mac) still uses the older switcher docked to the bottom with the grey background.

This seems a bit jarring.

Also, I quite liked the “make lists not war” tagline on the bottom, and it seems I am not alone. Would you consider bringing it back ? 🙂

Ron B.
Ron B.
2 years ago
Reply to  Simon Joliveau

I’m glad that the “Make lists not war” is gone. While I agree with the sentiment, it seemed unprofessional.

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago
Reply to  Simon Joliveau

Yes, we will change the shortcut. The tagline I think is probably gone for now :/

Brittany
Brittany
2 years ago

Not a fan of the new design at all. Way too much whiteness everywhere, I much preferred for my page to feel like it was a page like a notebook. Now white space just goes on forever and makes it harder to focus on the actual content. Going to try and install my own custom css to the page using a plugin to make it more like before.

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago
Reply to  Brittany

This seems like the most common thing people aren’t liking about it, and we’ll do something to address it.

dustying
2 years ago
Reply to  Jesse Patel

Didn’t realize I was in the minority; I quite like the sparseness. I feel like the typography alone is enough to define the “page” area.

Michael
Michael
2 years ago
Reply to  Jesse Patel

I love the sparseness as well. Typography is all you really need to define boundaries. Modern design has been going in this direction for a long time. The page look is one of the reasons Workflowy’s design seemed so dated before.

Franz
Franz
2 years ago
Reply to  Jesse Patel

I like the way it is right now. More professional.

I was finding the “notebook page” look very old and weird. It made WF look like a toy.

Please keep this new look.
Thanks

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Jesse Patel

You can now bring back the “page” feel with Settings > Theme > Vintage. Hope that helps!

andy r
andy r
2 years ago

Is there an option to collapse all? in the old version i double-clicked on workflowy in the top left corner.

andy r
andy r
2 years ago
Reply to  andy r

Ok found it. you have to scroll to the top of your lists first though. then to the right of your top-most entry is a star and 3 dots, click the 3 dots and you have the options ‘expand all’ and ‘collapse all’.

scottfoubister
scottfoubister
2 years ago

Looks great! I like the more modern look of the top toolbar.

Michael
Michael
2 years ago

Like I mentioned in the last blog post, an option to make the top bar auto-hide would make this just about perfect. Advanced users are looking for a true fullscreen distraction free environment. A hiding top bar would give us the functionality we need when we need it but without the distractions when we don’t

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago
Reply to  Michael

Yeah, we’ll probably add this.

dustying
2 years ago
Reply to  Michael

Yes, this would be awesome. On mobile too, when scrolling down further into a list and writing, all the UI should hide. 👍

Michael
Michael
2 years ago
Reply to  dustying

Yes this would be fantastic for mobile!

It was better
It was better
2 years ago

How can I get old design back? I don’t like new one.

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  It was better

You can get back the “feel” of the old design with Settings > Theme > Vintage. Not all parts though, just the page feel. Hope that helps.

Tiernan Martin (@maynardandking)

I really enjoy the redesign — particularly the changes to the line spacing and center-alignment 👍

andy r
andy r
2 years ago

Anyone found a way to put the keyboard shortcuts bar on the left instead of the right?

Stephen Scaringi
Stephen Scaringi
2 years ago

Love the look of the new bar at the top of the screen! You said you’re using the system font, but it looks like Lucida Grande on Mac High Sierra. Any chance you can select San Francisco? Overall, looks great!

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago

Hrm, I wonder if it didn’t get changed properly for you. It should be San Francisco on a mac if you have “System” selected in your font settings.

Leo Bian
2 years ago

I have been using workflowy for a long time, a great product that keeps my life away from war. The new interface has a very modern feel, the only deficiency (possibly) is the reduction in the amount of information that can be displayed in the same view space of the old version.
Regardless, iterative development is always the right direction.

Tim
Tim
2 years ago

Bring back “make lists, not war” !!

Frank
Frank
2 years ago

Ideally, I could let text fill the whole page from left to right. Right now there is about 40% of my screen unused as text wraps early. Didn’t notice that on the old design…

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Frank

We’ll be building a text-width setting in the future. Thanks!

Christopher Allen
Christopher Allen
2 years ago

I have yet to see a site “redesign” that I liked better than the original. Gmail, Google Docs, Reddit: all ruined by their new “modern” designs. Workflowy is no exception—but to your credit, your new design, though worse, is much less worse than expected.

Fortunately the desktop app hasn’t changed, and I mainly use that anyway.

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago

Some of the feel of the old design is now available at Settings > Theme > Vintage

Luca Leone (@luc4leone)

I agree with you Jesse, the new design is more “minimal, beautiful, and usable”. Grat to see this product continuosly improving!

Inspired by the minimal syntax style of programming languages like Ruby or Python I played a little in the Developer Tool to delete the “bullet” svg, which I understand is a very core design element. it looks neat and still very readable according to me.

My take is that, even if counterintuitive, it’s not really necessary to have the bullet icons. At least my eye can easily scan lists and sublists (the default indentation is 4 spaces I guess, which is perfect).

Pros: declutter, super minimal
Cons: the bullet is the target for the hidden item menu, but it’s already true that a line can be the target (see the – or + icons on hover state); I think Ruby and Python would not be popular if people would not distinguish indentation, but this is debatable: that’s why I would make this just a style option.

just an idea for the great Workflowy team 🙂

hms
hms
2 years ago

Is there a way to ‘complete’ an item without using the keyboard shortcut? I used to hover over the bullet, and choose complete from the menu. But in the new version, the menu disappears when I move the mouse?

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago
Reply to  hms

that is an Internet Explorer 11 bug, which we fixed yesterday and will be out on Tuesday.

Norman Wilcox
Norman Wilcox
2 years ago

The redesign works good, though I worry not enough resources are being devoted to the mobile platform. Despite the recent updates (or, perhaps because of them), I have repeated lost data due to bugs. Fortunately, I’ve been able to recover the data myself through Dropbox backups. Hoping the company begins to take the mobile platform more seriously. Free competitors are now surpassing WorkFlowy on mobile currently.

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago
Reply to  Norman Wilcox

We are super sorry about those data syncing bugs. They should now be fixed and were part of a rewrite that will help us improve workflowy at a much faster pace

S M S
S M S
2 years ago

As a desktop in-browser user, it’s a lot more unusable whitespace (that hides important page borders), a more distant nav bar, and no real benefit. I’m glad we were able to keep the font and page spacing the same, and I’m looking forward to any options that help us revert more of this design change in the future.

Support suggested paying for Workflowy Pro themes, so I guess the new monetization path is to make the free product worse until people pay for the “improved” old version. It’s all cosmetic and I still like the app, so I’ll keep using it and all, but hopefully we’ll see the much-needed mobile app rework before we get more fidgeting with the main app – “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Make list apps, not war.

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  S M S

Due to many complaints, we’ve brought back the old page feel as a free theme. Settings > Theme > Vintage. Hope that helps!

Norman Wilcox
Norman Wilcox
2 years ago

P.S. I suppose my above comment is a little grumpy, which is out of character for me– usually, I’m one of WorkFlowy’s biggest advocates and cheerleaders. The source of my grumpiness is perhaps shared by other longtime power users and subscribers, based on others’ comments: We don’t feel as though we’re being heard or listened to when we make suggestions and express needs and instead WorkFlowy is following a disjoint agenda in developing the platform by focusing primarily on cosmetic changes rather than addressing longstanding problems.

Jesse Patel
Jesse Patel
2 years ago
Reply to  Norman Wilcox

We are trying to listen to people, and to our hardcore longtime users. A lot of the work we are doing is under the hood, to enable the improvements that you want. What are the key things you’re looking for?

Ryokan
2 years ago

Thanks a lot for this revamp of the old WorkFlowy! Everything you are doing is amazing! Keep it like this: simple, clean and minimal, but also nice! I love it! 🙂

migueldelacueva
2 years ago

Hi, thanks for the great update. I will love more the app if includes the option to navigate between lines in the same level as works on the web with (Control + Shift + 0) and (Control + Shift + 9). Because in that way i can have a quick view of many projects. Again thanks for all.

Aaron L
Aaron L
2 years ago

The new design, which was pushed through with no ability to opt out, wrecks my workflow. I need access to the full breadcrumb navigation, which is now hidden up in the menu bar, and truncated so that I can’t see the pages that I need to click on. Also, the hover for commands over a bullet now forces you to have to look left, since its centered over the bullet, instead of justified left. Both seem to be careless changes, and they are affecting me big time. Please fix these things, or give me the option to use ‘old workflowy’.

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Aaron L

These are two great points and we are working to incorporate this feedback into the current design. You are not alone in your frustration and we hear you.

Daniel
Daniel
2 years ago

Very nice. Two important things:

I use a monitor 4000 pixels wide…I go to drag the window wider so that my text doesn’t needlessly wrap, but it seems to have a max-width set of about 500 px so I can’t use more than 1/3 of my available desktop space?

Fortunately the breadcrumbs DO expand so they aren’t hidden, but this seems a bit of an oversight if making the window wider to allow you to see more of the breadcrumbs works, but the actual workable space doesn’t.

Thank you for your app!

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Daniel

Making a custom width is on our lists!

Aaron
Aaron
2 years ago

I’m not sure if it’s directly related to the new design, but the importing/exporting is now broken.

When exporting, you can’t hit control+C and must click to download instead. (This problem only affects the Windows desktop app; the browser version works fine.)

When importing plain text, any hierarchical structure is ignored. I’ve already posted a comment about this latter problem at the Zendesk page here:
https://workflowy.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/360019557991-Pasting-text-ignores-indentation
This problem happens both on the Windows desktop app as well as in the browser version.

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Aaron

Both of these are fixed in today’s updates. If you still have any trouble, please write to us at help@workflowy.com

Mike
Mike
2 years ago

I want to be able to see the breadcrumbs again! It would be nice to be able to trade vertical for horizontal space – I keep the WF app window relatively narrow (so I can position it to the side of other windows) which makes it so I can read very few of the breadcrumbs – and that makes it hard to use them for navigation, which is a big part of my workflow.

Right now in order to see all/most of the breadcrumbs, I’d have to make the window REALLY wide, which I do not want to do. If there were multiple rows of breadcrumbs this wouldn’t be an issue (and it wouldn’t take much additional vertical space, compared to the amount of wasted horizontal space if I make the window wider). At the least it would be nice to be able to expand the truncated breadcrumbs – when I can only read 1 word of them (or half a word) I can’t even remember what they are.

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Mike

Thanks, you are not alone. Many have the same issue. We are working to address this.

Elisa
Elisa
2 years ago

I must say I am in the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” wagon. And for some reason it might be just me, but it looks like the page is loading bullets slower than it used to?

I really dislike the whole white space. I had tried minimalist styles and I realized I was grateful for the “page” feel as I hate staring at blank documents… (I also don’t want to use that horizontal space like others here want, so yeah, sign me up for the old borders feel).

I also wish the showing menu when the bullet is hovered could be turned off. I only use the bullet menu to export or duplicate. All other things I do via shortcuts, *except* for zooming in. So now, every time I want to click a bullet to zoom in, I am forced to see the menu if I delay (which I often do). I understand it makes life easier for those that actually like to click the menu, but frankly I don’t like to see it when I don’t want it and I don’t like navigating the bullets with the keyboard (probably because I use mobile a lot).

I agree with other people that the new header is more of a bother than anything else. I was very satisfied with the old version, there was nothing wrong with showing the whole path of all my bullets (and I had to move the mouse very little to navigate too. It was so easy.) I understand the new way is more “clean” but it’s less usable. Maybe just make a separate fullscreen version for users that need decluttered space to focus?

What about search and replace?

The “Make lists, not war.” could be optional. It was bothersome when using external things to use a proper search and replace (as any of the words in that sentence would be included in the results), but I really liked it and I miss it.

(When will we have basic formatting options and export functions in the app? I’m dying for any way to grab the links of the bullets in mobile…)

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  Elisa

At least we can help with one of your frustrations. The page theme is now available under Settings > Theme > Vintage. Thanks!

arcgeek
arcgeek
2 years ago

If there is only one Starred item please get me there right away istead of clicking on it again. Thanks. Love WF. Use it for 6 years everyday

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  arcgeek

We built this in mobile. 🙂 Still on our lists to build for web/desktop. Thanks!

james
james
2 years ago

Does Workflowy have 2-factor authentication?

Lee Granas
Lee Granas
2 years ago
Reply to  james

Not yet. On our lists.

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