Google has an accessible new look and new features

Wednesday, 12 May 2010 14:05pm

Google has considered access in the recent updates to the look and feel of its interface and the addition of left-hand navigation on the results pages.

If you’ve visited Google’s search and results pages, you will notice that there have been some changes to the look and feel of the pages and that there are new features to assist you with your search. Google is known for its clean interface design, and its continued adherence to web accessibility means people who use assistive technologies are still able to obtain full access to Google.

Google has added three new search features that give you more flexibility and options when viewing results to your search query: Universal Search, the Search Options panel and Google Squared.

  • Universal Search: Instead of only giving you a list of every result that matches your search query, Universal Search provides you with a list of suggested genres for your query, such as images, videos or blogs in addition to ‘everything’ which provides you with just that, a results list with everything on it.
  • Search Options panel: This panel was released as an expandable in Spring 2009 (US) and enables you ‘slice-and-dice’ your search results. The Search Options panel has moved from being expandable to being fixed in the new left-hand navigation.
  • Google Squared:  Google Squared powers the “something different” feature that gives you a list of topics related to your initial query, much like a thesaurus provides you with related words. For example, if you search for wind power, “something different” will suggest topics like solar power, wind energy, solar energy, geothermal energy or hydropower. The “something different” feature can be found at the bottom of the new left-hand navigation.


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