undated image provided by Pinterest shows the
popular link- and photo-sharing website's new
updated site. The update now offers people a
simpler navigation and new ways to arrange their
boards to fit their needs. Although the
haphazard spirit of Pinterest remains, the site
is much less overwhelming.
YORK — Don't worry, Pinterest fans: Your sprawling
virtual pegboards of wedding dresses, handmade
jewelry, craft projects and food porn haven't changed
dramatically. They're just easier to manage.
popular link- and photo-sharing website has rolled out
an update, one offering people simpler navigation and
new ways to arrange their boards to fit their needs.
Although the haphazard spirit of Pinterest remains,
the site is much less overwhelming.
wasn't a Pinterest user before, so the redesign gave
me a chance to take a good look at the site for the
first time. Before that, I had refused to be sucked
into yet another form of social media. I figured I
didn't have much use for it.
the months since I started testing out Pinterest's new
look, though, I've found the service helpful in
organizing and sharing my continually expanding recipe
collection. And it's fun to check what other people
around the world are looking at and to see which
strangers choose to follow me or respond to what I'm
it is not a replacement for Facebook or Twitter, and
doesn't pretend to be, it is a beautiful and vast
world with more than 25 million users around the
those who have never used Pinterest, the free site
lets people "pin" pictures from websites
they want to share on online peg boards. You can
choose to share the boards with just a few close
friends or the entire Pinterest world. Others can
comment on the boards and pins, "like" them
or repin items on their own boards.
result is an eclectic mix of millions of boards
spanning just about as many topics. Although it
doesn't offer as much of a chance to communicate and
debate the way Facebook and Twitter do, Pinterest is
an interesting and often beautiful supplement to those
social media networks.
recent redesign is intended to cut down on clutter and
make the site easier to manage, without drastically
changing its look. The new look continues to evolve.
Most of the changes are very subtle, and some have
been tweaked or reversed already, helping Pinterest
avoid the kind of backlash that Facebook has weathered
in the past. Pinterest promises even more updates in
the weeks and months ahead.
of the most noticeable changes so far is Pinterest's
move to larger pins, so you get four rather than five
items per row. The site looks cleaner and less
overwhelming because you don't see as many items on
the screen at once. Much of the text previously found
on Pinterest boards is smaller or gone. Menus have
impresses me most about Pinterest — and also what
drove me crazy — is its vast variety. Although
there's no shortage of boards devoted to food,
clothing, gadgets and home decor, there are also ones
devoted to obscure topics such as doors, hockey
goalies and the character Daryl from the TV show
"The Walking Dead."
boards are very artistic and personal, while others,
like mine, are more practical than pretty. The
possibilities are endless, and so is the potential for
wasting time — another reason I held off on joining
for so long. Basically, whatever you're obsessed with,
there's something on Pinterest for you.
me, that's food.
have hundreds of food-related sites bookmarked on my
work and home computers, plus my iPhone and my iPad.
They cover healthy recipes geared toward using up
ingredients from my weekly farm share, tips for
cooking a filet mignon and lists of New York
restaurants with the best ramen and pizza. Other
people have shared everything from the most ornate
wedding cakes to those old-fashioned casseroles held
together with canned soup.
became a handy way to organize all that. First, I set
up a Pinterest board simply titled
"Recipes." That quickly spawned separate
boards for easy meals, desserts and New York City
restaurants. Although they pale in size so far to many
of the countless other recipe boards out there, I find
myself adding a couple things every day as I browse
Twitter, Facebook and, of course, other Pinterest
boards also serve as a handy way for me to share
recipes. Want my go-to red velvet cake, mac and cheese
and turkey chili recipes? They're all on my Pinterest
page. It also gives me easy access to my recipes when
I need them. Rather than emailing myself links to
recipes that I've bookmarked on my office computer, I
can just pin them to my board and open up it later on
my iPhone as I walk through the grocery store or on my
iPad as I stir something on the stove.
just a few months, some of my boards have grown pretty
large. The new, less cluttered version of Pinterest
helps me find what a need a little faster.
activity feed, which details who likes and repins your
pins along with other information, is in the process
of moving to a drop-down menu on the right-hand side,
clearing more space for the pins and their often
beautiful photos. Its content is expanding as well.
Notifications go back further in time than what users
boards and pins by topic, such as "Art,"
''Food & Drink" and "Geek," is now
easier, too. Instead of one long list dropping down
from the middle of your page, the categories fall from
the upper left in three shorter columns. It's a simple
change that makes the list less daunting to read
through. Meanwhile, all of the profile and account
settings have been consolidated in a dropdown menu on
plethora of new information also pops up now when you
take a close-up look at a pin. To the right of the pin
is a mini version of the board it came from, which you
can scroll through. There is a mini board showing
other pins from the same website, so you can discover
related recipes, for instance. Below all of that is a
collection of pins from people who pinned the pin
you're looking at. It's a way to discover material
from like-minded people. It's a lot of content on one
page, but surprisingly manageable.
has also boosted its search capabilities, so that when
you start typing something in the search box located
in the upper-left corner of the page, a list of
suggested words appears below it. That's helpful if
you don't know exactly how to spell something.
some popular features have also been eliminated. Gone
is the site's "originally pinned by"
feature, which showed which user was the first to pin
a certain item. But Pinterest notes that many users
have requested its return. I wouldn't be surprised if
it did. Based on user feedback, Pinterest has already
brought back other features, including one that allows
users who have just pinned something to look at
related pins or go straight to their pin by clicking
on its "see it now" button.
makes Pinterest different from other social media
services is that it's not so much about posting your
opinions or even letting your friends know about
what's going on in your life. Instead of creating new
content, it's about sharing and organizing what's
already out there, preferably content that's attached
to cool photos.
get a beautiful visual experience and links to just
about everything online right now.
that's something you're interested in, you might want
to give the new and improved version a shot. Just
don't spend too much time at the office looking at
recipes for 1950s-style casseroles made with
cream-of-whatever soup. It's 2013, after all.