After five months of agonizingly slow turnover, the old Gmail is dead. Since the switch was announced, screams from the Twitterian plebes were impossible to escape. "Ugggh, today is THE WORST. Gmail is making me switch to the new design," is what their complaints would sound like, maybe adding a :( for emphasis. Everyone is on a level playing field now. We're all in the same, miserable boat.
When the redesign first came out, we showed the resistance how to avoid conforming to the new standard as much as possible. Changing your Gmail's look from the wide white-space rivers of it's "comfortable" or "cozy" display options to the more traditional "compact," and which scripts to download to keep your Gmail looking like the glory days of old. We fought the power! But that was then, this is now. We cannot cling to the past.
The Atlantic's James Fallows was still lamenting the loss of the old look this week. He tells the story of how he kept one final tab of the old Gmail design open as long as possible. He avoided closing his browser, or his computer, so he could avoid the switch. "I carefully "slept" the machine at night rather than shutting it down. I cancelled any software update that required a system reboot. I worried about what would happen if I unthinkingly closed the tab," he wrote. "It was my living connection to happier days." The window eventually froze. He lost his best friend forever.