I couldn’t disagree with Jack Shafer of Slate any more about the redesign of the New York Times Web site. The redesign is an improvement, but in no way would it cause me to turn my nose at the printed page for newspaper content. By that I mean if I am going to read stories printed in the paper, I prefer to read the daily paper as printed, not the same thing on the Web. The Web site can give you a lot of multimedia extras and links to other information, but in terms of readability, there is a reason the printed page has been around for so long.
What is missing from the redesign? At the top of my list would be white space; I think the line-height needs to be increased on the first page teasers, and a little more padding wouldn’t hurt. Second on my list of disappointments would be the use of the Georgia font. I’m not sure what the problem is, but it doesn’t look as nice on a PC (compared to my Mac at home).
It’s funny that Khoi Vinh, the new design director at nytimes.com, doesn’t take much credit for the redesign (he has only been there a short time). From what I have seen of his work, the updated nytimes.com design is very much similar to Vinh’s design taste.