Pinterest launches new look, more tools

Users should look for an email invite to check out the changes to the site

Social pinboard site interest began rolling out a redesign to its users today.

Users should watch their email for an invitation from Pinterest to check out the changes, according to the company. The social pinboard site, which opened its doors to the public last August, is giving users bigger images, or pins, more information and better navigation tools.

"In January, we asked a small group of pinners to test a new look designed to make discovering things on Pinterest easier," wrote Jason Wilson, lead product designer with Pinterest, in a blog post. "Since then, we've talked to some of these folks, analyzed their feedback, and made a few changes. Today, we're thrilled to start sharing the new look with everyone."

The redesign includes new features for close-up views of pins that are designed to help users find new things on the site, Wilson said. For instance, users now can explore an entire board without leaving the page they were on. It's also easier to find pins from the same website and from the same person.

The feature that makes it easier to find other pins from the same person is expected to be added to the mobile apps for the Android and iOS platforms.

"We also responded to some feedback from pinners who told us they hated losing their place while browsing," wrote Wilson. "Now, when you scroll through pins and click on something that interests you, the back button lands you right back where you were no matter how far you've gone."

He also noted that people will see bigger pins and what he calls "subtle" changes to the site.

"We wanted to make things simpler and cleaner, without requiring you to learn anything new," said Wilson.

Pinterest is like a shareable online scrapbook or a collection of collections. Users can create pages of interest by pulling in images from around the Web. If someone spots an image - of a inspirational saying, a stylish outfit or a beautiful cake, for example -- she can use a plugin to grab it and add it to her board.

People who follow the user can see her pinboards, repin their favorite images and comment on them.

The site offers a look into the people forming the collections as much as it does into the worlds of religion, fashion, gardening, cooking and travel.

Sharon Gaudin covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter at @sgaudin, on Google+ or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed . Her email address is sgaudin@computerworld.com.

See more by Sharon Gaudin on Computerworld.com.

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