What if Google had to design their user interface for…well…themselves? What if they had to account for the links they’d need to rank or the need to maintain fresh content? What if they needed to do some social media marketing and had to make sure they optimized on-page content? Maybe if they needed to do all those things to please their own algorithm the simple interface we all know and love would look a little different?
Maybe this would be the new design for Google.
The previous link is clearly a tongue-in-cheek answer to all of the above questions. It’s funny and worth the minute or so to follow the design evolution. It’s also an indication why you see so many of the elements on the final design present on so many sites. There’s a lot of truth in this bit of humor.