He’s got a point and Gmail is a marvel in it’s range of subtle usability tweaks.
But on the desktop splitpane views are pretty much becoming the norm. And as I’ve said before they suck a whole lot less than floating palettes and overlapping windows.
But they still leave too much of the decision making about use of screen space to the user. Jesse Kuhnert praises Gmail for removing those decisions from you and I must say I’ve never wished I could resize bits of the Gmail UI. Could this strategy work for a wider range of desktop apps too?