How many trials have you run?
Why do Google pages wait 5 seconds before fetching the data necessary to render the big red 1 on Google+? It seems deliberate, but it's visually distracting. Timeline of a page load below.
Every single time I load any page at Google (Plus, Mail, Search, etc) there's a noticeable pause before the red 1 appears. It's not an occasional thing, it seems deliberate. I only broke out the timeline tool a couple of times.
Maybe it's just "the last data" to load which will cause the delay, because it's least important in Google's view?
But the "last data" loaded 4.9 seconds ago; why wait so long for Google+? My guess is either to call attention to itself or else it's some workaround to avoid loading on pages that aren't open very long. Neither explanation makes much sense though, I'm hoping there's a reason the delay is good for the user. Visually it's terribly distracting.
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