I was ready to complain to GMail, then followed their instructions in their Help pages, and it seems the problem is DDG.
In the past 24 hours, all Rich Text options (the buttons) have vanished. Actually, the functionality is there if I click over the blank space where the buttons should be located. The "hunt the button" game is getting thin. Also lost the button than allows me to center up a message for typing (drives me nuts: GMail's "upgraded" layout puts the message-in-progress in a wee window at bottom right of the screen; kink in neck!)
According to Gmail Help, this may be because I'm using an "unsupported browser" (When I tried opening my GMail with Google itself, the problem vanished -- all formatting buttons were visible.) Here's what GMail says:
Is this the big G's way of squeezing DDG? This problem is new within the past 24 hrs.
There are a few reasons you may not see the latest features in Gmail.
AN UNSUPPORTED BROWSER:
If you sign in to Gmail using a browser that isn't fully supported, you'll automatically be directed to a basic HTML view of our service. To make sure that you can always access your mail, we've developed this basic HTML view that's compatible with almost any browser.
Since your browser isn't fully supported, you might notice that some of your favorite features aren't available in the basic HTML view, including the following:
Spell checker [mine is OK]
Creating filters [seems OK]
Adding, editing, importing, or deleting contacts [seems OK]
Custom 'From:' addresses [OK]
Rich formatting [lost buttons; functionality still there but cloaked]
If you're directed to the basic HTML view of Gmail, but you'd like to try using the standard Gmail view, visit: http://mail.google.com/mail?nocheckbrows...
. Keep in mind that standard view may not work, even with this link, if your browser isn't supported.