My Beliefs

Andy Rutledge on “the web and the economy we’re entering”.

Those designers who also understand front-end development, CMS integration, and scripting will do best. Unprepared and unprofessional freelancers will do very poorly during this time.

Yes – I design websites & I slice them. I care about every detail, every pixel. Being the designer & slicer at the same time is something I strongly believe in.

Note; by slicing I mean “front-end development; xhtml, css, javascript, …”

Don’t touch that input element

Repeat after me: input elements should look and behave like input elements – that sounds easy, and yet so many websites are doing it wrong. Wrong as in; design overkill.

Fine by me if you want to design a submit button, textfield or any other input element – as long as it still looks & behaves like one. Visitors instantly need to recognize that textfields are textfields and that there is a submit button at the end of the form.

Lets start with two bad examples;

* Funky shapes but the <textfield> looks more like
a design element instead of something functional.

* Notice the oversized submit button on the right

To conclude everything, here’s a good (belgian made) example;

* Plain & simple – very usable.

It appears that with all the different CSS goodies we have, people start designing/styling almost everything – and that’s not always a good thing. Try to keep it simple – focus on the user and the way they will use your web form.

Don’t be ashamed to use browser default styled form elements – they’re here to help you & your visitors.

Some interesting read on form design:

IE6, css and you

Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 6 is almost no one’s friend – but Andy Clarke has made a pretty good list of CSS rules you should definitely use, even though IE6 doesn’t support them.

He’s approach sure is special, but it makes sense:

You might be thinking that it’s strange for me as a visual designer first, that I would promote an approach where some people see a lesser design that others. But I’m also a pragmatist and I know that in my business, I would rather ask my clients to spend their money wisely on things that will improve their business, than to waste it on hours of unnecessary development.

Definitely worth (must!) reading if you’re a slicer.

PS: I know I’m running late on this one, but it’s too important not to share it with you guys.

3 layers

Flavio Argemi nicely illustrates the 3 (possible) front-end layers of a website. Smooth and funny to see.

3 layers

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