When the Library of Alexandria in Egypt was destroyed in a fire in 48 BC, humankind lost an unimaginable wealth of knowledge that could have changed the course of our evolution and development. Ever since then, scholars and communities have continuously sought ways to save and exchange information more easily through communications channels with written, audio and visual technology.
What does this have to do with web design? The driving force behind the Internet was the urge to save and exchange information between universities, the same force and instinct that built the Library of Alexandria. But endless pages of online texts, links and primitive messaging systems were not user-friendly, and web design gradually became the bridge between pure academia and a user-friendly experience for website visitors.
In its own right, design is a significant language of preservation, starting with Egyptian hieroglyphics and going all the way to today’s logos as the symbols of corporate culture, character, presence in the market and core activities.
Origins of web design
Today, the web has billions of daily users who communicate with others, do research, watch the news, play games, search for jobs, network, shop and carry out a myriad of other online activities. This is a far cry from the early 1990s when the Worldwide Web’s first website was built by Tim Berners-Lee for CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research. The world’s first search engine, ALIWEB, used the web’s first color – yellow – to attract attention to featured search results. Still, the early Internet was very much an academic environment that stuck to long texts and highlighter colors to make the point.
What is website design and development?
Web designers create the aesthetics of a website. They design different graphical elements such as menus, fonts, titles, subtitles, images, infographics, ads, and logos. Web designers spend most of their time on the language of color and visual branding.
Web designers usually focus on user experiences (UX) for website visitors. They create wireframe prototypes with homepages, inner pages and landing pages designed for practical and easy navigation.
The web designer’s visuals come to life when web developers take over and code in the functionality with languages like HTML, PHP and Java.
Who said ‘user experience’ first?
“User experience is everything, it’s the way you experience your life, it’s the way you experience the service.” Don Norman.
In 1993, Don Norman was working at Apple and told his group that the consumer’s experience of the company’s computers was weak. The computers were too big to fit into peoples’ cars, they were intimidating to put together at home and so history was made, the phrase ‘user experience’ was born and eventually abbreviated to UX.
What is user experience?
As described by Don Norman, UX is the entire experience a user has when navigating a system, whether it’s a computer, a website or a supermarket. Today, Apple’s products have UX at the heart of their design and visual branding, making the company a global giant in personal electronic consumer goods.
Main approaches to best user experience
In his honeycomb visual, information architecture consultant Peter Morville describes the best user experience as a combination of usefulness, usability, desirability, value, findability, accessibility and credibility.
Design and user experience
If we go back to nature, a metaphor arises that perfectly describes design and user experience. Walking through the park, the path curves and we follow it step by step as it weaves, taking us deeper into the heart of the sweet-smelling trees. We reach an opening in the woods where we find our destination, a holiday cabin!
Compare this to entering a search term on Google and finding the most relevant results, then clicking on the top result to happily and easily find our destination – that particular thing we need and are looking for at that moment in our lives. User experience should be…a walk in the park.
Website design services
Whether it’s to sell products or design services, reach a wider audience, or increase brand awareness, a custom-made website provides the adaptability to achieve all of this. From the servers and coding to the structure and visual design, we build everything from the ground up to ensure flawless, optimized performance across all popular devices.