What is webdesign?
What is webdesign? Web design is primarily the design of websites on the internet, but the term is regularly used in a broader sense, whereby the technical development of websites is also seen as a part. Because these two parts are regularly not performed by the same person, a division can also be made between web design, which mainly focuses on the front-end of websites, and web development which focuses on the backend, or technical realization thereof. Web design shows similarities with graphic design in traditional printed matter, but there are striking differences. For example, video and audio can be part of web design and interaction with visitors is different.
In contrast to the traditional structure of books, with a table of contents, various indexes, a chapter division and other, websites are generally designed less linearly. Various menus, search functions and sometimes also login functions are used to protect parts of the content from the general public. One way to provide orientation options in a website is the so-called breadcrumb navigation, where the path chosen by the user is indicated in the tree structure of the website on each page.
The substantive coherence of the message of a website is indicated in the text with computer commands. Usually HTML or PHP codes are provided for this. In addition, a style sheet can be used. It records directions about the desired appearances of certain HTML/PHP elements such as fonts, colors, and background images, as well as the positioning and spacing of elements on the site. Linking multiple web pages to the same stylesheet makes it easier to present the entire site in a uniform layout. However, the final rendering is not completely within the designer’s control, as different readers will use different devices to consult their websites.
Dynamic and interactive web pages
Websites do not look the same on different computers and in different browsers. HTML/PHP is interpreted and displayed by each computer/browser separately. A web designer should therefore take this multiform display into account, and will therefore strive for a cross-browser layout to keep this under control as much as possible.
- The resolution is the size of the screen, measured in pixels. The resolution may vary by user. A large resolution mainly offers more space in the width, the length is generally less important because that is absorbed by scrolling. A design that is not based on fixed screen dimensions is called liquid design, the content “flows” here, as it were, into the available space.
- The color depth indicates how many colors the screen can display. In the past, 256 colors were common and had to be taken into account. In that time the web colors arose. Today, however, high color depths are common.
- The color rendering may differ per screen. Some computers have a program installed that performs gamma correction, which adjusts colors. It also makes a difference whether a CRT or TFT display is used.
- The type of web browser also matters. Browsers each have their own interpretation of the code of a web page. Standards have been developed by the W3C on how the code should be interpreted. The browsers do not always fully adhere to this, especially Internet Explorer is often a concern for developers.