What determines the quality of a website – Part 2

Web Design
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From the user point of view

Information design
For an interactive designer, whom needs to collect information on website content, positioning, target audience, and also a closed collaboration with the content provider in order to produce a appropriate solution with matching visual representation.

A former procedure to produce a solution is: Useful -> Ease of use -> Want to use

However most of users do not have the knowledge of graphic design and usability design, so their judgment on a website is heavily relying on the first impression, which therefore brings the visual design as a prerequisite, therefore visual design should not be overlooked.

Visual design
Visual design consists of use of colour scheme, texture, text and image and attention to visual detail. Successful visual design can create a powerful first impression to the user, but if colour scheme is over colourful, and too many textures applied on buttons, may leave user an impression that the website is not professionally designed and not reliable, as a result, they will not come back again.
Ultimately a website is to deliver an overall impression, and visual plays a heavy role.

Other factors
Stability is another consideration for the quality of a website. 404 error page should not appear on the website, and all functions should be tested before launching.

Edited By Dan Li

What determines the quality of a website – Part 1

Web Design
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Visual design is not my profession and strength, but recently because of work, I kept thinking about this topic. So I might as well explore the factors that determines the quality of a website, hoping to give some feasible design guideline.

What is so important about quality?

Quality can improve credibility and reliability of a website, which then gives your users a good first impression, initial trust.

Ordinary users do not understand user experience, nor colour dimensions, even the quality are not their concern, but they evaluate a website through the first impression.

1. What does this website do?

2. Is this website credible?

3. Is this website professional?

It only takes a few seconds to leave the first impression to the users: is this website worth trying?

Within the few seconds, users certainly not have the time to read the long-winded “about us” article, nor do they bother to experience the interaction process through searching, shopping and registration.

So what affect user decision within seconds?

1. Branding and reputation – you may not find the visual attractive, but if you have enough reputation, e.g. “as seen on TV”, that may help to stay longer.

2. Channels – user may enter a particular website through other sites they know well, for example links in eBay or partnership sites, though the website itself lack of reputation, but through its friend sites, it could affect user decision.

3. Content, also the base – a few seconds, user can skim through and get the idea of what this website does and if it fits what they need. Headlines, bold letters, pictures and price, all are helpful for user to make judgement.

Now in some companies, content and brand strategists are recruited to plan columns and contents.

Edited By Dan Li

Design principle – final

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Microsoft Windows user experience design principles:

1. Reduce concepts to increase confidence
2. Small things matter, good and bad
3. Be great at “look” and “do”
4. Solve distractions, not discover-ability
5. UX before knobs and questions
6. Personalization, not customization
7. Value the life cycle of the experience
8. Time matters, so build for people on the go

(Source: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd834141.aspx)

iPhone human interface design principles:
iPhone Design principle
Figure 1 http://developer.apple.com/library/ios/#documentation/userexperience/conceptual/mobilehig/Introduction/Introduction.html

1. Metaphors

When you design applications, please learn about the existing metaphors in iPhone operation system, and do not redefine these metaphors.

2. Direct Manipulation

With multi-touch interface, iPhone users can enjoy a high level direct control over the operation system. Using gesture to communicate with the object gives user a feeling of control, as they do not need any media in between, such as mouse.

3. See and Point

Users no longer need to remember the steps of an application, because now the design is more intuitive.

4. Feedback

Besides seeing the result of their operation, users also need to have an immediate feedback from their action, especially in an application that takes long time to take effect.

5. User control

Let users initiate action and control behaviour, but not the application. Keep actions simple and direct, so that users can easily understand and remember them. It is best to adapt standard command or familiar user behaviours.

6. Aesthetic Integrity

Users expect a nice interface appearance, promise interests and encourage discoveries. Make sure your interface design elements are delicate in the application, so that they can provide a unify experience.

Edited By Dan Li

Web Design principle part 2

Web Design, Website Development
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It is worth noting: the design principle is an aid rather than a base for creative ideas.

It is helpful to use design principles to screen on all sorts of ideas, but if it gets too adhere to these principles, or even just to design around these principles can destroy creativity. Although it seems secure to brainstore design ideas within the framework of the principles. However, if we are confined by that, it is difficult to come up with surprising ideas.

This kind of idea is bound by specific principles. it is easy to gather different inspirations to enrich it.

The main points of design principles:

1. which is built on the basis of design research
2. it is concise
3. it is memorable
4. it runs through the entire design
5. it should be “easy to use”
6. it results from different sets of ideas
7. it is not self-contradictory

Finally, let’s share some examples of design principles once again:

1. quick, eye-catching, the use of pleasure
2. with a simple way input information into the calendar
3. it is more than just a calendar (memo to reminder and other functions)
4. easy to share, you can easily see your entire life schedule

Edited By Dan Li

Web Design principles part 1, an example from google

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As designers, we accumulate all kinds of good ideas over time, however before we begin a web design project, it is often a dilemma of which style to choose. Is it better to go for a eye-catching style? or vintage collage style? Which one is the most creative yet appropriate? Today we are going to talk about how design principles can aid us in this process.

Firstly, what is the design principles?

Design principles should reflect the core value of a product or a service, and they ought to be concise and memorable, which to be kept in mind throughout the process. In addition, all principles should not be in conflict with one another, but constantly be refined to become better aid for better product services.

Let’s take a look at 10 google user design principles. (For more detail, please go to http://www.google.com/corporate/ux.html)

1. Focus on people their lives, their work, their dreams.
2. Every millisecond counts.
3. Simplicity is powerful.
4. Engage beginners and attract experts.
5. Dare to innovate.
6. Design for the world.
7. Plan for today‘s and tomorrow‘s business.
8. Delight the eye without distracting the mind.
9. Be worthy of people‘s trust.
10. Add a human touch.

Edited By Dan Li

Website Design

Web Design
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Today internet is a household name, and presence on it is an absolute necessity for any business to strive and grow. Every entrepreneur irrespective of his business scale, try to promote his business and it’s objectives on Internet with the help of well designed Website.

It was in August 1991, when Tim Berners-Lee came up with what is considered as a first website. He was first to combine Internet communication with hypertext. It was a very basic and simple form of a website which over the years has developed into an artistic phenomenon.

Earlier Websites were made with simple HTML, which was a very basic mark-up language, it allowed websites to have headings and even link to other sites. But when, just as HTML was making its way into a really well rounded computer language capable of all kinds of things new languages like CSS, or cascading style sheets, became available.

HTML offered users limited involvement on the website. But, today things are different and Internet users can become very involved on a particular site thanks to other improvements like Adobe Flash and more. Websites today, have become more of a brand statement for an enterprise, as it popularly quoted, “What appeals to the eyes, soothes the heart as well”.

Edited By Henry Lu

Information architecture in Web Designing

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When discussing a website structure, an integral and important part of it is its Information architecture. It is a natural point of emphasis in any web design in Sydney; and every company into serious web development is serious about it.

Since everyone into website development in Sydney already knows about it, so should you to stay abreast and even exceed expectations. Information architecture is an inclusive term that manifests the entire detour it undertakes to describe and classify information on a website in an easy to read and understand manner.

It is one universally acknowledged fact that information and navigation are key features of any website that make it a good (read user-friendly) or a bad (difficult) web site. And there lies the catch. A good information infrastructure emphasises on simplicity in categorization of information. So, website development in modern times engages information architects to aid planning and maintenance of the structure of their website for optimal taxonomy.

Accordingly, a standard website may have four types of web pages, predominantly, information, navigation, product and content pages. Each type of page represents the purpose it solves. You may find many templates of each page type online, just in case, you need one.

Edited By Gary Smith

Why to opt for CSS and XHTML over plain HTML alone?

E-Business Development
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The fundamental feature of a typical professional web design in Sydney is that it separates layout and styling from content. Using HTML out and out is not recommended owing to a multitude of reasons, including

1.Using HTML elements alone invariably results into lengthier coding and larger file sizes. Consequently, a website takes longer to download, which is less favourable user browsing experience. All styling information in a separate CSS file, on the other hand, helps keep coding to minimum and lightest.

2.It is definitely way easier to maintain a single file with style information than updating a site throughout to update its appearance once in a while.

3.Using CSS for formatting a website renders it friendlier for visually handicapped and mobility impaired internet surfers. CSS ensures organized and proper construction of semantics, which in turn allows easy and effective integration of software like “screen reader” or software for voice input, respectively.

4.Plain XHTML pages can be easily formatted for different devices and varying screen resolutions by applying different CSS format files for respective settings/ presentation methods/ media.

5.With proper separation between HTML and CSS, it is easier for search engine ‘crawlers’ to spot your site and read it throughout without misinterpretations in a hassle free manner.

In the end, it is also a good web design practice across Sydney and else where. You would find it a popular website development practice in Sydney to use XHTML and CSS for formatting.

Edited By Henry Lu

Attributes for an Effective, Professional High Quality Web Design, Part 2

Web Design
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Some features in ideal web design in Sydney remain the same for all, no matter what may be the business area of the web master. All these features are fundamental to extending a sound browsing experience to one’s users, including

-Logical and Intuitive navigation
-Neat Layout Design
-Best possible website loading time
-Pure CSS Programming

In addition, a web designer may also consider the following during website development for Sydney based company:

Design in preparation of all screen resolutions:

Indeed, you cannot ensure the exact screen resolution your visitors might be using. You must, however, make sure that your website is able to retain them at reading the web content. So, it is advisable to design stretch layouts that would fit every screen resolution.

Design Scalable websites

It is critical to design and develop your website to be scalable. This will make it easier for you to upgrade and enhance the site designs to suit changing configurations and surrounding Internet based technologies.

Cross-browser compatible designs

If not all, you must check it for all leading Internet browsers used prevalently on World Wide Web. You may check the web design across Internet Explorer version 5 and beyond, Netscape Navigator 6+, Mozilla Firefox 1+, Opera 7+, Safari 3+ and Google Chrome, as these are used by almost 95% of Internet surfers worldwide.

Edited By Gary Smith

Attributes for an Effective, Professional High Quality Web Design, Part 1

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Coming to the point spot on, a web design company from Sydney would impart your website the following attributes to ensure superior website development by Sydney standards.Logical and intuitive navigation

A neat and easy set up of internal links for browsing within the website determine the adhesiveness of your site. In other words, the ease with which a visitor can navigate across all your site’s web pages and come back to the home page, determines how much time he/ she would spend on your site.

Neat Layout Design

This is again critical. Keep the site layout such that it looks neat [hint: may be use white space a lot], maintains main focus on content and uses fonts that are generally available across computers worldwide.

Best website loading time

The shortest it is, the better. You can achieve better results by keeping graphics, flash and scripts to minimum; HTML & script code optimization; using Server Side Include (SSI) files wherever possible.

Pure CSS Programming

A contemporary web design in Sydney has moved beyond tables-based websites. It is in vogue to go for website development in Sydney using pure CSS programming, as it extends greater control over web design, reusability, accessibility and significantly lighter in file size.

Edited By Gary Smith

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