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What is Web Design? (Essential Design Handbooks) Hardcover – 29 Aug 2003

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Rotovision (29 Aug 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 2880466865
  • ISBN-13: 978-2880466862
  • Product Dimensions: 17.5 x 2.5 x 22.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 825,195 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


To understand Web design it is critical to understand design first and technology second. "What is Web Design?" develops design principles that will be as relevant to future technological developments as they are today. While Web design is the most celebrated area of design it draws on many other areas, and by putting it in context this book makes Web design easier to understand. Technical platforms are lucidly discussed and illustrated, and the component elements of Web design are explained and contextualised. The book looks objectively at the relationship between the designer, the client and the other people whose skills and input are key to the design process, and stresses the need for designers to understand and collaborate with these partners in the pursuit of a common goal. A good idea is only as good as its final implementation and getting to this point requires mastering many processes. This book establishes basic principles and a step-by-step approach that should increase the chances of a project being successful. The book concludes by telling the stories of ten design projects from the perspectives of the people involved in their commissioning, designing and engineering.

Among the material includes are idea maps, sketches, flow charts, wireframes, design treatments, design ideas in development (and those that were rejected). Work by Trilogy, MetaDesign, Cooper, Visual I|O, Xymbio, Contempt and Organic.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Pg Barrett on 23 April 2004
Format: Hardcover
"The term "Web design" has got itself a bit of a bad reputation. The imageof the juvenile Photoshop jockey, obsessed with the funkiness of hislatest incomprehensible interface is taking some time to die off, longafter the dot.com bubble has burst.
The definition of "Web design" in this book is far broader and healthier.It emphasises user research techniques and solid design process as well asinnovation, beauty and appropriate use of the medium.
This book won't tell you anything about using the software you need tomake websites. It's a high level look at what good web design is - or whatit should be.
The book is densely packed with everything you ever needed to know andabout Web design - and various other kinds of design too. It's quotable.You can show it to people and say "look! *This* is how we should be doingthings!"
The book isn't necessarily designed to be read from cover to cover. It'ssomething to dip into when you need some perspective or background. bitsyou'll find useful very much depends on what your role in the Web designprocess is.
The book itself is beautifully designed. Its physical heft and fabulousstyle make it a really desirable object to have on your desk.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 3 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Simple title, sophisticated discussion 10 Dec 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Macdonald has assembled the best compilation of how designers have approached web projects. In contrast to most books, it does not offer simple rules or critiques, but shows many facets of real projects to illustrate what needs to be considered and ways to approach good design. The book is richly illustrated, which in itself provides wonderful material to contemplate. This book looks at the web from a design perspective, not simply typography and layout, branding, or usability, but the whole spectrum of design. Even though I'm familar with all the topics the book covers, I have learned much from the discussions, which are always original.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
good practices to improve chances of success 28 Oct 2005
By W Boudville - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
A nice book that rises above the technical aspects of coding a website. It places design as the primary consideration. Accompanied by numerous screen shots and analyses of existing websites that are good pedagogic examples.

Macdonald recommends that designers and programmers work closely. So that designers have a good idea of what the technology can do. Also, web projects should still have frequent meetings of all concerned parties. He also mentions what types of shared physical or virtual workspaces might be helpful.

These and other practices mentioned in the text can greatly improve the odds of a successful website.
Great approach 24 Sep 2012
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Great approach - design first and the technical details second. Web design is certainly a technical skill, but it is as much, if not more, an art, and a form of expression. This is especially powerful when designing sites for others, for friends or for clients. You must FIRST be able to hear and envision what what client wants to accomplish with their site, and then comes the ability to accomplish that, without putting your own design preferences into THEIR site.

Happy reading!
Michael Holt
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