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Exploring Web Design
Michalis 'BIG Mike' Kotzakolios

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"There are two ways of constructing a design. One way is to make it so simple that there are obviously no deficiencies. And the other way is to make it so complicated that there are no obvious deficiencies." - Charles Hoare

The buzz about the Web has been so loud it is impossible to ignore. For many people, it's a call to action - a new career opportunity, an incentive to keep up with competitors, or just a chance to get stuff out there for the world to see. But the Web can also seem overwhelming. There's a lot more to the art of web design than learning plain vanilla HTML and inserting GIF/JPEG files. If you're just getting started, chances are you have some mighty tricky questions. Where do I start? How does it all work? How do I get my stuff on the Web? How is web design different from print design?

To begin with, design for the Web is the most significant new area of design practice of the last decade. Learning to work in a new medium is both exciting and challenging, and forces us to restate what design is. The fluidity this medium presents allows it to assume a more prominent role in business and society. While web design has much in common with the approach to other areas of design there are also some important differences. Many of the challenges of web design are about creating an effective interface between people and technology.

Web design entails using a combination of media and HTML to develop a web page. Basic media components include graphics, sound, and animation files. This combination grabs the attention of surfers on the Internet. One dynamic Internet editing tool used to integrate media into a web page is Macromedia Dreamweaver, which aids in the production of web pages for personal or business use. Before you get in to the nitty-gritty of tags and file formats, it is important that you have a good feel for the design environment. Once you understand the medium and its quirks, you will have a good head start using your tools and making design decisions. All the rest will fall into place.


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