Summary – History of Web Design!

10 Apr

The amazing resource http://sixrevisions.com/web_design/the-evolution-of-web-design/ provides an amazing overview of the amazing path that web design has taken over the years. I feel that going over the history of web design would provide insights into more than just technique: it provides a look into changing processing power, cultural values, and theories of color and flow. As a result, it would be a great way to summarize the research I have been doing and contextualize my work.

The first web page. 1992. Just seeing the web page gives me frission – it is the epitome of “my first web pages” from all over the world. Wow. We have come a long way.

The first Yahoo! – 1996. This is interesting. Because I doubt I would have been able to make a page like that back then, with the resources they must have had. I’d imagine that it would have taken a whole team or a really hard-working person just to create this part of the website at that time.

My favorite development of the 90’s is decisively the rise of table-based design. This is what would be considered the “intuitive” way to make flowing, modern websites without the resources provided by CSS. With table-based design, websites can be separated into readable and understandable regions that are appealing and relevant. That is why the Altavista and Yahoo! sites from 2002, although “primitive” looking, still look so “modern” when compared to the 1996 designs.

Interactivity was probably the beginning of a web design revolution, exploding around 2002 with DHTML (Dynamic HTML), Flash, Shockwave, and the like. Interactive websites were more likely to draw viewers, creating an incentive for the development of interactive web applications and sites.

CSS-based design made websites much more dynamic and adaptable to different screen sizes. The problem of having websites translate over to different computers with different screen resolutions and the like must have been a huge problem; CSS solved this problem by making the spacing and layout relative to a point, thus scaling web designs to different screen sizes. Additionally, the advent of Photoshop web design must have had a huge impact on the development of web pages, as can be seen with the transformation of the W3C site from 2002 to 2009.

The internet has always been an important source of information, but making that information natural and presentable is just as important. The growth and advancement of web design over the years has shown a significant trend towards readability and functionality that has helped make the web the important medium it is today.

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