Eleventh – about beautiful sites

Today, the class was asked to look at the interfaces listed at this address: http://flashcriminals.wordpress.com/2009/12/11/35-most-creative-web-design-interfaces/ The following questions are to be answered: What is the benefit from creatively displaying your site through layouts such as these? What are the inherent risks? How do you balance both factors? My answer is very timid, since I am not completely sure if my interpretation of interface is correct and we are studying the appearance of the listed web sites.  The website presents many very different sites. Some are full of details, small details, which one can see well and appreciate on a larger screen only. They would remain unnoticeable – as far as I can see, or more precisely cannot see – on a cell phone screen. The whole purpose to show off a designers’ strength in going into little details and taking care of minuscule games embedded in the big picture do not show on a small screen. That is a risk taken when one produces a till-the-details-sophisticated site.

Other websites are very clean and modestly designed. They can be appreciated on different sizes of display. I even like such designs, but they tell more about the designer’s taste than his or her actual technical experience. Looking at it from the opposite angel, a way-too complicated design can betray lack of experience and understanding what code a design requires, if it is possible at all to support such design with a code, and if yes, what the costs of maintaining such a website are.

Connected to this are the menus. Some have very simple menus, others very complex ones. Each item on a menu means an additional page in the site, more size to it. Though in an almost geometrically opposite way that among old-fashioned machos, size does matter on the web. The smaller, the better available, and accessible. Lot of details, lot of information, larger size, slower download.

And maybe one more thing: if we are not talking about a portfolio site, that is we are talking about a site that is not rendered to propagate the capacity of the designer/programmer, the easier for the viewer to understand what the site is about, the better the site will transmit the message it supposed to transmit. Too many details steer the attention away from what is really important. In fact, it can also make the viewer feel lost among the details.

However, one very important point has to be made when trying to summarize the takeaways from this overview. I wish, I will have to balance between too sophisticated design and efficient coding as probably all those creators who stand behind these sites had to do. It will mean that I will be able to create such beautiful visuals that demand sophisticated coding. This is the most important thing I hope to consider once getting to this stage.

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