There was a time when web design was simple. Putting text on screen was similar to putting it onto a piece of note paper. One can always add a bit of embellishment to a note. But in general people only expect plain text. In the same way, people didn’t expect from much from a website. Things began to change when images become more popular on websites. Eventually we reached a point where websites were full multimedia experiences. A website’s design needed to be as beautiful as the most artistically designed book, and as immersive as a movie. It only took about a decade for simple text to become quite complex. And that’s the time when things became even more difficult for designers. Mobile computing platforms began to become popular. Whether it was a cheap netbook or a smartphone, people were browsing the web on the go. And people demanded, and continue to demand, the same level of quality on these underpowered devices.
Thankfully, new programming and web design techniques have risen up to match the demand and with this easy website builder you have no need to pay for a professional. . Each of these can be considered on the cutting edge of web design. But mastering either will save a huge amount of time in the long run. Even better, it will ensure that one’s reputation will rise above the competition. The two newer methods of web design are known as espensive web design and progressive enhancement. Both are usually discussed together because there can be some overlap between the two concepts. While one might choose to focus on a single aspect, in general it’s best to fully understand both.
These days a browser handles most of the functionality which was once handed off to plugins. Saying that this increases the complexity of a browser is an understatement. That’s fine for a browser running on a powerful computer. It can create issues when one has to do the same with a cellphone. Even when the processor can keep up, one still needs to consider a phone’s screen size.
Responsive web development focuses on CSS and HTML5 based techniques to position elements based on overall screen size. Basically, it considers a screen in the same way that one might consider a dining room. The elements within it are all important, but the positions don’t have to be absolute. What matters is that the elements are all there, and all put into a specific arrangement with each other. When done properly, this can ensure that a site will look great on both a phone and a desktop’s browser.
Of course it’s not always possible to fit every element onto a small screen. This is where progressive enhancement comes in. This design philosophy states that one should focus on a design which can fit every device by using responsive web development. Only afterward should one think about elements which would only work on a desktop based browser. A variety of techniques can be used by a site to detect what platform is accessing it. In particular, jQuery and jQuery mobile are a popular method to detect if one is using a mobile browser and then adapt to it. Basically, one starts simple and assumes a simple environment. If the browser loading it can handle more, the underlying framework can progressively enhance the site. By using this methodology, it’s possible to create a site which looks great on every platform. Even better, it will all sit firmly within a single codebase.