Effective Web Design

Ann Navarro Effective Web Design 2001Navarro, Ann, Effective Web DesignSybex, 2001 (2nd Edition)Navarro runs an Internet consultancy, is a member of the HTML Writers Guild, and works with W3C which strives to set standards on the Internet. The book is largely a ‘how to’ book, although she identifies design, time, financial and legal constraints (including recent issues such as copyright and privacy laws) on the scope and development of a site.

Sites should be planned on paper first, the purpose and audience of the site must be defined, the desired outcomes prioritised, and the site planned accordingly. Users should know from the start what they are going to get from your site, and this should be consistently applied throughout the site. It is the job of the designer to make it obvious to users what elements of the page are and how they work.

Navarro assesses how the visual balance of a site should work, the psychology of colours (although she advises going with gut reactions on what looks good), some of the new media available on the web. She stresses the importance of accessibility, with plenty of tips on how to implement good, accessible design, claiming that this forms the basis of what is effective for all users, although it may restrict some elements of design. (January 2002)

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