Web 2.0 HowTo Design Guide
Web design is simpler than ever, and that’s a good thing. 2.0 design means focused, clean and simple
2. Central Layout
This “2.0” style is simple, bold and honest. Sites that sit straight front & center feel more simple, bold and honest.
3. Fewer Columns
Less is more. Fewer columns feels simpler, bolder, and more honest. We’re communicating less information more clearly.
4. Separate Top Section
This means making the top of the screen (the main branding & nav area) distinct from the rest (the main content).
5. Solid Areas of Screen Real-Estate
Leading on from the clearly differentiated top area, you’ll notice that lots of sites define the various areas of real-estate boldly and clearly.
Real estate comes in various forms, including:
* Background / canvas
* Main content area
* Other stuff
* Callouts / cross-links
6. Simple Nav
Permanent navigation – your global site nav that appears on every page as part of the page template – needs to be clearly identifiable as navigation, and should be easy to interpret, target and select.
7. Bold Logos
A clear, bold, strong brand – incorporating attitude, tone of voice, and first impression – is helped by a bold logo.
8. Bigger Text
If you fill the same amount of space with less “stuff”, you have more room.
When you’ve made more room, you can choose to make more important elements bigger than less important elements (if they’re still there).
9. Bold Text Introductions
Leading on from the big text theme, many sites lead with strong all-text headline descriptions.
10. Strong Colours
Bright, strong colours draw the eye. Use them to divide the page into clear sections, and to highlight important elements.
11. Rich Surfaces
We all know that these little touches just feel nice, but we may not know why.
Realistic surface affects like drop-shadows, gradients and reflections help make a visual interface feel more real, solid and “finished”.
Web 2.0 design has more gradients than the Alps. Gradients soften areas that would otherwise be flat colour/tone.
The illusion of reflection is one of the most common applications on gradients.
These commonly come in 2 kinds:
* Highlights caused by light reflecting on shiny surfaces
* That shiny table effect!
14. Cute Icons
Icons play an important role in Web 2.0 design. Today we use fewer, better icons that carry more meaning.
15. Star Flashes
These are the star-shaped labels that you see stuck on web pages, alerting you to something important.
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