Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Current State of Web Design and Working on a Project - Shirley Kaiser Interview

The changing world of behind the scene Web design ...

"Digital Web: Last time we interviewed you was four years ago. What’s your opinion on the current climate of web standards and browsers?

Shirley Kaiser: From my vantage point, I see continued improvements and positive growth. For example, I see a much more open attitude toward web designers and developers at Microsoft via their IEBlog and related employee blogs. Web designers and developers can finally communicate directly with Microsoft browser developers; we can see for ourselves now that browser developers are paying attention, working hard at eliminating CSS bugs, and supporting more W3C CSS recommendations.

It matters that we can actually make a positive difference in improving the IE browser. As we all know, IE6 was stagnant for around five years or so, even though other browsers such as Firefox, Opera, and Safari kept on moving forward and improving. Now that IE7 is just released, I’m curious to see the impact. IE still has catching up to do, as the other main browsers are still ahead of them in terms of supporting W3C recommendations and browser features, but the gap is getting smaller.

DW: How has web design changed in the last five years in terms of what designers are doing better and what needs improving?

SK: I’ve seen tremendous growth in awareness of the benefits of CSS, and the importance of W3C recommendations, web standards, and accessibility.

On the other hand, I continue to see far too many professional sites that don’t allow for a browser’s fluidity and flexibility, that are confusing and tough to navigate, and that don’t provide sufficient, if any, helpful accessibility features. I also still see so many sites with incredibly bloated tables for layout and all those spacer gifs and font tags. Many are old designs—even some of my own clients still have old designs online that I created for them years ago like that. What bothers me more, though, are new designs like that."    (Continued via Digital Web Magazine)    [Usability Resources]

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