General Design Principles (1998)


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General Design Principles (1998)

  1. 1. Principles of design, layout, and desktop publishing Concepts that can increase quality, effect, & efficiency
  2. 2. you’re working in the post-revolution era. the “electronic publishing revolution” has made it both easier and harder for you to get your message out. example:
  3. 3. so, assume nobody’s interested. in the information culture that we now live, why should anybody read your work? learn to trick your audience into paying attention. treat your publication like any other presentation, e.g.: a speech. this is an absolutely key principle!
  4. 4. ask yourself ...
  5. 5. what’s your purpose? - what do you want your web to achieve? - determine this very early on in the planning stages of your design to entertain to persuade to identify to inform to elicit a response to provide a reference ?
  6. 6. what’s your image? formal, informal, friendly, playful, elegant, stylish, trendy, classic, adventurous, conservative, scholarly, provocative, diverse, spirited, generous, concerned the design of your pages will create an image, whether you like it or not
  7. 7. who’s your audience? who do you want to experience your design? what are they like? what do they know already? learn everything you can about your audience
  8. 8. remember corporate image Mangadine Systems Where the future starts when it's good and ready
  9. 9. a good hammer does not equal a nice birdhouse. software is only a tool, and good design is not one of it’s default settings. in other words ... having the tools of a designer does not necessarily make you a designer. example:
  10. 10. don’t forget your hats. designer/producer writer editor artist typesetter technician
  11. 11. keep an extra set of eyes handy.
  12. 12. repetition gives cohesion. a consistent “look and feel” shows planning and professionalism example:
  13. 13. variation gives interest. small variations within your scheme keep your audience engaged example:
  14. 14. symmetry loses your attention
  15. 15. asymmetry holds your interest.
  16. 16. use the rule of thirds. (a design principle taken from photography, fine art, graphic design, et al)
  17. 17. keep the eye on the page.
  18. 18. Effect is a product of quality and culture. You might also want to think of “effect” as your audience’s experience
  19. 19. effect is the result of unconscious assessment.
  20. 20. effect (or experience) is the bottom line.
  21. 21. Form has function
  22. 22. Details are important. They do contribute to the unconscious assessment that is your audience’s experience. "Details" “Details”
  23. 23. Style means what? Style means something. Style means something. Style means something.
  24. 24. and very important to realize ...
  25. 25. fashion exists.
  26. 26. but, you must also remember … … ultimately, content is as important as effect.
  27. 27. invention is … the art of stealing creatively. electronic publishing is perhaps the easiest medium ever in which you can “steal” other peoples ideas just be aware of copyright issues as you “create” good design can be time-consuming, so ... ... “steal” from yourself to save time example:
  28. 28. perfectionism wastes time. most often it takes: • 20% of your time to do 80% of the job. • and 80% of your time to complete the final 20% of that job. • another way to put this ...
  29. 29. perfectionism wastes time. 80% effort = 99% effect
  30. 30. Strive for excellence … not perfection.
  31. 31. Efficiency is a product of effort and effect. ReadRead this.this. Read this.
  32. 32. less is more. in designing a new "graphic piece," it is better in the opinion of most professional layout artists — though there are a few examples that seem to demonstrate the contrary — to use only a few elements and fonts than to use many different kinds. the same is "true" for words. example:
  33. 33. In conclusion … Keep in mind the law of computer-user inverse inefficiency: • A beginner wastes hours figuring out how to do something that an experienced user could do in just a few seconds. • An experienced user wastes hours designing a time-saving feature that will do something a beginner could do in just a few seconds more.
  34. 34. remember Hofstedder’s law. “everything you do will take three times longer than you think it will, even when you take Hofstedder's law into account.”
  35. 35. technology is not only your friend, but also … your enemy. the computer can be a very distracting thing to complete your task, you must exercise discipline