Questions about whether design is necessary or affordable are quite beside the point: design is inevitable. The alternative to good design is bad design, not no design at all.
(SFDV2001:18) Design Form follows function - that has been misunderstood. Form and function should be one, joined in a spiritual union. No matter how beautiful, no matter how cool your interface, it would be better if there were less of it. Douglas Martin Frank Lloyd Wright Alan Cooper
(SFDV2001:18) Design Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. Leonardo da Vinci The simplest explanation is usually the best. Ockham's Razor Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler. Albert Einstein
Take the content of an alertbox article and redesign the layout.
Add visual information
Clean up the code and add
CSS for semantic markup
Add a printable version
Add a Flash interactive version for education
Not all of what they do is perfect but an interesting perspective.
Simplification (SFDV2001:18) Design Don’t underline any text that’s not a link, even if your links aren’t underlined. Reserve underlining for links . Because underlines provide a strong perceived affordance of clickability, users will be confused and disappointed if underlined text doesn’t have an actual affordance to match this perception. Use bold or italics for emphasis with text that’s not a link . If you are going to use underlines, reserve the technique for links. Underlines on the web have a general expectation to act like links, and users will be confused or disappointed if underlined text doesn’t match this expectation.