Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home4/arthur55/public_html/wp-content/themes/headlines_enriched/functions/admin-hooks.php on line 160

Website Design

Designers are traditionally creative types, tending to favor the right brain, while programmers examine the details of a system more clearly, preferring a left-brain mode of thinking. So, when faced with the challenge of designing for the Web, designers are faced with what on the surface appears to be an oxymoron, a design technology named cascading style sheets (CSS).


CSS is a Web markup standard set by the Worldwide Web Consortium (W3C) that enables Web designers and developers to define consistent styles in Web pages, and to apply the template to multiple pages. CSS is a valuable tool for streamlining and speeding up Web development, although browser compatibility issues are a major pitfall.


While WYSIWYG Web page editors are getting closer and closer to a complete visual authoring experience, those software applications aren’t truly professional CSS design tools. CSS by its nature is a technology that, for the most part, must be written out manually to create compelling work. The problem with that is that most designers have a hard time committing to writing lines of code to get their work done.


Designers who express sheer joy in writing PostScript by hand are hard to find. Designers let Adobe Illustrator (or any similar program) provide a visual authoring environment and hide the coding in the background. All the designer sees is the imagery, while the computer handles the workload.


Another hindrance to using CSS doesn’t have anything to do with CSS itself, but rather the implementation of CSS in Web browsers. Browser vendors incorporated the technology into their browsers slowly over time. While CSS support is nearly 100 percent as of now, designers still run into problems when trying to shore up their designs in older or outdated browsers. That means diving into the guts of CSS and coding hacks and workarounds. The bottom line translates into more time writing and revising code, and less time working in WYSIWYG tools.


Does this mean that CSS is this out-of-control or untamable technology? Not in the least, but it does take some concerted effort to wrangle professional-looking designs.


Even if you know the basics of CSS (the properties, the acceptable values, the selectors, and so on), putting the technology to effective use can be difficult to downright frustrating. CSS stymies the best of us – even those who actually understand the W3C specifications as opposed to those who can only skim them in awe in their browsers.


Hafeez Ansari

Be Sociable, Share!
Tags: