Message-Id: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Mon, 21 Oct 1996 18:00:15 -0500 To: "Scott E. Preece" <email@example.com> From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Murray Altheim) Subject: Re: The Netscape / Microsoft / Future Quagmire Cc: email@example.com "Scott E. Preece" <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes: > From: email@example.com (Murray Altheim) >| >| >No different with web pages -- it's a known fact that people have a >| >better chance of exploring your web site if it's appearance "grabs" them >| >| It's not a well-known fact, it's an example of pure marketing crap. People [...] >It's not all marketing crap. Appearance *does* count and not all >attention to appearance is vanity or flash. Each site has an intended >audience and an intended message to send to that audience. [...] >In each case, the CONTENT is qualitatively different. Good designers >consider their audience, their sponsor's goals, and the technological >realities in designing a site. Not all flair is flash. Not all content >can be provided in ASCII text. Not all information can be meaningfully >presented to people with sight or hearing problems. Scott, I agree with most of these statements, but I fail to see where I've ever advocated ASCII text. Even HTML 2.0 can produce some beautiful pages in the hands of a good designer. Add to that tables, background color and images, and you've got plenty to work with. Good design doesn't require yellow ink on a silver background, contrary to what some may think at WiReD. And as soon as you design into a page something that shuts out a substantial part of your intended audience, that's poor design. I have a friend who frustratingly can't read much of WiReD due to some sight problems -- he has no difficulty with The Economist. To deal with the sight-impaired, I expect that server-side content negotiation will become the norm as we move toward WebTV and small devices, as that market demands access to the Web. I only hope that as content providers race into providing versions for small devices, they design with a greater community in mind than simply those with large screens and 300MHz Pentiums, otherwise we'll see a much greater disparity between the information haves and have-nots. It's generally not a lot of work to degenerate a complex page to HTML 2.0, which can be transformed to ICADD 2.2: simply remove all the glitz and replace with some descriptive text, and use ALT on your images, please. Murray ``````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````` Murray Altheim, Program Manager Spyglass, Inc., Cambridge, Massachusetts email: <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org> http: <http://www.cambridge.spyglass.com/murray/murray.html> "Give a monkey the tools and he'll eventually build a typewriter."