Re: Web vs. paper

Walter Ian Kaye (walter@natural-innovations.com)
Tue, 30 Sep 1997 13:53:37 -0700


Message-Id: <v0311073fb057143563e9@[205.149.180.135]>
In-Reply-To: <3.0.3.32.19970930153722.006918f4@smtp.idt.net>
Date: Tue, 30 Sep 1997 13:53:37 -0700
To: www-html@w3.org
From: Walter Ian Kaye <walter@natural-innovations.com>
Subject: Re: Web vs. paper

At 3:37p -0400 09/30/97, jptxs wrote:
 > At 12:02 PM 9/30/97 -0700, Walter Ian Kaye wrote:
 > >At 4:06p +0100 09/30/97, Peter Flynn wrote:
 > > >
 > > > same stylesheet? Would that work? A different medium requires a
 > > > different design. No escaping that.
 > >
 > >etc., not .html!). Yes, putting something on the web is publishing, but
 > >it's not paper. It's not even "active paper". It is a different medium
 > >entirely, and should be understood as what it is and what it is not
 > >before attempting any "design" of content. Form follows function.
 >
 > could you possibly explain this to my boss?  she's been doing our
 > organization's *newsletters* for 5 years :-)

Well, putting a newsletter on the web comes down to designing a front end
to a database, as well as providing the data (the newsletter articles).

Some questions to ask and answer before designing the web pages:

 * What browsing facilities should we provide?
 * What search functionality should we provide?
 * Should the articles be designed for easy reading onscreen?
   - and easy for *anybody* to read onscreen, regardless of window width?
 * Who will go in and create hyperlinks from articles to referenced
   articles?
 * How many years back should we go to put online?

I'm sure there are more; this is just off the top of my head. Notice that
those questions would not apply to print publishing. :)

I recently wrote a page called "Choosing a Web Designer" for companies
to help them find a person who actually understands web-specific issues.
You might want to check it out and maybe point your boss to it... ;)
<http://www.natural-innovations.com/boo/CaWD.html>

__________________________________________________________________________
  Walter Ian Kaye <boo_at_best*com>    Programmer - Excel, AppleScript,
          Mountain View, CA                         ProTERM, FoxPro, HTML
 http://www.natural-innovations.com/     Musician - Guitarist, Songwriter