Attleboro High students win web design contest

AHS WEB KIDS 6/215/17

ATTLEBORO

Computer information students from Attleboro High School dominated a recent web design competition sponsored by Bristol Community College.

Two-student teams of Attleboro juniors won first and second place in the competition that attracted students from throughout Southeastern Massachusetts.

Zion Armour and William Harmelink won the challenge with classmates Colby Goyette and Benjamin Tibnan coming in close behind.

At class on Wednesday, Armour and Harmelink said they learned a lot from the program.

They said the challenge was to use different computer languages to write codes to replicate a series of eight websites they were shown.

“At first I was leery of it, but it was definitely a learning experience,” Armour said.

Harmelink said he knew most of the languages he was required to use, but he did not consider himself fluent in them until the competition.

Teacher Frank Balcarcel said he started entering students in the competition as soon as he came to Attleboro High four years ago after seeing its benefits at another school.

He said knowing how to write codes and create websites prepares students for a number of jobs in the field.

Principal Bill Runey said the wins in the competition reflect highly on the career and technical education department at Attleboro High.

“Our CTE program continues to be a vehicle for our students to have relevant experiences. Mr. Balcarcel has provided them with an engaging opportunity that has prepared them to be competitive beyond the walls of AHS,” he said.

[“Source-thesunchronicle”]

Top San Jose Web Design Firm Awards Released for June 2017 by 10 Best Design

Image result for Top San Jose Web Design Firm Awards Released for June 2017 by 10 Best Design

Passionate and consistent awards organization 10 Best Design brings attention to web firms that are staffed by people with a drive for producing exceptional work. With the Best San Jose Web Design Firm List for June 2017, the organization highlights top-notch agencies on a list that garners respect and attention.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (PRWEB) June 23, 2017

10 Best Design recently presented the winners of its Best San Jose Web Design awards for June 2017. Rasteroids and Baunfire were among the honorees, along with Big Drop Inc.

The representatives of 10 Best Design are passionate about providing people with information and updates regarding which digital advertising firms can offer them excellent, effective services. As such, 10 Best Design is pleased to reveal its newest award category: Best Web Design Firm. This release provides a summary of the top San Jose Web design firms as well as several other digital firms that made the list.

Being one of the best web design firms, Big Drop Inc is the organization business owners should get in touch with when they realize that they’re in need of web design and development services that will increase their sphere of online influence. The professionals of this organization know which techniques to deploy for the purpose of making this happen, and one of them is responsive web design. The Big Drop Inc professionals utilize this strategy to ensure that the site is mobile-friendly, thereby ensuring that it can generate more traffic and sales. The Big Drop Inc reps also offer dynamic graphic design services that result in an incredibly innovative website that stands out from the cookie-cutter replicas that already exist in the online world.

Top web design agency Rasteroids Design is a community of dedicated, diligent site developers who thrive on helping business owners share their brand with online audiences in an interactive, engaging way. The techies of Rasteroids Design are passionate about maintaining a holistic approach to the web design and development process, and this means that they will optimize sites for all of the key components. Some of those components include mobile friendliness, functionality, engagement, and aesthetic appeal. Also note that the Rasteroids Design professionals maintain a client-centered outlook which ensures that the business owner’s specific interests and brand vision are always understood and respected.

Another top San Jose web design agency, BAUNFIRE is a community of sedulous, diligent digital marketing experts who operate in excellence so that the client can attain an exceptional return on investment (ROI). To ensure that the client’s website is absolutely incredible, the BAUNFIRE techies maintain an innovative approach that involves coming up with unique templates, backgrounds, colors and fonts. In addition to making the website aesthetically appealing, the BAUNFIRE representatives focus on optimizing sites for mobile friendliness, usability, and conversion.

[“Source-benzinga”]

How to Start and Run a Successful Web Design Business?

How to Start and Run a Successful Web Design Business?

While listening to the stories of great web designers it seems that starting a web design business is much easy. But the process of starting your own business is not that easy as it seems; you not only need to have designing skills but along with that, a full-fledged plan and sincere efforts are also required to get your business run successfully.

Once designers get experience and acquire skills to handle projects on an individual basis, they think of working as a freelancer or starting their own web designing company. No doubt it is a good idea but it requires a blend of strategic thinking, thoughtful and skilled efforts, and tenacity to convert your dreams into reality. However, all those, who are planning to start their own web designing business, can refer to the below-given tips for a perfect start and seamless running of their web design business.

  • Know your strengths and weaknesses

Your strengths will let you choose main services you would be offering and your weaknesses will help you at avoiding wastage of time and energy on the things that can be handled by someone else.

If you have planned to start your own business then definitely you will be hiring some staff for it. So, a thing that you need to do at first is knowing the tasks you are excellent at and you would handle yourself, and knowing the ones for which you would need someone’s help.

  • Know your market

No doubt you would be delivering the services you are good at but don’t offer people what you are trying to sell. Instead, try to know what they are looking for and tailor your services to their needs. If you are finding it hard then you can get some potential clients to tell you about their requirements for web designs.

Ross Williams of Rawnet Ltd explains: “In the beginning there was a rush for everyone to have a website. Now the focus is on the most innovative and exciting.”

  • Have a clear thought about your offerings

Once you have known your market, enlist all your offerings. It depends on your skill set and talent that what services you would be offering to your clients. More clarity about offerings means greater chances of success. Here are some questions that you should ask to yourself for finalizing your services:

– If you want to deliver services all over the world or just to local clients?

– If you want the payment for the whole job or on an hourly or daily basis?

– If you will be managing the client relationships yourself or would hire a professional?

  • Design an attractive website

As people would be hiring you for web designing services, they will definitely notice the design of your own website to have an idea about the quality. So, design an attractive website to reflect your business to the best. It should be responsive, fast and engaging so that viewers will just enjoy the browsing process on it. Clear and easy navigation along with the relevant content are the two main things that will add value to your business website.

Andy Budd of Clearleft explains. “The quality of design work is so high, that you have to be really, really good to actually get work.”

  • Be active on the Social Media

Social Media is no more restricted to establish social connections among the people, its approach has reached a far behind that. It has become the excellent way to promote your services, drive traffic to your website, attract potential customers and form a network of the people who have the same niche. So, understand the importance of all the social media platforms and the way you can use them to maximize your business profits.

  • Show your credibility

When clients shop around for web designing services, they look for the experts. So, showing your credibility to the world is really essential. Mention all the essential educational details, certifications and work experiences on your profile as it would give people a reason to trust you and your services. Enhance your credibility by posting visual content about your area of expertise and by updating yourself as per the latest industry trends.

In the last, we would like to say that this is an era of tough competition, so you would need to keep patience and show perseverance regardless how many hardships you face to get started. And once you have an effective and thoughtful foundation in place, success will come your way on its own. It is well said by Gurpreet Walia, CEO at Suffescom Solutions- “The way to get started is to stop talking and start working as per your plans”.

 

 

[Source:- Entrepreneur]

Norway’s new passport – already a design classic?

Nordic cool: Oslo design studio Neue have won a competition to create a new passport and ID concept for Norway.

If the passport is a symbol of national identity, then the new design for Norway’s travel documents has undoubtedly cemented the country’s reputation as a land of sleek, minimalist beauty.

This week, Norway’s National Police Directorate announced the winners of a competition launched in February to find a new design concept for the nation’s passports and ID card.

The winning entry, by Oslo design studio Neue, features beautifully simplified depictions of Norway’s natural landscapes drawn with fine lines in pastel shades. The cover features a modernised version of the national crest, stamped in gold on unusually bold colours: either white, turquoise or red for immigrant, diplomat and standard passports respectively.

When shone under UV light, the landscapes within the pages transform to show the northern lights in the night sky, a magical touch that adds a deeper sense of intrigue to the already striking document.

“All Norwegians are so connected to nature, it’s a very strong part of our history and defines us as a country,” says Gørill Kvamme of Neue, who explains that the minimal concept came from seeking to find the “essence of something”.

“It represents the vast variety of nature and landscapes you find in Norway … which makes it relevant to all of us whether you have always lived there or just received your citizenship.”

Praising the design, the jury applauded its wide appeal. “It both illustrates the Norwegian identity and makes sure the passport will be viewed as document of high value,” they said. “The design is attractive and stylish, the colours are subtle and the abstraction of the landscapes are exciting. Aesthetically, the landscape motifs have been given a distinctive look. The jury appreciates the simplicity of the solution.”

Now Neue will work closely with the National Police Directorate to find a way to balance the design with the complicated security expectations of a passport – something they are not currently able to discuss in detail. No date for the passport’s release has been set but it is expected to be within the next two years.

Passports aren’t the only national symbol the state has opened up to the country’s design teams. Last month – as a result of a similar competition – Norges Bank picked proposals from design studios Snøhetta and The Metric System for their new kroner notes. Pixelated and also featuring bold colours, the new notes are due to be released in 2017.

Along with the country’s new passports, they show how progressive design is tied in with the Norwegian way of life. As Kvamme says: “Design has a natural role in helping express what country or culture you are a part of.”

 

[Source:- Gurdian]

 

Does this type make my design look fat?

featured_typescale

Nothing can ruin a design like typography that doesn’t fit. Whether it’s too big (or too small), improper type scaling is a major problem.

It’s a problem for more designs than you might think. Too commonly you visit a website where the type renders beautifully on a desktop browser, only to revisit later from a phone and find it difficult to read. It happens all the time.

The issue is that the type wasn’t truly scaled for each device. It’s a totally avoidable problem when you consider a typographic scale for projects.

WHAT IS A TYPOGRAPHIC SCALE?

A visual typographic scale encapsulates the sizes, space and proportions of type elements relative to on another in a project. This includes everything from the main body text style to headlines, subheaders, captions and any other text element.

The scale helps determine size and placement of the text elements in relationship to one another. For web design, in particular, the visual type scale often corresponds to tags in your CSS (such as h1, h2, h3, p, and so on).

A type scale helps you create harmony and rhythm in the design. It also keeps you out of stylistic trouble because text elements correspond with CSS elements so that every part of the design uses the same elements and consistency.

The scale should be based on the size of body text. (Always set a typeface and size for that first). Then build the scale around this main typography. Not sure where to start? Google has a solid recommendation:

  1. Use a base font size of 16 CSS pixels. Adjust size based on properties of the font being used.
  2. Use sizes relative to the base size to define the typographic scale.
  3. Text needs vertical space between characters; the general recommendation is to use the browser default line-height of 1.2 em.
  4. Restrict the number of fonts used and the typographic scale.

CREATE HARMONY AND RHYTHM

A type scale does more than just help users move through the copy, it creates harmony and rhythm for the flow of text. This is important on any device.

So where do you start?

UX Matters has some of the best research available on minimum text sizes by device. Note that these are minimum sizes and as body text sizes continue to increase (as does line spacing), you should strongly consider larger point sizes. Steven Hoober recommends starting at least 40 percent larger than the recommended minimums. Further, enhanced content styles can go up to 80 percent above the minimum, but you should be cautious with exceptionally large type as well.

Device Type Minimum Size 40% Recommendation (adjusted for easy use) 80% Maximum (adjusted for easy use)
Small Phone 4 5.6 (6) 7.2 (7.5)
Large Phone 6 8.4 (8.5) 10.8 (11)
Phablet 7 9.8 (10) 12.6 (13)
Tablet 8 11.2 (11.5) 14.4 (14.5)
Laptop/Desktop 10 14 (14) 18 (18)

Once the body text size is set, you can determine how to size supporting text elements. There’s a fine art to that and the eye test is often a good place to start.

There’s almost no such thing as a headline that’s too big. Say what you need to say and size to scale the words in the space. A two-line headline will feel larger than one-line even if the text is the exact same size.

The easiest way to think about scaling up for headlines and other larger test elements is working in percent based on the body text. While every designer has a different starting point, 250 percent larger than the body text is a good ballpark for the headline; 150 percent for h2, 75 percent for h3 and 50 percent for elements such as block quotes. (This is not a rule, just a starting point.)

Here’s why percents, rather than set sizes, are important: Once you set the size of the body type the percents adjust sizes accordingly regardless of screen size. Every type element is relative to the body type.

CHARACTER AND SPACING GUIDELINES

There are some other guidelines that designers look to as well when it comes to type on the screen. When it comes to spacing, one of the rules of thumb has been to look at characters per line to ensure readability.

  • Desktop and large devices: 60 to 75 characters per line
  • Phones and small devices: 35 to 40 characters per line

Note that readability on smaller screens is based on having fewer characters (larger text).

The same idea applies to spacing as well. You need more space between lines of text when the screen size is limited to make it easier for users to read and scan content. Consider adding 25 percent more line spacing on smaller devices than for desktop typography.

The additional size and spacing helps ease that tight or crunched feeling that users can feel when trying to read on smaller devices. Because the canvas is small, reader flow and legibility is vital to keep users scrolling.

TIPS TO GET STARTED

There are plenty of ways to create a typographic scale and ensure that the text does not make your design look fat. How you go about it likely depends on your comfort level with code and development in addition to the design.

The best option is to use a responsive design with media queries. This is the designer-developer option that will provide the greatest level of control over text specifications. (For more go back to those Google recommendations, above.)

Another route is to design different versions. While this is a pretty out-of-date concept, there are still some places using mobile URLs and desktop URLs for their websites. It’s not recommended in most cases, but for some websites where the design is dramatically different or users experience different things, it can be an option.

The easy option is to start with a theme for your website. Just make sure to opt for a fully responsive option. When you use a high quality responsive theme, most of the guesswork is taken out of it for you. All you really have to think about is the body text size. Just make sure to check everything to make sure the mobile type sizes meet your standards.

 

 

[Source:- webdesignerdepot]

Building design success from failure

featured_mistakes

The longer you work as a designer, the more opportunities you’ll have to look back and say, “What was I thinking?” It’s a natural part of your evolution. Over time, both your skills and your portfolio will grow. As a result, you’ll undoubtedly find projects you’d do differently if you could go back in time.

Personally, I’ve designed (at least) a few websites that were total clunkers. Some of it is just that design trends change over time. But there are also sites that were just plain bad in any era. A few of them are still online and I can’t wait until they go away, hopefully to be replaced with a highly-profitable redesign.

But we humans, usually, learn from our past. And for designers, so much good can come from these experiences. Let’s explore the positives you can reap from the worst designs of your life.

FAILURE CAN BE GOOD FOR THE SOUL

From the time we’re born, we are taught that failure is something to avoid. Some of us have quite a desperate fear of it. But in all reality, failure is a part of everyone’s life.

Learning to accept failure will ultimately lead you to a better place.

If all you’ve tasted is sweet success then you’re missing out. While none of us set out to fail on a project, there is an opportunity here for self-improvement.

Take a look at why the project failed, and, just maybe, it’s only a failure in your eyes. Look at the factors involved and figure out what, if anything, you might do differently if you had another chance.

When looking back, you may find that a client took your great idea and “tweaked” it until there was nothing left but rubble. Or, maybe you just royally messed up. Whatever the cause, you should be able to pinpoint some areas where you can improve.

For example, if client interference is a major culprit, you might learn to have a frank discussion with future clients about the pitfalls of such behaviors. Or, you might learn to leave that bold (hideous) color scheme alone.

Learning to accept failure will ultimately lead you to a better place. From it, you can move on and do better the next time around.

DISCOVER THE BENEFITS OF FOCUS

Often, I’ve found that my design work is at its worst when I’m having trouble focusing. It’s easy to feel the need to keep plowing through your work – even when you’re just not feeling it. That’s when you’ll learn that it’s time to take a step back.

Go do something non-work related for a bit. When you get back to the old drawing board, you’ll feel more refreshed and ready to take on the task at hand.

Obviously, you don’t want to miss any important deadlines. But above all, quality will be appreciated more than speed. A design fail that occurred during a time where you felt rushed is a clear sign to slow down and do things right. Lesson learned.

SIMPLE IS BETTER

There have been times when I tried to make something a little too perfect. Maybe I took a client’s direction too literally. Or I attempted to impress someone by doing something I’d never done before, and probably wasn’t too comfortable with.

You’ll often find that a more simple approach works best. Starting out simply doesn’t mean that you aren’t going to provide a detailed design in the end. On the contrary, starting with a simple concept can stir up the creative process and lead you to add in the finer points as you progress through a project.

Most of the time, a design is not going to be immediately perfect. There’s a method and process to creating something beautiful.

THERE ARE SOME PROJECTS YOU SHOULD JUST AVOID

We all like to think that there’s nothing we can’t do. But over time you may find that there are certain projects that just aren’t a great fit. Looking back at my own mishaps, I see a common thread of people and projects that weren’t at all in my best interest.

…trying to fit a square peg into a round hole doesn’t work.

Especially when starting out in the design field, you might be tempted to take pretty much any work that comes along. You’re poor and a bit hungry. You’re trying to build a reputation.

The reality is that trying to fit a square peg into a round hole doesn’t work. Worse, it can actually do more harm than good to your confidence and reputation.

This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t challenge yourself by trying something new and different. It’s more a matter of giving yourself the best chance to do your very best work. If you have serious doubts about a person or project, you might be better off going in another direction.

IT’S ALL PART OF THE EXPERIENCE

Even the most talented designers will have a few projects that just didn’t work out as well as they’d hoped. Some may be categorized as failures. What separates the best from the rest is the ability to get back up (and learn from) past mistakes.

As the old saying goes, “There’s no substitute for experience”. Experience is what allows us to expand our horizons and improve. It adds to our creativity and helps us become who we are.

Failure can serve as both an important teacher and reminder of what makes for great design. So, the next time you aren’t quite happy with how something turned out, don’t get too discouraged–although it is fine to have a brief period of mourning.

Instead, see it as an opportunity to become even better. Take what you’ve learned and chalk it all up to just another life experience. It will make the success of your next killer creation taste even sweeter.

 

[Source:- webdesignerdepot]

 

Popular design news of the week: December 19, 2016 – December 25, 2016

featured

Every week users submit a lot of interesting stuff on our sister site Webdesigner News, highlighting great content from around the web that can be of interest to web designers.

The best way to keep track of all the great stories and news being posted is simply to check out the Webdesigner News site, however, in case you missed some here’s a quick and useful compilation of the most popular designer news that we curated from the past week.

Note that this is only a very small selection of the links that were posted, so don’t miss out and subscribe to our newsletter and follow the site daily for all the news.

THE CURRENT STATE OF ADAPTIVE DESIGN

MATERIAL COMPONENTS BY GOOGLE

TAKING IKEA OUT OF ITS BOX AND REDESIGNING IT FOR 1.6B USERS

“GREAT” MAC DESKTOPS ARE ON THE WAY

ONE SURE-FIRE WAY TO IMPROVE YOUR CODING

DOGS EXPLAIN THE MYSTERIES OF HTTP STATUS CODES

30 BEST WORDPRESS THEMES OF 2016

BLOX: A BEAUTIFULLY MINIMAL 3D GAME

BEST AND WORST IDENTITIES OF 2016

WHAT WE LEARNED ABOUT WEB DEVELOPERS AT ADOBE — JUST BY ASKING

FRONT-END TOOLS: MY FAVORITE FINDS OF 2016

WEB FUNDAMENTALS

THE ANATOMY OF A WEB REQUEST

EMAIL DESIGN TRENDS 2017

10 GREAT WAYS TO USE WHITE SPACE IN WEB DESIGN

CSS VERTICAL CENTERING – EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

WEB DESIGN TRENDS WE CAN EXPECT TO SEE IN 2017

5 REASONS WHY UX DESIGN IS NOT CHEAP

TYPOGRAPHY IN SHARED SPACES: A TREND YOU NEED TO KNOW

LUMINAR: WORLD’S FIRST PHOTO EDITOR THAT ADAPTS TO THE USER’S SKILLS

THE 42 BEST PHOTOSHOP PLUGINS

15 BEST NEW PIECES OF TECH FOR DESIGNERS IN 2016

SHIFT: SWITCH BETWEEN GMAIL ACCOUNTS LIKE A BOSS

PREPARING TO BE BADASS NEXT YEAR

VOICE IS THE NEXT BIG PLATFORM

 

 

 

 [Source:- webdesignerdepot]

The simple way to get better at design

featured_feedback

Design, by its very nature, is there to be judged. We do it every day—whether it’s our own creation, or that of someone else. When we see something, we’re looking at it and forming an opinion (positive or negative).

So, those of us who do this type of work for a living do understand that it’s all part of the gig. Clients will of course give their opinions about what we have created for them. Our job is generally two-fold:

  • Communicate with the client as to why we made specific design choices and back up our methods with supporting evidence. For example, perhaps a client doesn’t like the placement of a search field. You might point out that you placed it in that particular spot as research shows more users will utilize the feature.
  • Make sure you’ve done your best to ensure the client’s happiness with your work. Whether they come around to your way of thinking or not, you still need to put forth your best effort to help them achieve their goal.

There’s a certain amount of give-and-take in the design process when working with a client. But that’s to be expected when you’ve been hired by someone to represent their brand.

However, in recent times, designers have also become subject to another kind of criticism: one they voluntarily sign up for.

PUTTING YOUR WORK ON DISPLAY FOR THE DESIGN COMMUNITY

Beyond the usual client feedback, there are “community critique” websites. Many designers are choosing to submit their work to sites like Behance or Awwwards – places where the community at large (and a jury in the case of Awwwards) can offer both critique and some creative inspiration.

Both communities, although a bit different in methodology, are quite popular. Behance is run by Adobe and is completely free to use. Besides websites, they also feature varied types of media such as photography, architecture and fashion. You can upload your work via their site or directly from Photoshop CC. Community members can vote up and comment on submitted works, while Behance curators create featured galleries showing the best of the best.

Awwwards differs in that they focus solely on websites and they also charge for submissions. After submission, your site will be evaluated by a panel of eight judges and can also be voted on by members of the community. But only community member voters with a specific amount of “status” points to their credit actually count towards the final verdict. If you do well enough, you may even get featured as a “Site of the Day”, and included in their yearly book.

There is some truly outstanding work being shared. It’s hard not to find inspiration when browsing through the submissions. If you decide to join in the fun, you may find that you’ve made a positive impact on someone else. Even if you don’t win any formal honors, inspiring others is a reward in its own right.

It’s also entirely possible that, if your work becomes popular, your career may get a real boost. Behance, for example, has an area of their site for job postings. Granted, the competition is fierce. But if the right person sees your creations, it could lead to some big opportunities.

Going through the whole process of having your work critiqued by other design professionals can also make you a better designer. Helpful tips from others can point out some different techniques or help you to clean up some inconsistencies in your work. Little things like this can make a big difference in the finished product.

POTENTIAL PITFALLS?

While there are lots of positive attributes, these communities are not completely risk-free. For one, the joys of putting yourself out there to be judged may not be for everyone. We sensitive types might not be ready or willing to handle low ratings—or worse—unflattering comments.

Thankfully, scanning the comments section of various Behance listings showed mostly positive and uplifting messages from other members. Initially, one of my biggest fears when peering into these communities was that anyone could come in and say derogatory things about another person’s project (this is the internet, after all). But that didn’t seem to be the case. It could be the result of a friendly community combined with top-notch comment moderation.

In fact, the only minor annoyance in the comments section is the self-promotion from other designers (“Great work! Please click here to see my profile.”). Oh well, you can’t blame people for trying.

As for low ratings, well, that could be tough to take. To some, it could feel devastating to see their hard work panned. On the bright side, it may be a good motivator to continue learning and improving your skills.

GO AHEAD, PUT YOURSELF OUT THERE

Until recently, I hadn’t taken the time to look into sites like Behance or Awwwards. I have to say that my initial reaction to the thought of these community critique sites was one of concern. I thought that perhaps they’d be equivalent to the trolling we so often see on social media. Pleasantly enough, I was wrong!

For many, submitting your work for review can be a very positive experience. At the bare minimum, you’ll have the opportunity to see how you stack up against some of the best designers out there. That can lead to a growth in your skills and perhaps even a boost for your career as a whole.

Still, this may not be the best fit for every personality. Criticism, even if it’s well-meaning, can be difficult to hear. But even if you’re not interested in submitting your own projects, I encourage you to take a look around at the quality of work on display in these communities. You’ll undoubtedly find yourself inspired by what you see. Plus, you may even get a shot of confidence from discovering that you’re capable of doing similarly well in your own projects.

Both Awwwards and Behance appear to be well-run communities. You can feel confident that your participation in them (whether you submit something or not) will be very worthwhile.

 

 

[Source:- webdesignerdepot]

Can web design stand the test of time?

featured_webdesign

2016 marks my twentieth year as a web designer. While it’s crazy to think that so much time has gone by, it’s downright cringe-worthy to think of the sites I designed back then. Seriously, some of them look like they belonged in the dark corner of shame atGeoCities.

Humor aside, it’s understandable if a website built 20 years ago doesn’t quite live up to today’s expectations for form and function. After all, both technology and taste have changed a whole lot over that amount of time.

And, as designers, we evolve with those changes. Our existing skills are honed as we continue to learn new ones. New tools arrive to replace the old and outdated.

But it’s worth wondering if the sites we’ve created more recently will hold up better than their ancient predecessors. Is that even possible?

IS WEB DESIGN CYCLICAL?

It seems that, at some point, just about every print design trend from the last half of the 20th century has made a comeback. The illustrated print ads of the 1950s, the psychedelic 60s, groovy 70s, futuristic 80s and grungy 90s have all been brought back into vogue.

If anything, web design has always been more about pushing forward than looking back

But what about web design? Well, I’m not always up on the latest fads but I haven’t seen table-based layouts or large images sliced into a hundred pieces much recently. Once in a while you see something from the past, but it’s usually as the butt of a joke. That sense of nostalgia just isn’t the same.

If anything, web design has always been more about pushing forward than looking back. But with all of the improvements made in recent years – maybe this could change to a degree.

LOOKING BACK TO MORE RECENT TIMES

As opposed to what I did in the 1990s and early 2000s, looking five or six years into the past brings me a different type of cringe. The designs themselves don’t get me—it’s more about functionality and how I chose to implement it.

2010 began the “WordPress Era” of my career, where I began using it regularly for site building. In those early days of creating with WordPress, my knowledge of how to get things done in development wasn’t quite as sharp. Plus, the software didn’t have as many helpful administrative and developmental features. So naturally, both the software and I have improved over time. Now, I’ve got a real comfort level and a process for it all (which, of course, means that it will all completely change any minute).

Probably the biggest thing missing from this time period is responsive design

Design-wise, I can certainly see that my work is a bit different now than it was then. Some of the more advanced CSS3 techniques weren’t widely used yet. Probably the biggest thing missing from this time period is responsive design. That was all coming into light but not as universal as it is now.

While the designs are different, they still look respectable (to me, anyway). Six years is certainly a lot less time for a design to get dated than twenty. But I’ll be interested in looking back on this crop of sites after a few more years and see how they hold up.

STEPPING INTO THE FUTURE

So how will the website you launched today hold up over time? I’d argue that, while the design trends will undoubtedly change, what we do today will hold up fairly well years from now.

That’s because we have reached a time when readability, accessibility and adherence to standards are so widely recognized and implemented by designers and developers.

It’s easy to see now that the designs of 15-20 years ago were, for the most part, missing those principles that we now hold dear. Not necessarily because designers didn’t care about them, but a lot of those concerns simply weren’t known at the time. The web was a new medium and best practices weren’t around in any widespread manner.

In that way, if we create something today that implements those best practices, we’re apt to have fewer cringe-worthy moments when looking back at our portfolios.

That’s not to say that we won’t have a laugh at a color choice or a bad stock photo we used. Those things will always change with the times. It just won’t be that put-a-paper-bag-over-your-head terrible site I mentioned earlier.

NOW, TO ANSWER THE QUESTION…

Designers will continue to push their craft forward – always finding new and creative ways to tell a story. While that’s important, it seems like the really big changes will be in what tools we’re designing with and the platforms we use to build websites.

Change will present new challenges and creative opportunities for designers

WordPress, for example, is planning to use a lot more JavaScript in its UI. Version 4.3 of the popular Jetpack plugin is going to use React.jsfor its administrative interface.

This type of change will present new challenges and creative opportunities for designers. Maybe that means our designs might not look dated as much as the way we implement them will.

So, I believe I have arrived at an answer: Yes, a web designer’s portfolio can stand the test of time. Just not in the nostalgic, cyclical way of print design. Technology simply won’t let us rehash the past very much.

Instead, we can look at a well-done website from 2016 and say that it looked and worked as it should given the technological constraints of the time. That’s something we should all be proud of—no matter how many years go by.

 

[Source:- Webdesignerdepot]

 

Engine design takes a major leap at Argonne

Engine design takes a major leap at Argonne

\

Mechanical Engineer Janardhan Kodavasal, from right, discusses piston bowl design with Assistant Computational Scientist Marta García and Principal Mechanical Engineer Sibendu Som.

The search for a truly revolutionary engine design that can make dramatic gains in efficiency requires deep scientific understanding and tools. Lots and lots of tools.

In the past, tools were needed to make prototypes, requiring repeated testing and retrofitting along with a healthy dose of engineer’s intuition to determine which ideas held the most promise. In the future, however, the most important tool for designing engines may well be computers, specifically supercomputers that can virtually test and evaluate thousands of designs simultaneously, weeding out the less promising and leaving behind only those with the most potential, thereby greatly reducing development costs.

A team of scientists and engineers with the Virtual Engine Research Institute and Fuels Initiative (VERIFI) at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory recently announced that they have taken a major step toward that future. The team has completed development of engineering simulation code and workflows that will allow as many as 10,000 engine simulations to be conducted simultaneously on Argonne’s supercomputer, Mira. These simulations are typical “engineering-type” smaller scale simulations, which are used routinely for engine design within industry.

The work was enabled by a recent award of 60 million core hours on Mira—the fifth-fastest supercomputer in the world—located at the Argonne Leadership Computing Facility (ALCF), a DOE Office of Science User Facility.

Presently, engineers exploring new engine designs can do a small number of simulations—perhaps 100—on cluster computers, which can take weeks to complete. Each change of a variable in an engine design, such as piston bowl or fuel injector configuration, requires a new simulation, and changing multiple variables increases the number of required simulations exponentially, quickly using up the computing power available to industry. At the end of this lengthy simulation process, the engineers have data to select promising designs to go to a prototype hardware build, but only based on a limited number of simulations with a limited number of variables.

“This new computing capability is a quantum leap from what anyone was doing before, and it holds the potential to unlock major breakthroughs in engine efficiency, as well as very substantial cost savings,” said Sibendu Som, principal investigator and principal mechanical engineer at Argonne’s Center for Transportation Research. “In the past, doing 10,000 simulations was unthinkable. Now we can do that in a matter of days.”

While writing code and optimizing workflows might not seem like traditional automotive skills, Som said the coding effort is critical for engineers trying to access the breakthrough capability provided by Mira. The team works with the CONVERGE engine simulation software from Convergent Science, Inc., but it’s not as simple as putting CONVERGE on a supercomputing system like Mira and hitting start.

Mira is often used to do a few huge simulations, but the VERIFI team wants it to do large numbers of smaller, engineering-type simulations simultaneously. To get there, they had to optimize the source code of CONVERGE and use an Argonne-developed, high-level programming language known as Swift to manage the massive workflows involved.

This massive simulation capacity has opened up a new capability for industrial partners seeking new advanced engine designs. VERIFI is already working with a major auto manufacturer, a leading company in energy and transportation and a global fuel supplier to put this unique capability to work.

“We’re talking about bringing the power of supercomputing to engine design, which will accelerate deployment of new technologies,” said Argonne mechanical engineer Janardhan Kodavasal. “You’re letting the computer do the heavy lifting. When you can ask a family of questions and get answers in hours, rather than months, you change your approach to asking questions.”

The power of supercomputing will not only increase the quality and quantity of simulations while reducing the development costs, it will also broaden the number of vehicle systems that can be simulated at once. The smaller computer systems VERIFI has been working with have forced engineers to focus on finite aspects of engine design, such as fuel injectors or the fluid dynamics of combustion. With this new approach, they can broaden their inquiry to the entire powertrain.

“The modern internal combustion engine is an extremely complex system, so it needs these types of computing resources to do simulations on the scale required to enable real breakthroughs,” said Kevin Harms, senior software developer at ALCF. “This is a very exciting area of computer science that could have real-world impacts through greater transportation efficiency and a reduction in harmful emissions.”

 

[Source:- Phys.org]