Well, it’s finally here — a brand new design of my website!
It’s interesting to look back and think how much has changed since I designed the last version of my website in 2003. Facebook and Twitter didn’t exist, there were no iPhones or iPads, Google was pretty much just a search engine, and decent computer monitors took up at least 2′x2′ of desk space.
And the web has changed a lot too. In 2003, I nearly put on my website “Designed for Internet Explorer 6.” Remember when sites did that?
This time around, IE was the last browser I tested on. In fact, it was the only time I used a Windows machine during the design and development of the site since I’ve been Mac-only for a few years now. I don’t even own a PC — another change from 2003 when my personal and professional projects revolved solely around Windows, and I followed what Microsoft did with bated breath.
Interestingly enough, from an engineering point of view the old site did hang on well considering it was made with the best layout technology of its time: tables and slices of many tiny images. Browsers have maintained pretty decent backwards compatibility in this regard, and the site rendered well on modern desktop browsers, tablets and phones.
But from a design perspective it was pretty old looking. It was time not only for a new coat of paint, but a completely new design that would be simple, modern and elegant. By focusing on the content itself, I could remove a lot of chrome and reduce visual clutter. Typography plays a strong role on the site, and graphical effects and embellishments are minimized to keep the design simple.
And by using modern web development techniques, the site can be much more easily changed in the future. If 10 years ago we didn’t have Facebook, Twitter, iPhones and iPads, I can’t even imagine what will be here in 2023.
Let’s see if this design lasts that long!
Still to come: better support for phones and other devices with small screens.