Blog post #9: Critical analysis of lesson

In all honesty when I signed up for this class I thought it was going to be a piece of cake.  That I would breeze through it with next to no effort because I thought I knew a lot about website design.  As it turns out, I knew next to nothing and this class kept me on my toes at every turn.  Each model built on the information learned in the last one, and before we knew it, we were building complete, consistent, and pleasant looking pages.  I’m glad that it wasn’t a cake walk kind of class.  I mean don’t get me wrong, those are nice classes, but you come out of them feeling gypped and that is definitely not the case with this one.  The only “complaint” I have is I still don’t much seen the need for fireworks.  I disliked that software not for any design reasons but for the simple fact that the lessons weren’t that useful when it came to the Dreamweaver page designs.  Other than the mastheads, it didn’t really tie in to anything we did in Dreamweaver.

In fireworks I would have to say the assignment that took the longest would have been the watch assignment.  I don’t know why but that assignment wouldn’t turn out looking exactly like the picture in the lesson like the other assignments did.  I think I would say that the assignment in fireworks that I learned the most from is a tie between the editing a background of a picture you already have and the movie banner with the actor/actress and the old time cars.  To some degree, I almost feel that you can do just as much with MS paint as you can with fireworks.

In Dreamweaver the assignment that took the longest would be, without a doubt, the GreenStart page.  I worked on that one for what seemed like an eternity.  I believe that once I submitted it, got the areas that had issues from you, and I was able to relax a bit.  Taking my time and slowly working with it I was able to fix almost all of the issues I was having with that page because I didn’t have to worry about a due date as it had already been graded.   As far as my favorite lesson within Dreamweaver, I don’t know if I could narrow it down to just one.  I have liked working with Dreamweaver since I first started playing with it in a noncredit coed course back in 2010.  I feel that every step of the way I was learning more, and adding to what I knew, to create more exciting pages.  I felt silly a few times as I actually got excited and did things like clap or shout “Yes!” when I finally figured how to do what the assignment was asking.   I tried to keep a running list of things we learned that I liked or found useful so that I would be able to use them when I create my own site.

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Activity #9: jQuery Tabs – Blog Post

1. Actually I am worried about this assignment as it went far too easy!  hah!  It was an interesting one, and I can foresee using this on my final project if I can just figure out how.

2. I would like to try to use the jQuery on my final project for pages that have a lot of information but I don’t want them being a mile long of reading.  This will allow the reader to read only what they need or want.  I am thinking that this might be useful on a contact/about me type page but I will have to play with that a little bit to get it how I want.

Blog post #8: Organization

Is organization important to good design and how?

One of the best ways to organize is to try to figure what you want your page to accomplish.  Is it a personal page, a business page, a nonprofit page, etc?  Start out with an outline; this will help you design the layout that works best for your website (Webdesigner Depot).  Websites are often an ever changing thing.  This means you constantly have to check links and pages to make sure all the aspects work.  This will help keep the clutter down and if you find out something doesn’t work, remove it and replace it with something else (Gardner).

I strongly believe that organization is very important to good design because it makes the page flow together smoothly.  It also allows the viewer to easily maneuver the page to get where they need to be or find what they need to find. Site navigation is a good way to start organizing your websites.  With site navigation you can have between 4 and 15 links to other pages within your homepage.  Making the navigation in the same spot on every page allows viewers to know right where to look to get to other pages.  Always also keep a link for the homepage.

Jan Willis, director of WOW Consulting ltd, says that “a new visitor takes only 3 seconds to decide whether or not to stay on your page.  That in those first few seconds, you have to answer these three questions from your visitors mind:

1. Where am I?
2. What can I do here?
3. Why should I do it?”

Citations:

Willis, Jan. “Business : What’s More Important? Good Website Design or Compelling Copy?” What’s More Important? Good Website Design or Compelling Copy? Eacademy We’re Changing…, 21 June 2011. Web. 28 Nov. 2012. <http://www.ecademy.com/node.php?id=165244&gt;.

“Content Organization: Deciding What Matters Most.” Webdesigner Depot RSS. N.p., 12 July 2010. Web. 28 Nov. 2012. <http://www.webdesignerdepot.com/2010/07/content-organization-deciding-what-matters-most/&gt;.

Gardner, Jeff. “Organization Tips For Web Designers.” Smashing Magazine. Smashing Magazine, 14 Oct. 2010. Web. 28 Dec. 2012. <http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2010/10/14/organization-tips-for-web-designers/&gt;.

Blog #7 post: Feedback

Click here to take a quick 8 question survey http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/XR8GWLL

Taking this survey that will allow me to better create the site that you want and need.

Copyright Blog

After watching the video I found the main points to be that copyright is changing, and that the US might have different copyright laws than other countries.

My understanding of copyright law is that once someone creates something and you use it without permission and correctly citing where you got it from that you are breaking copyright law.  Give credit where credit is due and don’t use something that isn’t yours without permission.

Some things that the video says can have copyright:

  • Literary works
  • musical works
  • dramatic works
  • Pantomimes & Choreographical works
  • Motion picture & other audiovisual works
  • Pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works
  • Sound recordings
  • architectural works

Some things that the video says cant have copyright are:

  • Ideas and concepts
  • procedures, methods, systems, principles, discoveries, or devices.
  • works that have been fixed in a tangible form such as speeches or performances that have not been written or recorded
  • works that consist entirely of information that is common property
  • titles, names, short phrases, & slogans

As a designer, it is important to understand copyright because you dont want to use someones creation without permission which would then open you up to a lawsuit.  This could not only ruin your reputation, but charge you large fines and depending on the severity, possibly jail time.  If you cant get permission to use a piece of work, do one of two things 1) don’t use that work, or 2) use it but make sure to give the creator full credit on it.  Make sure if you go the route of number 2 that you list who the work was created by, and where you got it from.

Blog Post #5: Fonts

From what you know about websites, webdesign and user experience, why does page load matter?

Page load matters because people want speed.  They don’t want to sit there for ten minutes waiting for your page to load.  People are impatient and will find a different page that has the information that loads faster than yours.  The more fonts and graphics you attempt to put on a page, the larger to load time will be.  There is also the issue that if you use a font that works in Mozilla Firefox but is unknown to Internet Explorer, or Google Chrome, then you wont get the desired effect.

Blog #4: Graceful sites

Although I liked all the pages, and believe that they all have merit, my personal favorite was either http://www.seymourpowell.com/  or  http://checklandkindleysides.com/ .  I liked the layout and design of the seymourpowell page because I like the rotating picture.  You don’t have a chance to get bored with the “same old same old” design.  I thought it was smart that they put their contact information in the left hand side page of the front page.  I also like that they allow the viewer the option of loading the page in Flash or HTML version.  I liked the checkland kindleysides page because it’s obvious what they sell and shows a wide variety of their product.  I am also a fan of the toolbar of links at the top of the page.  I think that makes it easier for the customer to find what they are looking for.
I would like to have all my contact information on the front page as seen in the seymourpowell site. I believe that it not only handy but practical.  I also want toolbars, like the one found on the checkland kindleysides, with about, and home specifically on my webpages.  I strongly like the idea, with todays tech saavvy culture, to have different ways to contact you or to be able to follow the information you post.  This can include a blog, twitter, facebook, linkedin, etc.

Blog Themes

Here is my blog post about my old and new themes.  I also added a few new items to my blog other than changing the theme although I did that before the “before” pic was taken so the items appear in both pics.  I added the links to other blogs i enjoy reading, I also added the site bar options and the blog stats at the bottom of the page.  Of course you cant see all of this in the images but you are able to see them when you click my blog home screen.

The first picture is the old theme (titled Wu Wei)

Image

The second is the new theme (titled Skeptical)

Image

I plan to change the link colors on this new theme.  I want the links to stand out a bit more than the text.  I am going to play with that now.

Blog #2: Point of view

I actually had to do some more reading on this before I felt comfortable enough to answer.  I believe that it depends on how you are using the information you are posting and what you are using it for.  I have found, through my studies, that blogs are more personal and websites are more professional.  From my readings between Chris Dixon’s post and two others, I have found that blogs are essentially the same thing as a webpage because they all are accessed through a URL.  Blogs are continually looking more and more like webpages with the different layouts and themes you can choose.  Usually a blog is set up so that the older the post, the further down the page it is, whereas the newer posts will be towards the top of the page.  A websites layout is much easier to change and rearrange.  The nice thing about a website is you can set CSS style sheets so that certain pages are different or the same. Though my knowledge is limited about blogs, I believe once you pick a theme, that is the same theme for each page.  At the current moment, I don’t believe I need a hosted site, though I may look into one in the future.  I am interested in family geology and would love to make a website that combines the information.  I believe for now a blog is more than enough for me while I collect the information, once I have the information finalized then I will probably look into a hosted website.

Blogs, as this is, can do much the same thing as websites in that they can:

  • post links and number/bulleted list:
  1. http://www.trishjones.com/blog-vs-website/
  2. http://www.brandbuildsell.com/blog-vs-website/
  • Centered Text

Hi! I am some centered text!  Have a wonderful day!