[thelist] Asking newbie questions

Madhu Menon webguru at vsnl.net
Wed Nov 7 14:33:13 CST 2001


We've been having a discussion on theforum about getting more 
"design"-related discussions on thelist. We know there are a lot of visual 
designers on thelist who might be lurking, afraid or unsure of whether to 
ask their questions, seeing how thelist can sometimes (though not always) 
appear like it's full of only programmers.

I assure you that it's not the case and that we encourage any level of 
questions here. Nothing is "too silly".

In fact, spinhead asked this question on theforum:

>Madhu, this is exactly the kind of stuff I'd love to see more of, but when
>it comes to design, I'm so ignerrunt I don't even know what QUESTIONS to
>ask. This list will give me a place to start (if I EVER design a public site

to which I replied:



Like I said earlier, *everyone* was a newbie at some stage. I didn't pop 
out of my mum's womb with writing skills in me. :)

Heck, I used to do stupid things like underline text 7-8 years back. Now I 
know better (in case you're wondering, it destroys readability by making 
the word appear rectangular - and people make out words by the shape of the 

Watch for the next time someone makes a remark like "the brown and hot pink 
colours don't go well on the [xyz] site". Then see if you agree with them. 
If you don't, ask a question like "but why don't those colours work? I 
think they're cool". At this point, someone will probably explain a bit 
about colour theory and what different colours symbolise. They may even 
point you to a site with a tutorial on the topic. Now you know a bit more. 
Rinse, repeat till you reach desired level of expertise.

And to help you on your journey, visit: 

Download the presentation and go through it. Some of the graphic design 
fundamentals are explained well.


I hope this starts off some interesting discussions. We'd like to see more 
discussions on the following topics:

1) Layout
2) Colour schemes
3) Typography
4) Information architecture
5) Usability
6) Site strategy
7) Web marketing
8) Content development (do you realise how few discussions we've had on the 
copy used on a site?)
9) Production techniques and processes (naming conventions to Photoshop 
tips to site maintenance included)
10) Interface design
11) The business of web development (Dealing with clients, writing 
proposals, etc.)

All your thoughts are welcome. Go on, get out of lurker mode. Show 
yourselves. ;)



<<<   *   >>>
Madhu Menon
User Experience Consultant
e-mail: webguru at vsnl.net

Weblog: http://madman.weblogs.com

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