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Why I did it: Pranshuarya.com E-mail
Tuesday, 28 April 2009 13:59

Pranshuarya.com

It's different - some might even say it's ugly.  But at least it's original.  I was tired of looking at all the grid-based designs out there and decided to try something with a different look.

I know the grid-based designs are popular for a good reason - they're predictable to render for the designer and to navigate for the user, but once in a while it doesn't hurt to try something different.  Grids are good; grids are easy.  But experimentation is good too.

Now I wouldn't experiment like this on a busy corporate site, but considering it was my own little project, I had that latitude to play around and feed my whim.

 
Pthesis on Browsershots.org E-mail
Thursday, 16 April 2009 12:38

My site Pthesis.com has been approved to be added to Browsershots.org.

 
Google on performance and design E-mail
Saturday, 21 March 2009 15:04

News article on a senior designer at Google who's quitting because of not having enough latitude to design in the face of performance considerations.  From his own blog (bold mine):

When a company is filled with engineers, it turns to engineering to solve problems. Reduce each decision to a simple logic problem. Remove all subjectivity and just look at the data...that data eventually becomes a crutch for every decision, paralyzing the company and preventing it from making any daring design decisions...

Yes, it's true that a team at Google couldn't decide between two blues, so they're testing 41 shades between each blue to see which one performs better. I had a recent debate over whether a border should be 3, 4, or 5 pixels wide, and was asked to prove my case. I can't operate in an environment like that. I've grown tired of debating such minuscule design decisions...

Separately, this article talks about the kind of testing Google does to improve the usability of its products.

Noteworthy points:

  • Users asked to be shown more search results per page, yet when more results were displayed, people searched less overall because of the performance overhead of the additional data.
  • When the company trimmed the Google Maps page size by 30%, the company started getting about 30% more map requests.
  • "Split A/B testing also led Google to refine exactly how much white space to pad around its logo and other elements on the search results page. And it changed from the industry practice of a pale blue background behind ads to a pale yellow background. People not only clicked on ads more, they also searched more in general..."
 
Kuler E-mail
Thursday, 29 January 2009 11:20

Kuler is a pretty cool application, although I'm not clear on why they decided on 5 colors per theme.  I decided to break my websites down into 5-color themes, and here's how they look.

 
Change we can believe in! E-mail
Friday, 16 January 2009 20:17

Who designed Barack Obama's website?  Someone named Scott Thomas, of http://www.simplescott.com.  I was wondering about this long ago, while the campaign was still going on, because I figured it's a hell of a career booster to have a site like that in your portfolio.

There were some other names involved as well: Walker Hamilton, Matt Ipcar, and Kyle Crouse.

I found the information here.

 
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