1. Class Outline

Thinking about design

Screen design


2. Audience

Design is for an audience

What are you saying to who

There is no right design

There are expectations

Expectations are formed by use
Expectations change over time

Designers play with expectations

Design has fashions

3. Thinking about design

Design of the interface

Design of the screen
Interaction design

Design of the architecture

What information goes where
Technologies to use
Interface and navigation options and control (programming)

4. Screen interface

Layout (of information)

How information is arranged on the screen
What do you put where


How do you identify information


How do you let them go elsewhere
What are their choices


What information to make available


How do you sign your page

Colour, Graphics and Animations

5. User Questions 1

Design as a dialogue answering questions

Where am I?

When you click on a link you go somewhere new
You have expectations about where you go
You are disoriented
Good design reassures you as to where you are and orients you
Signature graphics and titling is important

What can I get from this page?

You have expectations about content
You want information you expect
Good design makes content available without distraction

6. User Questions 2

Where can I go from here?

You may not be in the right place
Good design helps you get there
You may want more information
Good design helps you find it

Good design anticipates questions and answers them

Designers try to surprise you

7. Examples

Simple Example

Google: Very simple Web page

Complex Example

McMaster External page
McMaster Daily News page
University of Toronto Home page

8. Questions to ask about a design

Is the audience clear?

Does it have a point?

Is the content appropriate for the audience?

Is the design appropriate for the audience?

9. Questions to ask about screen design

Is there a clear and consistent titling scheme?

Is there a recognizable graphical logo?

Is there a clear and consistent location for content?

Is the content easy to access?

Is there a clear and consistent navigation system?

Can I find what I want quickly?
Can I find out who did the site?

Does it load quickly?

Created by Geoffrey Rockwell, September, 2003