Highway Web Consulting

Digital Consulting & Website Development

Defining Success

Many of the definitions of success revolve around being a success. That is an appeal to the emotions (which leads directly do your wallet). However, success is not a state of being, it is a state of doing. More specifically, success is the result of the completion of some goal. When we attach our success or failure to our state of being, failure will crush us and any success can only be accepted subjectively (and will often be fleeting). However, when we attach success or failure to actions, we are met with many successes and failures every day--none of which will bring us to undeserving euphoria or soul-crushing defeat. Did you succeed at the task? Great! Learn from it. Did you fail at the task or objective? Great! Learn from it.

What does this have to do with web design and development? Everything.

When you judge the "success" of your new website without attaching any objectives or goals, how can you know it was successful? A website is not a personal extension of yourself or your organization. It is designed and implemented to achieve specific goals and purposes. It is a tool that takes into account the needs and actions of others as they relate to your own business needs. It is the place where Web users come together with you in an online environment to carry out mutually beneficial actions. What do the users need in order to take the actions that your organization needs them to take? How can you work together with users to achieve mutually beneficial goals? Taken this way, a website is not just a presence but also a tool--a tool that is useful to both the organization and the user.

It is out of this understanding that organizations can begin to set sensible goals that will allow them to judge success or failure; not of the ethereal kind, but of the objective, quantifiable kind. Only then can adjustments be made to the site so that users and the organization can experience more successes and eliminate failures.

Eliminate the subjectivity of your website being a success and focus on the objective successes or failures of the site. From this place, you'll more accurately be able to judge success or failure when it comes to your online platform.

Invisible Navigation Trigger

What if it a site's navigation was just kind of intuitive? Touch an area and the menu shows up. This is an attempt to make a more seamless reading and navigation experience. There are a couple of things going on here. First , there is a large navigation pane which means sites can pack a lot of information into it. Second, this pattern allows the user to see as much on the screen as possible without the distraction of navigation. This is definitely a "read first, nav second" pattern.

View the code on Codepen: Explore Navigation // UI.

Tiled Mobile Design Using CSS Grid

Windows 8 wasn't a popular version of the operating system, but the Metro design did introduce some interesting concepts like interface as navigation. This just means that the elements in the interface are all navigation elements and the design doesn't rely on a separate navigation panel or pane. We see this often with grid-based designs. The experiment above is a mobile interface that utilizes interface as navigation but also includes a traditional menu behind a hamburger menu icon. Another unique design feature is the full-screen toggle in the top right, which gives this web page the feel of a native app.

View the code on Codepen: Tiled Mobile Design Using CSS Grid.