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What Is Web Design?

Web design involves creating a web page.
A web design specialist is an individual who produces a website that a company can use to give potential customers information about the organization and represent the company in a professional manner.
Web design includes all facets of creating pages and linking information found on websites.
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  • Written By: Brendan McGuigan
  • Edited By: Niki Foster
  • Last Modified Date: 11 September 2014
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Web design is used as a general term to describe any of the various tasks involved in creating a web page. More specifically, it refers to jobs focused on building the front-end of a web page.

The web consists of myriad pages, presenting information using different technologies and linked together with hyperlinks. There are two basic aspects to any web page found on the Internet. The first is a presentation that the user interacts with, usually visually, while the second is a back-end that includes information for non-human browsers.

The basic markup language used to tell a browser how to present information is called the HyperText Markup Language (HTML). A stricter version of HTML is also widely used, known as eXtensible HyperText Markup Language (XHTML). Using HTML or XHTML, a web designer is able to tell a browser how a web page should appear. In the last few years, there has been a push towards separating the underlying structure of a web-page (using HTML) from the visual presentation of the site (using Cascading Style Sheets or CSS). This approach has a number of major benefits in both the short and long term, and it is gathering popularity as time progresses.

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From a technical standpoint, the act of web design can be quite difficult. Unlike more traditional print media, HTML has a number of variable factors. To begin with, not all browsers interpret HTML according to the standards created by the standard-setting body — the World Wide Web Consortium, also known as W3. This means that while a page will appear as the designer wishes it to in one browser, it may appear completely differently in another. There are numerous fixes and work-arounds to try to circumvent browser-specific bugs, but it is a tenuous business at best.

Another major limiting factor is the plethora of formats a site might be viewed in. While graphic designers know exactly how large the piece of paper they are printing on will be, a web designer must account for different monitor sizes, different display settings, and even browsers for non-sighted users. Combined, these concerns often leave a design professional struggling to incorporate enough dynamism to make a web page attractive on a range of browser sizes, while creating a layout static enough to allow for the use of images and other necessarily fixed-size components.

In addition to XHTML and CSS, designers often use a number of database driven languages to allow for more dynamism and interactivity on their websites. While useful with smaller sites, such languages become a virtual necessity on any site presenting huge amounts of data.

The possibilities for web design are virtually limitless, although at one point, they were quite constrained by the boundaries of the browser itself. With the advent and flexibility of embedded technologies, these boundaries have been all but removed, allowing for a versatility and dynamism that challenges the imagination of anyone interested in designing for the Internet.

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Discuss this Article

TheTechguys
Post 20

Also, the HTML version is stricter and widely known as Hypertext Markup Language extended (XHTML). Using HTML or XHTML, a web designer is able to tell how a Web page browser should appear.

Indiadesign
Post 17

Good primer on web design, gives basic information on all aspects of web design.

anon200995
Post 15

with HTML, anon.

anon100815
Post 10

how do i make a flash based site?

anon100461
Post 9

can i use www after http?

anon93354
Post 8

You want to create your own website using visual studio 2005. go to menu file->new website

next window open choose your language. this is a way to create a website in aspx file. It should be used with XHTML and asp.net controls. thanks in advance.

anon77310
Post 6

how do i create my own website?

Moderator's reply: Please see http://www.wisegeek.com/how-do-i-create-my-own-website.htm

anon36863
Post 2

how do i create my own website

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