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Screen Resolution

 

Web designers/developers have to opt for a default screen resolution and given current trends 1024 x 768 seems a reasonable choice. There are, however, still significant numbers of users who prefer the lower resolution of 800x600 even though it requires a great deal more page-scrolling. Monitor size is also a factor - a 200x300 pixel image will look smaller on a 15-inch monitor than on a  21-inch monitor.

 

If web pages have been developed for 1024x768 screen resolution be sure to test them also at 800x600. Note that graphic elements and tables which have been positioned absolutely present particular problems

 

Visit this site for up-to-date statistics on browsers used and screen resolution

 

Presentation

 

There is clearly a place for imaginatively designed web pages, but what may seem exciting to a designer can be very irritating to an end-user. Why should users have to click on 'skip intro' to get to the information they require ? suffer endless graphics and adverts which serve only to slow the site down ? spend what seems an eternity trying to find the appropriate link on an unnecessarily congested page ? have pop-ups inflicted on them ? All this and much much more. 

 

McLuhan's oft-misrepresented phrase, "the medium is the message" does seem to resonate when looking at a great deal of web material. With the increasing convergence of technologies, corporates are understandably eager to meet the thirst for 'active content', but the spin-off seems to be that presentation frequently eclipses content.  

 

Good web design should be content-driven. Users who arrive at a site will leave very quickly if there are slow response times or unnecessary distractions. Ensure that the key information is readily accessible and that navigation is straightforward

 

Search Engine Ranking

 

There are many techniques for improving a site's ranking. Survey this list and decide which items are reasonable practice and those which reflect less savoury aspects of search engine optimisation ..... 

 

                Use popular keywords (e.g. "Madonna") 

 

                Use meta-name keywords covering the content of every page of the website

 

                Hide keywords in single pixel images 

 

                Include a keyword in the URL or site address

 

                Give an image the same name as a keyword

 

                Locate keywords in a <noframes> tag, even though you're not using frames

 

                Increase site popularity by creating a network of sites all pointing to each other

 

                Leave messages across thousands of other sites and weblogs which point to the
                target site

 

This article (Guardian 21/12/05) makes it clear what's at stake in terms of search engine optimisation ....

 

http://business.guardian.co.uk/story/0,,1671762,00.html

 

And this webpage looks at techniques for search optimisation and associated issues

 

http://www.marketposition.com/blog/archives/2003/05/hidden_images_a.html

 

      

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Copyright 2008 [Fen Tyler]