Every web designer harbours tales of frustration, limitation and despair. Web design requires skills and knowledge beyond mere manipulation of form, shape, language, colour, message and meaning. What users don’t see behind those visuals is just as important as what they do see. We have to think about moving parts and engineering solutions, and consider language, metadata, user experiences, and so much more.
Whether we work alone or in teams, we need to follow rules, constantly extend our skillsets, and sometimes even predict the future, dealing with social networks, web apps, microformats, geolocation, magical new devices and augmented realities. Our work goes beyond borders, accessible at any time from any location, on any number of browsers and devices, at varying speeds, on multiple resolutions. And it is consumed by humans, each with a brain a little different from the next.
The web presented a fantastic new opportunity to us, but from the outset we made the mistakes typical of every new industry — we ran before we could walk, and forgot to take notice of the lessons learned by those that came before. We started building things without any thought for the future: no accountability; no standards. Every industry needs to be accountable. Every industry needs standards.