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Über dieses Buch

Michael Baumgardt is a DTP pioneer and well known for his numerous books and articles in the magazine PAGE. In this book he sets new standards in web publishing: detailed step-by-step guides and numerous tips and tricks show how unusual design elements and astonishing effects for exciting web sites can be made quickly and efficiently using graphics and image processing programs. The accompanying CD-ROM offers selected examples of successful web site designs for off-line viewing.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

Chapter 01. Concept

Abstract
How to get started is a difficult ques-tion. In a book about journalism that I once read, the author emphasized how important it is to have a strong beginning to capture the interest of the reader. In his opinion, the key to a good opening was to find something that would surprise the reader and keep his or her attention. How about this: All you need to know to create award winning Web sites can be taught in a week or less. Surprised? Do you think it is unrealistic? Well, it is, depending on your background. If you have never designed before and have no basic knowledge of computers and how program languages work it might take you a little bit longer. But if you have worked before as a print media or multimedia designer you can make the leap into the world of Web design fairly easily, simply because you already have design skills, something that even a good book couldn’t teach you in a week. Understanding the limitations of the Web and learning how to solve them is the smaller part of the challenge. As a designer it is more important to understand the information architecture on the Internet and its logic and the possibilities, because that is the real challenge. In this book you will find many interviews with designers and HTML authors that will give you an idea of how to create the information architecture for a site, and along with that, you will also see solutions that people have come up with. If you are a designer who wants to use this book to create a homepage for yourself or your company, you will still find all the information that you need. But because this book cannot be a complete guide to HTML, JavaScript, or Shockwave, I have reduced the information to that which is most significant. I will explain how you can create interactive buttons with JavaScript, because they are an important element of interface design. If you want to find out more about how to program in JavaScript I would suggest getting a book that is dedicated to that subject. This book is geared towards designers who are already familiar with design software and now want to start creating Web sites.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 02. Layout

Abstract
Imagine this: you are designing the layout of a magazine and everything looks great. While you are away from your computer to get yourself a cup of coffee, the editor walks in and changes the width of the text column and also the font type. You are shocked to find, when you return, that everything looks different and your carefully arranged text and pictures are not where they are supposed to be. Designing for the Web is pretty much like this, because you have no control over the size of the browser’s window and neither can you anticipate in which font the user might view your site. And that was pretty much the intention of the inventors of the HTML code. The code was designed primarily to provide structural information to the browser. It is only because of the pressure of designers, who weren’t really pleased about this, that HTML has increasingly accommodated itself to the world of desktop publishing. From the viewpoint of a designer, this is very important, because in a medium where the elements can be moved freely, you can’t really do advanced design.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 03. Images

Abstract
The pictures in your site are like the spices in soup. If they are great, visitors will be enthusiastic even though what was served was mainly water. You are not convinced? If you’re not convinced try surfing the Web and you’ll discover that there are just a few recipes used to create a Web site, with the only difference between a mediocre and fantastic Web site being the images that are used.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 04. Tables

Abstract
This HTML extension is one of the most important for designers, because it allows you to have, at least, some control over what your page looks like. Tables can contain anything from text and sound to images (on which see the section Imagetable in this chapter) and, because the borders of a table can be made invisible and can be given a fixed width, most people use tables for layout purposes. Although the basic syntax of tables is very simple, using it can be a little confusing in the beginning, so let us now look at how HTML structures them.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 05. Frames

Abstract
One of the problems with large documents is that any table of contents or navigation buttons placed at the top of a document are out of reach once the user has scrolled down the window. One way of solving this problem is to use frames, which allow the browser window to be segmented into smaller, independent units. In the beginning, there were a couple of drawbacks of using frames. For example, borders could not be made invisible. Fortunately, this has been fixed. because it isn’t easy to create a great design, with grey borders cutting through your artwork.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 06. GIF Animation

Abstract
From the beginning of the Web’s popularity, Web designers have wanted to add animations to their websites. Although plug-ins are now available, Gif-Animation is still the most popular way of bringing animation to the Web. The reason is simple: Netscape 2.0 or higher and Explorer 3.0 can read an animated GIF file without any plug-ins. No struggle for the visitor to a site to get the right plug-in before the site can actually be seen. Even if the browser doesn’t support GIF animation, it will certainly support GIF files, because the GIF graphic format is the standard format for online graphics and, at least, the first (or last) picture of your animation will be seen in the browser.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 07. Cascading Style Sheets

Abstract
The only way to specify a font in HTML is the FONT tag, which allows you to specify a list of fonts as your preference. But it was clear that this was not enough, so in search of a solution, the Cascading Style Sheet extension was created. With Cascading Style Sheet Level 1 (CSS1 you can set the fonts, colors, or white space of your text and redefine the HTML tags. This means that you can still use the regular structural tags like < H1> or <P> (Heading or Paragraph), but include formatting information for these tags in a style sheet. if the browser doesn’t understand CSS, it will at least interpret the structural tags as usual. This was actually one intention of the creators of CSS: instead of creating more HTML tags for the display, they wanted to ensure that HTML would remain a structural language.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 08. Shockwave

Abstract
Creating Shockwave was a very smart move on the part of Macromedia, because it allows the designer to create advanced multimedia applications with the popular multimediaprogram Director and then embed them in their websites. Macromedia has emphasized Shockwave a lot so it’s no wonder that the Shockwave plug-in is so widespread, and installed in many browsers on Windows and Macintosh.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 09. JavaScript

Abstract
Many designers don’t like programming, but designing for the Web will become more like multimedia design than designing for print media. This requires basic knowledge about Java and JavaScript, since they allow for much more interactivity than regular HTML. In this chapter I want to give you some ready-made scripts that you only need to adapt slightly for your pages. All you need is some basic knowledge of how to implement Java and JavaScript, but let me first explain the difference between them to avoid confusion due to their similar names.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 10. Music & Audio

Abstract
To make your web site a true multimedial experience, you need sound and video. Unfortunately, both are really hard to transmit due to the bandwidth of the connection that most users have. But advances are being made and audio will become more and more common.
Michael Baumgardt

Chapter 11. Uploading & Registering

Abstract
The final step in creating a Web site is registering it with the search engines. These search engines are sometimes called robots or spiders, because they “crawl” from one URL to the next URL, as they register the full text of every home page and sub-page. Eventually they arrive at your site and register it. But instead of waiting for that unknown day you should submit your URL to be registered which then puts you on a waiting list for the agent to visit and index your site. These robots then periodically update the information and in case of a dead link (because you moved your site or took it off the Web) they erase your URL from their records.
Michael Baumgardt

Backmatter

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