Temp3.net Web Design

Website design, SEO and Marketing FREE Tips and Techniques

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Know Your Web Browsers

You might think to yourself that a discussion about web browsers has no place in website planning. You are very wrong in many ways. When planning your website or a website for a client you should keep in mind the user experience. After all the work is done, the user is going to use a web browser to visit your website. This is not a discussion or argument in favor of one browser or another. This is just a note about the market to which you are targeting your website. Over the past 4 years, mobile internet has became more popular than expected. We will dived this discussion to 2 separate ones.

 

Desktop and Laptops

Looking at the market share data on the right we can see the Internet Explorer still controllers 52% of the browser market share use. This should come as no surprise, because every new windows pc is shipped with Internet Explorer pre-installed. These figure are decaying, but it is not going to change by much in the near future. When you are planning a website, for yourself or a client, think about the browsers your average user might use. You may conclude that all your users will use Firefox, maybe because your website is about Firefox plugins. A good practice would be to test out the final product on the 4 major browsers, Explorer, Firefox, Chrome and Safari. If it works on all of these, chances are it will work on all.




Mobile Internet

The rise of the mobile internet almost duplicated any work web developer need to do. The data shows that currently (January 2012) Safari controls slightly over 52% of the market, with Opera mini and android trailing behind. This is a complete different ball game than what we saw in desktops and laptops browsers. Also, the screen size and functionality changed significantly with touch screens and smaller screen sizes. You should presume your users will want to access any website from a mobile device or a tablet and accommodate it accordingly. Sometimes that mean redoing the entire site and others just a minor CSS change. Either way, get hold of the main 3 devices or emulators and test out the final project on all browsers and platforms.

Final thought
As a final note on browsers. This might seem like a lot of work, and sometime it is. However, after doing it once or twice without the initial thought, you will learn to keep all this in the back of your head even before you begin to think about development. As is with security, the end user has to be thought about throughout the entire process of building a website. At the end of the day, if you build a website users don't like, it's life will be very short lived.

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How the Internet Works

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Most people take the internet for granted, without any insight to how it works or connected. First let's setup some definitions. The Internet and the World Wide Web (www) are often used to refer to the same thing. This is wrong. The internet is not the same as the world wide web. The Internet is a network of networks. The world wide web is a set of hyper linked text document, it's what you see in you web browser when you open a page that links to another page.

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is an organization that keeps some order in all the chaos that might happen online if we didn't have some common census. Think of W3C as the manual of the internet, where you can find definitions and explanations for almost any term you will learn in any paid or free design course. Take some time to visit the website are read the documentation, get a feel for what you need to know.

The high level picture of the internet is the world wide web, it is what you see in your browser every day. Behind this text and every other text there are many parts at work getting you the information you request. At a low level, the internet is a (very large) group of servers that are inter connected. This server range anywhere from private ownership to government and education networks. In fact, anyone could put up a server and connect it to the internet from their own home. Every server has a unique address. When you type in a url (http://www.temp3.com) it gets translated to a number address. Something like 127.0.0.1 (localhost). We have name servers that are in charge of only translating these words to numbers. When that number is retrieved, it goes to the server where the page is stored and then sends a packet of information back to the browser. Then your browser receives that a copy of the files and displays it according to the html within them (or php, javascripts, etc...)

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