Web is 4D Design

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Forget 2D and 3D – 4D websites ENGAGE with your audience!

Websites are 4-dimensional. That makes them the most effective sales and marketing tool yet invented. Because they adjust to an individual customers needs, and allow them to “talk back”.

  • 2D – IS an online brochure, newspaper or trade magazine
  • 3D – “live action” like TV and radio with time and motion.
  • 4D – interactive like a software app. It responds to a reader’s actions, and lets you to collect data in forms, chats, surveys or forums.

2D design isn’t 3D design

I was a print designer before I was a web designer. Web design is far trickier than print. Most creatives appreciate that radio and TV are specialist channels for media advertising and design.  Like television, web has the 3rd dimension of time and motion.

Most artists hope that this 3rd dimension can be added later, during development. The result is a website that behaves like a linear PowerPoint presentation and graphics with the energy of a Duracell bunny.

3D design isn’t 4D design

But the web has a 4th dimension not found in any other medium – interactivity.

The internet is the first communication medium since the telephone where the audience can influence the message being communicated.

Web designers need to take into account more functional needs than any other communication tool. Websites are not only multi-dimensional but multi-spatial. By multi-spatial, I mean a web page needs to be designed to present data (including text and graphic data) dynamically in a way that makes sense to the user, and allows the user to interact by using their own cell phone touchscreen, or mouse.

Many ad agencies dismiss web design as a version of print. CYMK issues are a mere paint splatter in comparison to the bucket loads of canvas planning needed to design dynamic web pages. After all, a print designer can expect to know the size, ink and paper stock of the magazine they works for! They can define the fonts, exact colours and sizes of their advert.

Web designers need to learn the many idiosyncrasies of a dozen operating systems, browser versions, screen resolutions.

A modern website is an evolving beast, that is able to feed itself with multiple forms of data. Speeding up download times are part and parcel of what makes a ‘good’ web design ‘great’.

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