Simplicity as design principle

June 5, 2008

“Simplicity is certainly an important design principle. Many designers try to cram too much into a screenful of space, making it unwieldy for people to find what they are interested in. Removing design elements to see what can be discarded without affecting the overall function of the website can be a salutary lesson. Unnecessary icons, buttons, boxes, lines, graphics, shading, and text can be stripped, leaving a cleaner, crisper, and easier-to-navigate website. However, a certain amount of graphics, shading, coloring, and formatting can make a site aesthetically pleasing and enjoyable to use. Plain vanilla sites with just lists of text and a few hyperlinks may not be as appealing and may put certain visitors off returning. The key is getting the right balance between aesthetic appeal and the right amount and kind of information per page.”

From: Preece, J., Rogers, Y., Sharp, H. (2002), Interaction Design: Beyond Human-Computer Interaction, New York: Wiley, p.27

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