Hi folks.

Having a few issues with my Boss, and was hoping that a little input from others would help resolve the conflict once and for all!

So, the issue at hand...?
The design process or Web Design/Creation.

Arguement 1)
When you get a client, you should be able to conceive and create a general design based upon a handful of data from the Client.
There is no need to have any idea s to the purpose, function or content of the site.
All you need to do is create some generic designs to show layout, colours, themes etc. to permit the Client to choose roughly what they are after.

Arguement 2)
When you meet a client, you should bew able to coax the required info out of them. If they want a website, most of them should a have an idea as to what they think site should
do and look like, and may even have a fair conception of the end appearance and behaviours.
You shouldn't come up with to many pre-conceived ideas as to overal appearance until you havea good grasp on possible content and how it is to be displayed.

So please, let me know which of those two arguements you are more inclined to agree with as good-practice, common sense or simply the right way to do it.

If you feel upto it, short notes for justification are welcome as well!

Thank you.

It depends on your goal. Do you want it to be a good site or as a developer do you want to be done with it soon?

A good site has to be carefully planned (or at least somewhat planned). This takes time and interaction with the client.

On the other hand, a canned site can be done in a couple of days (or hours).

So, what are you shooting for? good stuff or mass-production?

A lot goes into site design, usability, and navigation. This absolutely, definitely, without a doubt needs to depend on the site content and the target audience in mind. When designing a site, the first thing that needs to be done is determine what the page content is, and then create a navigational map of how pages will be connected and the hierarchy of the site structure. From there, wireframes should be designed with placement of various graphical elements. ie. where the navigation menu will be, etc. Then, the wireframe can be filled in with actual colors and graphic elements. Everything down to color shade is dependant upon the target audience ... what type of mood do you want to set? Is this a technical site? Are we attracting scientists or artists? Is this a content based site where the most important thing is the body text and everything else is fluff? Or is this an entertainment site or a site aimed at teenagers?

Thank you for the responses

I personally, am in line with Arg.2..... Arg.1 was suppositioned by my Boss.
As he wouldn't take my word for it, I thought I'd post the idea on several forums and show him the responses.

So far, "Everyone" has gone with Arg.2.
Since then, the Boss has shut-up. He may not agree, but he won't argue with me.

I deem it unprofessional in most cases to not follow Arg.2.
no matter whether the site is a quick knock-out or not, it still needs to be formed around the purpose and function of the site.
Further, things such as Navigation and presentation to me are the main formuliac part of the site, and require a large degree of effort. Without considering the content, how to display, and how to get to it, it's not web-designer.... I might aswell use Dreamveaver or Frontpage and just churn-out block Html.

So, again, thank you for the replies, as they helped resolve an ongoing - issue at work.
Much appreciated

I agreed with everything you said up until:
>>I might aswell use Dreamveaver or Frontpage and just churn-out block Html.

Dreamweaver - and, although painfully, Frontpage2003 for that matter - are professional tools. Not recognizing them as such only speaks about yourself, not the tools.

Just a heads up. I'm sure you don't want to go around making a good argument and then breaking it yourself in the last paragraph.

Sorry, my bad... should have been a little more clear on the complaint definition.

It is not that I hold anything against such applications.... it's just the large number of folks that use them with little understanding of what web-design entails, and they fail to clean up the code..... leaving MM_js all over the place, internal CSS on everypage.

It is not that the software is unprofessional, merely that a lot of unprofessional people default to such software... I hope that makes sense.
I think it's all those stupid caourses.... you know, become a professional web designer in 28 on this dreamweaver course!

so, no offence to those that use the software, (*cough* or those that produce it! ;) )

I see what you are saying and you are right, most designers use the tools without getting to know them or the web technologies properly.

But I also see plenty of people proud of their hand code that do not even know what a DOCTYPE is. When comparing both cases, those using the professional tools have a better chance of producing less crappy code because they at least have the software making an effort to produce clean sites, while on the other hand the Notepad doesn't even have syntax highlighting. :)

I accept that.
I hadn't even considered the hack-handers as well as those that use software apps.
Again, my bad.

Still, would be nice if there was a true body to check such things, one that wasn't money orientated, to act as a watch dog or such.

Occasional mistakes, the odd browser mis-interpretation etc... these things occur over time due to advancements etc..... yet some of the people out there taking peoples money for what they claim as professional work is indignant.... if services suc has contracting, mechanics, textiles etc. are "policed", I wonder when our range of services will be?

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