Ahead of our time

In 1999 whilst working with another company we were asked to pitch for the design and construction of a new website for an adventure travel company - potentially a lucrative, exciting and prestigious contract. In an effort to thoroughly impress we thought we would go all out using the cutting edge technology of the day to both showcase our talents and “wow” them our understanding of their business and the potential this technology could do for them. Working with the designer we came up with a layout and construction the would provide excitement, interest, interactivity as well as future proofing the site (as best as one can with the constantly evolving internet).

We coded the site using what in those days was termed DHTML, or Dynamic HTML. This is based on using layers, CSS and JavaScript, very different from the standard method of the day which used tables to structure the site layout and design.

Did we get the job? No, we didn’t The first question the client asked was whether the design was table based, and because it wasn’t they decided not to use us, instead going to a company which offered the “safer” option of the table based standard of the day.

Nowadays of course all new websites are based on layers, CSS and JavaScript, the latest flavour of these being HTML5, CSS3 and JQuery (an easier version of JavaScript) with Responsive Design being the primary objective. Tables are rarely used now, and only for displaying data in tabular format.

As usual at Tallowin we are forward thinking, ahead of our time. It obviously doesn’t suit everyone. But if you are looking for a forward thinking company, give us a call.

To see the prototype of the site we created for demo purposes click here…. (Please bear in mind that this was built for the monitor resolution of the day - 15 years ago. When you get onto the Map page run your mouse over the list of tours on the right hand side.)

The importance of Responsive Design

When we started designing and building websites the target screen size was a 600 x 400 pixel format as that was the resolution of most monitors at that time. This then expanded to 800 x 600 and has increased since through 1024 x 768, 1600 x 900, 1920 x 1080 and up, with variations on these as well. The design and layout of websites has had to change accordingly. In addition, the standard, dominant desktop browser was Microsoft’s Internet Explorer generally accepted as being used by around 85% of website visitors.

Now things are changing, and instead of screens getting larger, they are getting smaller as more and more websites are now being viewed on mobile devices – tablets and smartphones. It is now these devices which have become the dominant platform for viewing websites - again taking up that magic 85% of website viewings.

For a period website designers created two sites for each company, one for the desktop and one for these up and coming mobile devices. But as browsers have developed, allowing more responsive designs, for the majority of sites this is no longer necessary. Designers now build sites that “respond” to the device viewing the site and adjusting the display accordingly. So much so in fact that the focus of design of the primary format has changed - whereas previously designers would design for the desktop and “degrade” down for the smaller, mobile devices, this has now turned on its head, so that the primary focus of design is for the more prevalent mobile devices with alternatives for larger devices – the desktop.

An example of a responsive design is this site. If you are viewing this on a desktop/laptop, try resizing your browser window to make it progressively smaller down to mobile phone size and you will see how it responds to the changes in size.

Is your website up to speed to respond to the latest technology? If not, you may be losing valuable audience and customers.

The only limit to our potential is…

When we are at school one of the biggest questions on our minds is – What do I want to be when I grow up? To be honest that question may be relevant many years after leaving school too. It is a very difficult question to answer, particularly when the only limit to our aspirations is – us, or perhaps more accurately, our mind-set. Our mind-set is in turn limited by our expectations.

If we set ourselves up in business, the development and growth of that business is itself limited by our mind-set. Whilst we may start off small, do our aspirations stretch to remaining small, or to becoming a player on the world stage? If we want to be a player on the world stage, the first, and most important step to getting there, is adopting a “world-class” mind-set, a mind-set that extends to everything we do, and in particular everything we present to our target market.

For example, the small business that has small business aspirations will get cheap business cards made up based on a template from one of the major cheap, template business card providers. The world-class mind-set goes out and gets a bespoke design for their business card properly printed on quality card stock.
Similarly, the small business puts together their own website using one of the cheap/free D.I.Y. template systems available. The world-class mind-set goes out and gets a professionally designed and crafted website that reflects their aspirations. In each case that business visually projecting to their existing and potential customers their aspirations and expectations, and in each case two sayings come to mind:

1. You get what you ask for.
2. You get what you pay for.

The word-class mindset understands and appreciates the difference that a bespoke, professional look and feel will do for their business.

If you have world-class aspirations you need to show that to your target market, and by doing so will attract the customers you need to realise those aspirations.

Template sites have their place for the small, local business, but not for those with wider aspirations - the "template mind-set" has no place on the world stage.

If you have a world-class mind-set with world-stage aspirations and need some help getting there - call us.