July 24, 2007
Plain view: embrace your limitations
I've been witness to more than one 'homepage war', where everybody wants their piece of the valuable 'online real estate'. It's usually a fruitless battle and in the end everybody - and especially the visitor - looses.
The problem is, there is always lack of horizontal space. We gained a little with widescreen monitors, but that's it. In vertical space there is the perceived barrier of the 'fold' (see Blasting the Myth of the Fold). But these are both limitations that should be embraced; reserve the top 60-70% of the page (full width) for an image - remember: one image says more than a thousand words - and design for people to delve deeper into the page. For examples on how to do this, look at mobile phones and PDA's; you can even think of zooming like on the iPhone. This practice shouldn't stop at the homepage, but be continued consistently through all pages.
And if you're looking for inspiration on what to do with the new found space, take a look at Birdseye aerial kyte photography and 'Plain Pictures; images of the American prairie' by Joni L. Kinsey.
Posted by Almar at July 24, 2007 02:38 PM