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July 28, 2009

Pan down, pan right, close up

It has been argued widely that film/photo techniques like panning and close-ups add to the dramatic effect of movies and pictures. In a previous post "Getting out of the way", I already discuss using more of these techniques in website design.

A really good example of what this could look like is shown by Prezi.com (a zooming web-presentation tool) in their Prezi Tips and Tricks presentation. Prezi of course uses a dedicated technique, but simply breaking the standard up-down flow on a website already has a positive effect. See for example the App Store on the iPhone:

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When viewing the information on a particular application you first scroll down the text, but arriving at the screenshots the scroll becomes horizontal (and vertical again if you continue beyond the screenshots).

The zooming doesn't necessarily have to be literal, but could be like a peek under the hood: showing the actual realtime dataflow on a website (as opposed to visualizing the output data) in a corner of the screen. This is similar to zooming in on the moving parts of an engine, clarifying the mechanics, next to oozing the power potential.

Posted by Almar at July 28, 2009 03:08 PM