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Jurassic Web Design [update: June 2007]


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No, nothing like that exists except in my own mind. But maybe it will catch on, let me explain.


If you read the book or saw the movie "Jurassic Park" you may remember a scene where the Mathematician/Chaos expert played by Jeff Goldblum is arguing with the creator/owner of the park and states something close to "You are so busy asking yourself if you can bring the Dinosaurs back, you have forgotten to ask yourself if you should." Well that is a potent question. Being that - great, you can bring the dinosaur back, but should you bring back to life creatures who became extinct 56 Million years before man existed?


So what does that have to do with us? Simple really, we forget to ask that same thing often enough in web design. The question is still legitimate "should we focus on doing something we can or ask if we should?"


Let me give you an example. Beginners, all there sites look the same, I see it and hear questions asked all the time at a M$N Group for web design called Web Design . How do I play auto-play Music? How do I add a counter? How do I get big fat 3 level backgrounds to frame my text? How do I get a Flash Splash Page. When you ask why, they reply "I want my site to look professional and/or everyone else has these things." This is what I call the Lemming attitude, everyone else does something so I will too without understanding why or why not, now where is that cliff to run off? But how many professional sites really have the things they want.. very few, mostly it is just other lemming sites that have them.


So doing my best (that means not good) Goldblum imitation...


"You are so tied up about how you can have a flash splash page, you forget to ask yourself if you should have one."

"You are so tied up about if you can have auto-play background music, you forget to ask yourself if you should have it"

"You are so tied up about if you can have a counter (considering most normal web sites have statistics available) that you forget to ask yourself if you should have one"

So I offer the net a new term, "Jurassic Web Design" to describe web sites by those people who stick everything possible into a site because they can without asking themselves if the should.


I will now leave you with a wonderful quote I saw on a signature of a member of the Killersites Forum. "Perfection is not finding something else to add, perfection is finding nothing else one can remove."




June 2007 - clearing out my bookmarks I came across "The HTML Hell Page ," it is quite a good read and lists allot of forms of Jurassic web design.

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