1 Bridging the gap between design and development


This chapter covers

  • The entirety of the web design process covered in this book
  • The evolving role of web developers
  • Benefits to both freelancers and full-time developers of understanding design fundamentals and user experience processes

The web is a place of change. New technologies and frameworks are introduced every year. HTML and Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) remain the foundations for building websites and web applications, and they continue to grow, accommodating the needs of developers as designs evolve.

Part of building for the web is keeping up to date with the technologies used to build it. But how does this work for design? Although tools change over time, a lot of the underlying concepts are timeless. What you see is a shift in trends over time.

Familiarity with web development has been invaluable to me as a specialist in web design. When asked, “Should designers learn to code?” my answer is yes. An understanding of what’s possible on the web is a great asset. It makes communication between designers and developers much easier. In tech, the communication gap between designers and developers is commonly considered one of the hardest to bridge. A less-asked question is, “Should developers learn to design?” Again, my answer is yes, at least when it comes to understanding design fundamentals.

1.1 How design and user experience fundamentals benefit developers

1.1.1 Improving collaboration and communication

1.1.2 Understanding the why behind design decisions

1.1.3 Writing better code by understanding visual design fundamentals

1.1.4 Better code (and design) through less dependency on third-party frameworks

1.1.5 User experience and development

1.2 The path to understanding better design and user experience

1.2.1 The design process this book covers

1.2.2 Design experts vs. designing smart

1.2.3 Putting it all together