The internet is a pillar of modern society – something most of western society use daily, if not all day in some form. It is a digital public space for everyone. Growing in popularity throughout the past two centuries. However, as the space has grown and we utilise websites as a visual medium to present us with information, some ‘traditional’ things have stuck;
We still view most sites in a bookmarked and menu view, static text and information is a necessity for readability. Some sites now use overlays and layered sliders, but the majority of design is still stuck in the quagmire of classical print – columns and text blocks reminiscent of newspapers and magazines.
Pages are separated into various sections, for ease of use, but also the more information the site stores the less ergonomic and confusing the site can become to navigate. People have a natural affinity to navigate through websites through regular use. Often children can use iPads better than their parents – the User Experience (UX) design is implemented to create ease of access. Through “use” and “experience” we are educated in the use of the singular interface. However complex it is. This is just good design.
Content is kept relatively separate and not integrated together – video, images, sound and text are not combined to create a ‘organism’ but kept separate – sure youtube can have captions, subtitles and some overlay links to the next video – but it still stands as a singular binary object parallel and segregated from other objects.
But what has changed? Speed – more speed equals more information. With most users on high-speed connections now, content is delivered at an increased rate. The piles of data that are being delivered is phenomenal – just think how many images, words and videos there are on your seemingly infinite facebook feed. It’s not a feed anymore it’s a feast!
New strides are being made in all areas of the web. Faster speeds, cleaner coding for websites and better encoding for video. The person up at 3am working on algorithms to make data encode in a more compressed manner, the programmer implementing easier readability – these are the unsung heroes of the digital age. This stuff isn’t easy and things are getting harder, but they are getting better, faster, stronger – our work is never over!
The combination of everyone’s participation in the creation of the internet, higher speeds and strides in programming, design and all the magical parts has made the internet what it is today. A new trend is materialising on the web – Animation.
GIFs were an emerging media 30 years ago, created by CompuServe. GIF’s are potentially one of the greatest inventions since sliced bread, but we’ll leave that for you to decide. Since then in the realms of singular animations on the internet we haven’t come much further. Not to be confused with video – we’re talking about animated images or text in web design.
Now things are different – internet speeds are up. Animation is an emerging trend of 2017, and we think it’s really going to take off in 2018! Integrated animation in web design is going to bring the web to life. The stagnant trends of yesteryear are on their way out, and we believe animation is going to take its rightful place at the forefront of modern web design.
…and it’s already started!
Check out these wonderful sites – animated through scrolling;
We think this is just the beginning. If we look at webtrends throughout time, they are reminiscent of natural evolution.
- Trends emerge
- They are tested by the user environment
- They survive and prosper
- Or they are replaced by a stronger opposition (or just they die out)
Take Myspace, originally a strong contender on the web, the beginning of social media for a lot of people – replaced by a stronger predator – Facebook. This is a very obvious example but this is happening all the time on the web, without oversimplifying, the internet is in a constant state of flux and change. Its evolving.
We believe that integrated animation will become increasingly prevalent in modern web design – businesses (like Apple) are already implementing it into their portfolio. Because, at the end of the day, web design is about delivering the correct information to the users in the best way possible. Integrated animation can deliver a message clearly if used correctly and in moderation. With newer and more subtle frontend design, animation can give visual cues to the user, increasing user experience without the loss of exciting visuals.
Is animation is the next trend – or not? What will the trend be after that? And after that? Will we be viewing the web in a virtual space in the future? Logged into the network like some cyberpunk from a 80’s sci-fi novel? Its an exciting time for the future of the internet!
Illustrations by us here at Yen Studio!