Responsive web design: The need to know

There isn’t anything more frustrating than trying to manipulate a website from your phone when the design is totally unresponsive: you spend so much time just zooming and panning to view anything at all.

Responsive web design is probably one of the most important skill-sets to designers or maybe even developers creating a new website. It’s been around for a while if you consider whether people designing for a tablet desired a fluid or static interface. I won’t go into the programming aspects of it because I don’t know how to explain it in a way that makes any sense, but in layman’s terms, responsive design means that a page will be able to detect the device a user is on and expand/adjust images and spacing to work based on that platform.

This sort of design makes use of flexible layouts and images so that a company can maintain the same feeling/idea of the original site without needing to worry about what screen size a user is viewing it on.

I’ve been working with Reesenews.org to create a responsive design for the site during the summer and I’ve come to realize that the design-side has it’s ups and downs. Consideration of white space and sizing restraints has probably been the most difficult for me to work with but I think I’m beginning to get the hang of it. And I certainly understand why it’s important that I do.

If you are interested in the topic:

Inspirationfeed has a great collection of examples here.

Designmodo also does an excellent job at summing it up and providing good examples here.

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