What’s the Deal with Responsive Design?

Web design is in the midst of a revolution. Websites that adapt to the user’s environment are truly interactive and user-friendly — but they also pose some design considerations and challenges. In a live DesignCast on Wednesday, Dec. 14, Jesse Friedman will teach you about responsive web design practices and technology and how to design dynamic and responsive sites.

So what’s the deal with responsive design?

Responsive is exploding right now. Ethan Marcotte coined the term — he basically took existing technologies and put them together to make something awesome. When we talk about responsive design (or adaptive design), we’re referring to websites that adapt to their environment, whether it’s a handheld device or a 23-inch Apple cinema display. We can create our sites to automatically fit in very narrow windows or utilize all the white space on a huge desktop monitor.

Isn’t creating a responsive website really expensive?

Not necessarily. If you’re starting from scratch, you have you to put more time into the planning and design phases to make sure your design can move as it needs to. But if the front end developer can design in-browser, you can save a lot of time and create fantastic responsive sites with out doubling your efforts.

What are some of your favorite responsive websites?

The first responsive site that really impressed me was clearairchallenge.com. It was one of the first sites I saw that took the mobile user experience into account. Those beautiful large icons resize and move wonderfully. The main navigation also changes from text links to nice big buttons that are easy to touch with your finger on mobile devices. My most recent favorite is Chris Coyier’s CSS Tricks. Everything Chris does is amazing, but he really went above and beyond on this website.

What’s do you hope designers will take away from your DesignCast?

You’ll have a much better understanding of what responsive web design is, what it means for our industry and a few nice tricks to help speed up the process of creating responsive sites.

Sign up for Jesse Friedman’s DesignCast today and you’ll save $10 off the registration!