A Brief History of Web Design

Meet the people who have influenced the history of web design and graphic design at HOW Design Live 2015 in Chicago, May 4-8.


The Froont.com blog recently posted a brief history of web design that caught my interest—partially because I am nostalgic, but also because I encounter so many new designers that aren’t aware of this information.

Screen Shot 2015-02-19 at 4.02.44 PMImages and animations from Froont.com

Designers that are either new to the game or grew up in print might not know much about the history of web design. And while this might not be an exhaustive study of the topic, the details are dead on.

(Plus, it includes some simple illustrative animations representing different developments from the history of web design.)

02-Tables-1
Tables – The beginning (1995)
07-Responsive-3
Responsive web design (2010)

Understanding the history of the industry you work in is important for many reasons; and not just so you can feel like one of the “in crowd.” No, understanding our history helps us appreciate where we are, it helps avoid the mistakes of the past, and it puts into context the work that we are doing. Above all, knowing your place in history helps you consider how to push the industry to take us to the next phase.

Here’s a brief excerpt from the piece:

The very beginning of web design was pretty dark, as screens were literally black and only few monochrome pixels lived therein. Design was made by symbols and tabulation (Tab key). So let’s fast forward to the time when Graphic User Interface was the main way of surfing the web – the Wild West era of tables.

Read more at Froont.com.


Looking for design history resources in other fields? Check out these books for designers:

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