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Mind-Blowing Web-2.0 Design Trends

The über-trendy “Web-2.0” paradigm seems to be floating quite comfortably throughout the blogosphere these days. In fact, with it’s current mainstream popularity, the Web-2.0 mentality enjoys de facto status as the dominating influence behind modern website development and design. Not too long ago, however, Web-2.0 hovered quietly amidst the thinking of cutting-edge entrepreneurs and developers, as they strove toward freshness, simplicity, and usability.

Before it’s rise to media fame, Web 2.0 was merely a loosely defined set of concepts and ideals. As the concept materialized, representative sites emerged, and the Web-2.0 design aesthetic evolved into an easily recognizable collection of stylistic elements, minimalistic interfaces, and dynamically interactive functionality. Indeed, now that Web 2.0 has hit it’s stride, its characteristics are well defined and apparent to even the most casual observations.

For example, popular Web-2.0 sites such as Flickr and Twitter clearly demonstrate the fundamental stylistic trends of the Web-2.0 design aesthetic. Of course, this rhetoric is merely meant as an exercise in expository writing. So don’t take it too seriously. I realize that conceptually defining Web 2.0 is theoretically impossible and claim no authority on the subject. Having said that, here is an “inside look” into the typical design aspects commonly employed at Web-2.0-ish websites.

Fundamental Principles

  • Simplicity in functionality and behavior
  • Simplicity in communication and content
  • Simplicity in layout and design

Typical Layout Features

  • Centralized layout with distinct banner area
  • Minimalistic overall presentation
  • Clearly defined page regions
  • Simple, easy navigation
  • Oversize buttons

Typical Text Properties

  • Oversize paragraph text and captions
  • Oversize logos and headline text
  • Bold featured and caption text
  • Easy to understand language

Typical Design Elements

  • Simple, minimalistic color schemes
  • Bright, contrasting colors
  • Icons for everything
  • Texturized surfaces
  • Reflective surfaces
  • Subtle gradients

Unfortunately, as with all popular trends, “Web 2.0” will eventually fade away as the next popular web paradigm rises to the surface. Here is a good indicator that a fashionable trend will begin to take a nosedive: the idea has become so absolutely defined that its continued evolution becomes impossible. And of course, another telltale sign that Web 2.0 is going extinct is that people are already talking about its replacement, which is unsurprisingly dubbed “Web 3.0”. Can anyone guess what might come next?

Jeff Starr
About the Author
Jeff Starr = Fullstack Developer. Book Author. Teacher. Human Being.
Blackhole Pro: Trap bad bots in a virtual black hole.
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Perishable Press is operated by Jeff Starr, a professional web developer and book author with two decades of experience. Here you will find posts about web development, WordPress, security, and more »
Blackhole Pro: Trap bad bots in a virtual black hole.
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Currently having a blast redesigning Plugin Planet, so much work so little time.
Thanks to David McCan over at WebTNG for the awesome BBQ Pro review.
Enjoyed a nice mini-vacation with my fam. Great way to recharge and regroup.
Nice little interview with yours truly over at ThemeIsle. WordPress, web dev & more!
Perishable Press celebrating 16 years online! An incredible, rewarding journey.
Thanks to Nicholas Ferrell for his excellent and thorough review of Wutsearch search-engine launchpad.
Great article about using RSS as a Facebook alternative. I use RSS/feeds for news every day. Facebook, not so much.
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