The Noob Guide to Web Design

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Web design is so much anchored on technology to a point that it is difficult for beginners to catch up, and if they even try to, it would be very difficult.

For someone who has zero idea on web design, this can be pretty frustrating.

You want to learn something new so you decided to try out web design. Because of this, you immediately looked for tutorials.

To your surprise, there are a lot of tutorials out there. However, browsing through each of those tutorials, you realize that these lessons are actually directed towards people who have designed websites before.

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Website Cosmetology: What Makes a Good Design a Good Design?

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What is a good design? And what makes a good design, really?

Many of us have a lot to say when it comes to designing. People would say a good design is something that is useful and for others, it should be functional.

The answers are actually infinite.

There are certain ideas and principles in creating a good design. Web developers and web designers need to think deeper into their projects to get the best results.

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Bring up the Verve: Why Write Your Own Book

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Books can be boring. Reading a book can be even more boring to many people. To some, this is their personal qualm and sentiment, something that should be respected.

After all, all people have their individual preferences. But have you heard how books and e-books have changed other people’s lives? How they become rich without having to work hard? Are these enough motivation to make you write your own book?

The Benefits of Writing a Book

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Discover the Extraordinary: How to Find Great Web Design Resources

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The Internet has completely transformed the computer and communications world like never before. The Internet has become a world-wide broadcasting mechanism for collecting as well as sharing the information.

Through Internet browsing, you can easily access information on unlimited topics related to web design.

However, the biggest hurdle that people face on the Internet is how to effectively access the huge information available with a simple mouse click.

Today’s post is about teaching you the best way to scour the Internet in order to find cool resources that can be perfectly used in your designing projects. Let’s start!

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Here’s a Quick Way to Find WordPress Developers When You Need One

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You’re a business owner but why would you bother to find WordPress developers?

Being a business owner, you know that having a website is one great way to ensure profitability. Moreover, you know that you should not settle for generic themes.

Okay, you also realize that some things are learned over time- but that is one luxury you do not have.

What should you do? Of course, one of the best ways is to know which job board really caters to WP development and post your listing there.

With so many job boards to look online, how would you know that you are getting the best your money can buy?

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Telltale Signs That You Might Be a Bad Boss

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Bosses  can be pretty infuriating at times. But do you know what can really ruin your day? A bad boss.

In your web design career, you surely have experienced being administered by the boss. You take orders and requests, do and finish them and earn money at paydays.

If this is not the case, you might be the boss. You are the one who sends payments, administers people, and sanctions them if they do something wrong.

This can be very difficult at times, especially when you think of the times when you were still at the bottom of the chain. Everyone saw you as a friend more than a foe back then.  One moment, you still enjoy having coffee with your co-workers in the pantry. The day you were promoted, people looked at you with angry gazes.

Is this perfectly normal? What would you do? How did all this happen?

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Internet Is Down: What Will I do?

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Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, 1stwebdesigner. Not too long ago, these four websites loaded together in each tab in harmony. Then everything changed when the Internet got down. Only the service provider can fix this, but then, that service provider vanished.

What will you do now that the Internet Is Down?

I know nothing can really be as infuriating than a down Internet connection. As a web designer, this is very frustrating because most of your tasks are online and you will not get anything done until the connection goes back.

Most of the times, you’ll be pictured as the person who observes his router like a hunter observing a gazelle. Sometimes, you are seen pressing F5 every single minute, hoping it would soon load properly. Other times, you try and debate with your ISP over the phone and realize that there is no hope. Heck, you even plan on making rituals for the Internet gods to bring your connection back.

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The Beginner’s Road Map to PHP Success

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Learning something from scratch can be intimidating sometimes. Oftentimes, you simply have no idea where to start or how to learn all what you want to learn within a specific amount of time. One such example is PHP. A lot of people are still figuring out PHP success at the moment.

Although PHP is one of the easiest languages to learn out there, it is somewhat difficult to master.

There are some instances wherein there is a plenty of ways to do a PHP program but only two or three are accepted as valid answers within the PHP Community.

This may vary according to opinions and concepts of different PHP developers. For some logical programmers, learning PHP is only skin on the pig.

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Basic Principles of Flat Design – And Resources to Get You Started!

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In case that you have been stuck in a cave for the past few years, let me tell you this nice news: flat design is the current craze. We should now say goodbye to those intricate designs dominated by brushes, gradients, drop shadows and all those kinds of designs. I repeat, flat is the new trend.

The flat design is an emerging design style that uses flat shapes and icons. It basically revolves around the use of rectangles, circles, triangles and others shapes with the absence of other design elements like shadows, strokes and gradients. It was made popular by Microsoft in their computer systems, especially their new operating system they call Windows 8. Basically, the flat design style is rooted on two principles: simplicity and readability. These two principles guide the designers in formulating stylish web layouts, software designs, posters and many more.



Photo from Michael Kelsinger

Flat Design’s Simplicity

It is the state of a design that refrains from the use of intricacies. Simple flat designs turn away from the use of drop shadows, strokes and other design elements. The reason behind this is that people now appreciate simple and easy to recognize styles. Also, with the advent of mobile browsing, where the screen space is limited, the use of simple images would maximize the use of the pixels on the screen. The minimalist style is also applied as the designers focus on wide spacing between icons, images and all the other elements of a web page or application. Furthermore, simple and flat images tend to load faster than intricately designed ones because the browser would not load the design elements packed together with the main image.

Meanwhile, the principle of readability comes in together with the minimalist style. With more ‘white-spaces’ (or empty spaces), the text is seen well. Also, the absence of drop shadows, strokes and gradients will ensure the readability of the texts placed within a page.

Facebook is one of the first to adapt the design format. In the past weeks, Facebook has evidently changed their design schemes, allowing users to see simple icons, designs and more eye-friendly visuals. Google has also followed the lead by changing its icons to colorful yet flat images.

Truly, the flat design trend has slowly but surely invaded our web pages, apps and computers. Soon enough it will totally influence us. And before that happens, let’s familiarize ourselves with the philosophy of the flat Design. We’ll talk about the elements of the design and how are they used to fully utilize the screen space.
There are actually five elements. They are:

  1. Absence of depth
  2. Use of simple elements
  3. Typography
  4. Color
  5. Minimalism

Photo source: The World is Flat

The Death of Depth

Depth is now dead. A new design trend is ruling the block. Unlike the previous design trends where we couldn’t live without drop shadows, strokes, bevels and gradients, the new flat design style focuses more on simple 2D blueprint. This philosophy of the flat design totally contradicts the skeuomorphistic design, where images are made to imitate the shape, color and utilization of a real-word object. Skeuomorphistic-designed websites and apps normally have background images which are realistic in nature. These use textures in the real world.

A good example of this kind of design is the iOS6 (and previous versions of iOS) design. Each design is supposed to be an imitation of the real object. The use of 3d computer-generated images, the use of gradients, textures, strokes, bevels and embosses are maximized to make the image look like real-world. The newsstand app looks like an actual newsstand made of wood.

On the contrary, these elements are removed in the flat design. The scheme of the flat layout removes these 3D elements. Drop the depth. Remove all those shadows, gradients and strokes!

Simplicity is Still Beauty

With the removal of depth in the designs, it is but normal for the images, icons and other design elements to become visually simple. Icons are now made to be flat and uses basic geometric shapes like circles, squares and rectangles. This will give a simple and easy to use graphic user interface. The average person will no longer feel the need for a manual because the visuals present themselves as they’re used.


Photo from Hrvoje Grubisi

When you see an F icon placed in a blue square, you’ll easily know it’s Facebook. When you see an icon of a gear, it would easily tell you that it’s a settings menu. Flat design works like that. When you see a diskette shape, you’ll automatically know that it’s the save icon. Or when you see a big yellow letter M placed on a red background, the notion will always be McDonald’s. See, the simpler the logo gets, the better the recognition will be. What you see is what you basically get.


Resources for designing a Timeless Logo:


More on Okilla.com

Typography, as I told you before


Photo by Courtney and Andrew
Typographies have their place in flat designs. It adds style even with the texts and gives you a reader-friendly interface. No more calligraphy. Use crisp and clear font texts with shorter messages and chromatically placed with color and shapes. For more information on this, read our typography tutorial.

Coo-lor Colors

As I mentioned in our typography tutorial, color is important. It can make or break your page. It basically sets the whole feel of your site or page. In the flat design principle, it is advisable to use candy colors which are slightly desaturated because they tend to add aesthetic beauty to your page without making your reader’s eyes bleed because of too much brightness. Candy colors attract the eyes better because they are cute, and can be complemented and contrasted easily with other colors. These colors are normally #e65d5d or #c43434 (for red), #7dc692 or # 508b61 (for green), #dfbc42 (for yellow) and # 3498db for blue. Flatuicolors.com provides a good guide for this.

Just remember that color is everywhere; don’t bore people by choosing the un-cool ones. Gradients are also not cool anymore. Avoid using bright yellow, neon yellow green, neon purple and bright red and bright orange. Don’t make your website visitors glare.


Master Your Colors!

Less is more, lesser is most

Minimalism is the art of de-cluttering your page or screen. This principle originated from the magazines of the print media where white spaces are more evident than the text itself. It gives padding or breathing room for your texts and suggests a typographical peace. Leave a lot of empty spaces. Throw away the unneeded elements and impress people. Less is more. Lesser is most.


Relevant: Why Creating Minimalist Design Makes You a Better Designer

The flat design could be simple as it looks, but creativity is still everything. When thinking of possible usage for this layout, remember to refresh your mind. Think of newer, cuter and sleeker designs. This design style will be still in style, but doing a wreck out of it won’t make it any more famous. Be creative. Try to experiment. View inspiration sites. Try your own style, commit mistakes, correct them and be a better artist!
Know that you know how to be flat. Let us all, go flat!

Basic Principles of Flat Design – And Resources to Get You Started!

What Are the Best Laptop Computers That Is Not MacBook Pro?

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The dazzling 13-15-inch screen of Apple’s MacBook Pro, one of the best laptop computers, topped up with amazing technical specifications can surely make your eyes pop for a while. I mean, it’s Apple! Everybody loves the quality of company’s products. You’re assured of top notch items. But seeing the price tag that goes along with them, it will surely make your eyes pop too, but for another reason.

Now, I’m not starting a PC vs. Mac debate here but not all people can afford to buy a Mac; for newbie freelancers, buying a $2000 laptop computer may not be a good decision, especially if you can’t afford it. For me, if you’re starting from scratch, you should invest on the things you need first.

Hence, this article. I tried looking around for great MacBook Pro alternatives. Know the best laptops other than MacBook here:

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