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Vitaly Friedman's Notebook: How to design a list?

How to design a list?
  » Oct 22, 12:41 PM

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Recently I’ve been receiving a lot of e-mails from my readers who are concerned about the design of the Web Developer’s Handbook – a list of essential web-sites, tutorials, references and examples (related to CSS Navigation Menus, CSS- & HTML-Techniques, Layouts, Accessibility, Usability, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) etc.), which make the life of web developers easier.

Apparently, for many web-developers the font used on the page ( font-family:tahoma; font-size:10px; ) is waaaaay too small, and now I realize that the page I’ve created some months ago definitely isn’t as usable as I thought it is. I can always find the references, tutorials, examples, galleries etc. I am looking for, which reduces the amount of time I spend on it enormously. However, the amount of information has become quite enormous, too, so the links presented on the page have become overwhelming: indeed, there are just too many links.

So the question I’d like to pose is what is the best way of presenting 700-800 links on a one single page? Writing about this problem, I am not only talking about my project. I am interested in the common solution of this problem – from different perspectives and points of view such as accessibilty, readability, usability etc.

Initially, the concept of the Web Developer’s Handbook was just a huge list with links, divided in 10-12 categories, presented in the form of tables. The second step was the creating of the “Essential Bookmarks for Web-Developers”, which was (and is) definitely more usable, readable and accessible, includes the descriptions of the listed resources and has a maxi-edition, similar to the previous version.

So the pocket version of “Essential Bookmarks for Web-Developers” – Web-Developer’s Handbook – was the latest version of the project, I was working on for 4 months.

Observing similar catalogs, such as Resources For Web Design, | the best of the Web or (directory-like list), CSS Help Pile (nice, usable, readable, but not so many links), Design.Principles (standard, readable, usable), Piepmatzel (only images, no text), The List of Bookmarks (simple, but not really readable), wg:Resources (well, simple, but there is just no place for 700 links!).

So what do you think? What do you prefer? Since “The Web-Developer’s Handbook” is supposed to be usable, readable and accessible for all the web-developers who are willing to use it, I think it’s necessary to ask you, what do you think about it. I’d be grateful for any help or suggestions coming from your side.

  » Blog, Web-development @ Oct 22, 12:41 PM


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