The History of Web Design

The History of Web Design

The internet has been around since the 1960’s. But the modern internet, as we know it, is barely 2 decades old. The last 20 years, however, has seen it grow by leaps and bounds. In less time than anyone thought possible, it has managed to ingrain itself in our lives.

Some years ago, social media, SEO, online marketing, blogging and web design didn’t even exist. Now, you can’t imagine not being able to post a Facebook status, blogging about the new movie you just saw, or posting a picture of your new dress at Instagram.

Need to send a message? Where would we be without email? Looking to buy something that cannot be procured locally? Shop online.

We are slaves to web pages. Where would we be without graphics and backgrounds and fancy text?

The Humble Beginnings

When the internet began, it’s purpose was simply to transfer information. It wasn’t very fast and it certainly wasn’t very efficient, either.

It was mainly used by the military and medical personnel.

When Mosaic was introduced in the 1990’s, the public suddenly had access to a free browser program. And they were introduced to online content.

Most of you are probably not even old enough to remember that for internet to work back then, one had to have a telephone line to connect to. First generation sites have documents in HTML. What color those have are very limited. And loading pages took forever.

Speeding Up

Eventually, the World Wide Web Consortium or the W3C was founded. The goal is singular: to prevent large companies from gaining a monopoly on web design code.

Of course, early web designers really didn’t have a lot to work with before. They couldn’t do much with HTML in the early days. It didn’t stop them from thinking of ways to make sites more appealing visually, though.

But with the birth of the Netscape browser in 1994, the modern internet started to take form. Netscape created its own tags, the rest of the web followed suit.

The net is speeding up, and web designers are getting more and more HTML capabilities. Graphics are becoming more frequent. And coding is starting to become more complicated.

Within the next few years, web designers learned to use tables and sheets. Newer, more colorful and even patterned backgrounds are emerging. And Flash helped change web design and made it more dynamic.

The New World

Today’s graphics are a far cry from first-generation codes. Flash is no longer alone. We now have JavaScript, XML and CSS, among others. New syntaxes are being created every day.
There’s also been an emphasis on mobility. Web design is no longer just limited to computers. Mobile use has steadily been increasing year on year and the pressure to make web design more mobile-friendly is escalating.

The dawn of the internet age has ushered in unparalleled technological advancement. And web designers are at the crux of it. For them, the internet isn’t just a tool. It’s a playground of limitless possibilities.