Innovative Design

Overview

Responsive Web Design (RWD)

Web design approach aimed at crafting sites to provide an optimal viewing experience—easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices (from mobile phones to desktop computer monitors

Challenges and opportunities

Fluid Designs The fluid grid concept calls for page element sizing to be in relative units like percentages, rather than absolute units like pixels or points.

Mobile first, unobtrusive JavaScript, and progressive enhancement "Mobile first", unobtrusive JavaScript, and progressive enhancement (strategies for when a new site design is being considered) are related concepts that predated RWD: browsers of basic mobile phones do not understand JavaScript or media queries, so the recommended practice is to create a basic web site, and enhance it for smart phones and PCs—rather than try graceful degradation to make a complex, image-heavy site work on the most basic mobile phones.

Progressive enhancement based on browser-, device-, or feature-detection Where a web site must support basic mobile devices that lack JavaScript, browser ("user agent") detection (also called "browser sniffing"), and mobile device detectionare two ways of deducing if certain HTML and CSS features are supported (as a basis for progressive enhancement)—however, these methods are not completely reliable unless used in conjunction with a device capabilities database. For more capable mobile phones and PCs, JavaScript frameworks like Modernizr, jQuery, and jQuery Mobile that can directly test browser support for HTML/CSS features (or identify the device or user agent) are popular. Polyfills can be used to add support for features—e.g. to support media queries (required for RWD), and enhance HTML5 support, on Internet Explorer. Feature detection also might not be completely reliable: some may report that a feature is available, when it is either missing or so poorly implemented that it is effectively nonfunctional

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