July 28, 2000 9:14 AM   Subscribe

wow. balthaser has a new concept...forget jakob nielsen, THIS could be the end of web design as we know it!
posted by centrs (19 comments total)
That looks wonderful, but I don't know...there's something about Flash that rubs me the wrong way when it comes to content that is updated often.

If it's a static site, that's great (using Flash).
posted by Cavatica at 10:03 AM on July 28, 2000

I'm sorry, I can't seem to find whatever you're refering to, maybe you should post a direct link, or give directions to get there?
posted by tiaka at 10:14 AM on July 28, 2000

Yes, the end of web design as we know it... big empty pages with nothing in them but a plugin that doesn't play on any of my boxes... :-)

posted by Mars Saxman at 10:28 AM on July 28, 2000

or wait. the other thing? hmmm... I thought that was there before. I really, really doubt Flash will ever come even close to replacing html. Sounds like they have a Flash-web-based front-page with templates, which doesn't really differ any from what's out there now. And that didn't "end web design". Again, I doubt anything will
posted by tiaka at 10:28 AM on July 28, 2000

If anything, this B2 tool they're offering (I presume that's what we're talking about) will increase demand for quality site designers. After all, WYSIWYG applications still churn out heaping mounds of compacted feces when in the hands of folks who don't know what they're doing.

As for Flash - a little goes a long way. The Balthaser site always makes me feel like I'm being forcefed lots of unpleasant media - a clockwerk organg kind of sensation. Rather unpleasant, to be sure.

Further, considering Flash 5 will incorporate HTML text (a joyus event to be sure), it would seem that HTML content is here to stay.
posted by aladfar at 10:45 AM on July 28, 2000

Oh, come on Aladfar...
FrontPage doesn't butcher up a web page that bad! As long as you don't use JavaScript, CSS, DHTML, Image Maps, Nested Tables, Roll overs, Flash or Applets, and if you pay your host extra for the "oh-so-1998-FrontPage support".....your page will be fine. :0)
posted by CyberPal at 11:06 AM on July 28, 2000

Hmm... I don't think their design was all that great, and typographically speaking it was god awful. and any tool that makes anything easier and more user friendly will never take over good old fashioned design sense, creativity, and a little bit of the elbow grease.
posted by Satapher at 11:06 AM on July 28, 2000

The flash was really very basic stuff - mostly just throbbing, fading text, and pulsating stagnant images. References to throbbing and pulsating aside, this was nothing to get excited about. Good sound effects, tho. The reference to the Clockwork Orange feeling is dead on.
posted by the webmistress at 11:27 AM on July 28, 2000

I think that the only thing we really need to keep an eye on Flash for moving into the future is it's potential for smaller devices. Because of the vector based graphics, it DOES scale down to a palm and still looks good.

Right now, because Flash is still relatively new, there are a ton of people who have a very little knowledge of what it can do. I'm not claiming to be one of those that knows a lot, by any means. But you have to remember, any new technology can be used for "good" or for "evil". And sometimes a little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing.

Flash is a useful tool, but if you don't have the animation and design skills to use it properly, it's like painting a turd gold. Sure, it may be shiney and pretty - but it's still shit.
posted by thinkdink at 11:36 AM on July 28, 2000

Well, the B2 thing could be the end of the web design profession as we know it - but the part of the Balthaser site where they say "more like TV" is more accurate than they realize. To view these sites is to be numbingly bombarded with complete and total emptiness.
posted by EssenDreck at 12:45 PM on July 28, 2000

well, i guess i should have clarified. i didn't mean to get into the whole flash vs. html thing. i was focusing mainly on using the drag and drop feature of flash to allow clients to design their own sites. my experience with difficult clients who think they know everything tells me that there are some that will jump on this. there are some that have no respect for the design process. but, i guess it's no great loss.
posted by centrs at 1:49 PM on July 28, 2000

The easier and more accessible the tools get, the higher the bar gets raised, and the greater the need for creative people to keep up the standard of innovation. I don't think anyone who's successful in the field right now is in any danger of losing a job from B2.
posted by byun at 2:10 PM on July 28, 2000

blah. It's Gabocorp all over again.
posted by brian at 5:40 PM on July 28, 2000

Guh... I hate it...Even thoug I *like* shiny things, I still hate it.Did I not watch the flash tutorials well enough, or is that really easy to do?Personally, I'm sticking to learning DHTML so I don't have the horrible framerate of flash...
posted by Bane at 12:10 AM on July 29, 2000

Is this what the web is trying to devolve to? Call me old-fashioned, but in my book content is good, and hype is bad. For all its potential, I've yet to see a Flash site where the Flash enhanced the content -- or the communication of that content -- to the end user.

Like T.V. is exactly right -- content-free (and somewhat annoying), catering to an audience that would rather be passively entertained than interact.

Bah. Humbug.
posted by Ray at 11:34 AM on July 29, 2000

I'm heartened by all these level-headed anti-flash discussion. If you want to see the future of web design — pardon, the end of the web as we know it — look no further than atom films. It's run damn near entirely in flash (when your only navigation is flash, that's damn near entirely), all the content is strictly broadband. You want to know the most consistently popular show on atom films? "Bikini Bandits." I kid you not.

The web. Teevee part II. Sleep tight kiddies.
posted by capt.crackpipe at 9:55 PM on July 29, 2000

Content is king. Interactivity is queen. Any corporate entity which does not get that through its thick skull will be trampled to death.

Awhile back FOX attacked the fans of shows like X-Files for putting their proprietary information on the 'Net. Well, if they had actually done that in a timely manner, the fans of that show would have gone there instead of just making their own webpages. But no. Fox had a meek episode guide at their site, with a couple fancy ooh-ahh thingies (probably made by flash or something like it), and then they put links everywhere selling X-Files on video. No content of any use, because corporations refuse to give any content away for free, which is why corporate infiltration of the 'Net is like a handful of rowdy marines crashing a cocktail party.

Corporate entities talk about portals when they should be talking about communities. They speak of wanting their customers to cry for more, but they have deaf ears, both before and after they get your credit card information.

This can bleed over into the mp3 controversy too. Music companies are whining now because others have come along and made lyrics, graphics and even songs available online, but had they gotten their heads out of their asses years ago and done it in a timely manner at their own websites, there would have been no vacuum for someone else to fill.

The future of the 'Net is not television. It is not sitting back and letting flash emptiness bombard you. The future of the 'Net will continue to be content and interactivity, or there will be no future.
posted by ZachsMind at 10:25 PM on July 29, 2000

Man how 1997. I was doing the whole falling text thing in Powerpoint at varsity. Is this cool because it's on the web now?
posted by Foaf at 2:46 PM on July 31, 2000

Flash bugs the hell outta me, but I have to admit that this is beautiful. Which brings it back to the content, I guess. If the content is worthwhile, then the presentation can be worth it. Not in all cases, just when it's done well.
posted by beth at 3:47 PM on July 31, 2000

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