Our Mandate

Digital Design Standards aspires to be the de facto guide for the design industry’s best practices as applied to the web.

Designing For:

Accessibility

Why Designing for Accessibility is Simply Good Business

When we think of disabilities, most of us tend to think about the extremes: someone blind since birth... a quadriplegic... being completely deaf. Yet most disabilities are more subtle, more temporary, and most of us have them. Let’s take a quick surv...

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Inclusive Digital Design

You may have heard of web accessibility, if not through the digital design community, then through what are increasing client requests. Not accessibility in a sense of people in developing countries being able to access the Internet – albeit a burge...

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Designing For:

Desktop

Picking the Right Colours

Though there aren't any rules about the colours that should and shouldn't be paired together, there are tools that can help you pick the best colours for the web and provide you with an easy way to match them with their corresponding hex codes (your devel...

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Understanding Web Fonts

At long last it's finally practical to use more than the traditional "web-safe" fonts on the websites you design. Sure, there were options going back several years, but we're emphasizing “practical". One of the complexities that still remains with we...

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Designing For:

Mobile

Designing for the Internet of Things

The term “Internet of Things” is simply a fancy way of talking about the proliferation of sensors that are connected via a network (the internet, satellite, terrestrial cellular or RFID networks are examples). It can even be a simple as an object bein...

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Responsive and Adaptive Design

The difference between adaptive design and responsive design is that adaptive design adjusts to pre-defined specifications (or “break points”) and serves up an experience based on whichever specs are the closest. As an example, a site could be set to...

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Designing For:

Process

Best Practices in Online Storytelling

At The Works, telling a good story lies at the heart of everything we do: you could call it our master best practice. So, how does this apply to best practices in digital design? Simply, it comes down to figuring out how content, form and function ...

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The Importance of Engagement and Research as the First Steps to Design

The most important part of any new website or digital work is to build a shared understanding and definition of the project with the key players. By creating the website together you build in ownership and commitment. This initial collaborative phase of t...

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Designing For:

Social Media

Social Media Cover Photo Layouts and Sizes

It's important to keep the branding and design of your social media channels consistent with that of your website. Each network has its own specs for the background 'cover image' used on profiles. Below are some resources for templates that will help you ...

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Official Social Media Logos

Over the past few years, Facebook, Twitter and Google+ have gone through some fairly dramatic logo updates. In some cases, the updates happen often enough that it's hard for designers to keep track of what the proper usage rules are for their branding. ...

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Blog

Optimizing your mobile content for responsive sites

If you’re going mobile, it’s a great opportunity to streamline your content creation and meet the needs of a whole new audience. Know your audience The way people read on a mobile device and the type of content they’re looking for is very differ...

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Trends vs. Standards: Infinite Scroll

The difference between a Trend and a Standard (using infinite scroll as an example)   Trends A trend is a tendency or an inclination for things to move or behave in a certain way. And trends sometimes last for a long time. These general tendenci...

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DDS Inspire

Trends vs. Standards: Infinite Scroll

Trends vs. Standards: Infinite Scroll

The difference between a Trend and a Standard (using infinite scroll as an example)   Trends A trend is a tendency or an inclination for things to move or behave in a certain way. And trends sometimes last for a long time. These general tendenci...

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Nike Attempts to Establish a

Nike Attempts to Establish a "Standard" of its Own in Fitness Tracking

Nike is looking to take its established NikeFuel fitness tracking points to a new level, and make its homegrown activity platform the Standard for all fitness and wearable devices. If you're not familiar with it, NikeFuel is the points system that ...

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Beautifully (re)Designed: Songza on the Desktop

Beautifully (re)Designed: Songza on the Desktop

We've pointed out before how well designed the Songza app for mobile devices is. Now, the music streaming website has brought its desktop website into the fold with a redesign that adopts elements of its mobile counterparts, but also introduces new elemen...

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DDS Contributors

David Berman

David Berman is a special advisor to the UN on how to use accessible design to fulfill the Millennium Development Goals. He also conducts accessibility workshops and blogs for Design Edge.

Full bio and standards +

Rob Harvie

Rob Harvie brings a rich background in ICT and accessibility solutions. At the University of Toronto, he directed Information Technology Services with the Faculty of Information, lectured on emerging technologies including augmented reality and multi-sens...

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Nigel Smith

Nigel Smith is Creative Director of KerrSmith. He has worked in London, Milan and Toronto. He has extensive experience with diverse international clients in a variety of commercial and cultural sectors. Nigel has taught at Harvard University and the Unive...

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Tutorial: Optimizing your mobile content for responsive sites

If you’re going mobile, it’s a great opportunity to streamline your content creation and meet the needs of a whole new audience. Know...

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Tutorial: Responsive Web Design in PhotoShop

Responsive web design is more than just a way to optimize your site for mobile devices  –  it's also a way to think about designing for ...

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Tutorial: Create Textures & Patterns for Web Design

This video will help any designer master the art of creating textures and patterns for web design using PhotoShop. ...

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