UI design patterns that we can Improve in 2017
UI Design Patterns that we can Improve in 2017
A Brief Introduction to UI Design Patterns
User Interface Design patterns are recurring solutions that solve common design problems. It is a concept that has been used for many years in areas such as wayfinding, branding and identity design but has only become widespread on the web fairly recently. Platforms such as Bootstrap and guidelines like Google’s Material Design have helped design patterns to become more ubiquitous and be commonly used as an unofficial standard.
Although these patterns are proven and well known that doesn’t mean they can’t be improved upon to make them more interesting, usable and create even better user experiences. This is a short rundown of just some areas we think will be interesting in 2017.
The ‘Hero’ has served us well for a long time now as it can convey emotion, create instant recognition and if done properly, offer the perfect first introduction to a service, product or brand. The full screen hero image however, is one of the areas we’d like to see more thought put in. It has become a go-to solution as a sort of ‘splash screen’ for the website and has become so overused that it can be easy to forget which site you are browsing. In 2017 we’d like to see this particular ui pattern break out of the box and use more interesting compositions.
Although the hamburger menu icon has been around since the early 1980’s (originally designed as part of the interface for the Xerox ‘Star’) it experienced a massive comeback after being used extensively in mobile apps and websites. I’ll argue the case for the burger icon to expose a standard menu for a website because of its widespread familiarity but in a mobile app where it can be used inconsistently to reveal functions, i will wholeheartedly agree with TechCrunch’s verdict on the matter and urge designers to come up with far more usable and delightful ways of accessing the apps features.
The ‘grid’ has been around since the dawn of the internet. Its persistence is in most part due to the early web being based on tables and then, later, the constraints of browsers (*cough* Internet Explorer) ability to render elements in a more dynamic fashion. Now we have reached the golden era where most modern browsers can capably render elements wherever the designer and developer sees fit. This is ushering in a new wave of ideas where we are seeing the web start to use ideas from print and break out of the box. We encourage our designers to embrace this idea and create much more interesting and engaging layouts.
Some UI design patterns have hangovers from technological limitations, now though, with the rise of mobile and the prevalence of modern desktop browsers, we can finally start to really let the imagination run a little wider and use techniques that have been a mainstay of graphic design for decades. It’s time to break the constraints of the past and start building a future that will not only make the web more usable and accessible but also make it a more delightful and enjoyable experience.