The first website I ever created for money was back in 1999. I earned $900. It was a flat-file database for an import/export business. After that, I made a $500 website for a Michigan-based cookie company. I was just in the last year of my high school career, so that kind of money was pretty sweet.
I formed a partnership with a high school classmate, and a web agency was born.
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The best startups today understand that great design is a team effort.
We need to deliver a seamless design and brand experience throughout all the things our customers see and touch.
And that’s no easy task when we silo our designers into teams like Marketing and Product Development.
At my company, Zendesk, we’ve adopted a long-table approach where the entire design team works at a single communal table.
Flat design is the most popular trend in UI design right now.
Superficially, flat design is simple:
- Don’t use gradients, shadows and textures
- Use simple shapes, bold colors and clear typography
I believe that a few prominent flat designs sacrifice usability and best practices such as consistency for the sake of aesthetics — and this is what I’ll primarily be talking about. But first, I’d like to discuss flat design in a historical context.
When we pay for software, it’s usually because it solves a critical problem we have. It satisfies a need. It provides a certain value we’re willing to pay for.
And if we can derive value from a product or a service at no upfront cost, then we are more likely to pay later on in order to continue deriving that value.
Internet entrepreneurs need a business model that supports this notion.