The World-Wide Web would be in ten times worse trouble. Trust me.

The web designer in any given company is, if they hired right, the only person who actually knows how to make pages fast-loading, easy to read, comfortable on the eyes, and not crash the last ten percent of all web browsers. The ugly, color-uncoordinated sites people love to hate are invariably built by raw beginners tossing together photographic pages about their friends or new babies on Geocities, or by summertime high school students working as HTML monkeys at their local ISP for small business owners who think this is all they need to enter the glamorous world of e-commerce.

At the other extreme, it's the sales representative who wants to add as much flash and splash as possible; it's the client rep who wants to put every last bit of useless information on one page; it's the project leader who wants to slap it all together; and it's the graphic designer who wants to fill it with colors and as many high-resolution JPEG graphics as they can. The web designer is the one whose job it is to moderate all of the above inputs and make a page that meets everyone's desires and the desires of the end user, who has been utterly forgotten about by everyone else.

If there were no web designers, rest assured the WWW would look like this:

  • LOTS of pages full of huge graphics, distracting from the actual information...
  • LOTS of waiting for the gratuitous Flash intro the designer put together last week...
  • LOTS of badly-implemented cookies so that the front page can say "Hi, <your name here>! You have visited this site 1 times!" to every visitor...
  • LOTS of ghastly badly-colored backgrounds clashing with the text, which probably <BLINK>s at you non-stop...
  • LOTS of useless sound effects for every single thing you clicked on...
  • LOTS of JavaScript alerts and events, and five times as many unexpected errors...
  • LOTS and LOTS of frameset documents preventing any search engine from indexing your site properly...
  • LOTS of badly-chosen fonts because they don't know how to use Cascading Style Sheets at all...
  • LOTS of useless Java applets to add animation and cute navigation tools at the slowest possible speed.

Browsing would be an ongoing nightmare, rest assured. Trust us, we're professionals.

And don't even get me started on the NTK site's design philosophy. Sweet Lord, I thought plain text had gone out of style when they began selling color monitors....

Me: "Ok, to sum up my presentation, here's the deal. I'm offering to get your Golf Club online. I can completely automate your booking system, I can bring your handicap system online, I can design an application for your pro shop to sell your goods online, I have full digital photography services and I can provide email addresses for all the staff and commitee. All of this on a super duper fast server at a knockdown price. I can start working on it straight away."

Them: "Well, uh actually, the club secretary's nephew does a bit of the web design himself so ehh, we're allright for the websites now, he's looking after it for us. Thanks very much."

And so I am pointed to www.someangelfiresite**.com for perusal of the nephew's work.

See for yourself.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to blow my own trumpet here, but I'm a fucking good web designer. I've worked for BIG, BIG, BIG clients, I've won awards, I've been told by people in the business that I'm one of the best in Ireland.

Right, fair enough. So, I go to college for a year to learn some programming, I qualify, I can't get a job. So I decide to take the whole ReiToei show on the road and see if I can get a bit of freelance work. I approach people, I offer them a genuinely GOOD service at a frickin' good price... but no.

Your nephew does "a bit of the aul web design" and he's doing the work.

Don't insult me.

Sometimes I really think I should just give up and go home.
** /msg me for the URL. The site exceeded it's bandwidth when I posted it here and it's been closed down for two hours. I'd prefer if this didn't happen again.

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