“Never use”

Written on 30 March, 2014

Real designers never use:

  • Helvetica
  • Carousels
  • Modal windows
  • Content toggles
  • White typography on black backgrounds
  • Scroll manipulation
  • Base font sizing under 16 pixels
  • Base font sizing over 16 pixels
  • Non-responsive design
  • Interactions available on hover
  • …and seemingly an open minded research process where nothing is ruled out at the beginning?

Absolute truths are nearly always damaging, yet the modern designer’s opinions seem to be full of them. Of course, knowing which ideas and design patterns are more often suitable and successful is a large part of being a better, and more efficient designer. But totally ruling ideas out because of popular opinion is just too close minded. Use research, use data, and decide on a per-project basis.

“Helvetica is overused.”
“Content toggles often mean a lack of content strategy.”
“Hover interaction fallbacks for touch screens always seem to get forgotten about.”

As true as these statements are, that doesn’t mean any of the design choices or solutions are never suitable. Any idea can have its place, even if the circumstance is a rare or obscure one.

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