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Initial Planning

A web site consultant has to have a web site but other than knowing I wanted to make it a model site, I didn't really know what I wanted to do. I'd been thinking about the problem for months and done two other site designs in the meantime but had done no concrete work until after I had my Employer Identification Number and ordered an SDSL line. I wanted to have a real site ready by the time I had the necessary connectivity.

I had done some logo sketching and had one tight sketch which I was pretty confident would be the basis for my logo so on one tack I started developing this in an electronic format. There were some interesting challenges in translating strong line art image into an effective web graphic. I also knew some of the features the site was going to have; some of those things that are listed in must have lists or the do side of do's and dont's lists such as consistent navigation, a contact us page, a what's new page, site searching and/or site map, and a privacy policy.

Obviously since the core function of the site is to promote myself I was going to have a professional resume but I knew that I did not want it to in any way resemble a traditional printed resume. In part I wanted the site to speak for my skills but I've done a lot and I wanted to take advantage of hyper linking capability to provide much more than a traditional resume but to do it in a way that readers could find and focus on what they were interested in quickly and easily.

I considered using a graphics tool to layout a complete site map with all the site areas and how the pages would relate and where there would be a flow. I decided against this because while much of my previous work has been scripted data access pages, this site would be primarily static and much of the detail depending on writing which had yet to be done. I simply didn't know whether I was going to have one or ten pages in some areas.

I decided to simply list the major areas of the site. Since the site is small and simple compared to others I've worked on there was little danger of having complex cluttered pages and I felt that I could at least experiment with some of the simple graphic effects, such as bevels and drop shadows, that can add some visual snap to a site if they are used sparingly.

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