Design is a means to an end. We design things for a purpose. We design beds to sleep in. We design clocks to keep track of time. Our success at these activities (the end) depends on the design of the tools (the means). With good design, the tool fits the task so neatly that it becomes part of the task. Instead of using a bed, we sleep. Instead of using a clock, we check the time.

We build Web sites for many reasons, but one reason trumps all others: We build Web sites so people can use them. They are to be looked at, watched, listened to, skimmed, read, printed, clicked, input into, and operated by different people using different access devices. If the result of design is that someone cannot load a page or activate a link or read ...

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