Network Training Reaches New

A seemingly elegant design can quickly begin to bloat with unexpected content or break under the weight of actual activity.
Origins and discovery

Websites in professional use templating systems. Commercial publishing platforms and content management systems ensure that you can show different text, different data using the same template. When it’s about controlling hundreds of articles, product pages for web shops, or user profiles in social networks, all of them potentially with different sizes, formats, rules for differing elements things can break.

The wise man therefore always holds in these matters to this principle of selection: he rejects pleasures to secure other greater pleasures, or else he endures pains to avoid worse pains. Most text editors like MS Word or Lotus Notes generate random lorem text when needed, either as pre-installed module or plug-in to be added. Word selection or sequence don’t necessarily.

Then the question arises: where’s the content? Not there yet? That’s not so bad, there’s dummy copy to the rescue. But worse, what if the fish doesn’t fit in the can, the foot’s to big for the boot? Or to small? To short sentences, to many headings, images too large for the proposed design, or too small, or they fit in but it looks iffy for reasons the folks in the meeting can’t quite tell right now, but they’re unhappy, somehow. A client that’s unhappy for a reason is a problem, a client that’s unhappy though.

Using dummy content or fake information in the Web design process can result in products with unrealistic assumptions and potentially serious design flaws. A seemingly elegant design can quickly begin to bloat with unexpected content or break under the weight of actual activity. Fake data can ensure a nice looking layout but it doesn’t reflect what a living, breathing application.

If that’s what you think how bout the other way around? How can you evaluate content without design? No typography, no colors, no layout, no styles, all those things that convey the important signals that go beyond the mere textual, hierarchies of information, weight, emphasis, oblique stresses, priorities, all those subtle cues that also have visual and appeal to the reader. 

The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.

Jim Morrison

Rigid proponents of content strategy may shun the use of dummy copy but then designers might want to ask them to provide style sheets with the copy decks they supply that are in tune with the design direction they require. Or else, an alternative route: set checkpoints, networks, processes, junctions between content and layout.

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