Web Style Guide, 3rd edition

Basic Design Principles for Creating Web Sites

Patrick J. Lynch and Sarah Horton; Foreword by Peter Morville

View Inside Price: $30.00

January 15, 2009
352 pages, 7 x 9
185 color
ISBN: 9780300137378

Also Available in:

Out of Print

Consistently praised in earlier editions as the best volume on classic elements of web site design, Web Style Guide, now in its Third Edition, continues its tradition of emphasis on fundamentals. Focusing on the needs of web site designers in corporations, government, nonprofit organizations, and academic institutions, the book explains established design principles and how they apply in web design projects in which information design, interface design, and efficient search and navigation are of primary concern.


New in this edition:


—a full chapter devoted to Universal Usability

—guidelines and techniques for creating universally usable designs

—a full chapter on Information Architecture and how best to promote its robust development

—information on Search Engine Optimization and the designs that improve it

—techniques for using Cascading Style Sheets for layouts and typographic design

—185 illustrations, all in full color

Patrick J. Lynch is director, Special Technology Projects, Office of the Director, Information Technology Services, Yale University. He lives in North Haven, CT. Sarah Horton is director, Web Strategy, Design and Infrastructure, Dartmouth College. She lives in Hanover, NH.

To learn more about the book, read select content, and access links and other supplemental materials, visit the book’s web site

"The clearest, most practical guide to Web design you'll find."—Peter Morville, from the foreword

Praise for the earlier edition:
"A style guide for the interface with real long-run value, showing us deep principles of design rather than simply fashion and technology."—Edward R. Tufte


"At last a book on the design of web sites with the viewer in mind. Non-technical, yet informative and lively: It delights as it informs. Lynch and Horton intelligently and succinctly discuss all those topics so badly neglected by most web sites: site architecture, the typography of page layout, the importance of planning, and the power of simplicity. If web designers would follow these principles, they would delight their viewers, minimize the deadly tedium of needlessly long loading times, organize information so that people are quickly and efficiently served, and bring pleasure to the eye, and mind of the beholder."—Donald A. Norman, The Nielsen Norman Group

"Disavowing that their guide is The Chicago Manual of Style for the World Wide Web, the authors are too modest about its value.  It condenses common sense about what Web masters should think about before writing their first HTML tag. . . . [Lynch and Horton's] concision and practicality seem sturdy enough to keep abreast of the Web's velocity of change."—Gilbert Taylor, Booklist

"Just as many writers reserve a space on their book shelves for the thin but essential work of William Strunk and E.B. White, a similar space should be hallowed out for The Web Style Guide."—John Mello, HR Today

"Web Style Guide covers all the basic elements of creating a Web site. . . . Readers are first offered the notions of content and interface design before they are asked to contemplate the traditional eye-candy favorites of page layout, graphics and multimedia. . . . Authoritative factoids are sprinkled throughout . . . [and] serve to ground the book in logic while elevating it above some of the brightly colored hyperactive Web design manuals out there. . . . The book is sort of an Elements of Style for Webmasters, and the authors even invoke that classic handbook's injunction to 'prefer the specific to the general, the definite to the vague, the concrete to the abstract.'"—J. D. Biersdorfer, New York Times Circuits Section

"[Lynch and Horton] concentrate on the application of fundamental design principles that create a useful, educational, Web experience."—Sam McMillan, Communication Arts

"Lynch and Horton offer an informative book for Web designers who want to go beyond HTML to consider specific information architecture issues. The discussion on the use of tables for creating editorial layouts is particularly well written and important."—Choice

"In 160 pages of expert instruction, authors Patrick J. Lynch and Sarah Horton put the essence of the Yale University Center for Advanced Instructional Media's wonderful online site design guide into traditional print. Web Style Guide: Basic Design Principles for Creating Web Sites begins the presentation of its helpful and forward-looking advice with a discussion of the overall process of defining the objectives and users of your Web site, as well as the goals you will use to measure your progress."—Stephen W. Plain, Web Development Editor, Amazon.com.  A top 10 choice of Web Development Editor, Stephen W. Plain for 1999

"This is one of the best design books that I've seen, catering specifically to information-oriented sites. . . . The Web would be an easier world to navigate if all Web designers read this book."—Deborah Lynne Wiley, Online

"If what you need is a non-geeky Web-design primer—a rule-of-thumb guide that calmly introduces you to the issues involved in developing a Web site—look for the paperback Web Style Guide: Basic Design Principles for Creating Web Sites. This book tells you what you need to know about Web-site design in plain language, with understandable examples, in a format that won't test your techno-wonk decoding skills. It is essentially Strunk and White's The Elements of Style for Webmasters. . . . Whether you're just starting out in Web design, thinking about constructing a corporate intranet site, or planning to retool a mature Web site, this little book is a gem."—Mary Creswell, Presentations

“As a Web presence has become important for law firms, lawyers have needed to make judgements on the design of their Web sites. Patrick Lynch and Sarah Horton’s Web Style Guide. . . . It is a self-exemplifying guide to good Web site design that illustrates the subtle but significant differences between a good Web site and a fine book.”—Talmage Day, Law Practice Management

“The approach to the topic is straightforward and easily understood by a novice in web design.  Each chapter is packed with suggestions and hints for developing a successful, enduring sight.”—Eva Efron, American Association of School Libraries

“[A] highly readable guide to Web layout.  The book overflows with innumerable examples and basic design tenets that prove beneficial for either newbie or trained expert alike.  For inexpert student affairs administrators, who have been handed the task of developing a divisional Web presence, the book will prove to be invaluable. . . . [A] book to be read and studied by anyone looking to design a Web site.”—Stuart J. Brown, Student Affairs On-Line

“[A]n excellent, practical handbook. . . . [T]he book can be unreservedly recommended.”—Tom Wilson, Information Research

“The book has practical relevance for those of us who write and edit Web content. Its eight chapters present a cohesive overview of the challenges and constraints that Web designers face and an insider’s knowledge of the architecture that makes Web pages go. This information can give you a basis for developing content, evaluating a Web site’s functionality, and discussing improvements with the designer.”—Stephanie Deming, Science Editor

"If Forrest Gump had commented on Web design, he probably would have said it was like peeling an onion, with each layer revealing something different. This book lays out the Web onion, layer by layer, and without the tears. . . . This new print edition covers a lot more ground than past versions. . . . There are many books available on different aspects of Web design, but few cover so much in such a concise and well-written fashion. In so far as the Web represents a frontier of human knowledge, Web design is like an adventure to an unknown and wild land. Take this book along with you as a guide."—Greg Kearsley, Education Technology
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