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Hyperlinks

The Web uses hyperlinks as a way of connecting different information and pages. Since hyperlinks are so essential to the medium, you, as the designer, will spend quite some time designing them. The most common kind of navigational controls use text or image links to connect pages and information. If you’ve ever seen a Web site with several buttons, then you saw a set of images that were defined as hyperlinks.

Designers often take the easy route and use threedimensional buttons as navigational links because it’s a simple way to display a clickable area, and such buttons are unambiguous. However, there are only a few Web sites where such buttons are actually well integrated and look good. One of them was the Studio Archetype Web site. These buttons used icons as well as text to communicate where they led, and the icons glowed when visitors moved the mouse pointer over them. This interactivity, where a navigational element changes when the mouse is positioned over it, is called a rollover (it is achieved by using JavaScript, a programming language that most browsers can interpret). The only drawback of these rollover buttons is that they require twice as much data to be transmitted (images for both the “on” and “off” button states need to be downloaded). If you are already using a lot of elements on your page, this might be an issue.


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