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Chapter 15. Multimedia Issues > Designing with Multimedia

Designing with Multimedia

It isn’t enough to know how to put multimedia elements on your web pages. You also have to know why. What are all those bells and whistles doing there, and are they worth all the fuss? You have probably visited web sites where animations, background music, or fancy bits of interactivity were detrimental to the web experience, instead of being a constructive part of it. Because of this, some pundits consider multimedia the enemy, with no useful place in good web design. This isn’t true. Multimedia isn’t suitable for all web sites; however, if used wisely, it enables you to take full advantage of the possibilities of web communication. Your job, as a web designer, is to be clear about what purpose multimedia is serving in your web pages, so you can determine when to use it, how to maximize it, and when to leave it out.

Use Multimedia When It’s the Best Way to Present Information

Sometimes, you just need media. If the purpose of your web site is to sell music or advertise movies, obviously it’s appropriate to have audio or video content (see Figure 15.4). It’s also important to have enough interactivity that users can navigate through the content, can start and stop playback, and can maybe find and isolate favorite portions for playback.


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