20 November 2020
We've come a long way in the past 10 years since we launched the LIBD site… It was right around this time in particular, 2010/11, that the digital sphere went through a rapid growth spurt, testing everyone’s ability to adapt!
Partly because we are about to enter another new decade, and partly because we are (still) going through the archive of our work to finally update our site, we’ve been thinking a lot about how web design has evolved over the past decade.
One cannot think back about the good old days without thinking about Adobe Flash right? In the ‘00s, it was The Technology that allowed developers to incorporate animation and interactive content to sites.
In early 2010, MOTHandRUST launched our last Flash site. Shortly before that, all designers at the branding agency I was working at were enrolled on a rather lengthy Flash course. No one wanted to see that its demise was coming. But in April 2010, Steve Jobs wrote his “Thoughts on Flash,” a moment many have defined as “The Death of Flash.” Suddenly it was on the way out and everyone had to (sooner or later) accept this and adapt.
The LIBD site used interactive HTML5 Canvas animations that were just as sophisticated as Flash, but these could be viewed without having to install it (a major downside of Flash). This meant that it worked across most devices, even mobile. Of course today, everything can work pretty seamlessly across all devices, but this was quite amazing at the time.
Just over a decade ago, Nokia’s Symbian and RIM’s Blackberry were ranked as the top 2 mobile operating systems at the time. Things changed quickly, so by about 2010/11Android and iOS were quickly taking the lead. The iPhone was first unveiled in 2007, and its Android competitors showed up in 2010. Apple released the iPad in 2010.
With the explosive growth of smartphones and tablets, everyone had to adapt yet again, this time to designing for various screen sizes and devices: enter responsive web design. Today, the thought of a site not adapting to work on a tablet or mobile is unthinkable, but this was just not really done much before about 2010/11.
The LIBD site was responsive, which really made it stand out at the time. In fact, it did not only resize to tablets, but if you used it on a tablet and you tilted the tablet up and down, or left and right, you would move around the animation accordingly. Pretty cool!
One of the decade’s biggest graphic design trends, flat design, was born out of a need to make digital apps clean and accessible. It was developed to ensure that responsive designs work well and load fast (especially important since mobile devices have slower internet speeds). Designers had to adapt their work for easy readability and sparse interfaces. Nowadays, it’s hard not to open a web page (or a brochure or a magazine) without being greeted by flat design (flat colors, minimal vectors and geometric sans serif fonts, etc).
As you can see in the image above, the LIBD site also used flat design. For example, all buttons are large, solid bright colours. Again, today this is not unusual, but in 2010/11 3D buttons where still not that unusual.
By the middle of the decade, websites were moving away from being The Way to engage audiences, and were becoming more like informational portals. We began to see a rise in single page scrolling websites, and a rise in more and more cookie cutter sites. Even today, it seems sites are still becoming purely informational and less experiential. Cookie cutter sites are more prevalent than ever, due in part to availability of off-the-shelf design templates.
But really, the internet is still young and it definitely still has so much potential. This is still the beginning. We love the internet. We keep seeing amazing developments for those who are able to resist the cookie cutter approach. Just as websites never did completely kill print, such things as Instagram and AR haven’t completely killed websites—they simply exist alongside them. We have so many ways to communicate now, often it is more a matter choosing many ways, not one, depending on the audience. We look forward to doing what we always have done, focusing on the result, not the medium used.
The link to the LIBD site is still live, at least until our upcoming site update.
10 May 2019
Just came across this site that I think you would really like.It is not some new site selling something, but rather it is part of the "Next Generation Internet (NGI) initiative" – the European Commission’s new flagship programme working on building a more democratic, inclusive and resilient internet. The NGI “hopes to empower everyone to take active control in shaping the future: the internet does not just belong to those who hold power today, but to all of us.”It's a beautiful site. An interactive timeline charts the past (eg: "Wikipedia founded in 2001") and the future (eg: "2039 we run out of lithium and can’t make new smartphones.")It also has lots of interesting articles including an interview with Oobah Butler, who famously got a completely fake restaurant to the top spot on TripAdvisor, who shows the flaws in the systems that influence us.It got me thinking about such things as "what happens when your language isn’t supported by apps, websites, and keyboards?"
SuzanPosted in: web
11 September 2018
I am so pleased to say that Brigitte's site is now live. Her work is amazing, Brigitte herself is absolutely lovely to work with. The gorgeous imagery is showcased in a fluid fashion that is easy to access for busy directors and agents.
Well, back to work after one of our busiest summers...
30 March 2018
Just launched a site for the Actors’ Benevolent Fund, which has been working to support London actors and stage managers experiencing hardship due to injury, illness or old age - for the past 135 years. This charity is almost as old as Canada!
Over it’s long history, it has been bequeathed many original costume illustrations, pieces of art and writings from some of the most renowned artists in the industry. Much of this will appear in the Archive section of the site, finally being available to the public for the first time.
The site also features a History page that tells its story. It is a good read, as it is quite eventful!
We are grateful to work for such an amazing organisation.
Have a nice Easter Long Weekend! As you know, we have just had one of our busiest few months here at MOTHandRUST London, which has been great, but I do look forward to getting back to sharing news more regularly.
21 April 2017Hi MLE,
We just launched a new site and brand for the Kavli NDI Institute!
The Kavli Foundation is dedicated to advancing science for the benefit of humanity, promoting public understanding of scientific research, and supporting scientists and their work.
Much like the Nobel Prize, the Kavli Prize is a prestigious prize awarded every year for advances in astrophysics, nanoscience and neuroscience, and is honoured by the US President at an Oval Office reception.
The Kavli Foundation is also actively involved in establishing research institutes at the best universities across the globe (e.g., MIT, Cambridge, Tokyo). Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore was one of the most recently awarded an institute, and the Kavli Neuroscience Discovery Institute was launched this year.
In the last 25 years there has been an incredible expansion of knowledge regarding the molecular components of the brain, the development of remarkable new technologies to measure, image and manipulate the brain, as well as dramatic enhancement in computational capacities that give us the ability to define the structure, function and malleability of discrete brain circuits. One daunting aspect of this extraordinary opportunity in brain research is the sheer volume, variety, and complexity of modern neuroscientific data.
Neuroscience still lacks effective tools for managing these massively large data sets. Kavli NDI researchers are filling this gap by finding new ways to organize, analyze, and extract meaning from neurodata. They plan to lead the transformation toward big data-driven neuroscience and in so doing accelerate the pace of discovery.
Answering the questions that are most important is no longer achievable by a single individual or lab, or even by a single department or center. Rather, novel insights will come from establishing deep, long-lasting, transdisciplinary collaborations that combine the efforts of scientists with diverse expertise to understand the emergent behaviors of systems as complex as the human brain.
The Kavli NDI mission is to advance neuroscience discovery by uniting neuroscience, engineering and computational data science to understand the structure and function of the brain.