Future horizontal

I alerted my friend to a job opportunity here, and one of her first comments was, “more and more websites are horizontal now”.

Artefact Group's website

 Like MocoLoco, too.

MocoLoco website

MocoLoco website

That sure got my attention. Only a few days ago, a colleague did a template to consolidate and present concepts from research through design. She asked if the horizontal or vertical version was better. My straight-off answer to her was “horizontal because I hate to scroll”.

The interface for Plurk which I’ve used and loved more than Twitter, also places its timeline on a graphical horizontal plane, compared to Twitter’s text-based interface.



So as the future of web content moves toward more graphic- than text-based, will more web interface begin to migrate to this horizontal mode, because it is faster to scrub than scroll, and you don’t need to have vertical visual continuity because there is very little text to read?

Or is the horizontal interface a reaction to the rise of the iPod and iPad devices, where it is more natural to flick your finger across the screen than moving it up and down? Or was Apple truly that far-sighted to have predicted the onslaught of the horizontal websites and content pages so far ahead that now I’m even considering perhaps it was iPods/Pads which are leading this new interface design?

Finally, if this is our future, how should traditional computing devices be designed to accommodate this shift from vertical text-based webpages to horizontal graphical interfaces? To begin with, we should really rethink the design of mice and trackpads.


About transez

Design researcher: curious about people, passionate about life.
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