Building a website that works well and looks sharp on numerous devices is critical. Your visitors aren’t chained to a desk, they will be accessing your website from desktops, phones, notepads and laptops. Each device has different screen shapes and different resolutions and they will be interacting with your site in many different ways. There are two major schools of thought in developing web sites that can adjust according to the device that is viewing it.
Responsive web design uses CSS files and classes to adjust how the website’s markup is rendered. This can be achieved using CSS media queries or the screen size. No scripting or modifications to the website’s markup is required for this method to work. Images that may be specific to a a certain device or resolution can be displayed using the currently utilized CSS file(s). Themes can be developed for each anticipated device or resolution and those theme CSS files utilized accordingly.
Adaptive web design relies on either scripting or back end code to adjust the web site’s layout and or the images it displays. This technique gives the developer more freedom since it can be used to create, modify or remove elements within the website’s markup. This can be done by the visitor’s browser on the client side or in back end code. The benefit of doing it on the server’s side is only the elements used by the current device or resolution are served up to the visitor.
These two approaches aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive. A website can use different CSS files as well as server code or scripts to build the solution that works best for the visitor’s current device.
If you need to build a cutting edge website that works well on any device it may be displayed on, contact our talented team at RHYNO Networks:
Click here to read Webmonkey’s insightful article on responsive vs adaptive design click here.