What does Google Web Designer have to do with Web Design?
Not much unless you want a quick and simple way to create HTML5 adverts. Having been released for free in beta form, Google's "Web Designer" product has recently piqued the interest of web designers across the internet. The fact that the product is named Web Designer could lead many to believe this product will be a serious alternative to Adobe's Dreamweaver and other WYSIWYG applications. In it's current state however, this is simply not true as the only presets available are all aimed at Google's own Ads format.
Having tested the actual product, I found the interface to resemble the look and feel of Adobe's Photoshop, along with a Flash like timeline for animation and some basic tools for text editing and 3D positioning. These tools are fun to play around with for a few minutes, but a quick look at the generated code that results from all this could leave many scratching their heads. The deep fundamentals of HTML5 and CSS3 are sidestepped, as are the good coding practices which help ease future editing while maintaining compatibility.
It is fair to say that Adobe's Flash is on its way out to being completely replaced by HTML5, and rightly so. However in order to learn HTML5 and good web design in general, you are going to have to put the hours in to build a solid understanding. In doing so, you can pick up someone else's half finished project and know exactly what's what so that you can continue development. By using a tool that aids this process, web designers are free to do what they do best. However, I feel that Google Web Designer over simplifies the underlying mechanics to the point where the novice wouldn't know where to begin. And once the product begins to feature full-on web design, this could become a real issue when troubleshooting for bugs.
Author: Bernie Collins, Web Designer
Categories: Web Design Tools