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The Internet Of Things – Why Is IoT Important For Web Design?

The Internet Of Things – Why Is IoT Important For Web Design?With the evolution of technology has come the need for web designers to adapt. In the past, websites were designed for desktop devices/laptops. Then came smartphones, effectively mini laptops able to display web pages on small mobile screens. Web developers had to adapt and learn new skills like design desktop websites that would work on mobile, master apps for different mobile operating systems, understand how to use Flash, and then adapt once again to Java and JavaScript technologies to design apps and websites that work with HTML5.

It has been a rollercoaster of a ride for website specialists, and the cause of it has been what we now call the ‘Internet of Things’ – IoT. It is this huge network of devices, software, and bots that influences web design as we know it today, and IoT will long continue to throw new challenges that website designers will continually have to adapt to.

Just some of the areas IoT influences…

  • Website Visual Elements
  • Design Needs – Website Builder or Developers
  • Software Language: CSS, HTML, CMS
  • Symmetrical or Asymmetrical Balance
  • Movement – 3D Rendering/Moving Graphics

What is IoT in a Nutshell?

Today, IoT encompasses billions of nodes (devices), software apps, and digital bots all connected to the ‘Internet of Things’. Think about smart apps that allow you to turn your heating on/off before you arrive home, control the thermostat, or turn off the aircon if you already left but forgot to turn it off. Or security software that allows you to see your CCTV or burglar alarm software that remotely warns you of intruders – many of which are connected to 24/7 monitoring services.

Now although these examples do not necessarily influence most web design, we used these as examples just to give you the bigger picture of the IoT. In short, you could say that IoT is anything connected to the internet infrastructure that hosts the World Wide Web, and although not all elements affect web design as such, they can affect web design indirectly.

For example, the smart apps may not affect web design now, but they affect web app developers. Also, with HTML5 now prevalent means that you can now use your web browser as an app, so once again the technology goes in full circle back to web designers that need to design a web version of the app.

There is an interesting explanation of this on the Creative Momentum blog covering the growing integration of web design and the IoT.

Examples of Modern IoT Tech affecting Today’s Web Design

Now you understand what the Internet of Things is (just about anything on the internet), and you can see how something that seems unrelated to web design can affect web design, let’s look at some other influencing factors that are part of the IoT that affect web design.

Cyber Security: Of course, with the many stories we hear about hackers holding company information to ransom, forcing businesses to release cash, and industrial espionage, one of the biggest IoT influencers on web design is security. Luckily encrypted HTTPS SSL certificates are now part of the parcel of website infrastructure and web designers only need to buy and implement the certificate. However, there are other factors web designers must also consider.

  • Password Policy: Making sure strong passwords are used
  • Permissions/Access Control: Editors, Bloggers, Administrators
  • Limiting Plug Ins: Only using safe plug ins for your website builders
  • Testing Policy: Having a security testing policy in place (hire third-party security analysts)
  • Firewalls: Locally/Self hosted websites will need to b protected by state-of-the-art firewalls like Cisco routers

Blockchain Tech: The newest piece of tech that will have the biggest influence of web design in the future will be blockchain technology. It is still relatively unknown. Most blockchain ecosystems are not connected to the World Wide Web, but they are all connected to the internet, which is how we are able to transact. That being said, many of us use Web apps and websites on the WWW to carry out these blockchain transactions. Rumour has it that eventually there will be a brand-new internet, and it will run on blockchain technology on which website ownership will be completely anonymous, and apparently impenetrable by hackers.

Intelligent User Interfaces: One of the most interesting, intelligent user interfaces today is voice controlled search. Alexa is a good example of a device that you can literally ask a question and it will throw back an answer. The same thing applies to voice search on Google or any other search engine. However, the search engine voice queries bring up web pages. Before voice, internet searches were manual keyword inputs, but today younger generations tend to prefer voice search. This poses a whole new challenge to search engine optimisation when choosing target keywords.

 Becoming an IoT First Focused Web Designer

For further reading on this subject, we suggest checking our recent article ‘How is IoT Impacting Web Design & Development in 2021’. It gives you more ideas on how to become an IoT focused web developer. As for our advice right now. The best thing you can do is have an open mind. Consider every angle, get people together for brainstorming sessions, and even in your social life, ask people how they interact with websites and what would make their experience better when accessing the net via different connected devices.

Jack Bannon – I have been a writer for many years after working for numerous IT solutions and marketing firms. I enjoy the challenge of communicating how different industries function and how to communicate niche specific to consumers, while I have also been involved in projects to help businesses improve areas of their value chain as well as helping them go back to basics to identify external and internal influences that have caused their overall internet marketing strategy to lose traction – the challenge is always to be honest, realistic, and never take shortcuts when it comes to research!

Source: Plato Data Intelligence

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