What is this “$ var_TxtSite”?

There still is a lot of websites that come from the first palpitations of “.com” and “.ca”. Those were the time, where to go surfing we had to use the office’s computer or for the lucky ones, the one at home. Since then, the technology has changed a lot, so fast that there are still many functional websites that are designed only for this old homogeneous technology.

According to the 2018 wearesocial.com* report, Internet user percentages show that more than 50% of them use a cell phone now. From this data, you can conclude that several sites that can be found on the Internet are no longer necessarily in the correct format of the screen of the potential customer. These unfortunate visitors with their cell on those unsuitable sites, are definitely not be able to navigate and do the worse for your site, they simply close the window at first sight, which I do frequently(1). This insignificant act from visitors can be a bad signs for Google** and could affect your ranking on the search engine. For those who want to redo their site or just an update, there are several options available to you. Below are some explanations on the types of sites and ideas that could enlighten you or scramble you completely for the redesign of your website.

What is this “responsive website?

The responsive solution is the most popular with the WordPress® advent, a very popular web application and used here on Typesetting Montreal. You could create and administer a website that adapts to the variant widths of screens. Whether it’s a smartphone in landscape or portrait format to a computer monitor. The positions and dimensions of images will adjust and the flow and size of the text will change according to these. Therefore, you might only need having different versions for languages.

Are you in front of a computer right now? If so, have fun. Slowly reduce the width of the current window of your browser. See how responsive this site is to the size of it. First, the background image will disappear to eliminate the margins, then it is the turn of the search section on the right to be eradicated and then for finish, the main menu at the top of the page, which is replaced by a hamburger menu on the right at the top. I take this opportunity to invite you at the same time to visit the centre TYPO’s site, continue to have fun on their pages and notice how it adapts differently.

There is only one other disadvantage that I noticed with responsive sites apart their download times. Frequently on a conventional computer, sites of this type have oversized lettering and writing fields, and you have to scroll a lot to read a single paragraph. Unfortunately, some graphic designers neglect this rendering and appearance on them. In addition, there is some loss of control over the graphic and typographic aspect.

What is an “adaptive” website?

The other solution you could have is to use a script to detect what kind of device is used. This script works on the same principle as trains’ switch. For example, in the case of a visitor using a computer, the person will be redirected to the version of the site adapted for such a device. On the other hand, if a laptop is recognized, the script will make it shift to another adapted version or could even serve a responsive site as mentioned above. Basically, this involves having a site for computers and one or more sites for portables. I will not go into tablet formats and not even smart phones that also have different dimensions.

The disadvantage with this type of system, it could duplicate the work and maybe even quadruple it for future updates. Especially if you have other versions for languages, such as French.

What is this “$ var_TxtSite”?

This part of the text has nothing to do with the on‑screen display, but it could not be very useful for a multilingual site. As you understood above, a responsive site is only one site for all, like a movie for the family. While an adaptive site categorizes customers according to its category, General, 13+ and 18+ (image: Basic websites).

So everyone would have their own film and their visual presentation would only vary according to the age of the person. Let’s say, for fun, that Jodie Foster was doing a single narration and that we could use exactly the same soundtrack for the three films. The voice of Jodie Foster becomes a shared data to several websites that represents the three format of movies (image : Options by adding a database). It would be possible to push things further by using a database and variable texts, from where the title of this section

The variables allow you to have one and only place to correct for the texts of all representations of your site. In addition, you could add other languages to your database. On the other hand, if you use this option, you should expect that you would need alternative images, in the case of those including text, and use variable links for them. Otherwise, you could simply arrange for this to be only images without embedded text or multilingual text. In both cases, whether it is an adaptive or responsive site, this variable text option is not insignificant. It gives the flexibility to switch text from one language to another without necessarily downloading the entire webpage again. Adds speed and economy of bandwidth.

To conclude, if I owned a business with the means and time to design a website as complete as possible, I would naturally use the three points mentioned above. A version for the computer with a width of approximately 1100 pixels and an adaptive version (image: The ultimate). I would opt for perhaps two adaptive versions, offering the choice of one for cellular data and the other for Wi‑Fi that tablets use frequently. The whole thing would use a database for my texts in French and English.

*   Original article of “We Are Social”.
** Interesting text in FRENCH about Google Analytics from «  Les Affaires ».
(1)  My top 4 reasons to close a site at first glance: pop-up, invasive advertising, complicated menu and bad format.

UFF ! LES DELIRES D’UFF (bédéiste)
Disney – Pixar 1986‑2018 – Legal Stuff
Judie Foster Picture; Credit:
Robert Trachtenberg/Sony Pictures

If you are the owner of a copyright photo used here, be advised that I have tried to contact people involved. If you wish, I would be happy to add a link or even remove your work from my page, thank you.