• Responsive Design: The Future


Nothing is perfect in life, not even responsive web design. In this series, we’ve covered the history of responsive and present day uses of the technology. So what’s next for responsive design?

Yes, even something considered to be the future always has ways to improve. Responsive Server Side (RESS) and responsive typography are two major reasons the future’s so bright for responsive.

Let’s RESS for a Minute

RESS is the future of responsive web design, and honestly one of the greatest advancements in web technologies as a whole. Okay, so maybe that is a bit too bold of a statement for some developers out there, but if you’re working within modern standards – you immediately see the power of RESS.

What exactly is RESS? The term was coined in 2011 by well-known web developer, Luke Wroblewski, in his article RESS: Responsive Design + Server Side Components. Without getting too technical, RESS is a technology that eliminates the need for CSS3 media queries, which is the main component in responsive web design that enables a site to react fluidly to the visitor’s screen resolution.

RESS means that it’s the server’s job to detect and react to whatever device connects to the website, displaying a site appropriate for the unique screen size. Having a server-side language be able to detect and then serve resources it needs based on its findings is… well, it’s the future!

Traditional web design, and even responsive web design, in some ways, still suffer from a few issues. RESS would allow for load times to improve, could serve resources only when needed and more. These are issues we still face today, even with responsive web design. 

Most websites have problems loading on smartphones and tablets do to their load times. People drop off after waiting for mere seconds, and every second counts when it comes to getting customers to your website and closing deals. Having a faster load time, even on a responsive site, can have dramatic impacts on your business! 

Responsive Typography

RESS isn’t the only thing responsive developers are talking about nowadays. It’s also possible to have your typography (content) be responsive as well! Thanks to the new “rem” unit of measurement, or “root em” unit, your written content is able to respond and react as well.

This is a powerful design method for your company to utilize. It’s true that with current responsive design standards, we can make words change their size all over. However, what about your call-to-action? Don’t you want that headline to stand out and deliver a powerful message to visitors? With “rems,” you can more easily have your text react dynamically and maintain a certain style throughout your site.

Reactive content means an improved user experience with your website from start to finish, top to bottom – regardless of what device they’re using. Whether on an old iPhone, a new tablet, or the classic desktop computer, your site’s content will adapt to display perfectly and your customers will stay.

What Should Be Next for Your Company

In the end, the future of responsive won’t matter unless you take advantage the power it brings your business now. Responsive web design saves development dollars, time, and above all, can make you more money in the long run!

Eliminating the need to develop two separate versions of your website, eliminating the overhead of managing two versions of a website and minimizing the need for future updates since responsive is far more future-proof than traditional web design.

More and more, mobile users are opting into the ease of use they have with responsive sites on the go. Companies are no longer forgiven when they force users to “pinch and zoom” on their smartphones and tablets or – even worse – wait until later to see their site.

Responsive web design is changing how we make websites each and everyday. It’s always evolving and the community of developers – and businesses – using it is growing as well.

If you’re not responsive, you’re not responding to your users’ needs.

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