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Importance of having a responsive web layout?
I'm making a personal website for my portfolio (some web stuff, interaction design, also drawings and prints). Its purpose would mostly be for employers. I'm trying to decide how important it is for my website to be responsive (essentially meaning adapting it to also fit mobile). Is it really going to make that much of a difference that people can view my website on their smartphone? I mean, when I'm on the subway, in a car, etc, it's not really the context in which I'd be looking at designers' websites. Should I jut implement it for the sake of showing off my ability to do so? The problem is that it really limits the type of media I can use, and the flexibility of how *I* want the user to see it, rather than the *user* seeing it exactly how they want. I don't want to compromise the aesthetic/intended experience for features that might not even be needed.

So my question again is - Is responsive web design absolutely necessary for a personal website with semi-web-related content? I don't want to seem like I'm jumping onto the HTML5 / CSS3 bandwagon, throwing every possible feature into the mix without really considering the contexts, but I also want employers to know that I can do these things. What's your say, those with similar experiences?


I have run extensive studies on this as I design web content. I have found that around 35% of people browse the internet on a mobile device for more than half the time they're online. If you would like to remove ~17-20% of your audience then that is your choice, but it is zero extra work to build your site based on a fluid grid and RWD. It's a no-brainer in fact, you simply continue to build your website as per normal and at the end of it you will have both a desktop version and a mobile site all in one.

The main mistake people make when considering RWD is the individual elements, but to get a good idea have a look at other's responsive designs. Examples might be a menu along the top becomes a drop-down (taking up the space of only one item) on a mobile device. This is all handled by the CSS, so it's very very simple to achieve.



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