not top ten, just ten

I notice more and more that articles and blog posts on the topic of web design/development, once you get away from established sites like ALA and into the fringes, tend to be top tens (or sevens or elevens or whatever). Check out Design Float’s Web Design category, for instance, and how many of the recommended pages have titles that begin with a number. I know it’s a formula that works for attracting readers, but it seems like the result is a lot of content without a lot of.. content.

With all these people listing off the same sites, Photoshop filters, Javascript widgets, dos-and-don’ts, etc. it seems like any actual opinions are getting deferred in favor of having as many lists as possible. There’s no apparent editing to enforce the author’s viewpoint, which makes it seem like the author has none. Which kind of scares me. If the authorities in our field are just a bunch of people linking to each other without consideration for quality or expertise, are designers and developers going to have the power they did when they pressured browser makers to focus on standards, for instance?

Anyway, this train of thought came from a post called 17 Most Desirable Designers Collection. I’m honestly not sure what it’s collecting, I just thought it was pretty amusing to compare the images in “Top 7 Most Cliché Stock Images Used in Web Design” with the images on the page chosen as the example from “30 Beautifully Blue Web Designs”. The beautifully blue design hits three out of seven. Which is it, folks?

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