Taschen's 1000 Favorite Websites  (September 1, 2003)

This site (Segura) and our 5inch venture are both included in "Taschen's 1000 Favorite Websites" by Julius Wiedemann.

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Excerpt from the book.
Just a click away. That's the distance that separates us today from most of the surprises, information, solutions, contacts and experiences in this life of ours. And this simple click is in fact the path to our new e-lifestyle on the World Wide Web. After its initial development as a military communication resource, the web has grown and undergone numerous phases. In terms of design standards, the pages were at first constructed using nothing more than html; this was then followed by the script phase, during which people also discovered gif animations. This brought movement and visual dynamism to the web. Although they were sometimes annoying and took their time to download, gifs added a great deal of fun to the web. This innovation is now becoming the cult part on the web. Further experimentation centered on Flash, and it is still with us and getting stronger by the day, particularly for creative professionals who make their sites their window to the outside world. This phase started almost simultaneously with Shockwave, adding the possibility of interaction online, which has taken us to the phase in which we are now, where all these resources with moreover the addition of movies and sound are making the www even better than ever.

It terms of communications media, the Web has also gone though a lot of stages. The first could be defined as the curiosity stage. Few people had access at first and even fewer had pages. Things were happening very fast, but we could only get the necessary information from a very small handful of publications or from what we heard by word of mouth. The second phase was the informative stage, which was still not really about information-providing on the large scale, because it all took much too much time and required real professionals to make the pages. The corporations and website pioneers put in a great deal of work to get things to this point, and yet it was still only the beginning. But the seed had been planted and was growing. The third stage was about information proper, and now on a grand scale. Thanks to massive investments made by media corporations, not to mention the loss of billions of dollars, these companies started to transfer their material to the web, where they could now enjoy spectacular speed and quality. But the best thing was that this was all being made available for free on the net. Nobody could have imagined that such a flow of information would ever come and grow so rapidly. Corporations and governments joined forces and added a whole new world of online services. From e-commerce to government tax forms, users began to see the new possibilities of the massive move from offline to online service accessibility and exploit it.

The next step was interaction, the point when millions were joining the web revolution every day and wanted and needed to get more instantaneous feedback. Interactivity itself was no longer a question of technology, it was a change in people's way of thinking. Of course it was all sped on by the popularization of programming languages, new resources, and tons of relevant publications. Not to mention the exchange of information online. More services offering instant feedback now added to both the happiness of the users and the benefit of the companies. It is from this point that the net has evolved to where it is today, or at least to where we are now going: the entertainment era. Time, money and sweat have always been needed, but the entertainment aspect requires that all the previous phases are properly working before it can really function as it should. Better lines, large numbers of people accessing and demanding services, plus large commercial interest, are all needed. But we are getting there. A lot of movies are already online and huge numbers of sites on music, games, animation, and interaction are popping up every day. No matter what you do, whether you buy a book or you play games online, the focus now is on the experience you should be getting and how it compares to "real life". The big breakthrough for this was the creation of broad public access to high-speed lines such as isdn and DSL. The investments are proving their worth and the increase of people's "pleasure" while navigating the web is highly significant.

By this stage it no longer matters what we call it - the net, www, web, online page, home page, or whatever - definitions of the particulars have lost their importance. The main thing now is the change it has produced in our lives and the expectations it creates for the world to come. As we have seen, the web has achieved a point where anyone can and should do something. Although it is also true that the speed at which it has grown has created difficulties in creating international standards, this can in fact be seen as a real challenge. And this challenge is one of the reasons behind this book. At least when it comes to the parameters of beauty, navigation, creativity, attractiveness and artistry that are relevant to the areas in which TASCHEN publishes. And the medium has by no means reached its final form(impossible for a medium that grows by millions of pages a day...), for on the contrary it is just beginning for those who are searching for new, thrilling solutions. This book is divided into a number of chapters representing genuinely creative areas on the web, such as advertising, art, architecture, movies, fashion, photography, illustration, design, and eroticism. That's not to say that the examples serve simply to illustrate these fields. On the contrary, versatility online consists in extracting the best of what it is offered and applying it to any field one wishes.

The icons give you a quick idea of what to look for, i.e. whether you will find animations, sounds, downloadable material, or whatever. This publication is a compilation of 1000 pages that will shorten your path to finding great solutions online and give you millions of fresh insights. You can pick and choose from these 1000 great starting points and find the best to optimize your personal navigation time. Have a nice trip!

The DVD.
This book comes with a DVD. You can play it both on your computer and your DVD player. It contains 6 interviews done with 6 different creatives from 6 different countries, each talking about different topics. They will show you how they use the net to maximize production, get inspiration, find technical support, help clients, provide better service, exchange ideas, stay plugged to the latest news, and put their creativity to its best use. No software installation is needed, just the DVD player. The DVD is code 0, which means that it is compatible with all DVD players.

(source: excerpt text from Taschen)


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