But more than just HTML and CSS, it’s the mentality that only a coded website is professional that is extremely toxic, misleading and holding the web back.
People who are more skilled at creating great designs are going to be less proficient with the symbolic nature and detail oriented busywork of code, while detail-oriented people who can focus on coding are the more analytical types, who are less likely to contribute great design ideas to the web. In fact, when’s the last time you have seen a website built without a stellar budget that was visually distinctive?
But great design isn’t the only thing the web is missing out on.
Adding code to your site in 2022 is increasingly problematic, the bar for minimal performance has never been higher. The farther away you are from the analytical type, the more likely it is you don’t fully understand the implications of the added code.
While many people enjoy the thrill and the challenge of shaping their creation with a chisel, web coding is not quite wood carving, and the page will end up showing up incorrectly on some browser, load slowly, have accessibility, privacy or security issues, or all of the above.
Yes it’s possible to iterate and fix the coding issues, but that makes it an artisanal endeavour, not unlike painting, cooking or crafting a necklace. But coding a website is about what’s technically correct, it’s engineering, not artisanship.
At the same time, when all your focus is on code and technical aspects of a page, when do you start thinking of everything else the website needs? The site objectives and user needs, the content requirements, the information architecture and interaction design, information and navigation design and finally visual design. More time spent on code means less time spent on everything else. Again a net loss for the web.
Finally, all this happens in the context of Wordpress templates being the primary website delivery medium on the web. While the templates are designed to be pretty, they ultimately conform to the same structure, and Wordpress is a hot mess. Nothing new and interesting coming from there.