The use of smartphones, tablets and netbooks for web access has been increasing like never before. This is the reason why responsive web design has become the hottest topic in the web design community. Responsive design is an approach to web design in which a website should respond to the user’s behavior and environment based on screen size, platform and orientation. To make it simpler, it’s all about using scalable images and adjustable layouts so that people can have a hassle-free browsing experience on various mobile devices.
Responsive web design allows web designers to provide an optimal user experience to visitors of the site. To create a successful responsive website design, you need certain tools that can make the task a lot easier. We shall now have a look at the top 5 responsive web design tools for designers:
Responsive Data Table Roundup is an excellent tool with examples and source codes that help in responsive web design. It focuses on how a table should appear as the size of the screen decreases. Depending on the content of the data table, the solution varies. On narrower screens, a pie graph is formed from the data and the table is hidden. Another solution is to generate a mini graph of the table. Here, the users will have to click the mini graph to get to new screen that displays the entire table, and click to get back.
Responsive Tables by Zurb is a CSS/JS combo that helps you design both small and large tables for your responsive website. This wonderful tool takes data tables and modifies them so that they do not break the responsive layout on devices having smaller screens. The code pack of this tool has a demo file and two key files namely responsive-tables.js and responsive-tables.css. The tool works by pinning the first column to the left of the table and allowing users to scroll the other columns under it. This tool supports iOS, Windows Phone 7, Chrome, Safari and Firefox.
Seamless Responsive Photo Grid is an interesting tool that displays photos edge-to-edge on a browser window without any space in between them. It works on almost all major browsers and is ridiculously easy to incorporate in any kind of responsive website design. The tool makes use of CSS media queries to test the browser width. The number of columns adjust accordingly when you resize the browser window. Browser support is available for IE 10, Firefox 3.6+, Opera 11.1+, Safari 4+ and Chrome 10+.
You can test your responsive website during the development process with this brilliant testing tool. Using Responsive Web Design Testing Tool, all you have to do is enter the URL of your site; the tool automatically displays the appearance of your site, on various device sizes. As it displays all the screen resolutions side-by-side, debugging becomes quite simple.
The success of any responsive website depends on how well the designer has created the user interface. Designing a website with a good user interface is however a challenging process. By making use of the 5 responsive web design tools mentioned above, you can reap the benefits of a highly accessible website.