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I used to be quite a successful web-designer 1o years ago (before we I got children and moved to another country). Now I plan to restart my professional experienced, whilst still working mainly from home as a freelancer. I used to work mainlyin Photoshop, but also with HTML, CSS, javascript etc. So in general my task was to make the site look nice and practical, whilst leaving to others to make it work. As I said, I did know html coding, but this was not exactly my favourite thing.

And as I understand (correct me if I am wrong here) the UX / UI design is the area where it is most logically for me to develop now.


What kind of skills do I need to update / acquire to be on the competitive level?

What kind of computer (and also SW) shall we purchase? What to pay attention to?

Does it make sense to purchase laptop or is workstation better?

I assume high attention shall be paid to monitor (what shall it be)?

Any other advice is appreciated.

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closed as primarily opinion-based by Izhaki, DA01, ChrisF, JonW Jan 15 '14 at 23:33

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

A bit has changed since 2003, first brush up on HTML5 and CSS 3, if just to know what new tools are available to you. – VoronoiPotato Jan 15 '14 at 21:37
This question is largely opinion based in my view. – Izhaki Jan 15 '14 at 21:45
As with any skill, you learn best by doing. You don't need fancy hardware or courses. Just start building things, coming up with ideas and seeing them through. – Brendon Jan 15 '14 at 21:53
We have no idea if UX/UI is the area that is most logical for you to pursue. It depends entirely on your interests, desires and business goals. – DA01 Jan 15 '14 at 22:06
Resist the temptation to get (only) a high-end monitor. Get (also) an average one -- whatever your end-users generally use. Too many designers produce work that looks great on their high-end monitors and crappy on everybody else's. – Erion Jan 16 '14 at 9:21

Off the top of my head, things to Google pertaining to this industry that came out over the past 10 years

  • the cloud (heh)
  • mobile design
  • responsive web design
  • touch interactions
  • AJAX
  • JS libraries (jQuery, etc.)
  • CSS libraries (Bootstrap, etc.)
  • Apps (native vs. hybrid)
  • HTML5
  • Agile Dev/Lean UX

For UX work, in terms of hardware, get whatever you want. Any laptop/desktop will likely work fine.

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Just as VoronoiPotato said, when it comes to the basic front end.

Computer wise I would go with a laptop that has a good CPU you can hook it up to 2+ monitors and also take it on the field if you have to present something.

Regarding the UX you have to understand the concept of "Less is more" and act accordingly. There are a few books and articles that could make you understand the concepts, but again your eXperience in the field will grow this skill.

From a UI perspective a lot has changed. Websites these days are expected to be responsive, which means it should look different/adapt to the screen resolution.

Check out this link:

Adobe has a neat little app called Adobe Edge Inspect which will help you test your design on different tables, phones, form factors.

When you make responsive web design you have to think about performance implications when it come to mobile devices.

I hope this helps, in your jurney and also i would suggest going around and checking out the best websites out there and don' forget to include "responsive" in your searches with google.

Good luck!

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