Zeldman, in the course of several days has gone from saying, rightfully, that the design is an inherent part of content and that’s why he didn’t have an RSS feed, to creating his own hand-rolled feed.
He apparently got some nasty comments, and has said that design is still a form of content and that his feed is merely the moral equivalent of an opt-in e-mail system. I take the same view of my RSS feed. It is merely another method to attract readers to my site and let them know of updates.
I applaud Mr. Zeldman for taking the, often unpopular, stance that design is a part of content. There are a lot of Web “designers” out there who either a.) never learned about content-driven design or b.) learned about it and don’t care.
I am an unabashed supporter of content-driven design: design isn’t just about looks. Design is about solving problems, helping readers (viewers, listeners, etc.) find what they want and telling stories. Put simply, we are here to communicate, the words that are written, the photos that are shot and edited, and the pages put together should all serve to send a message: preferably one unified message.
Many “designers” on the Web today are just stylists who can make things look “cool.”
I’ll take communication over cool any day…