Astound your Users: Fade to Yellow
- By Matt Stephens
37signals, the paragon of Web2.0 UI spiffiness and creators of Ruby on Rails, took great advantage of Ajax when they created Basecamp, a project management and collaboration product. In many ways it's a showcase user-friendly web application.
An especially nice effect in Basecamp is the “attention-grabbing yellow fade”, in which a component flashes to yellow and then fades slowly away. The user’s attention is thus drawn towards the flashing component.
Of course, it’s possible to overuse the effect, and end up with components flashing yellow (or whatever color you choose) all over the page. Naturally, this would lessen the technique’s impact, turning your page into one of those epileptic fit-inducing “congratulations you’ve won, click here!” flashing banner ads. The technique’s value is in its ability to stand out from an otherwise static background, so should be used with caution.