Web sites are rapidly becoming the preferred media choice for information search, company presentation, shopping, entertainment, education, and social contacts. At the same time we live in a period where visual symbols play an increasingly important role in our daily lives. The aim of this article is to present and discuss the four main areas in which aesthetics play an important role in the design of successful Web sites: aesthetics play an important role in supporting the content and the functionality, in appealing to the taste of the target audience, in creating the desired image for the sender, and in addressing the requirements of the Web site genre.
Septimiu Daniel Popescu, Alex Otniel Popescu, Mihaela Dănilă, Mihaela Dobria, David Maior and Valentin Nădăşan
Background: The quality of online health-related information may affect users’ understanding and medical decision-making with dramatic impact, particularly in case of stroke. Objective: The objective of this study was to assess the quality of information about stroke on the Romanian and Hungarian websites in terms of completeness and accuracy. Methods: The research was designed as an observational cross-sectional study. The sample included 25 Romanian and 25 Hungarian websites presenting information about stroke for the general public. General characteristics such as website ownership, main goal, website genre and medical approach were identified by the evaluators using a predetermined set of common instructions. The completeness and accuracy of the information were assessed by two independent assessors against a quality benchmark. Results: Overall, most of the websites were owned by private commercial companies (42%), had educational goal (66%), were designed as medical web-portals (46%) and had a conventional medicine approach (72%). Mean completeness score was 5.6 points (SD± 1.9) for Romanian sites and 4.1 points (SD ± 2.4) for Hungarian sites (p = 0.017). Mean accuracy score was 6.2 points (SD ± 1.1) for Romanian sites and 7.0 points (SD ± 0.7) for Hungarian sites (p = 0.02). Conclusions: The information about stroke on the Romanian and Hungarian websites had poor quality. Although we found statistically significant differences between the quality scores of the two language sub-samples and two site characteristics associated with significantly higher quality, the practical relevance of these findings for online health information seekers should be interpreted with caution.