Skip to toolbar

Community & Business Groups

Sustainable Web Design Community Group

A community group dedicated to creating sustainable websites. This group will not publish specifications.

Note: Community Groups are proposed and run by the community. Although W3C hosts these conversations, the groups do not necessarily represent the views of the W3C Membership or staff.

No Reports Yet Published

Learn more about publishing.

Chairs, when logged in, may publish draft and final reports. Please see report requirements.

Publish Reports

Conversational Design as a Route to Web Sustainability (and what you do before “Mobile First”

I’ve been reading a bit about Conversational Design, and want to suggest some talking points about its relation to web sustainability:

Conversational Design uses text interaction, which reduces the complexity of the Ui

Conversational Design may provide a more natural way of user interaction for many apps, currently download gobs of JavaScript to create an elaborate, animated visual Ui that uses lots of visual symbols instead of a few words

Conversational Design creates a dialogue between user and a “Site Persona”, which fits nicely into many Ux models. We’ve been calling these, “Design Personas”, as part of Emotional Design:

Conversational Design outputs a text stream ordered in time, which means you naturally support visually impaired uses with screen readers. In contrast, we need to put ARIA roles on visual pages to make sure they let screen readers parse content in the correct order

Conversational Design deliverables look a LOT like a Ux user storyboard, scenario, or Customer Journey.

Conversational Design supports those without visual screens, which includes IoT devices like Alexa. But it also supports, in theory “smart” web spiders and related AIs trying to make sense of a web page, if they can also engage in a dialogue with the Site Persona.

Conversational Design will be used heavily in VR and AR. The reason? VR and AR environments are too complex to control except via voice interaction.

So, I’m suggesting that instead of “Mobile First”, “Conversation First” as a new route to Web Sustainability. Thoughts?

Bringing the Green Web to WordPress

With Mozilla’s 2018 Internet Health Report finally shining a light on sustainability, and thanks to Chris Adams’ presentation at MozFest last year, I’ve been inspired to seriously up my game in terms of helping wherever I can in this field.

As a first step, I’ve put together a very simple WordPress widget that allows users to easily add The Green Web Foundation’s badge to their website. I think of the widget more as a marketing tool than anything else ‚Äď i.e. it gets The Green Web Foundation into WordPress’ shop window.

You can see the widget in action on my blog (bottom of the sidebar).

My next steps within WordPress are to create a theme that incorporates all of the sustainable web design techniques. My goal is to make a theme that can theoretically score 100 with Ecograder. I say theoretically because some things are dependent on the host, MozRank etc. But if, for example, I could get the demo site for the theme near to 100, that’d be awesome. And I could also centre all of the content on the demo site around Internet sustainability.

Also, hello everyone! I’m Jack and I work as an engineer on the VIP team. I’m rather passionate about environmental issues. ūüôā I was the Green Party candidate in a UK parliamentary by-election last year which meant I appeared on TV a bit!

Old JavaScript Code Threates Web Sustainability

The following research paper describes the astonishing extent of old JavaScript code with know security problems on the web:

Thou shalt not depend on me: analysing the use of outdated JavaScript libraries on the web

What’s needed for better sustainability is a library that allows lookup of JS library by version, with known vulnerabilities. At the very least, design and maintenance documents for websites should include a strategy for fixing outdated JS libraries in the mix.

Sustainable Ux in VR – Using Ux to enhance sustainability of Virtual Reality

My presentation from Sustainable Ux Р for Jan 2017, also the Nov 2016 Los Angeles Ux Professionals meeting

Narrated YouTube:

Google Slides:

Sustainable Web Talks?

Tim Frick provided a good intro to the concept at his recent Ted Talk:

You can see discussions of specific topics at the Sustainable Ux website – how Experience Designers can combat climate change:

Here’s a video of the entire Sustainable Ux¬†conference:

Sustainable Ux Organizer James Christie has a great talk on “Carbon-Conscious Web Design”


Sustainable Web Design Resources

MightyBytes Sustainable Web Blog

Here’s a link to all things Sustainable Web Design on Mightybytes’ website. As of Feb 2014 we have 19 posts on various aspects of web sustainability and a guide for developing sustainable digital products for anyone who might be interested.

A SlideShare Intro to the Sustainable Web

A good summary of Sustainable Web Design principles.

Sustainable Web Design from Tim Frick

Sustainable Virtual Design Blog


Current Sustainable Web Evaluators

All — I propose we keep a running list of current sustainable web evaluator tools/methods. These can be either auto-gen (“auto”) assessments (like Tim’s Ecograder) or manual (“manual”) assessments (like the IMA contest, etc.)

From this and with additional work we can compile a standardized set of assessments to rate sustainable Web.

If you know of others, or come across them in your work, please add to the list:

  1. Ecograder, auto,
  2. Interactive Media Awards (Green Category), manual,
  3. Green Certified Site, auto,, $
  4. The Green Web Foundation
  5. Green Your Website (Mashable article), manual,
  6. Jeramiah Owyang (blog article), manual,

SWED Model Vinn Diagram

SWED Model (vinn diagram)
I am working out the model for improved sustainable Web ecosystem design model.

All, just wanted to share the latest version of the Sustainable Web Ecosystem Design (SWED) model that I am using for edition 2 of my book. This is also being used as instructional material in the class I teach at Penn State, IST 250.
Any commentary is welcome.
Thanks, Greg