Most of the things we have read up until this point advocate the need for some white space in design in an effort to prevent an overload, specifically the book White Space is Not Your Enemy. And then this week while reading Thinking with Type I discovered that there is a contingent of designers who are advocates of “visual density” who argue for “maximizing the amount of data conveyed on a single page or screen” (Lupton, 99). Although Lupton does not discount these advocates, in fact she seems to agree with the argument for density as a way to help readers make connections and comparisons. However, in the next paragraph she vey emphatically argues that “a person can still process only one message at a time” (Lupton, 99).
And this is where I became confused. Which is it? Do we like lots of white space or is “virtual density” the way to go? Lupton seems to agree on some level with both views- so which one are we supposed to practice? Is it a personal preference? I know, personally, web pages with too much going on (kind of like the Visual Thesaurus on page 94) are not my cup of tea. But maybe everyone has a different preference. How do we figure that out? Do we take that into account when creating a web page or is there a fairly hard fast rule we are supposed to follow?