Interview with Khoi Vinh

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I’m sure many of you have heard of the uber-talented Khoi Vinh, Design Director for NYTimes.com and grid pioneer. Khoi was kind enough to take a moment to chat with me about grids, why they’re important and how he uses them.

Check out the interview on The Grid System.        

7 Comments on "Interview with Khoi Vinh"

  • nitzan says

    nice one, thanks for sharing

  • Don’t you sometimes feel that grid systems are brought too far into the foreground of design? I was creating website designs in I guess what would be called a grid system long before I even knew what they were, and that they had books about it. Don’t get me wrong, I love grids and I use them all the time. I know they’re important for foundational structure but they can also impede flow and flexibility. What I am trying to say is, it just feels a little blown out of proportion at the moment.

    Take Khoi Vinh’s site for example, when I first visited his current website, I was lost. It was all grid and had no sense of typographic hierarchy. The font sizes presented throughout the site are predominately at one size and what would be headings aren’t even made bold. And when they are bold, bold copy in the content would look exactly the same. The litany of grid lines further confused the eye.

    Too many people are judging work by grids instead of the complete design as a whole. Especially in the interactive web space, where functionality is so vital.

  • Daniel, when a grid is designed and used correctly, it can never impede flow or flexibility. When done well, it should never get in the way of your design.

  • This kind of write ups are what everybody needs, an essential basic knowledge of grids’ importance. I hope you’ll keep writing articles which are very helpful like this.

  • This is really a great resource for someone like me who is coming from a print background but wants to learn as much as possible about web. Thanks Antonio and Khoi for all the info.

  • “Also, I should say that I think the idea of being a “pioneer” of grid systems in interactive design is probably overstating my contribution. ”

    Yes I think this is very dangerous statement, as he says, he only started using grids in web 4 years ago.

    The company I worked for had a fundimental doctrine of grid based website design some 10 years ago or more. I’m not really sure where they are going with this.

  • Hawken, I was the one who conducted the interview but I wasn’t implying that Khoi was the first to use or promote grids for the web. Sure people have been using them for web design for more than 4 years but it hasn’t been at the forefront until recently. And I think Khoi and Mark Boulton have A LOT to do with that. Do a search on google and a majority of the articles on grids will be from the both of them.

    So I must disagree with you and with Khoi.