Some of the people reading this may be old enough to remember the early days of the web. Like, 1995.

Back then the coolest thing was to have text and images flashing on and off in a frame of your Netscape Navitator. Those were the days. Never mind that anyone prone to siezures was at risk whenever they looked at their brand-new VGA screens.

Fortunately, the web moved on, and flashy-flashy text has been phased out of all but the most primitive websites — usually websites of churches, I think.

Then came sliders.

Everyone had to have a slider on their website. Not for any reason other than everyone else seemed to have one. Many websites have yet to get over this.

Now, it seems everyone needs parallax.

What is parallax?

I’m sure you’ve seen it. If you haven’t yet, you will. It’s where a part of the web page you’re looking at has an image or a block of text that scrolls at a different speed than the rest of the page. Or moves sideways as you scroll down. Or fades in. Or slides up from the bottom. Or out on the top.

Sure it’s cool. It’s new. It’s hip…

… And everyone wants it because it’s the in thing, the latest thing.

But I guarantee you we’ll look back in a few years — maybe not in 2016 or 2017, but probably it will be dawning on us by 2018 — that parallax for the sake of parallax is just as bad an idea as flashing text for the sake of flashing text.

Sure, there are probably still a few (rare) good reasons to use flashing text. There are a few (rare) good reasons for sliders. And there are probably a few (rare) good reasons for parallax.

All I’m saying is that, like all good things, too much of it can be hazardous. Just because you can have the latest visual effect on your homepage doesn’t mean it’s the right visual effect for what your site needs to communicate.