To make a deck look and function well there must be some planning done before you start building.
Location of the deck is very important.
Are you trying to use this deck for multi purpose or a single event place?
Example: Do the kids play in the back yard and you use the deck as an outpost watching the kids?
Or do you sun bath on the deck and need a little more privacy?
Do you like or hate the summer heat?
Is the deck next to the driveway, and all your friends migrate to the deck. Or is it a private getaway four the 2 of you.
After answering these questions you will see an Idea immerges as to the kind of deck you are looking for.
An other example; If your a party animal your going to want to barbeque on the deck with extra seating as well as a lot of accent lighting around the deck to call the bugs away from the guest with see through rails to the other parts of the yard. Installing steps or a stairway to get to the lower yard helps cut down on traffic thought the house.
Where if it is just for the 2 of you your going to want it a little smaller size deck with romantic accent lights and no steps to the ground and may be a more defused viewing area though the railing system.