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learning standards-compliant design

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benw

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Post Posted November 11th, 2002, 5:27 pm

does anyone know of any good tutorials on learning good standards-compliant HTML? (e.g. using CSS for layout rather than tables, etc)

i've been doing web stuff for a few years, i'm pretty familiar with HTML, but all the layout stuff i've done has been using tables, and i want to learn a better way.

i5mast

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Post Posted November 11th, 2002, 6:09 pm

this should get u started.

Thinking inside the box by Joe Gillespie
http://www.wpdfd.com/editorial/wpd1002.htm#feature

Rashid Muhammad

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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 10:35 am

Hey that's a pretty good link! Here's my $0.02

The best book that I've read is the "XHTML 1.0 Language and Design Sourcebook" by Ian S. Graham. Published by Wiley. It's a great XHTML / CSS book that goes over all of the fundamentals that you need to know. I don't know if it's still in print but you may be able to sinf it in a library. Also, any CSS book by <a href="http://www.meyerweb.com">Eric Meyer</a> (I have his O'reilly pocket CSS book which is indispensible) is going to be outstanding. Check out <a href="http://www.meyerweb.com/eric/css/edge/">edge</a> part of his website for some more advanced (and not roundly supported) CSS features.

The <a href="http://www.w3c.org">World Wide Web Consortium</a> site is also a great place because you can read the specifications first hand. If you use Mozilla, go to <a href="http://www.livesidebar.com">Live Sidebar</a> and install the CSS and HTML 4 sidebars for a great quick reference to the specs. <a href="http://www.bluerobot.com/web/layouts/">Blue Robot</a> is an excellent site to learn about different types of CSS layouts, so is <a href="http://www.bluerobot.com/web/layouts/">glish</a>. <a href="http://www.webmonkey.com">Webmonkey</a> used to be cool but they fell off. Maybe with the <a href="http://www.wired.com">Wired</a> redesign they might try to put more standards-based stuff on there.

michel v

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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 12:26 pm

Although I'm all for making webpage layouts in CSS, I find it very annoying to see so many people putting 'standards compliant' and 'CSS' indifferently as if they were linked ideas.
Well, you heard it first here: you can make standards compliant webpage layout with tables, just like you can make non-standards webpages layouts with CSS.
Please help stop the buzzwords, use the right words for the right ideas.

</rant>

Ted Mielczarek
 
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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 1:34 pm

michel v wrote:Although I'm all for making webpage layouts in CSS, I find it very annoying to see so many people putting 'standards compliant' and 'CSS' indifferently as if they were linked ideas.
Well, you heard it first here: you can make standards compliant webpage layout with tables, just like you can make non-standards webpages layouts with CSS.
Please help stop the buzzwords, use the right words for the right ideas.

</rant>


You can, but you shouldn't. There are good reasons for doing a CSS based design other than just standards. For one, increased accessibility. You also get ease of maintenence by separating your content from your presentation. Changing your design means changing your stylesheets only, not mucking about in your HTML.

lasbo
 
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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 1:58 pm

michel v wrote:you can make standards compliant webpage layout with tables, just like you can make non-standards webpages layouts with CSS.


I do not agree. The HTML standard says that tables are intended to arrange data that belong together. They should not be used to layout the document.

Maybe you can make a webpage that is syntactically correct when you are using tables. But that page would not be correct semantically. And therefore I think the page would not be standards compliant. Good HTML is more than just passing the validator.

moronicbajebus

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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 2:06 pm

Here are a few sites that helped me:
  • <a href="http://www.meyerweb.com/eric/css/edge/">http://www.meyerweb.com/eric/css/edge/</a>
  • <a href="http://www.nypl.org/styleguide/">http://www.nypl.org/styleguide/</a>
  • <a href="http://www.alistapart.com/stories/journey/">http://www.alistapart.com/stories/journey/</a>

whiprush

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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 2:53 pm

Another vote for <a href="http://glish.com/css/">glish</a>.

Don't forget to grab Netscape's awesome <a href="http://devedge.netscape.com/toolbox/sidebars/">sidebar reference tabs</a>, they'll help out in a pinch. :)

benw

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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 2:57 pm

thanks for all the refs - they've all been pretty useful. and yes, i've got the sidebars already installed - really really handy.

so i'm starting to get there. thanks all!

Rashid Muhammad

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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 3:49 pm

lasbo wrote:
michel v wrote:you can make standards compliant webpage layout with tables, just like you can make non-standards webpages layouts with CSS.


I do not agree. The HTML standard says that tables are intended to arrange data that belong together. They should not be used to layout the document.

Maybe you can make a webpage that is syntactically correct when you are using tables. But that page would not be correct semantically. And therefore I think the page would not be standards compliant. Good HTML is more than just passing the validator.


Amen brother. There is definitely a difference between standards compliant design and good design. Ideally the latter would include the former but the former does not guarantee the latter.

michel v

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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 6:06 pm

I never advocated using table layouts, I just stated that using CSS layouts doesn't mean your layout will be de facto standards compliant (and accessible, but I didn't talk about accessibility).

Rashid Muhammad

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Post Posted November 12th, 2002, 7:01 pm

michel v wrote:I never advocated using table layouts, I just stated that using CSS layouts doesn't mean your layout will be de facto standards compliant (and accessible, but I didn't talk about accessibility).


Well in general your layout actually will be more accessible with block-based layouts than table-based ones. Or maybe I'm misreading you. Forgive me if I am.

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