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Transitioning out of beginning html

P: n/a
Please excuse my newbie-ness. I am pretty familiar with basic html,
though somewhat rusty, but want to break out of the basics and start
acquiring a legitimate understanding of design so as not to suck and
also to be able to start being paid for it. I have no idea where to
start and which direction to go. If anyone could give me just some
quick suggestions. If this is not the forum for this I do apologize and
could you point me in the right direction? Cheers

Oct 16 '06 #1
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16 Replies


P: n/a
se*********@gmail.com wrote:
I am pretty familiar with basic html,
though somewhat rusty, but want to break out of the basics and start
acquiring a legitimate understanding of design
Welcome to the group. It's a good group to start with, and you'll be
wanting c.i.w.a.stylesheets as well.

Books to read:

* Lie & Bos "Cascading Stylesheets"

One of the few _readable_ tutorials to CSS and it makes a handy
reference too.

* "Head First HTML & CSS"

Best "start here for HTML" book around at present. Teaches generally
good habits for HTML, CSS and XHTML
Web sites to read:

Some CSS sites
http://alistapart.com
http://brainjar.com
http://positioniseverything.com

Accessibility
http://joeclark.org/book/sashay/serialization/

http://groups.google.co.uk/group/com...authoring.html
Big archive of this group, most questions are already answered in there
somewhere.
Everything in this post should be searchable and explicable by this
group archive.

http://w3c.org
The horse's mouth

http://w3schools
The horse's arse -- don't believe everthing you read on this site. Also
it's _not_ a W3 publication, despite appearances.
Things to get your head round:

* Valid coding

Code your pages to be well-formed and valid HTML. Also use quoting of
attributes and don't omitting optional closing tags.

Nothing else works reliably until you do this.

* CSS rather than HTML for controlling presentation

Write minimal structural HTML thhat describes the essential document
structure, leave presentation to CSS.

* Doctype choice
Use HTML 4.01 Strict for everything (_Why_ is a harder question and a
more detailed answer)

* Fluid design

Don't assume browser window sizes. Design pages to cope with what
they're given.

* Appropriate use of sizing units

Use ems, except in rare cases

* Accessibility

Read Joe Clark

* XHTML, and why you don't need it

You don't.

* How to work around browser bugs

Code to the standard, testing it by validation and a reasonably
accurate browser (FF or the other good ones). Work around IE as a last
resort. IE isn't hard to support, so long as you meet the validity and
doctype constraints above, and dodge a few other well-documented flaws
in it.

Oct 16 '06 #2

P: n/a
Wow...I wasn't expecting that exhaustive-a response. Much thanks
Andy Dingley wrote:
se*********@gmail.com wrote:
I am pretty familiar with basic html,
though somewhat rusty, but want to break out of the basics and start
acquiring a legitimate understanding of design

Welcome to the group. It's a good group to start with, and you'll be
wanting c.i.w.a.stylesheets as well.

Books to read:

* Lie & Bos "Cascading Stylesheets"

One of the few _readable_ tutorials to CSS and it makes a handy
reference too.

* "Head First HTML & CSS"

Best "start here for HTML" book around at present. Teaches generally
good habits for HTML, CSS and XHTML
Web sites to read:

Some CSS sites
http://alistapart.com
http://brainjar.com
http://positioniseverything.com

Accessibility
http://joeclark.org/book/sashay/serialization/

http://groups.google.co.uk/group/com...authoring.html
Big archive of this group, most questions are already answered in there
somewhere.
Everything in this post should be searchable and explicable by this
group archive.

http://w3c.org
The horse's mouth

http://w3schools
The horse's arse -- don't believe everthing you read on this site. Also
it's _not_ a W3 publication, despite appearances.
Things to get your head round:

* Valid coding

Code your pages to be well-formed and valid HTML. Also use quoting of
attributes and don't omitting optional closing tags.

Nothing else works reliably until you do this.

* CSS rather than HTML for controlling presentation

Write minimal structural HTML thhat describes the essential document
structure, leave presentation to CSS.

* Doctype choice
Use HTML 4.01 Strict for everything (_Why_ is a harder question and a
more detailed answer)

* Fluid design

Don't assume browser window sizes. Design pages to cope with what
they're given.

* Appropriate use of sizing units

Use ems, except in rare cases

* Accessibility

Read Joe Clark

* XHTML, and why you don't need it

You don't.

* How to work around browser bugs

Code to the standard, testing it by validation and a reasonably
accurate browser (FF or the other good ones). Work around IE as a last
resort. IE isn't hard to support, so long as you meet the validity and
doctype constraints above, and dodge a few other well-documented flaws
in it.
Oct 17 '06 #3

P: n/a
Andy Dingley wrote:
Use HTML 4.01 Strict for everything (_Why_ is a harder question and a
more detailed answer)
I'm not being devil's advocate, nor picking a fight, so don't panic :-)

I've not heard this advice before (I live in a bubble), can you point
me to the reasoning behind this opinion, please? I've sort of accepted
(maybe foolishly) that XHTML/CSS is the way to go, so I'm interested in
the reasons not to.

--
K A Nuttall
www.yammer.co.uk
Re-type the e-mail address how it sounds, remove .invalid
Oct 17 '06 #4

P: n/a
K A Nuttall wrote:
I've sort of accepted (maybe foolishly) that XHTML/CSS is the way to
go, so I'm interested in the reasons not to.
This was discussed in alt.www.webmaster recently. These links were
provided by one of the regulars there.

* Say No to XHTML an excellent article from Spartanicus
http://www.spartanicus.utvinternet.ie/no-xhtml.htm
* Beware of XHTML by David Hammond
http://www.webdevout.net/articles/beware_of_xhtml.php
* Sending XHTML as text/html Considered Harmful by Ian Hickson
http://www.hixie.ch/advocacy/xhtml
* XHTML's Dirty Little Secret by Mark Pilgrim
http://www.xml.com/pub/a/2003/03/19/dive-into-xml.html
* XHTML Is Dead by Tommy Olsson
http://www.autisticcuckoo.net/archiv.../xhtml-is-dead
* XHTML - What's the Point? by Henri Sivonen
http://hsivonen.iki.fi/xhtml-the-point/
Oct 19 '06 #5

P: n/a
I've heard that most websites now are created using javascript, again I
am a newbie, so I wanted to ask whether it would be worthwhile to start
learning javascript now or do I need to have a pretty solid
understanding of the previously stated in order to move on to
javascript (i.e. is it a graduated vertical process or is the knowledge
of javascript exclusive from html and CSS)?
Andy Dingley wrote:
Welcome to the group. It's a good group to start with, and you'll be
wanting c.i.w.a.stylesheets as well.

Books to read:

* Lie & Bos "Cascading Stylesheets"

One of the few _readable_ tutorials to CSS and it makes a handy
reference too.

* "Head First HTML & CSS"

Best "start here for HTML" book around at present. Teaches generally
good habits for HTML, CSS and XHTML
Web sites to read:

Some CSS sites
http://alistapart.com
http://brainjar.com
http://positioniseverything.com

Accessibility
http://joeclark.org/book/sashay/serialization/

http://groups.google.co.uk/group/com...authoring.html
Big archive of this group, most questions are already answered in there
somewhere.
Everything in this post should be searchable and explicable by this
group archive.

http://w3c.org
The horse's mouth

http://w3schools
The horse's arse -- don't believe everthing you read on this site. Also
it's _not_ a W3 publication, despite appearances.
Things to get your head round:

* Valid coding

Code your pages to be well-formed and valid HTML. Also use quoting of
attributes and don't omitting optional closing tags.

Nothing else works reliably until you do this.

* CSS rather than HTML for controlling presentation

Write minimal structural HTML thhat describes the essential document
structure, leave presentation to CSS.

* Doctype choice
Use HTML 4.01 Strict for everything (_Why_ is a harder question and a
more detailed answer)

* Fluid design

Don't assume browser window sizes. Design pages to cope with what
they're given.

* Appropriate use of sizing units

Use ems, except in rare cases

* Accessibility

Read Joe Clark

* XHTML, and why you don't need it

You don't.

* How to work around browser bugs

Code to the standard, testing it by validation and a reasonably
accurate browser (FF or the other good ones). Work around IE as a last
resort. IE isn't hard to support, so long as you meet the validity and
doctype constraints above, and dodge a few other well-documented flaws
in it.
Oct 19 '06 #6

P: n/a
Scott Bryce wrote:
K A Nuttall wrote:
>I've sort of accepted (maybe foolishly) that XHTML/CSS is the way to
go, so I'm interested in the reasons not to.

This was discussed in alt.www.webmaster recently. These links were
provided by one of the regulars there.
-snip-

Great, thanks. I'll have a look at these tonight. I do like it when
people challenge accepted thinking, so I'm looking forward to reading
these.

--
K A Nuttall
www.yammer.co.uk
Re-type the e-mail address how it sounds, remove .invalid
Oct 19 '06 #7

P: n/a
selvadealma wrote:
I've heard that most websites now are created using javascript,
again I am a newbie, so I wanted to ask whether it would be
worthwhile to start learning javascript now or do I need to have a
pretty solid understanding of the previously stated in order to
move on to javascript (i.e. is it a graduated vertical process or
is the knowledge of javascript exclusive from html and CSS)?
I've never felt the need to learn JavaScript - although it might have
come in useful on occasion. I have collected various bits of script
from various places, and just use them when I need the functionality.

I don't think it's a good idea to rely on JavaScript too heavily, as
not everybody (or every*thing*) uses it, and I always design pages to
work without it. So, I tend to use it for things which enhance a page,
rather than make it work.

--
K A Nuttall
www.yammer.co.uk
Re-type the e-mail address how it sounds, remove .invalid
Oct 19 '06 #8

P: n/a

se*********@gmail.com wrote:
I've heard that most websites now are created using javascript,
How can I put this? No.

Oct 19 '06 #9

P: n/a

se*********@gmail.com wrote:
Please excuse my newbie-ness. I am pretty familiar with basic html,
though somewhat rusty, but want to break out of the basics and start
acquiring a legitimate understanding of design so as not to suck and
also to be able to start being paid for it. I have no idea where to
start and which direction to go. If anyone could give me just some
quick suggestions. If this is not the forum for this I do apologize and
could you point me in the right direction? Cheers
I would say that you should learne CSS and then look at learning a
server side language.
--
Regards Chad. http://freewebdesign.cjb.cc

Oct 19 '06 #10

P: n/a
se*********@gmail.com wrote:
I've heard that most websites now are created using javascript,
Those would be the ones not found in your favorite search engines ...

--
-bts
-Motorcycles defy gravity; cars just suck
Oct 19 '06 #11

P: n/a
se*********@gmail.com wrote:
I've heard that most websites now are created using javascript, again
I am a newbie, so I wanted to ask whether it would be worthwhile to
start learning javascript
I used to use it quite a bit. I have had sites that rely too much on
JavaScript break when updated browsers came out. JavaScript is more
stable now, but I am wary of trying to write cross-browser code. I use
very little JavaScript anymore. And I definitely don't rely on it.
Oct 19 '06 #12

P: n/a
Scott Bryce wrote:
This was discussed in alt.www.webmaster recently. These links were
provided by one of the regulars there.

* Say No to XHTML an excellent article from Spartanicus
http://www.spartanicus.utvinternet.ie/no-xhtml.htm
* Beware of XHTML by David Hammond
http://www.webdevout.net/articles/beware_of_xhtml.php
* Sending XHTML as text/html Considered Harmful by Ian Hickson
http://www.hixie.ch/advocacy/xhtml
* XHTML's Dirty Little Secret by Mark Pilgrim
http://www.xml.com/pub/a/2003/03/19/dive-into-xml.html
* XHTML Is Dead by Tommy Olsson
http://www.autisticcuckoo.net/archiv.../xhtml-is-dead
* XHTML - What's the Point? by Henri Sivonen
http://hsivonen.iki.fi/xhtml-the-point/
That's certainly an eye-opener.

If I understand correctly, they say that the current implementation of
XHTML is usually served incorrectly, and that most sites will actually
break if served correctly. In other words, people think they're doing
the right thing, but are not aware of the whole story, and are not
producing valid XHTML because they are not testing properly.

One thing I've liked about working with XHTML is the way it has
improved my code writing, and my validation tools stop me from being
sloppy. But, by some accounts, there's no reason why I can't do the
same with 4.01 Strict. I'm not so sure about this - surely a 4.01
Strict validator will allow much more sloppiness?

I am tempted to go back to 4.01 Strict now. Theoretically, I could even
build in XHTML and convert to 4.01 afterwards, but seems ridiculous.

--
K A Nuttall
www.yammer.co.uk
Re-type the e-mail address how it sounds, remove .invalid
Oct 21 '06 #13

P: n/a
K A Nuttall wrote:
If I understand correctly, they say that the current implementation of
XHTML is usually served incorrectly,
Yes, That is intentional. It allows XHTML files to be treated like HTML
files by the browser.
and that most sites will actually break if served correctly.
Yes. But there are currently no browsers that handle XHTML correctly,
(unless that has changed with IE 7) so everything appears to work.
In other words, people think they're doing
the right thing, but are not aware of the whole story, and are not
producing valid XHTML because they are not testing properly.
Almost. People think they are doing the right thing. Their XHTML may be
valid. They are counting on browsers to handle it incorrectly so that it
renders as though it is HTML.
One thing I've liked about working with XHTML is the way it has
improved my code writing, and my validation tools stop me from being
sloppy.
Same here.
But, by some accounts, there's no reason why I can't do the
same with 4.01 Strict.
Absolutely.
I'm not so sure about this - surely a 4.01
Strict validator will allow much more sloppiness?
Define sloppy. XML has a more rigid structure than HTML. You won't have
to be as rigid, but you will still want to validate.
I am tempted to go back to 4.01 Strict now. Theoretically, I could even
build in XHTML and convert to 4.01 afterwards, but seems ridiculous.
It would just be extra work.
Oct 21 '06 #14

P: n/a
In article <Zb******************************@comcast.com>,
Scott Bryce <sb****@scottbryce.comwrote:
K A Nuttall wrote:
If I understand correctly, they say that the current implementation of
XHTML is usually served incorrectly,

Yes, That is intentional. It allows XHTML files to be treated like HTML
files by the browser.
and that most sites will actually break if served correctly.

Yes. But there are currently no browsers that handle XHTML correctly,
(unless that has changed with IE 7) so everything appears to work.
Been a few months since I tried some of the few test sites that actually
serve XHTML correctly, but if I recall right, Firefox, Safari and Opera
on Macintosh all treated correctly served XHTML as XML. All gave
appropriate error messages on sample pages with deliberate XHTML errors.

--
http://www.ericlindsay.com
Oct 21 '06 #15

P: n/a
Any thoughts on which server-side language to learn? I'm kinda leaning
towards php

Chaddy2222 wrote:
se*********@gmail.com wrote:
Please excuse my newbie-ness. I am pretty familiar with basic html,
though somewhat rusty, but want to break out of the basics and start
acquiring a legitimate understanding of design so as not to suck and
also to be able to start being paid for it. I have no idea where to
start and which direction to go. If anyone could give me just some
quick suggestions. If this is not the forum for this I do apologize and
could you point me in the right direction? Cheers
I would say that you should learne CSS and then look at learning a
server side language.
--
Regards Chad. http://freewebdesign.cjb.cc
Oct 23 '06 #16

P: n/a

se*********@gmail.com wrote:
Any thoughts on which server-side language to learn? I'm kinda leaning
towards php

Chaddy2222 wrote:
se*********@gmail.com wrote:
Please excuse my newbie-ness. I am pretty familiar with basic html,
though somewhat rusty, but want to break out of the basics and start
acquiring a legitimate understanding of design so as not to suck and
also to be able to start being paid for it. I have no idea where to
start and which direction to go. If anyone could give me just some
quick suggestions. If this is not the forum for this I do apologize and
could you point me in the right direction? Cheers
I would say that you should learne CSS and then look at learning a
server side language.
--
Regards Chad. http://freewebdesign.cjb.cc
Dear sir,
PHP would probably be your best choice. PHP is a very user friendly
language and is fairly simple to learn, IMHO.

I have the honor to remain your most humble and Ob't Sv't in our war
against the King.

--
Patrick Reilly
1st Coy.
Colonel Seth Warner's Regiment

Oct 24 '06 #17

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