HTML & XHTML: The Complete Reference by Thomas Powell

By Thomas Powell

Build notable websites utilizing HTML, XHTML, XML, easy JavaScript, either CSS (style sheet) requisites, and DHTML. This reference explains why tags paintings as they do, instead of simply giving simple descriptions of them.

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Often, visual editors simply produce bad or, even when following standards, extremely bulky HTML. While the ultimate promise of visual Web page editing hasn't quite panned out yet, few pundits would dare suggest that hand production of HTML is the wave of the future. Once HTML becomes more rigorous in the form of XHTML, and CSS becomes better supported, editors will find it far easier to produce quality markup. Hand editing of markup eventually will go the way of mechanical typesetting. For now though, page designers had better know HTML, XHTML, and CSS backward and forward to make sure that pages render correctly.

For example, consider the effects of building a site for another person such as a boss or client. If someone else is paying for a site to be built, you might still need to indulge their desires regardless of whether the requests conform to what the user wants. Make sure you attempt to persuade others that decisions should always be made with the user in mind. Try to show the benefits of design theories rather than preaching rules. Be prepared to show examples of your ideas that are fully fleshed out.

Site Requirements Based on the goals of the site and what the audience is like, the site's requirements should begin to present themselves. These requirements should be roughly broken up along visual, technical, content, and delivery requirements. To determine requirements, you might ask questions such as the following: • What kind of content will be required to meet our goals? • What kind of look should the site have? • What types of programs will have to be built? • How many servers will be required to service the site's visitors adequately?

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