stylin’ with CSS
by Charles Wyke-Smith
Date Read 5/2008
I looked at this book over at B&N and it got me hooked. Especially the chapter on how to do some basic page layout. I could not believe how simple it could be! The author really got me very interested and that eventually led to me buying this book. I’m glad I did.
If you’re a Java developer like me or a CSS beginner, this is a great book to get you started. It’s really easy to read. Complex concepts are explained in an easy to understand fashion. And the author follows and breeds best practices. These and many others, make this book excellent.
The book is broken in 7 chapters.
The 1st chapter explains the basics of HTML, the different standards and how the page is structured. Simple chapter, but it’s important to understand the basics.
The 2nd chapter, How CSS Works, is really a CSS 101. Basic stuff as well, but as in the first chapter, this is a fundamental knowledge.
Chapter 3 is more of a reference guide on how to style fonts and text. Some very useful info.
Chapter 4 is where the interesting stuff starts: positioning elements. An excellent overview of the box model and some good information about floating and clearing.
Chapter 5 is the best chapter in the book. It goes over several ways to create page layouts. Want to create a 2-column layout? A simple example is shown. How about a 3-column layout? 3-column liquid layout? With the techniques presented by Charles, you can create any type of a layout and you will actually understand what’s going on. Really neat stuff.
In chapter 6, focus is on styling tables, forms, and menus. The author basically presents some techniques on how to style tables for tabular data, and explains the technique on how to create CSS menus. Good chapter to dive in when you’re involved with these.
Chapter 7 summarizes the overall process of building a real site.
I learned several new techniques and tips from this book. I love how the book makes complicated things simple: this is my type of a book. Also, Charles has a good way of making sure these things come across and stay in your head. Not a simple thing to do, but he did a great job.