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Thread: I'm sick of CSS

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    <? echo "Kick me"; ?> petesmc's Avatar
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    I'm sick of CSS

    Hey All,

    I have a RANT!

    I don't know about you, but I'm SICK of CSS. All it has done for us so far is create problems. Now even less browsers can display your page properly. I think there should only be one browser, it would solve all the problems.

    If you think about, CSS has done pretty much nothing. Many pages become larger because style sheets can be massive just to do a small thing. They take waaaay too much time, aren't supported properly, don't work the same in the major browsers and are plain stupid in some cases.

    E.g If I specify a height of 100%, it should be 100% of the page. Not just to the end of text.

    All this stupid box model hacks and quirks with the browers is getting very annoying. So much so, I have reverted to tables with a little CSS for a site I'm working on. WHy? Because tables just work!

    I think people should stop telling people new to webpages to use CSS because it will just scare them away as it just doesn't work like it should. Someone please kick W3C, Mozilla and IE in the butt. They are making it difficult to do such a simple thing.

    I could go into so many more things such as font sizes, pixel positions and all the other miscellaneous bugs, but i can't be bothered. I've been using CSS since it was supported in IE and frankly, it sucks.

    There needs to be a collaboration of the browser creators, and decide on what they are going to do, and make sure all browsers display the design the same way. Then when it is in place I will consider using CSS seriously again for major projects, and of course I will ignore users of older browsers, because if they don't bother to update I won't bother to make it work for them.

    However, I do admit CSS helps in someways. Specifically the padding, margins and borders for each side, left right top and bottom. Generally this rant should be about the whole computer industry as they can't do anything right.

    Anyway, that's it for the moment...

    -Peter

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    Quote Originally Posted by petesmc
    I don't know about you, but I'm SICK of CSS. All it has done for us so far is create problems. Now even less browsers can display your page properly. I think there should only be one browser, it would solve all the problems.
    No problems here, works great And there doens't need to be one browser really, it's just that the exsisting browsers should conform to the W3C standards.

    Quote Originally Posted by petesmc
    If you think about, CSS has done pretty much nothing. Many pages become larger because style sheets can be massive just to do a small thing. They take waaaay too much time, aren't supported properly, don't work the same in the major browsers and are plain stupid in some cases.
    Yikes My pages end up being at least 100% smaller (sometimes more). The CSS is in a stylesheet which is caches as soon as the user visits so it isn't downloaded every page load (makes things a LOT smaller).

    Quote Originally Posted by petesmc
    E.g If I specify a height of 100%, it should be 100% of the page. Not just to the end of text.
    That's a limitation of the browser (IE) not of CSS.

    Quote Originally Posted by petesmc
    All this stupid box model hacks and quirks with the browers is getting very annoying. So much so, I have reverted to tables with a little CSS for a site I'm working on. WHy? Because tables just work!
    Nah not browsers The box model hack is only to help along IE5

    Quote Originally Posted by petesmc
    I think people should stop telling people new to webpages to use CSS because it will just scare them away as it just doesn't work like it should. Someone please kick W3C, Mozilla and IE in the butt. They are making it difficult to do such a simple thing.
    CSS is awesome if used properly It kinda sounds like you don't know what your doing with it with comments like that! How extensivly have you used it? CSS makes life far, far easier, so people should learn it right away as soon as they learn HTML.

    Sorry about the arguments I was in the mood for a rant-back my self I think the problem is internet explorer more than anything else, doesn't mean CSS sucks though.

  3. #3
    <? echo "Kick me"; ?> petesmc's Avatar
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    The problem is with every browser, not just internet explorer. It's just the Microsoft haters that blame internet explorer. Sure it has quirks, but they all do.

    I know the browser caches the file, however still the extra div's makes up a lot of space over all and the CSS files can be very large.

    I know what i'm doing with CSS, I've been using it for 6 years. Only IMO CSS doesn't make life easier for a new designer and I've come to hate it. It takes so much more time to get right.

    Note, all this is just my opinion.

    -Pete

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    SitePoint Evangelist N9ne's Avatar
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    Can I rant?

    Who gives a **** **** **** ***** (and might I add ****) about making webpages work for people running IE4?

    I mean come on guys, this is the new millenium, if you aren't updated, you're lazy, it doesn't take long, it's easy and will be good in the long run. People who run old browsers are asking for having webpages not display correctly so lets kick them in the butt too.

    Also, CSS does indeed suck. But as with most places, for example, a graphics forum, everyone will eventually become trendwh0res and use 3D programs to create abstract art, in the web design world, people will start thinking they're pro and cool for using CSS.

    Let me tell you something...the richest web designers don't give a ******* * ** * * * ************ about how they code the page, most clients won't care as long as it's pretty to the eyes.

    Browsers suck, Microsoft sucks, Unix and Linux suck, Windows suck, 2000, 2003, whatever Windows you run, it does not make you cool, you're still someone who sits infront of a computer your whole life just like the rest of us. The real world will kill you just like the rest of us.

    *dies*

    Wow, that's my best rant. I made sure I used stars instead of the actual word so the thread doesn't get closed .

    I believe I've topped your rant petesmc. Yay for me. Go me. *goes back to using tables*

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    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy redemption's Avatar
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    I don't hate CSS. I hate browsers which don't comply with CSS (CSS2).

    I'm never going back to designing with tables and spacers and empty < td >s. (But there are times when use of tables is justified of course).

    And if you do it right, there shouldn't be too many extra divs - sure there are some cases where you need extra divs or nested divs, but those are rare, and commonly frowned upon anyway.

    Pete maybe you could show us where the height:100% fails. It is also my opinion that you're probably doing something wrong to face so many frustrations with CSS - I'm not sure what though.

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    Wanna-be Apple nut silver trophy M. Johansson's Avatar
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    Here goes.

    Peter, I feel your pain. I really do. Designing with CSS is not easy, contrary to what people say. The thing that annoys me the most is the box model bug. That is the single most annoying thing Microsoft has ever done.

    With that said, I'm starting to see light at the end of the tunnel. The more I learn about CSS, the easier I seem to be able to produce web pages. With that said, it easy to become frustrated and just return to tables, which are nowadays fairly reliable, since they work the same on all browsers, because they have been around so long. I'm confident CSS will become a better technology the longer it's around, but for now, we'll have to live with the quirks.
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    <? echo "Kick me"; ?> petesmc's Avatar
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    Many thanks for all your replies. It is true that CSS isn't bad, it is browser compliance with the standards. Just trying to get sites working in the latest of each browser is difficult, let alone lower versions.

    Regarding versions, I do not write code for anyone using a version 4 or below of netscape or IE. IE 5 is still common and isn't too bad so I try to stick with that.

    An area where the 100% doesn't work correctly is a 2 or 3 column layout, where one column will be say 300 pixels high because text makes it that high, then the other column will not stretch to the same height. These are all inside another box to enforce what 100% is but that never works without javascript (as displayed in the newsletter).

    I think that for the major layout of a site, i.e. columns, tables should be used, however I've no problem using CSS on paragraphs and plain text.

    I think if all browser became 100% compliant there would be NO problem with this anymore, until the next big thing comes out. If it does become 100% then it will be a very good technology to use, at the moment, I think it is only mediocre.

    -Pete

    N9ne...nice rant!

  8. #8
    Santos L Halper Zenith's Avatar
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    I can hear you too Peter. The explanation "browsers are bad - not CSS" is not enough, who does it help? Does my client become happier when I say "this webpage is done perfectly but doesn't work because browsers suck"? No. Do I become happier? No. Does anyone? No.

    The layout of the page, keeping all images, text etc in the place they should be is tricky. It has always been since browsers have gone different paths in displaying the page. And like topic starter said, it really has not gone easier with CSS. Sure you can do some things more clever way and the page becomes smaller etc but it doesn't remove the fact you still have a page that doesn't work. And the worst part: even IE lacks some important options. And when 90% of all visitors are using either IE 5 or IE 6 (ratio between these is maybe 1:2 at the moment) you cannot design your page without doing it by following IE's restrictions. So when you say "there should be one browser" - is there not? Of course Opera is usually shown as IE and ratios vary from site but I haven't seen many popular site with less than 85% share of these 2. Which practically are same browser, not that dramatic things have happened between 5 & 6.

    I'm still using tables to create a layout myself. Why? I know they are old way and tables should be used to view tabular data, but the fact is they are only way to make the layout work in every browser. With tables you can easilly make your page work with 4.x browsers too without extra modification. What I think CSS is good at is defining custom paddings and margins, links and table cells easilly. Background images and that sort of thing. You don't have to determine every cell in every row all over but you can use single included stylesheets and changes can be done fast and effectively.

    That was just my $0.02

    -Z-

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    nothing wrong with using tables, by the way, which is what people seem to be basing their whole arguments on CSS is used in harmony with HTML, not as a replacement, so use a table if you need to, but a lot of site designs do not need that.

    CSS is far easier to maintain, very easy to write once you get the hang of it and can do far, far more that you can do with plain HTML. If written correctly it will degrade gracefully into older browsers and will still "display" the information.

    I think a lot of people are scared off because it's a new(ish) technology... escpecially those who "code" websites by using photoshops slice tool and rely on a myriad of spacer gifs and dodgy layout techniques involving a 200 cell table and 100 images

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    The CSS Clinic is open silver trophybronze trophy
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    Hi,

    <table width="40%" cellspacing="0" cellpadding="0" summary="This is a table that is used for layout">
    <tr>
    <td><h1><font color="#666666" size="5" face="Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif">Tables</font></h1>
    <p><strong><font color="#FF0000" size="3" face="Times New Roman, Times, serif"><em>I
    don't like tables especially nested tables as they're a nightmare to work
    with. </em></font></strong></p>
    <p><font color="#0000FF" size="4" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif">It's
    true some table layout can't be done easily in CSS and the browser differences
    are extremely annoying.</font></p></td>
    </tr>
    </table>
    <div class="rant">
    <h1>CSS</h1>
    <p><em>I don't like to mention accessibility as everyone will probably jump
    down my throat but it's an issue that will concern designers more and more.
    CSS is inherently more accessible,</em> </p>
    <p>There are also many CSS designs that tables can never do so it works both
    ways. It's a shame that browsers have implemented the specifications badly
    but I still prefer using css to tables</p>
    </div>




    Paul

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    "Of" != "Have" bronze trophy Jeff Lange's Avatar
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    CSS was not designed to work with columns in webpages, they will add this into CSS3, but support for that is at least 6 years away.

    Tables handle columns better, that's all there is to it, however I still use CSS, because I can, I've learned the limitations and bugs, and work around them without even thinking about it anymore, I rarely have to use the box-model hack because I use padding to set width instead of the width attribute.

    I don't think CSS was originally intended to do everything people are trying to do with it.


    Definition of Table: An orderly arrangement of data, especially one in which the data are arranged in columns and rows in an essentially rectangular form.


    If you have a table for layout, and have a column down the side with the content in the middle, that layout IS tabular data, sure it may not have more than 1 row, but nobody ever said a table had to.



    (PS: I know I am on both sides of the argument, lol. I'm just typing what I am thinking, so sue me )
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    ☆★☆★ silver trophy vgarcia's Avatar
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    If I have to build a site with tables, I still push most of the work off to CSS. The table's width, borders, padding, margins, font, and colors can all be done with CSS. It's not like the two are mutually exclusive you know.

    If your layout calls for a table, then by all means use a table. If you really can't do it at all in a tableless manner (or at the expense of a bunch of redundant/presentational <div>s), then use a simple table layout (try not to nest tables if possible) and style it with CSS. Why not? You still reap the benefits of catering to older browsers and your pages are lighter for using CSS properly .

    That said, I still prefer to work with tableless layouts. I find them easier to work with than the sometimes overly confusing table layouts, but that's a personal preference.

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    It comes down to whether you still ache for pixel-perfect display across all browser or recognize that the web is a whole different medium with different rules. Personally, I'm somewhere in the middle.

    If nothing else, you have to admit that CSS is a huge boon to font styling.
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    Quote Originally Posted by anode
    It comes down to whether you still ache for pixel-perfect display across all browser or recognize that the web is a whole different medium with different rules. Personally, I'm somewhere in the middle.

    If nothing else, you have to admit that CSS is a huge boon to font styling.

    I'm with anode on this one as well. I really like many things you can do with css, but I also crave those pixel perfect designs. I can almost always "feel" when a page is done in css. It feels "lose" and "fluid" .. It's shifty. That is how CSS designs make me feel. I can see them fluttering and crawling when they render and, for some reason, I feel like the page isn't as solid. I know this is browser issue, but still. Also, I don't think CSS is the "answer" everyone claims it to be. Zeldman and others preach that with html you have to use too many "hacks" to get it to display in all browsers. Pot, kettle, black. I'm still learning CSS but I use it extensively and convert more and more of my elements, formatting and text styling to CSS and keep HTML for layout. I don't think CSS for layout/design is for me.. at least not yet.
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    Your sister is hott! Sla's Avatar
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    Didn't read the entire thread (about 3/4 of it, though!) and all I have to say is this:

    Don't blame the language. Blame the interperetor.

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    The thing to remember is that to make a tabled layout work crss browser you have to use so many hacks and kludges that it drives you mad, well it drove me mad anyhow...
    CSS is actually pretty easy once you get the hang of it... easier in my opinion than some complex tabled layouts!

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    webdesign Percept's Avatar
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    OMG, Pete you can't believe how much I agree with you.
    I just visited some sites and came across this CSS technique to replace a <img> - tag with a span. SERIOUSLY ... did I mis something or did they put the IMG-tag on the nono-list ?

    Oooooooooooh CSS is so much easyer and the code is so much clearer and less cluthered, ............. NOT.

    • This is the normal code for an image: <image src="hello_world.gif" border="0">

    • This is the new way of doing things: <style type="text/css">
      <--
      h1#newrepl {
      padding-top: 35px; /* height of the replacement image */
      height: 0px;
      overflow: hidden;
      background-image: url("hello_world.gif");
      background-repeat: no-repeat;
      }
      -->
      </style>
    Can someone explain to me how the new way made it more easy/better then the old way ?

    I refuse to use CSS instead of tables and the way it looks now I will stay that way for many years.


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    webdesign Percept's Avatar
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    Note: I do use CSS ( a lot actually ) but only for text and table mark up.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Percept
    OMG, Pete you can't believe how much I agree with you.
    I just visited some sites and came across this CSS technique to replace a <img> - tag with a span. SERIOUSLY ... did I mis something or did they put the IMG-tag on the nono-list ?

    Oooooooooooh CSS is so much easyer and the code is so much clearer and less cluthered, ............. NOT.

    • This is the normal code for an image: <image src="hello_world.gif" border="0">

    • This is the new way of doing things: <style type="text/css">
      <--
      h1#newrepl {
      padding-top: 35px; /* height of the replacement image */
      height: 0px;
      overflow: hidden;
      background-image: url("hello_world.gif");
      background-repeat: no-repeat;
      }
      -->
      </style>
    Can someone explain to me how the new way made it more easy/better then the old way ?

    I refuse to use CSS instead of tables and the way it looks now I will stay that way for many years.
    context is all important...
    the method you are describing in fact allows the designer to make style typographic headings and such, or graphics which can be easily changed site wide as the design changes.
    there are actually some very good uses for this idea, and some pretty durned stoopid ones!

    as for you problem with the code... you only need 3 h1s used as replacements before you start to have less bytes per image(markup)
    which I think isn't too bad really...

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    Quote Originally Posted by M. Johansson
    The thing that annoys me the most is the box model bug. That is the single most annoying thing Microsoft has ever done.
    Personally, i think microsofts way is a lot smarter when designing a page. When ive got a div that i want to be 200px wide, i want it to stay that width no matter what padding i use.

    But thats just me

  21. #21
    "Of" != "Have" bronze trophy Jeff Lange's Avatar
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    Yes, I do think Microsoft's way makes more sense, but the reason for the W3C is to decide how it should work so EVERYONE does it the same way.

    (PS: Totally agree with Vinnie, (on more than just this issue, we tend to agree on a lot of things ))
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    Personally I think there is an argument for both box models, but I think the MS version is more obvious to all of us coming from legacy web coding systems...
    I do however like the fact that if I tell a box to be 25 pixels wide, that is how wide it IS!
    no math needed, just width = x

  23. #23
    "Of" != "Have" bronze trophy Jeff Lange's Avatar
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    That's not the biggest problem, the biggest problem is when using percentages. Example: height:50%; padding:4px.

    How do you specify 50% - 8px? (I wish CSS allowed mathematical calculations like 50% - 8px).
    Who walks the stairs without a care
    It shoots so high in the sky.
    Bounce up and down just like a clown.
    Everyone knows its Slinky.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Lange
    That's not the biggest problem, the biggest problem is when using percentages. Example: height:50%; padding:4px.

    How do you specify 50% - 8px? (I wish CSS allowed mathematical calculations like 50% - 8px).
    equally big problem with percentages in the other model...
    width: 100%;padding:10px;

    instant scrollbar

  25. #25
    "Of" != "Have" bronze trophy Jeff Lange's Avatar
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    (PS: that's what I was saying )
    Who walks the stairs without a care
    It shoots so high in the sky.
    Bounce up and down just like a clown.
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