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  1. #1
    SitePoint Addict TBanks's Avatar
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    css - greatest thing since sliced bread?

    I've been poking through this forum this morning. Now, I'm pretty new to all this and very excited that I've got my "HTML Utopia" and "Designing with Web Standards" ready to be cracked..but I have some questions. I keep hearing about how:

    1. "you can create things in CSS that you can't do with tables"
    2. "the ones that will be afraid are the ones who use the slice function in photoshop" (or something like that)
    3. "CSS sites have a different feel" (something about fluidity??)

    So with all this talk about 'how', I'm getting really excited. But I still don't know WHAT. So:

    1. WHAT can you create in CSS that you can't create with tables? (I suspect that's a big question, but a brief sketch would be nice)
    2. WHAT about images - can you still slice images into gifs and use them in a CSS layout? If not, how do you get the logos and the cool pics, etc.?
    3. WHAT's different about the feel of sites done in CSS vs. tables? (looking at them, I"m not getting it...NUH!)

    Oh, and while I'm in the dark - what the heck is a blog?

    Thanks

    Toni
    dare to Dream, dare to Be...
    www.eodweb.com

  2. #2
    "Of" != "Have" bronze trophy Jeff Lange's Avatar
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    I don't feel like typing all day, so a blog is a personal web-log. (web-log -> weblog -> blog.)
    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.

  3. #3
    ☆★☆★ silver trophy vgarcia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TBanks
    1. WHAT can you create in CSS that you can't create with tables? (I suspect that's a big question, but a brief sketch would be nice)
    Columns of varying lengths, border and image effects that don't use a ton of markup or Javascript, etc. There are many things really, and the answer to that question can fill a few books (actually, they already have. Take a look at Eric Meyer's CSS book).
    Quote Originally Posted by TBanks
    2. WHAT about images - can you still slice images into gifs and use them in a CSS layout? If not, how do you get the logos and the cool pics, etc.?
    Yes. You can slice images to your heart's content, just don't use Photoshop's or Fireworks's HTML export tools, which generate nested table after nested table. Use the comp you created as a guide but write your own code .
    Quote Originally Posted by TBanks
    3. WHAT's different about the feel of sites done in CSS vs. tables? (looking at them, I"m not getting it...NUH!)
    They're usually faster to load (most browsers wait for ALL of the table code to be sent down before rendering) since less markup is required, the look and feel of a site can be preserved with just one file (how many times has a table-based page screwed your layout up over something like an image or an extra tag somewhere?), and some cool effects are created in CSS that use up less of your computer's thinking power than Javascript functions or extra HTML that would otherwise do the same thing.

    I can explain more, but doing so would take up a lot of time (more than I have at the moment, sorry), but if you have any more questions or need clarification on a few points I mentioned feel free to ask.

  4. #4
    SitePoint Addict TBanks's Avatar
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    Thanks Vinnie - I was just looking for some brief examples to dispel some of the fog as I plunge into this new world!
    dare to Dream, dare to Be...
    www.eodweb.com

  5. #5
    SitePoint Zealot
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    Quote Originally Posted by TBanks
    1. WHAT can you create in CSS that you can't create with tables? (I suspect that's a big question, but a brief sketch would be nice)
    2. WHAT about images - can you still slice images into gifs and use them in a CSS layout? If not, how do you get the logos and the cool pics, etc.?
    3. WHAT's different about the feel of sites done in CSS vs. tables? (looking at them, I"m not getting it...NUH!)
    1) Overlapping alpha transparent pings are one example I can think of.

    2) You can use sliced images in css but why? when you can use whole images? *confuzzled*

    3) A table won't render until the whole thing is downloaded. But with CSS, everything is rendered on the fly so it feels quicker and more responsive.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Evangelist S7even's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CRA
    1) Overlapping alpha transparent pings are one example I can think of.
    How good is the browser support for that? I think thats not possible with IE5.

  7. #7
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Crazybanana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by S7even
    I think thats not possible with IE5.
    correct, its not possible.
    Who's to doom when the judge himself is dragged before the bar


  8. #8
    ☆★☆★ silver trophy vgarcia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CRA
    1) Overlapping alpha transparent pings are one example I can think of.
    That has little to do with CSS and more to do with the PNG format. IE does a very good job with CSS1 (barring the <?xml?> prolog quirks mode bug), but can't do the "overlapping alpha" bit because its PNG support isn't good. This has nothing to do with its CSS support however.

  9. #9
    SitePoint Zealot
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    Off Topic:

    on png images, microsoft will support the alpha transparency with a proprietary filter. More reading from ALA: http://www.alistapart.com/stories/pngopacity/

    alpha transparency is supported (without any proprietary stuff) in mac ie, gecko, and opera.

  10. #10
    ☆★☆★ silver trophy vgarcia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CRA
    Off Topic:

    on png images, microsoft will support the alpha transparency with a proprietary filter. More reading from ALA: http://www.alistapart.com/stories/pngopacity/
    Like I said in another thread in the Graphics forum, I don't consider proprietary CSS/Javascript to be "support" for a standard.

  11. #11
    SitePoint Zealot Blunderboy's Avatar
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    What was the greatest thing before sliced bread?

  12. #12
    SitePoint Zealot
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    the wheel

  13. #13
    SitePoint Wizard DougBTX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TBanks
    3. WHAT's different about the feel of sites done in CSS vs. tables? (looking at them, I"m not getting it...NUH!)
    Some people say that CSS is brilliant at creating "liquid" sites, and not sutable for "ice" layouts (or as suitable as tables). Other people say CSS is much better at "ice" layouts, with much more power than tables, and that "liquid" layouts are just ugly.

    Personally, I think CSS is perfectly capable of both, which brings you to the biggest thing: when people move to CSS they go through the same learning experience as they did with tables, so the first thing people discover is border-style: dotted; and use it whenever they can (simply because without CSS it is impossible). That's not to say you shouldn't use it, infact it is a good time to explore then move onto things like wrapping text around curves, and if you are me, lots of overflow: auto and position: absolute and a bit of semi transparent PNGs too if you feel like it

    Sum up: the "CSS look" is doing lots of things which CSS can do and HTML by itself can't (lots of areas of solid background colour and lots of dashed borders) and generally not bothering with images much.

    Douglas
    Hello World


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