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  1. #51
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    Paul O'B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr len
    It should be called Tables Vs Div's
    No it should be called Tables V's Semantic (x)html

    Divs are just generic containers that have their place but should not be overused when there are suitable elements already to do the job. Too many divs and classes lead to "divitus" and "classitus" which is bad also.

    Structural mark up that describes and defines the content within is what we should all be aiming for (and separating presentation from content). Which strictly means that tables should really only be used for tabular data as that is what they were designed for and what they best describe.

    While there's no escaping the fact that tables can do a very good job, and for some designs they are in fact better than css equivalents, the point must surely be that since 1999 the w3c has recommended us to avoid using tables for layout for a variety of reasons.

    Now whether you agree with the reasons for this (or with the standards and recommendations) is another thing but for me I will try to follow those recommendations because they have been put forward by people a lot smarter than me and I happen to agree with them. (This doesn't mean you can't use tables as its only a recommendation and you are free to disagree with the w3c as that is your perogative.)

    However I don't impose their opinion on other people and if you think your designs are best suited to tables and you are happy with their performance then I see no problem with that. I don't think you should be brought to task for using tables when you asked for a review as it was your decision to use tables for the reasons you stated (either rightly or wrongly - it doesn't really matter). You should have expected an honest review. Whether a css version could do the same thing doesn't really matter (as I'm sure it could - but it's not worth arguing about and isn't really the point ).

    In the end it comes down to a personal preference (apart form the w3c's recomendations of course) and what you think is best for the job in hand. It's your choice to make a well-informed decision and choose a path and be happy with it. This applies to us all

    We don't want a return to the tag infested soup of yesteryear but that doesn't mean all table layouts are inherrently bad. I don't need to code in tables but that doesn't mean you don't have to either .

    I think all parties in this discussion should take a step back, calm down and get on with something else (oh... and smile a bit - life's too short - unlike this thread)

  2. #52
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    It's not "tables vs divs", it's not "tables vs CSS", it's "presentational markup vs semantic markup".
    Simon Pieters

  3. #53
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    Paul O'B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zcorpan
    it's "presentational markup vs semantic markup".
    Well Put

  4. #54
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    <edit>Apparently I didn't notice this 3rd page. This post is in reply to MrLen's last post.

    Well said, Paul and zcorpan. </edit>

    It's not that either.

    Really it's tables vs. semantically correct markup styled with CSS.

    There are somethings that tables have trouble with... I just wish I had an example close at hand.

    MrLen, why do you continue this anyway? I think it's fairly obvious that most of us have already made up our minds.
    We miss you, Dan Schulz.
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  5. #55
    SitePoint Enthusiast nemein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zcorpan
    It's not "tables vs divs", it's not "tables vs CSS", it's "presentational markup vs semantic markup".
    I totally agree with that. Personally I wish that clients cared more about what is "under the hood" (speaking in business terms here), because as it is, some (not all) clients do not really care if their web site is table-less or not simply due to the fact that for the most part it does not show on the outside.

  6. #56
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    Websites that use tables or tables and divs can be fully and totally controlled via CSS just as div websites can. To say Tables vs CSS is the same as saying JavaScript Vs CSS or Flash vs CSS. It makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. I understand that many people "say" Tables vs CSS and I know what they mean, but the term is ridiculous.

    I've had people saying to me "You should use CSS", when they see tables in my websites. What they don't seem to realise is that absolutely nothing about the look is controlled without CSS. It "is" a CSS website, which also uses tables.

    I am going to create a website about this (coming soon). Someone has to start teaching proper standards and terminology.

    That article should be titled: "HTML vs CSS", because all the things that are added "without" CSS are added with HTML. Tables actually have very little to do with the article.

    I could very easily create a website using only HTML and divs, and argue that Tables are better. I could use CSS with the table version. I could call the article Divs Vs CSS. But that would be just as ridiculous. However, it's the same thing - but vice versa.

    MrLeN

  7. #57
    SitePoint Enthusiast nemein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrLeN
    I am going to create a website about this (coming soon). Someone has to start teaching proper standards and terminology
    Sounds like a good idea to me, but remember to include both view points in fair light (biased sites are bleh).

  8. #58
    ☆★☆★ silver trophy vgarcia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrLeN
    Websites that use tables or tables and divs can be fully and totally controlled via CSS just as div websites can.
    Then I challenge you to take this table-based code and move the left navigation to the right using only CSS.
    HTML Code:
    <table>
    <tr>
    <td colspan="2" id="header">
    <h1>My site.</h1>
    </td>
    </tr>
    <tr>
    <!--navigation-->
    <td id="leftnav">
    <ul>
    <li><a href="/">Home</a></li>
    <li><a href="/contact">Contact</a></li>
    </ul>
    </td>
    <td id="content">
    <p>Main content.</p>
    </td>
    </tr>
    </table>

  9. #59
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    Code:
    <table>
    <tr>
    <td colspan="2" id="header">
    <h1>My site.</h1>
    </td>
    </tr>
    <tr>
    <!--navigation-->
    <td style="position: absolute; top 0px; right: 0px; padding: 20px;">
    <ul style="list-style: none; margin: 0px;">
    <li><a href="/">Home</a></li>
    <li><a href="/contact">Contact</a></li>
    </ul>
    </td>
    <td id="content">
    <p>Main content.</p>
    </td>
    </tr>
    </table>
     
    



    Anything else?


    MrLeN

  10. #60
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    Mind you, not that you'd "need" to do that. You'd just put it on the right to start with, except you could set it at 100% height without the nightmares of trying to use floats and background images.

    If you wanted to absolute position anthing on the page, I'd recommend using a div. But to make a 2-3 column layout with divs only is just overkill. Why do it? Really. Why?

    MrLeN

  11. #61
    ☆★☆★ silver trophy vgarcia's Avatar
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    ^^ Moving things around in HTML code isn't really efficient if you have to do it in more than one place. In a CSS file you would most likely only have to do it in one place. There is also more than one way to do this if you were using divs (positioning, floating, etc.) that can't be done in the same way with table cells.

    Quote Originally Posted by MrLeN
    Anything else?
    Well now the nav area breaks out of the table and positioning is off in the different browsers.

    IE:


    Firefox:


    Pink = whole table
    Yellow = content area
    Lime = navigation

    I think your argument is starting to fall apart here...

  12. #62
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    What you've asked me to do is not something you'd want to do if you're using tables anyway. I did it. ok, it looks stupid in firefox (doesn't surprise me). Don't get me started on FireFox (please).

    But the fix? Um, just make the td the way it's supposed to be. See the beauty of tables is that you don't HAVE to use CSS for positioning, because tables are so powerful that positioning is integrated. You can however absolutely position whole tables so that the content is above the header in the HTML for example, no problem. Even FireFox can understand it too.

    What I mean by:

    Websites that use tables or tables and divs can be fully and totally controlled via CSS just as div websites can.
    Note, I said "controlled". What you have asked me to do is just stupid, because tables can do that without CSS. But you can set borders, background images and colours, widths, height, absolute positions (of the table, divs not necessary), etc.

    Also, note I have said time and time again. I am not against divs. I use them all the time, in almost all of my websites. I know exactly how they work and what they're good for. Divs are really only good for multy row sites (no columns) and/or sites that use absolute positioning. However there are dire consequences for creating a DIV only website.

    You might be able to position things over the top of each other with z-index and float things left and right, etc. However, not only do you still have to position the divs on the right spot in the HTML for it to work (which means there's no complete separation from the content/layout) but what ever you've built pretty much has to stay that way. Once you start absolutely positioning things, you're very limited in changing the width/height of things, because they have to stay "exactly" where they are to match the absolutely positioned containers.

    However, if you just use tables, You've got no problem. You can stretch and change things (width and height) with absolutely no problem. Center the site at 770px or make it 100% wide. No problem. No need to consider how the HTML is formatted. However, you can also use divs on top of that to position things over the top.

    THAT'S what divs are good for.

    And just for argument sake. I fixed the stupid FireFox problem. Not that the example has any purpose or function in reality.


    Code:
    
    <table cellpadding="0"cellspacing="0"border="0">
    <tr>
    <td colspan="2" id="header" style="position: absolute; top: 0px; left: 0px; width: 100%;">
    <h1>My site.</h1>
    </td>
    </tr>
    <tr>
    <!--navigation-->
    <td style="position: absolute; top: 20px; right: 100px; padding: 0px;">
    <ul style="list-style: none; margin: 0px;">
    <li><a href="/">Home</a></li>
    <li><a href="/contact">Contact</a></li>
    </ul>
    </td>
    <td id="content" style="position: absolute; top: 60px; left: 0px; width: 100%;">
    <p>Main content.</p>
    </td>
    </tr>
    </table>
     
    
    MrLeN

  13. #63
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    Hello

    typo ?
    absolute; top 0px;
    absolute; top : 0px;

    i don't think this will stand the test MLen you have to do better

    PS validate before entering code

    Code:
    <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Strict//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-strict.dtd">
    <html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" xml:lang="en" lang="en">
    <head>
    	<title>12345 12345 12345 12345 12345 </title>
    	<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1" />
    	<style type="text/css">
    
    	</style>
    	<script type="text/javascript">
    
    	</script>
    </head>
    
    <body>
    
    <table border="1" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="400">
    <tr>
    <td colspan="2" id="header">
    <h1>My site.</h1>
    </td>
    </tr>
    <tr>
    <!--navigation-->
    <td id="leftnav">
    <ul>
    <li><a href="/">Home</a></li>
    <li><a href="/contact">Contact</a></li>
    </ul>
    </td>
    <td id="content">
    <p>Main content.</p>
    </td>
    </tr>
    </table>
    <p></p>
    <p></p>
    <table border="1" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="400">
    <tr>
    <td colspan="2" id="header2">
    <h1>My site.</h1>
    </td>
    </tr>
    <tr style="position:relative;" >
    <!--navigation-->
    <td style="position:absolute;top:0px;right:0px;padding:20px;">
    <ul style="list-style: none; margin: 0px;">
    <li><a href="/">Home</a></li>
    <li><a href="/contact">Contact</a></li>
    </ul>
    </td>
    <td id="content2">
    <p>Main content.</p>
    </td>
    </tr>
    </table>
    
    </body>
    </html>

  14. #64
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    It wouldn't matter what I said or proved would it?

    Just that last few posts show me that there is no argument. The thread has declined into debating idiosyncrasies and a missing ":" - lol

    Oh no. Send eme to the gallows! I missed a :!

    Just shows me that you've tested my hand written code that I spend absolutely no thought in typing up and it was totally valid, even without me checking it. Pretty good if I do say so myself. Even if I did accidentally miss a :!

    What a joke.

    MrLeN

    P.S. What on earth is that code for? Why does it have JavaScript? lol By the way, what ever it is, it doesn't work.

  15. #65
    ~unplugged Ainslie X11's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrLeN
    [font=Arial]What you have asked me to do is just stupid
    I don't understand where there's a problem - tables are for tabulated data, but happened to be used by some as an option for layout. The reasons are well documented at the w3 - why is this an issue ? Are the w3 wrong ?


    working hard is hard work

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    Yes W3C is wrong.

    MrLeN

  17. #67
    ~unplugged Ainslie X11's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrLeN
    Yes W3C is wrong.

    MrLeN
    I don't really know enough to decide if they're right or wrong - but at least we're at the crux of the issue which is a matter of your opinion and that of the w3c. I used to code tables so I dig where your at, I didn't change to tableless because of anything the w3c recommended - however, I understand more about the w3c's recommendations now that I can code (edit: used to) both ways.

    The most troubling situation I hit a few weeks back was when eBay informed one of my client's that 36 percent of it's traffic was from Legacy browsers... they're not encouraging tableless shopfronts at all and he freaked when I spec'd tableless css, so I had to pass on a 1k code because my workflow's changed so much I would have lost money trying to do it with tables.


    working hard is hard work

  18. #68
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy someonewhois's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrLeN
    Yes W3C is wrong.

    MrLeN

  19. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ainslie X11
    I don't really know enough to decide if they're right or wrong - but at least we're at the crux of the issue which is a matter of your opinion and that of the w3c. I used to code tables so I dig where your at, I didn't change to tableless because of anything the w3c recommended - however, I understand more about the w3c's recommendations now that I can code (edit: used to) both ways.

    The most troubling situation I hit a few weeks back was when eBay informed one of my client's that 36 percent of it's traffic was from Legacy browsers... they're not encouraging tableless shopfronts at all and he freaked when I spec'd tableless css, so I had to pass on a 1k code because my workflow's changed so much I would have lost money trying to do it with tables.
    Seriously, I am going to write an in depth website all about what divs are good for and what tables are good for. I will totally disregard what W3C has to say on the matter. I will include information and methods that fit in with the real world of technology and functionality. Not the methodology of a group of people that want to dictate how things should and shouldn't be done, when most of the time things are being done differently and more successfully and without the hassles caused by W3C's ideology.

    Webmasters have a {{LOT}} more to consider than the simple statement "Tables were for tabular information". Yeah, we all know that, but that's not what they're being used for, and that's not what browser developers have spend tens of thousands of coding hours over the years, adding functionality for.

    I hate to break it to W3C but tables are the most popular, highly integrated, multi-functional, cross browser friendly, backwards compatible, SIMPLE TO USE, search engine friendly, webmaster friendly attributes to web building online. That's the way it's going to stay, at least for the forseeable future.

    Hey. Divs are great. I don't know what I'd do without them. But so are tables. Divs have not, at this point in time, replaced tables. Divs are not "the next big thing". They're just another good thing.

    I'm quite happy to use divs only to build a website, if it's just a simple blog type website. But personally, I like to wrap things 100% high and wide. Including the columns. I know how to do it with divs, but it's too much hassle. Why do it with divs, when tables do it already? And if that was the "only" reason I use tables, I might very well consider just using divs. However, it's not the only reason. There are dozens if idiosyncrasies that divs don't cater for, that tables handle with ease.

    Anyone that makes a point of coding with divs only is wasting whole lot of time. Not only that, divs don't work properly (if at all) in many older browsers. There are still many Internet users with older browsers.

    I want to make a point to say that I am not for or against tables or divs. I am for what works. Much of the time I use tables. Many other times I use divs. But what gets me riled up is when people look at my code and say:

    "You've used TABLES!" - "Hahaha!" - "Look, everyone, he's used TABLES!"

    MrLeN

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    Have a look at this website.

    Really.. Is this the future of the web?


    "..to lead the Web to its full potential."
    Give me a break.

    MrLeN

  21. #71
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy someonewhois's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrLeN
    I hate to break it to W3C but tables are the most popular, highly integrated, multi-functional, cross browser friendly, backwards compatible, SIMPLE TO USE, search engine friendly, webmaster friendly attributes to web building online. That's the way it's going to stay, at least for the forseeable future.
    That's not entirely true. Tableless designs are easier on the SEs since all of the content is in a steady flow with CSS disabled, and there's a lot less excessive markup.

    I find CSS easier to use too, since I can reuse the same bits of code over and over and over again. Plus to change layouts, I just change stylesheets.


  22. #72
    ~unplugged Ainslie X11's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrLeN
    Have a look at this website.

    Really.. Is this the future of the web?


    Give me a break.

    MrLeN
    It's really not something to lose any sleep over - you've expressed your opinion and I'm sure everyone respects that. Have you contacted w3 to set the record straight ?

    Personally I'll be using their recommendations because it suits me now, 6 months ago though I would have been grinding the same axe - but 6 months down the track (now) I'd be wondering what all the fuss was about.


    working hard is hard work

  23. #73
    ~unplugged Ainslie X11's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by someonewhois
    That's not entirely true. Tableless designs are easier on the SEs since all of the content is in a steady flow with CSS disabled, and there's a lot less excessive markup.

    I find CSS easier to use too, since I can reuse the same bits of code over and over and over again. Plus to change layouts, I just change stylesheets.

    That's true - SE's read tableless sites pretty much the same way FF displays them when you turn styles off. You can run this simulation http://www.searchengineworld.com/cgi-bin/sim_spider.cgi it's handy if your comparing a client's old tabled site over how a spider will see their new tableless site - very enlightening, so is the page size checker tool on the same page :-)


    working hard is hard work

  24. #74
    ☆★☆★ silver trophy vgarcia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrLeN
    Have a look at this website.

    Really.. Is this the future of the web?


    Give me a break.

    MrLeN
    The W3C is mostly made up of engineers. Forgive them if their website isn't the pinnacle of design. You can always run to K10K or spoono for that.

  25. #75
    ~unplugged Ainslie X11's Avatar
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    K10k - Copyright (c) 1998 - Coded 1978

    <!-- All rights reserved, all 10megs of home page layout graphics copyrighted. -->
    <!-- Please don't steal our stuff. We know where you live. And we have ze ways of making you talk. -->


    working hard is hard work


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