I have a large “encyclopedia” type website (equivalent of 1300 Word pages) which I am trying to add navigation bars to, among other organizational things. My husband is a software architect, but I know only a little about web design. Together we’re trying to decide first, how best to organize my site considering how different it is from most sites, and second, just how to accomplish some of those things.

The problem we’re grappling with right now is adding a navigation bar to all of the 90 or so pages (as opposed to the home page only). I had thought it might be best (and take up less room) to condense the 90 categories to 10 or so, perhaps alphabetically for some (e.g., A-D, E-G, etc.), each of which would be fairly narrow in width. That way little of the page would be taken up with the nav. bar down the side.
Because each of my pages is s-o long (text only now, but some photos later), ideally I had wanted the nav.bar to stay in place while the text scrolled by on the right.
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So now the question: We had thought we could use pull-down menus under the nav.bar buttons (A-D, E-G, etc.) so that the actual page titles could keep their original length but take up less room than the letter designations alone. However, I just got this from the DH:

"It looks like pop-up menus and mouse-over expansion windows are not basic HTML features. They can be done using Javascript, and/or by the use of "floating frames". However, for security, I believe users sometimes choose to disable Javascript. And…floating frames may not be widely supported (that may be dated advice, however).
I'll do more investigating, but I thought you might want to ask some of the site crafting people specifically how they feel about using Javascript and floating windows. It's possible that I'm confusing Javascript--which I know is pretty widely used--with Java applets, as far as security issues are concerned. Maybe there's no real problem with Javascript?
(There is a way we can do the navigation bar that works like pull-down menus, without using floating frames or anything that isn't basic. The only problem is that the pull-down menu is limited to space within the left-hand navigation strip. It can't "float" over the main window and disappear when one of its links is clicked. So with that method, we can't have a super-narrow navigation strip, with buttons that expand into menus floating over the main window. For that, we have to rely on fancier features. I now know (more or less) how to do that, but I don't know if we want to).”

Anyone have any suggestions?

Diane B., http://www.glassattic.com