Question about Sitepoint's new book

I just downloaded the free sample chapters of the new book, “HTML5 and CSS3 for the Real World”. I started reading it, and then started wondering: If HTML5 is hardly supported in IE (I just checked the statistics), why bother learning and using it now? If I use it in my code, I’ll just have to be bothered with IE hacks, no? Am I wrong? Please explain. (I’m a newbie, just starting out…)
Thank you.

Hi suavedesign. Welcome to SitePoint. :slight_smile:

Yes, you’ll need JavaScript to make HTML5 work in IE at this stage. So really, it’s not all that practical for websites at the moment. But there is quite a buzz around it, and a lot of people—including prominent web designers—are using it already. So it’s fair enough to be playing with it and learning about it now, even though it’s not really truly ready for use yet.

It’s really up to you how much of it you want to use right now. It’s worth getting familiar with it, though, as those who do may be ahead of the game when it become mainstream (as long as a lot doesn’t change when HTML5 is ready for use).

Thanks, Ralph. That was a clear answer.
I am just starting out as a web designer, and I haven’t learned Java Script yet. Do you think it’s possible to be a good web designer without Java Script knowledge? Or is it worth it to learn it?
Thanks again!

It’s possible to be a good web designer without knowing Javascript, sure, but if you’re coding websites then I strongly recommend you learn it.

As for CSS3, you can use certain features and construct the site so that it degrades nicely in older or less capable browsers. For example, if you use the border-radius property, the site will work in less capable browsers—they just won’t show your rounded corners.

If you’re building a web app and have a lot of time (and preferably get paid for it) you can always use the features of newer browsers when available, and if they’re not available you can use alternative methods (e.g. images for rounded corners). That way, the site works/looks pretty much the same way in most browsers, while the newer browsers take advantage of their more modern features.

I agree with ralph.m when he says that those who learn it may be “ahead of the game” later on. If you’ve more or less mastered current standards, why not continue learning something new? :slight_smile:

O yes, very much so. In a way, it’s better to learn web design without it, as it can become a crutch leading to bad practices (inaccessible designs etc). But in practice, you will feel quite limited without it. One easy entry point to JavaScript is a library like jQuery, which provides a lot of complex JS written for you. A lot of designers use jQuery without really understanding JS (myself included at this stage). SP has a great Novice to Ninja book on learning jQuery, which I’d recommend getting.