I want to put 8-10 thumbnails on the home page. As I am not in favour of tables, I want to employ divs in placing those thumbnails and some little descriptions right underneath of them. My question is that which method do you masters think I should use - tables or divs? I heard that tables may slow down the download speed so I am a bit confused. Which method would you recommend and why?
From no more than your description, I’d go with a list, and display the list items as inline-block to accommodate the captions. See my inline-block gallery demo. Perhaps you can adapt it to your needs.
I would definitely not use tables. For a start, it’s just incorrect, plain and simple. For a second, it makes it harder to offer a flexible design.
I know others have suggested using a <dl>, but my own recommendation would be a <div>. This allows you to wrap the image and text in a single <a> element, which reduces markup and complexity. It might not be semantically perfect, but I don’t think it’s particularly wrong. You can then float the <div>s, which means that you will get the right number of items on each row to make best use of space - they will fill the width available then start a new row automatically.
All I meant was that it may be technically more correct to use lists, or definition lists, to give the relationships between content items. That said, I’m perfectly happy with the system of <div>s that I’ve used, and I don’t think it is in any way wrong, and it’s one of those examples where missing out on the minutiae of the semantics and allowing <br>s allows streamlined and minimised HTML and CSS, and is a sacrifice that is well worth making.