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Beginning CSS Web Development: From Novice to Professional Paperback – 1 Aug 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Springer; 1st ed. 2006. Corr. 2nd printing 2007 edition (1 Aug. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590596897
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590596890
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 2.6 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 467,662 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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About the Author

In October 2006, Simon Collision started Erskine Design based in Nottingham, U.K. which grew to become an eight-strong team of creative web designers and developers who are afraid of nothing. Some people say they're one of the best agencies out there, and their clients include major magazines, government stuff, software companies and polar explorers. Moons ago, he was a successful visual artist, and founded an independent arts org and annual arts festival, putting his degree to some use at least. Then he caught the interwebs bug. As lead web developer at Agenzia from 2002 to 2006, he worked on numerous web projects for major record labels (such as Poptones, Universal) and bands (including The Libertines, Dirty Pretty Things, Beta Band), visual artists and illustrators (Jon Burgerman, Paddy Hartley, Lucy Orta, NOW Festival), businesses, community, and voluntary sector orgs, passionately ensuring everything was accessible and complied with current web standards. He does a bit of public speaking here and there, and will generally do anything for a biscuit and cup of tea, but prefers hard cash. He has lived in many cities, including London and Reykjavik, but has now settled back in his beloved Nottingham, where the grass is green and the girls are pretty. He also drives a 31-year-old car, and has a stupid cat called Bearface.

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38 of 38 people found the following review helpful By K. Dawson on 5 Sept. 2006
Format: Paperback
...goes to Andy Clarke for getting Logan's Run and Battlestar Galactica into a book on Cascading Style Sheets.

The book is divided into two parts with Colly first introducing the reader to the basics of CSS before moving on to an in-depth look at layouts, usability and accessibility enhancements, tips and troubleshooting and the obligatory (great looking) case study. Chapter 1 -- Getting Started soon enters a reasonably meaty discussion on maintaining and organising style sheets that intermediate and even advanced practitioners might also find of interest. We all have our little ways of organising our files and Colly introduces the beginner to multiple directories under that one css folder we normally only ever have (come on admit it!), modular CSS, CSS syntax, commenting and indenting as well as reusing style sheets for other devices. From a teaching perspective it was good to see some best practices being introduced right from the start -- page 9 to be precise. The next chapter looks at IDs and classes, how to use the cascade (or not), grouping, inheritence, contextual selectors and CSS measurements (pixels, percent and ems). Again, a good foundation chapter for beginners here -- too often we see font-family defined for every heading or a class put on every list item when an id on the ul was all that was required. The reader is also informed about grouping similar styles into one rule to achieve nice, compact code. I'm not sure if CSS measurements belonged in chapter 2 but by the end of it a novice would be well-informed on how to organise their style sheets and get the most out of them in as few lines as possible.

After attending Dave Shea's "Typography for the Web" presentation at @media2006 I enjoyed the recap (as it was for me) concerning text offered in chapter 4.
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92 of 93 people found the following review helpful By Mr. S. Atherley on 9 Sept. 2006
Format: Paperback
How many of us get interested in a subject and end up buying loads of books on that subject because there is usually not one definitive source to get it from. In my search for the Hallowed CSS grail I have bought to date 5 books (excluding this one). I found only some of the answers I was after from all of them. Out of roughly 10ish chapters per book, I probably learned from only 3-4. If you buy a book as an alternative to searching google for the answers you expect that you wont have to use google to find out what some things mean in the book!

I spent much money and confused days & nights, wondering why someone could just not write a book, that takes you from your basic knowledge of HTML, guide you at a decent pace through the basics of CSS & on to a level where you have the confidence, understanding & proper technique, to design a decent looking website with clear explanations, a thorough discussion of the do's & donts and also when and why to use certain selectors, tags, block elements etc.

Well its apparent someone 'was' listening. Im not sure if Simon Collison has a 6th sense but this book truly does what it says it will'.

The author states that this was the book he wished he had when he was learning CSS & fortunately for people like myself & you its come at just the right time. I anticipated this book so much that I couldnt wait for it on mail-order I went to buy it from a big bookstore on Charing X road in London. I've just finished chapter 6 and so far I have been impressed by the style of writing, humour & clarity with which the author opens up your understanding of CSS. So many things started to 'click' & make sense. Ever had that eureka moment where you just sit there and say 'aaahh so thats how that works' or 'so thats why you do that..etc'.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Bob C on 19 Dec. 2006
Format: Paperback
I've just finished this book having read it cover to cover, and will now be going back to work through the examples page by page. I have to say I was extremely impressed - the examples and explanations are well-written and easy to follow. The book assumes a basic knowledge (though provides handy refreshers on basic XTHML for people like myself who are a bit shaky) but takes you step by step up to the stage where you can create and lay out a full web page with CSS, which was exactly what I wanted.

There were one or two occasions where typos in the example descriptions left me a bit confused for a minute or two, and I personally would have liked a section on pop-up menus, but overall this is an excellent book which told me what I needed to know and was enjoyable to read - highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Phil Morse on 31 Dec. 2008
Format: Paperback
With its focus on standards and accessibility, doing things right first time, and using CSS for what it was intended rather than just a way of separating the content and style (important though this reason is), this book is the one you need. It will suit if you're learning CSS for the first time or just want to start using it properly (I fell into the latter category when I first read it a couple of years back).

For instance, if you've ever wanted your content to look good WITHOUT the CSS (eg on a mobile phone), or when someone hits 'print', or on a netbook PC, you'll find how here. If you want to be accessible to screen readers, it's here. If you want weird browser glitches to just go away, again you'll learn how.

The book doesn't just explain the concepts but shows you them, both as a set of "classic" layouts, that you'll be able to use again and again, and as a real-life case study. This latter chapter is really useful as it bridges the gap between dry theory and the kind of projects you'll come up against as a web developer.

Packed with tips and tricks, and written in a refreshingly laid-back British style (the author is from Nottingham), this book will become your CSS reference and useful companion. You may not always live up to what it preaches (have you ever tried applying standards CSS to an HTML email?!) but if you're anything like me, you'll turn to it again and again - not least as it has a useful CSS reference at the back.
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