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Creating Cool Web Sites: With HTML, XHTML and CSS Paperback – 11 May 2004

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons (11 May 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764557386
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764557385
  • Product Dimensions: 18.5 x 2.3 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,362,834 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description


“…difficult to fault the quality of information provided…” (PC Utilities, August 2004)

From the Back Cover

How to take command of the wide, wonderful Web

Thinking of launching a Web site or an e–business? Want to jazz up the site you already have? This book is jammed with secrets that entice Web wanderers to stop at your site and return again. You’ll find out how to create a basic Web page, enhance it using CSS and JavaScript™, morph it into a complete multipage site, add forms, video, and animation, and get a top ranking from leading search engines. Here’s the perfect mix of technology and creativity–the cool stuff you want to do, plus a thorough understanding of the tools that let you do it.

  • Use Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) to maintain consistent formatting for a slick, professional look
  • Improve the quality of your site with XHTML, the next generation of markup language
  • Jazz up your site with appropriate use of color, graphics, animation, and sound
  • Discover how to improve your site design to make it more user friendly
  • Write your pages to make them search engine friendly and improve your ranking automatically
  • Check out all the examples and much more at the author′s Web site:

See all Product Description

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is the best introduction to the understanding of the whole web site story and the importance of CSS. I have since built 2 simple but successful business web sites. Because it is an introductory book, I now need to find a book for the next stage -- how to implement Frames and menus in CSS.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.2 out of 5 stars 17 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Learn From a Gifted Teacher 27 July 2005
By Jim - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Learn Web site design the easy way, from a gifted teacher! Dave Taylor is one of those rare authors that is truly gifted at teaching his subject. He makes HTML easy to understand and enjoyable.

I do a little programming and recently got involved with doing some CGI stuff for a website. The CGI stuff came easy, but my site design was extremely lame. This book makes it simple to move beyond the boring and put in a little fun.

My two daughters are interested in doing Web design and kept taking my book, so I bought two more copies for them.

If you are just starting out, this is the place to start!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beginner, but not "cool"... 9 Jan. 2007
By Lee Coursey - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I got this to be an aid in teaching HTML and CSS to a 13-yr-old.

There is a lot of your standard HTML stuff in here and even some decent CSS basics, but as for being a good start towards creative or "cool" sites utilizing the contents; it's not. Just some run of the mill examples. It even has whole sections dedicated to frames. Yech. The CSS examples are pretty limited too. One small chapter on CSS inline text formatting (no stylesheet use) followed by a large chapter on table based layouts. What a shame.

Decent for a beginner, but I'd gravitate towards "CSS Web Design for Dummies" instead.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Recommended for a class I'm taking ... 1 Oct. 2007
By kre8iv1 - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was (1) of (3) books recommended by the teacher of my online CSS & XHTML class.

It's more like a workbook than a manual, so it helps to work chapter by chapter.

It's easier to use than a manual and much less cumbersome.

However, I feel "Headfirst HTML with CSS & XHTML" by O'Reilly is more comprehensive while still holding onto the "workbook" style.

Make this book your SECOND choice to the O'Reilly book.
34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very nice coverage of a wide range of topics... 29 May 2004
By Thomas Duff - Published on
Format: Paperback
Target Audience
Beginning web designers or web designers who want to grow beyond single page designs.
This is a reference/tutorial guide to web technologies that are necessary to build web sites. The book is divided into three parts:
Part 1 - Building A Wicked Cool Web Page - So What's All This Web Jazz?; Building Your First Web Page: HTML Basics; Presenting Text Attractively; Moving Into The 21st Century With Cascading Style Sheets; Lists And Special Characters; Putting The Web In World Wide Web: Adding Pointers And Links; From Dull To Cool By Adding Graphics
Part 2 - Rockin' Page Design Strategies - Tables And Frames; Forms, User Input, and the Common Gateway Interface; Advanced Form Design; Activating Your Pages With JavaScript; Advanced Cascading Style Sheets; Site Development With Weblogs
Part 3 - Expanding Your Pages Into A Web Site - Web Sites versus Web Pages; Thinking About Your Visitors And Your Site's Usability; Validating Your Pages And Style Sheets; Building Traffic And Being Found; Closing Thoughts; Appendix A: Step-by-step Web Site Planning Guide; Appendix B: Finding A Home For Your Web Site; Index
If you're just starting out with learning how to build Web pages or sites, you no doubt have a wide number of books to choose from to help you learn those skills. But you can easily get bogged down in the minutiae of every little HTML tag and still not know what CSS means. You need a readable book that gives you solid coverage of essential information. With that in mind, you should check out Creating Cool Web Sites With HTML, XHTML, and CSS by Dave Taylor.
To position this properly, let's make sure you're the right audience. This isn't a book that will teach new tricks to an experienced web designer who earns their living developing corporate web sites. This book does an excellent job in covering a lot of ground without needing 1000+ pages to do so. Taylor takes you through the basics of HTML and XHTML, as well as how to use CSS to add formatting and presentation to your page. There's even some coverage of JavaScript as well. As you continue to gain expertise in each of these areas, you will probably want a hard-core reference manual to continue your education, but Creating Cool Web Sites will give you the necessary foundation to get started.
While targeted more towards beginners, the information in part 3 is a worthy read for a larger audience. To properly build a web site, you have to think of it as a cohesive whole, not just a collection of separate pages. The author helps the reader think through site issues, such as traffic, accessibility, and so on. Once again, any one of these topics could be a book on its own, but this is a nice level of coverage for initial exposure and to get started.
Beginners will find this to be an approachable coverage of web technologies, while intermediate designers will probably gravitate to the Web site design and CSS information.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best CSS primer also covers CGI and Javascript 7 Jan. 2007
By John - Published on
Format: Paperback
Among nearly two shelves of CSS books at the store, this was the best one in terms of brevity, usefulness, and practicality. (With honorable mention to "Eric Meyer on CSS." I was there quite a while checking books out, and I hope somebody finds this opinion useful.)

I had some experience with CSS which is why I had questions. Chapter 4 is twenty-odd pages that I assimilated in 15 minutes --it answered ALL of my questions and had me itching to try things out! I immediately re-factored my site's pages and it ALL worked on the first crack! Chap. 4 alone justifies purchasing the book. If you're still using the FONT tag or positioning images with TABLEs, kiss that goodbye forever! CSS is so much more professional and controllable, and this is a killer introduction.

There isn't much to know on CGI so it's "all" here: it's just an additional line of code for Perl hacks, assuming one is at least clinically sane about security, i.e., doesn't pass a form field to system("$form{1}"). Doesn't cover PHP. Has a good chapter on essential JavaScript (how to check form fields to make sure they were filled in, etc.). The book is aimed at beginners, yet I (a career techie) did not find it annoying. It is to-the-point and I quickly found what I wanted --and more! Lots of cool tricks + good "under the hood" info (such as: the HEAD section loads entirely before the BODY, which is why it's a good place to put JavaScript functions so that they're all ready by the time the user sees anything).
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