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The Modern Web: Multi-Device Web Development with HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript Paperback – 3 May 2013

4.0 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 264 pages
  • Publisher: No Starch Press; 1 edition (3 May 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593274874
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593274870
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 1.5 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 389,202 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

About the Author

Peter Gasston has been a web developer for more than 12 years in both agency and corporate settings. The author of The Book of CSS3, Gasston has also been published in Smashing Magazine, A List Apart, and .net magazine. He runs the web development blog Broken Links (http://broken-links.com/) and lives in London, England.


Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Peter Gasston's book is a model of clarity with a sensible layout of the material and no-nonsense descriptions and examples. The Further Reading sections at the end of each chapter are well-focussed and particularly useful.

Chapter 2 deals with structure & semantics and provided a line of thought that I had not really clearly considered before. I'm sure it will influence design and the markup conventions to be adopted for future projects.

The real purpose in purchasing the book was to obtain an up-to-date view of device-responsive techniques and the book has served that purpose admirably.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Writing web technology books is hard. You're documenting a continually moving target and competing against free content readily available on the resource you're discussing. Peter Gasston is a glutton for such punishments but he's managed to produce another excellent book which is essential reading for any web developer.

The Modern Web covers a vast range of current, new and near-future HTML5-related topics. Peter recognises this is a risk and technologies will change -- hgroup was dropped and main was added to the HTML5 specification since it was published -- but the information will remain relevant for anyone creating cutting-edge web sites and applications over the next few years. It's aimed at advanced developers but, no matter what your level of expertise, you'll discover something you didn't know before.

The 250-page book starts with a discussion about the increasingly blurred distinction between desktop, tablet, mobile and other devices such as web-enabled TVs and game consoles. Developers can no longer rely on device assumptions and 'fast' is the only context which matters.

The second chapter moves into HTML structure and semantics with an overview of ARIA, RDFa, microdata, microformats and data attributes but I suspect many will jump straight to chapter three: device responsive CSS. If you read Peter's previous book, The Book of CSS3, you won't be disappointed. While other authors may describe media query syntax, Peter provides engaging content such as adaptive vs responsive, mobile first, box-sizing, the calc function, viewport-relative units and images. This is followed by CSS layout techniques including columns, flexbox and grids.
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Format: Kindle Edition
For some it's shoes, others collect Zippo lighters... me, I have a weakness for web design/development books and this is right up there in my top three. Chapter 3 is worth the purchase price on its own but do start at the beginning - it's not the usual *yawn* potted history of the internet and its browsers, it's a valuable overview of the state of technology in 2013.

Bonus: each chapter has a list of suggestions further reading, also highly valuable.

I have to agree with Craig Buckler in his excellent review above that the first part of the title does the book a disservice but hopefully as more people read the book and leave swooning reviews such as this one, the title will matter less and it'll be known as "the book you MUST buy".

Very rarely do I say I would fork out for the second edition of a book but if one were to appear in 2015, 2016 I'd be queuing at midnight like a Harry Potter fan* to buy it :-)

* Disclaimer: I haven't yet actually read any HP but apparently they're quite popular...
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Format: Kindle Edition
The web has become a rather fragmented beast these past twenty some odd years. Once upon a time, it was simple. Well. relatively simple. Three-tiered architecture was the norm, HTML was blocking, some frames could make for structure, and a handful of CGI scripts would give you some interactivity. Add a little JavaScript for eye candy and you were good.

Now? there’s a different flavor of web framework for any given day of the week, and then some. JavaScript has grown to the point where we don’t even really talk about it, unless it’s to refer to the particular library we are using (jQuery? Backbone? Ember? Angular? All of the above?). CSS and HTML have blended, and the simple structure of old has given way to a myriad of tagging, style references, script references, and other techniques to manage the miss-mash of parts that make up what you see on your screen. Oh yeah, lest we forget “what you see on your screen” has also taken on a whole new meaning. It used to mean computer screen. Now it’s computer, tablet, embedded screen, mobile phone, and a variety of other devices with sizes and shapes we were only dreaming about two decades ago.

Imagine yourself a person wanting to create a site today. I don’t mean going to one of those all-in-one site hosting shops and turning the crank on their template library (though there’s nothing wrong with that), I mean “start from bare teal, roll your own, make a site from scratch” kind of things. With the dizzying array of options out there, what’s an aspiring web developer to do?

Peter Gasston (author of "The Book of CSS3”) has effectively asked the same questions, and his answer is “The Modern Web”. Peter starts with the premise that the days of making a site for just the desktop are long gone.
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