Smashing CSS: Professional Techniques for Modern Layout 1st Edition

34 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0470684160
ISBN-10: 047068416X
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Eric Meyer is an internationally recognized expert on the subjects of HTML, CSS, and Web standards, and has been working on the Web since 1993. Smashing CSS is for developers who already have some experience with CSS and JavaScript and are ready for more advanced techniques.

Smashing Magazine (smashingmagazine.com) is one of the world's most popular web design sites. True to the Smashing mission, the Smashing Magazine book series delivers useful and innovative information to Web designers and developers.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (November 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 047068416X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470684160
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.7 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #971,721 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Eric A. Meyer starting working on the web in late 1993. A past member of the CSS Working Group, he is the author of several acclaimed CSS books as well as many articles on CSS and web standards. More recently, he co-founded the conference series An Event Apart with Jeffrey Zeldman and speaks about web standards all over the world. In recognition of his work, he was inducted into the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences in 2006.

A longtime resident of Cleveland, Ohio--which is a much nicer city than you've been led to believe--Eric used to be a weekly radio presence on WRUW 91.1-FM with a show covering the Big Band era. He now spends most of his free time reading, searching out great dishes, and playing with his wife and daughters.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Tar Heel on February 11, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is by far the worst Eric Meyer book ever. What were they thinking? This book recaps CSS techniques from Eric and others that have been in use for years! A majority if not all of this information is readily available on the internet and some of it is very old.

Smashing CSS: Professional Techniques for Modern Layout

CSS3 is the biggest thing to hit the web and there are only a few pages dealing with CSS3. OK so the book should be about quality layout techniques. CSS3 will include columns and layered (multiple) backgrounds. I was blown away by the lack CSS3 subject matter. This is not a book for those who have been using CSS for some time (you will know this stuff or be able to find it on the web) nor is it a book for beginners.

There are several other books out there that are better. If you are wanting to learn CSS3 I would try the Visual Quick Start guide by Jason Cranford Teague. I do fault it, because the title is CSS3 and the book is not devoted to CSS3 alone.

I have the impression this book was just thrown together for the purpose of people like me who try to absorb as much information as possible.

Look else where for your CSS or CSS3 knowledge.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Ghost on January 11, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The content of this book is very informative and it's nice to have all the techniques together in a single volume. However, the examples do not always work the way the author intended so hopefully an errata will be published very soon. Also, the code examples on the companion web site are incomplete; it would have been useful to have completed examples available for testing purposes.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Webuquerque on May 10, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a very different sort of book by Eric Meyer. Not in subject matter, of course, but in tone and purpose. Instead of his previous rather pedantic and encyclopedic listing of every thing you might ever want to know about CSS, this book is light, humorous, and organized to be read from front to back.

If you've been paying attention to CSS for the last few years, most of this book will be old news to you. But the book isn't aimed for those already literate with CSS. It's meant to help the newbie learn enough to master the basics and go on to create some cool looks and layouts with CSS. Every chapter has lots of examples, screen shots, code, and advice.

The first section starts right at the beginning with a chapter on Tools such as Firebug and SelectORacle. Chapter 2 talks about every kind of selector with advice about what works best when there is more than one way to accomplish something. The second section of the book deals with Essentials. In the chapter called Tips you learn about things like unitless line-height values, image replacement, and list styles. The chapter called Layouts reviews float containment and explains layouts like faux columns, liquid bleach, the one true layout, fluid grids, and the holy grail. In the Effects chapter he explains how to create an effect like his complex spiral. He also explains CSS pop-ups, menus, rounded corners, sprites, sliding doors, parallax, ragged floats, and constrained images.

The final section of the book is Cutting Edge, in which he moves away from reviewing the foundation CSS knowledge of the past and jumps into new ideas. There's a chapter on Tables that shows new techniques for styling tables.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Bryan Newman VINE VOICE on April 8, 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I'm a hack web developer - the kind that lays pages out using nested tables (but I want to change.) So when I read this books overview, with it's 50 pages dedicated to CSS layout, and more on CSS tables, I couldn't wait for it to arrive. But it was not quite what I was expecting.

First I should say that I do really, really like this book, but you have to take if for what it is. Perhaps it explains this somewhere in the book or the Amazon description and I'm missing it, but this is a tips and tricks or ideas book, not a training book. Actually this is exactly the kind of book you get when you take years worth of a magazine's "Cool Tricks" column and try to fit it into a book. The result is a whole lot of disparate tips and gathered loosely into a bunch of themes. This rarely comes out with a flowing style, and this book is no different. It is a bunch of gathered CSS tricks that fall under a handful of topics. So it is not a book to learn CSS with, and for that matter, it is not an easy reference book.

So why do I really like the book? It has some amazing tips and eye-opening examples. In many places it delves into esoteric concepts of CSS that never make it into the "Learn CSS in 24 hours" books. This book has opened whole new worlds of CSS organization and capabilities. Not all the ideas are winners (for my needs anyway,) but there are enough great new things to pay back your time and money.

To give some examples, the book opens with 40 pages of tools. The descriptions are brief, and the packages are somewhat repetitive, but I have pulled a couple of the free tools and they are great. I see them making a big difference. Later he points out validators, another valuable tool. (Remember, I'm a hack, not a pro, but it was great to be introduced to them.
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