Top positive review
26 people found this helpful
Great introduction to XHTML and CSS
on December 8, 2007
I loved this book, and I'm a pretty experienced web designer. There are a lot of other reviews saying how great it is, so I thought I'd add a few comments not mentioned. First, this book is really intended for people who are starting from the ground up. As such, it only describes strict XHTML, so if you're going to be working on an existing site, you're not going to learn about a lot of what is out there, like frames and using tables for positioning elements on the page. It describes an elegant design philosophy that will get beginners on the right track. It also covers, in just enough detail, finding a web-hosting site, getting a domain, using FTP, etc. Second, as others have mentioned, it is not a reference manual. Third, it assumes the web tool you are going to use is Notepad, or a similar editor. Personally, I think that's the best way to go, but it's good to know before you buy the book. In other words, you are going to be writing XHTML and CSS to build your pages, not using some fancy tool. Lastly, where I think the book really shines is in the sections describing how to add extras to your web site, like search, blogs, and getting web statistics. It does all this only describing free utilities.
As I read this review, I've actually come to appreciate the book better. I can think of no other book that takes a complete novice from almost nothing to a complete, rather sophisticated web site that meets CSS and XHTML strict standards and even has a few bells and whistles, all in about 400 pages. There's even a bit of humor, and the author has a relaxed easy-going, re-assuring without pandering tone.