The Road Ahead
Article ID: KB101839
last article, I addressed some good reasons why you'd
want to move away from tables-based layout and get into
Since then, I've planned out the rest of this article
series, trying to come up with a logical and friendly way to
guide you through learning CSS without duplicating too much
the many good resources already on the web.
To give you a brief roadmap of where we're going, I want
to reference Emil Strenström's blog where he came up with
what he views as the
different levels of CSS knowledge:
Level 0: "CSS? Isn't that a multi-player game?"
People in this level have no idea of what CSS is (or even
how to make a web page, probably).
Congratulations, you are already past this level!
Level 1: "Yeah, I use it to remove underlines on
People in this level know basic HTML and very little CSS.
To move past level 1, I'll cover some CSS basics so that
you learn how to use CSS to format fonts, colors,
backgrounds, as well as removing link underlines!
Level 2: "No, I don't like divs; tables are
much easier to work with."
People in this level are tables-layout gurus. They may have
tried CSS layout but got frustrated and gave up. They may
have negative feelings about CSS.
To move past level 2, we'll look at layouts created with
tables vs. the same layouts created with CSS and compare and
Level 3: "Yes, I've heard it's good, but I can't
use it because of..."
People in this level know some CSS but something (a Level 2
boss, perhaps) keeps them from using CSS positioning.
Because Level 3 reasons can be very different, I'll focus
more on some practical CSS know-how and explain why I like
to start teaching advanced CSS by showing you how to format
Level 4: "CSS? Oh! Yes, I use divs for all my
These people create layouts that are carefully crafted with
absolutely-positioned and layered divs. (Perhaps they use
"layers" in Dreamweaver, FrontPage, or Expression Web to
create their layouts.)
Level 4 people are open-minded to learning new things and
are proud that they use divs and CSS instead of tables.
However, "CSS-based layout" is really part of a larger
discussion about standards and accessibility which they may
not fully understand. So, this part of the series will give
some reasons why you shouldn't depend on the "layers"
created by editors like Dreamweaver and Expression Web, and
then have practical how-to's when it comes to making
different layouts with CSS.
Level 5: "I use CSS for design, it's better than
tables because of..."
These people create semantic, valid sites that use CSS
This is where this series will end up! I'll talk about
semantic content and give an overview of my typical workflow
when I'm creating a new site.
I am excited about this new series, and will also be
creating webinars based on this material, so be looking for
those as well!
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