Book Review: Web Standards Solutions
Here goes my review of Dan Cederholm's latest book Web Standards Solutions: The Markup and Style Handbook (WSS). Dan is the guy behind Simple Bits—my almost daily read. His site gave me a tremendous head start when I was new to "the whole CSS thing."
WSS is a cook-book full of yummy recipes for everyday work. It's a very light and enjoyable read, free of geek speak and stories about browser manufacturer conspiracy theories. His is a hands-on approach with a lot of examples and guidance of which approach fits the bill better—why and when.
The book covers a wide range of topics, such as lists, anchors, quotations, headings. There's a neat chapter on building accessible tables. You will learn how to make every page printer friendly by adding a print style sheet.
WSS also teaches you how to part your old ways of using tables to emulate columnar layouts and how to accomplish it with CSS. A chapter on styling
<body> takes it a step further and demonstrates how to build page templates.
The closing chaper lists some helpful resources for further reading.
High On A Mountain Top A Banner is Unfurled
In my opinion, nobody preaches web standards better than Zeldman (hence the title of this section). He devoted the first 137 pages of his book to a powerful discourse on what web standards are and why they matter. His book holds almost religious value. Which reminds me of an old church blooper,
Today's topic of the sermon: Ahem...
What is Hell? Come listen to out choir practice.
On the other hand, nobody explains the nitty-gritty nuances of CSS better than Eric. His book is so comprehensive that it put me to sleep once or twice—so many minute details that my brain needed to reboot.
Dan's Web Standards Solutions is right there, between those two. Leaving conversion of lost souls to Zeldman and the nuts and bolts to Eric, he shares solid, proven ideas and code that will help you get your daily job done.
Additional recommended reading: 250 HTML and Web Design Secrets by Molly Holzschlag.