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Web design in a nutshell

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In 1998, Jennifer Niederst wrote the first edition of this very successful book after she found herself spending way too much time chasing down the solutions to HTML problems. From hexadecimal color specs to mouseover scripts, the answers are all out there, but finding the exact one you need can soak up a whole day. "I wrote Web Design in a Nutshell because it was the book I needed--one place to find quick answers to my questions." With all that's changed in the meantime, an overhaul is welcome. This is the rare book for designers that is almost completely nonvisual. It doesn't show what's hip in navigational bars or what the coolest colors are. Rather, it gives readers the kind of know-how that can make a difference between someone who just whips up pretty pages with WYSIWYG applications like Dreamweaver and someone who can make those pages cross-platform, cross-browser, fast loading, and accessible to all. The clear organization makes it easy to locate any specific topic. There are six sections. "The Web Environment" discusses the realities of browser compatibility, display-resolution problems, a useful bit of Unix, and tips for print designers looking to move into Web design. "Authoring" shows how to write accurate and up-to-date HTML, cascading style sheets, and Server Side Includes (like putting the current date and time on your homepage). "Graphics" brings together all you need to know to make effective use of images (GIFs, JPEGS, PNGs, and animated GIFs). "Multimedia and Interactivity" helps with adding audio, video, or Flash to your site (including some succinct tips on optimization and publish settings). And "Advanced Technologies" covers JavaScript, DHTML, XML, XHTML, and WAP and WML. And there are six useful look-up tables in the appendix, which include HTML 4.0 tags, deprecated tags, attributes, and CSS support across browsers. Web Design in a Nutshell could easily have been titled The Web Designer's Companion--it's mighty handy to have around. --Angelynn Grant

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