A List Apart

Menu

Topic: HTML

  • Using SVG For Flexible, Scalable, and Fun Backgrounds, Part I

    ·

    Many of us think of Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) as an also-ran: fine for charts and tables, but not much else. Yet SVG can actually enhance a site’s overall design, and can be made to work in even the most stubborn browser. In Part I of a two-part series, Shelley Powers covers important basics of working with SVG, including browser support and accessibility.

  • Get Ready for HTML 5

    ·

    Ready or not, here it comes. Despite the confusion surrounding its evolution, real-world HTML 5 is right around the corner. Longtime ALA contributor J. David Eisenberg returns to get us all up to speed on the markup we’re about to be writing.

  • Unwebbable

    ·

    It's time we came to grips with the fact that not every “document” can be a semantic “web page.” Some forms of writing just cannot be expressed in HTML—or they need to be bent and distorted to do so. But for once, XML can help. Joe Clark explains.

  • Introduction to RDFa II

    ·

    In part I of this series, we looked at how semantic features normally confined to the head of an HTML document can be used to add semantic richness to the elements of the body. Along the way, we defined six rules of RDFa. In part II, we’ll learn how to add properties to an image, and how to add metadata to any item—and we’ll add a few more rules to that list.

  • Introduction to RDFa

    ·

    In part one of a two-part primer on RDFa, learn how semantic features normally confined to the head of an HTML document can be used to add semantic richness to the elements of the body. Mark Birbeck shows us how.

  • Creating Intrinsic Ratios for Video

    ·

    Have you ever wanted to resize a video on the fly, scaling it as you would an image? Using intrinsic ratios for video and some padding property magic, you can. Thierry Koblentz shows us how.

  • Fluid Grids

    ·

    How awesome would it be if you could combine the aesthetic rigor and clarity of fixed-width, grid-based layouts with the device- and screen size independence and user-focused flexibility of fluid layouts? Completely awesome, that's how awesome. And with a little cunning and a tad of easy math, ALA's Ethan Marcotte gets it done. We smell a trend in the offing.

  • Semantics in HTML 5

    ·

    The BBC's dropping of hCalendar because of accessibility and usability concerns demonstrates that we have pushed the semantic capability of HTML far beyond what it can handle. The need to clearly and unambiguously add rich, meaningful semantics to markup is a driving goal of the HTML 5 project. Yet HTML 5 has two problems: it is not backward compatible because its semantic elements will not work in 75% of our browsers; and it is not forward compatible because its semantics are not extensible. If “making up new elements” isn't the solution, what is?

  • Return of the Mobile Stylesheet

    ·

    At least 10% of your visitors access your site over a mobile device. They deserve a good experience (and if you provide one, they'll keep coming back). Converting your multi-column layout to a single, linear flow is a good start. But mobile devices are not created equal, and their disparate handling of CSS is like 1998 all over again. Please your users and tame their devices with handheld style sheets, CSS media queries, and (where necessary) JavaScript or server-side techniques.

  • A More Useful 404

    ·

    When broken links frustrate your site's visitors, a typical 404 page explains what went wrong and provides links that may relate to the visitor's quest. That's good, but now you can do better. With Dean Frickey's custom 404, when something's amiss, pertinent information is sent not only to the visitor, but to the developer—so that, in many cases, the problem can be fixed! A better 404 means never having to say you're sorry.

  • Progressive Enhancement with JavaScript

    ·

    Our introductory series on progressive enhancement and the ways it can be implemented concludes with a look at the mindset needed to implement PE in JavaScript, and a survey of best practices for doing so.

  • Progressive Enhancement with CSS

    ·

    Organize multiple style sheets to simplify the creation of environmentally appropriate visual experiences. Support older browsers while keeping your CSS hack-free. Use generated content to provide visual enhancements, and seize the power of advanced selectors to create wondrous (or amusing) effects. Part two of a series.

  • Understanding Progressive Enhancement

    ·

    Steven Champeon turned web development upside down, and created an instant best practice of standards-based design, when he introduced the notion of designing for content and experience instead of browsers. In part one of a series, ALA’s Gustafson refreshes us on the principles of progressive enhancement. Upcoming installments will translate the philosophy into sophisticated, future-focused design and code.

  • Where Our Standards Went Wrong

    ·

    To validate or not to validate; that is the question. A List Apart's own Ethan Marcotte helps us to re-examine our approach to standards advocacy and how we can better educate our clients on the benefits of web standards.

  • CSS Sprites2 - It’s JavaScript Time

    ·

    In 2004, Dave Shea took the CSS rollover where it had never gone before. Now he takes it further still—with a little help from jQuery. Say hello to hover animations that respond to a user's behavior in ways standards-based sites never could before.

  • Multi-Column Layouts Climb Out of the Box

    ·

    “Holy Grail,” “One True Layout,” “pain in the @$$”... Alan Pearce presents a cleaner approach to designing multi-column layouts.

  • Faux Absolute Positioning

    ·

    CSS layout is awesome, except when your layout calls for a header, a footer, and columns in between. Use float, and content changes can cause columns to wrap. Use absolute positioning, and your footer can crash into your columns. Add the complexity of drag-and-drop layouts, and a new technique is needed. Enter "faux absolute positioning." Align every item to a predefined position on the grid (as with absolute positioning), but objects will still affect the normal flow (as with float).

  • Fix Your Site With the Right DOCTYPE!

    ·

    You’ve done everything right, but your site is breaking in the latest browsers. A faulty DOCTYPE is likely to blame. This essential ALA article will provide you with DOCTYPEs that work, enabling you to fix your site with just one tag.

  • Zebra Tables

    ·

    While misused tables are becoming increasingly rare, the table retains a legitimate role in data formatting. A little CSS and JavaScript magic can make tables better at what they do best: displaying tabular data.

  • A Preview of HTML 5

    ·

    Who's afraid of HTML 5? Not Lachlan Hunt! As both a front-end web developer and a contributor to HTML 5, he tells us what we can expect from the emerging markup specification, whose goals include more flexibility and greater interoperability.