“bring out yah dead”

New layout for this blog. What’s so special about it? Well, I used CSS for positioning, for one thing. That’s right, no more outrageous table nesting for me. I am standards compliant, baby. For icing, I tried to make sure it was XHTML validated too.

How’d I do it? I basically absolutely positioned the left menu, and gave the main content area a left margin the width of the menu. Also, to make my life easier, I used server-side includes for the header, footer, and left menu.

Where are good places to learn CSS? Well, there are always some good basic starting tutorials out there. Brainjar has a good write-up of CSS if you are already familiar with what stylesheets are and want straight up informative discussion. For ready-to-go CSS templates, try glish.

Ok, now for the laymen discussion. What’s the big screaming deal about Cascading Style Sheets? Well, CSS is a really powerful and convenient way to control the way your website looks and behaves. CSS is an official web standard, written up and published by the good samaritans over at World Wide Web Consortium. Assuming that the Big Browsers make themselves standards compliant (which is a OK assumption by now), webpages using CSS will look and behave the same across the different browsers. In the past, each browser used to have individually supported features and quirks that made it a pain in the ass to try to make one page look good, let alone the same, in all the different browsers. With CSS here, that sort of grief should become history.

Also, I am really anal and a purist and I would be the type of person to demand my webpage to be fully standards complaint, etc etc. Actually, the really boring plain layout before this one (with the go… / archive links on the side) used CSS too. I just thought it was time to take down that interim layout. Also, please note: I will be slowly tweaking this layout and styles as we go along. And most of the links on the left do not work yet. If you have any suggestions, feel free to send them to me. Looking up, I notice that I am quite verbose. sorry.

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