How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love CSS

Like many who came before me, the first websites I made were laid out using tables. Then one day the world of web design decided that tables were for tabular data, and nothing else. Div tags and CSS now reign supreme as the means of styling a website.

I won’t go into all the various reasons why tables are now a dirty word among web designers. Let’s just say that CSS is a much more efficient and flexible way of coding a website. The end result is that HTML and CSS have become two inseparable building blocks of web design.

When I first began to learn CSS it was a bit frustrating. Overall, it is an elegant way to style, but there are some quirks to CSS that still make me long for the simplicity of something like a <center> tag. I’ll be doing a couple of CSS tutorials later on down the road, but for now you can check out this short list of resources I have found helpful for understanding CSS.

W3Schools

This is a great resource for beginning web designers, not just for learning CSS, but for many other languages of the web.

Tizag.com

Another great overall resource for web designers; I reference this site often.

MaxDesign

This site has some good step by step tutorials.

css-tricks.com

This is a nice tutorial that explains the ever confusing float property of CSS.

Google Chrome or Firebug

Firebug is a great way to quickly see what the heck is going on in your code. You can hover the mouse over your tags and see where the tag is being displayed, its dimensions, margins, padding, and a whole bunch of other useful information. Google Chrome has a very similar feature built right in. Using these tools is like finding a light switch in a dark room.

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