52 Books a Year: #30 - The Art & Science of CSS

Posted by Brian Fri, 11 Dec 2009 00:59:19 GMT

The Art & Science of CSS
By Jonathan Snook, Steve Smith, Jina Bolton, Cameron Adams, and David Johnson


I decided that I had fumbled around with CSS enough so I decided to read a couple of books on proper usage. I started with The Art & Science of CSS. While it was directed more at web designers than programmers, I got a lot out of it.

There is strong emphasis on semantic markup throughout. The coverage of styling navigation, rounding corners, and styling forms was very useful and every example came with quality color pictures highlighting the changes that had been made. These were almost always accompanied with the actual CSS and HTML with the changed or new portions bolded. The writing is also very strong after the first couple of chapters, clearly explaining new styles as they are introduced and why they are being used.

There are a few negatives. The number of authors leads to inconsistency in writing style and the writing in the first two chapters is inferior to the rest of the book. Those authors just jumped right in and didn’t explain many of the styles they were using. It is also assumed that you know the basics of table-less design, something I had picked the book up to learn. Even with these negatives this is an excellent read for learning some advanced usage of CSS.


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