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HTML 4 for the World Wide Web by Elizabeth…

HTML 4 for the World Wide Web (2000)

by Elizabeth Castro

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-to-the-point, concise, shows as well as tells
-the best kind of how-to-program book
-there should be more like this ( )
  mykl-s | Aug 28, 2013 |
Good book... very helpful. ( )
  JaimiTaylor | Feb 23, 2012 |
I've come to a realization: If you wish to learn HTML or read a book about HTML, and you go to the book store in order to find such a reference, you will almost certainly procure a book written in the 20th century.

Back then, shortly after we crawled out of the tide pool and descended from the trees to use one of two browsers to surf the Internet, HTML was a simple, forgiving thing. If you forgot to close your tags, it was all right. If you only made your page compatible with Navigator (A link in the Firefox evolutionary chain) or Internet Explorer, it was all right.

Nowadays, though, if you forget a closing tag, it could throw off your careful formatting. If you make a page only compatible with one browser, you're angering everybody who doesn't use such a tool. There are at least 5 mainstream browsers now, each with their own little quirks. In today's rough-and-tumble world of web design, the sort of books written in the yesteryear may be helpful at times, but are not good way to learn the language.

Maybe all this will change once HTML 5 hits the floor. Several browser already implement the specifications, but HTML 5 has not yet found its place in our bookstores (or at least mine!).

Castro, in her book, is very exhaustive, but her techniques are dated. The book would be a helpful reference if you're displaying web pages on cave walls, but if you're going to use this book as your only reference, you're going to generate less than respectable web pages.

I'd recommend if you absolutely positively need a book to learn HTML to give this one a try. Otherwise, wait around for O'Reilly to publish a book on HTML 5, which is infinitely better than HTML 4 or even the branching species, XHTML, which at a time was the memento mori for HTML.

But, yeah, if you can't get by using the internet to learn HTML, then give this book a shot. But you'll have to do a lot of work to fill the 12 years of improvements to HTML between now and the original publication of this book. ( )
  aethercowboy | Jan 22, 2010 |
I still refer to this often, having had it on my shelf for several years. ( )
  wbell539 | Oct 9, 2008 |
Back before I got lazy and started using sites like Blogger and LibraryThing, I had my own little website. If you would ever see it, you would probably notice a lack of, shall we say, quality. I admit it. The site was constructed by me using SimpleText, the old Macintosh system text editor, and the handful of HTML commands I had picked up off a list or deciphered from source pages. (Oh, and once I did ask the guys over at the Unearthed Ruminations message board how to make a link come up in a separate window.) Well, before I sold out, I had become dissatisfied with the status quo. I liked keeping my code short and to the point, but I was getting tired of seeing the iCab frowny face on my web pages and being clueless as to how to fix it. What pushed me over the edge was the discovery of an old friend's personal web site which was quite beautiful in it's design. I was a bit embarrassed to tell her about mine, knowing she might venture and gaze upon the ugly, ol' thing. Anyway, even though I got over that and rededicated myself to the motto "It's ugly, but it's fast", I did pick this book up from the library. It simply describes version four of the HTML code and takes you step-by step through using the various commands. It was very well written and organized. If I wasn't such a cheapskate, I would have bought a copy for myself right away instead of waiting a few years for it to show up at the friends of the Library book sale. But then again, if I wasn't such a cheapskate, I would have been running a DSL modem and not given one thought to those running text only browsers. Anyway, if you want to learn HTML, check it out. I think the wisdom garnered from that tome will one day enable me to make a website upon which iCab can smile. (Assuming I ever find time to code one...)
--J. ( )
  Hamburgerclan | Sep 10, 2006 |
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0201354934, Paperback)

"Perhaps the best-written HTML tutorial ever."

This book occupies a unique spot in my opinion. It's "the competition." All other HTML/Web page learning or how-to books are trying to knock the crown from this book's head. While it may not be for everyone, it just does such a superb job that it defines the field. Congratulations, Elizabeth.

This is what I could classify as a true intermediate or advanced book. Elizabeth Castro doesn't waste time or steps trying to teach a newbie how to click here or create a text file. In fact, so much is assumed that this really can't be called a beginner book at all. So, if you know what you're doing or what you want, this book will serve you well.

The whole HTML thing is broken down into tasks: formatting, text, layout commands, cascading style sheets--the whole nine yards. Then individual HTML commands or tasks are illustrated one to a page. The steps fall down the outside of the page; illustrations line the page's inside.

While this is all a great way to learn HTML, I can still find room for improvement--though not at the expense of the format. For example, a reference or tear-out card would have been handy. And some topics, especially JavaScript, are glossed over too quickly to be useful. From personal experience, I know that some topics, such as FTP, could use even more hands-on examples.

If you "get it" when it comes to computers, and are ready to do some down-and-dirty HTML coding (and I'm not talking lame-old FrontPage here), this book will teach you the basics in no time. It will provide a firm foundation upon which you can easily build your Web pages for the future. --Dan Gookin

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:13:01 -0400)

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A simple to use, visual reference guide to using HTML and creating web pages using HTML.

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