Goodies to Go (tm)
May 19, 2003-- Newsletter #233
Goodies to Go (tm)
May 19, 2003--Newsletter #233
This newsletter is part of the internet.com network.
Featured this week:
* Goodies Thoughts - Table Elegance
* Q & A Goodies
* News Goodies
* Goodies Peer Reviews
Just in case you missed it before, the new Beyond HTML Goodies book is now available!
Goodies Thoughts - Table Elegance
It's a welcome invitation indeed when it's heard: "come, join me at my table."
In the "normal" world, that would be an invitation to dine, but in the more
exciting world of a web programmer <g> the finest, the most elegant tables are
all defined by HTML! We have talked before about tables, but with all the
wonderful solutions they provide it is hardly surprising that we return to
talking of them once again. Questions continue to come in to the HTML Goodies
http://www.htmlgoodies.com/mentors) the answers to which involve tables.
A table is an arrangement of things in rows and columns. At the intersection of a row and a column is a rectangle called a cell. In theory, a table could be one row deep and one column wide, but the single cell table so created would be of limited value. When you have more than one row, or more than one column, the true value of the table reveals itself.
It is amazing how many times we are asked "how do I put two pictures side by side? The browser puts them on on top of the other no matter what I do." Browsers will do that. To force the pictures to appear side by side, you would create a table having a row and two columns and place a picture into each of the two cells thus defined.
A table cell can contain pretty much anything. One thing it is sometime very useful to place into a table cell is a table. Nesting them in this way allows for some very interesting layout possibilities for your page. Some people struggle with frames to lay out their pages. Frames do have their place, of that there is little doubt, but for the finer points of layout, the table rules! Remember that frames slice your viewing space from top to bottom or from side to side. A table can occupy any portion of your viewing space. There are, of course, iframes, which can float in the middle of the page, but trust me, this is not the easy way to finesse your layout!
A table's definition allows you to specify its width or height, either as a percentage of available space or as a number of pixels. You can define a background for the table as a color or a picture; you can specify characters of a border, if you wish to have one; you can specify its location to be fixed at a certain point on the page; you can specify a certain amount of white space to be between the cells or within the borders of each cell. You can also specify most of these attributes for each cell within your table.
Such flexibility is what makes the table a powerful weapon indeed in the web coder's arsenal. If you want to see how each of these things is accomplished, check out the tutorial at http://www.htmlgoodies.com/tutors/tbl.html
Now take a look back at Goodies To Go #231 (see http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters/231.html) The example included in that issue makes some outstanding use of tables. You can see them in action at http://www.upperlowerbury.com/menusample.asp In this example, there are definitions in use that span multiple files. The contents of each of the files are included in the footnotes of that issue. To see the resulting tables as a whole, use "view source" on the sample page, and cut and paste the code into your wysiwyg editor of choice. The use of tables is quite cunning, and its worth following through until you see how it all fits together.
Now, to me, a table laid out with fine silver and Noritake is OK, but relatively unimportant, no matter what the menu. But a table laid out across files that holds a menu in a fixed location and spreads out content so that it's all easy to get to -- now that's impressive!
Thanks for Reading!
- Vince Barnes
Questions are taken from submissions to our Community Mentors. You can ask a Mentor a question by going to http://www.htmlgoodies.com/mentors.
Q. I have a side menu that is part of the whole page, and was wondering if there is a way to change the menu with out having to go through each page, but with out using frames.
[Check out Goodies To Go #231 at http://www.htmlgoodies.com/letters "Including Easy Maintenance" -- it includes a soup to nuts answer to your question! -Ed]
Q. I would like to start a web design company, but I don't want to be tied down to html editors. I can manipulate open source websites, such as the ones found on www.oswd.org but I would like to be able to open up notepad and go to work designing my own. I thought maybe I could get some answers here.
A. I am not sure what you are looking for. You can certainly use Notepad to create web pages. You just have to know HTML. You would have to have a program for images if you are going to edit and/or create images for your pages. An HTML editor is just a tool to make it easier to code a page. If you were to type every line of code it would take you a lot longer than if you used an editor. I'm not saying to rely on an editor completely. I have to edit/tweak my HTML manually all of the time. If you are just starting out trying to learn HTML you came to the right place. HTMLGoodies.com will get you well on your way.
Q. I uploaded some files via ftp and everything seemed ok, but when i go to look at the site I get the old test pages not the new pages. I have several machines all connecting to the internet via the same adsl router. I have cleared out the browser cache and history on all the machines, rebooted them, connected to the website and I'm still getting the old pages. But, if I use www.anonymizer.com I get the new pages!
A. You mention that you are using an "adsl setup". This has been known to cause caching problems. In the settings for your adsl modem look for the "webproxy" setting. Make sure that there is NOT a check in the box. If there is, "un-check" the box and look at the website again. You may or may not have to re-boot after making this change.
A. One of the problems you were having is that you were trying to use the
target property with a drop down. That will not work. I have modified your
code and was able to get it to work. Here is is:
<title>Drop Down New Window</title>
<option value="">Select One</option>
<option value="http://www.wheatlandsalem.org/newsletters/May03.pdf"> May
<option value="http://www.wheatlandsalem.org/newsletters/Apr03.pdf"> April
<input type="BUTTON" value="View" onClick="LinkUp()"> </form> </body> </html>
<title>Drop Down New Window</title>
if(selopt!="") // if variable is not empty then open window
<SELECT NAME="DDlinks" onChange="LinkUp(this.options [this.selectedIndex].value)">
<option value="">Select One</option>
<option VALUE="http://www.wheatlandsalem.org/newsletters/May03.pdf"> May
<option VALUE="http://www.wheatlandsalem.org/newsletters/Apr03.pdf"> April
The above example uses the onChange event in the select tag to perform the
function LinkUp() when a selection is made. It also passes along the value of
the option that was selected to the function. The term "this" refers to the
formelement and its properties such as the elements name, type, etc.
Q. This was posted In the recent Goodies newsletter (5/12/03):
Q. I found a script that disallows the right clicking to "view source" which is great.. however is there another code that disallows the ability to click on the "Source" option under the View Toolbar?
A. There is no way to stop them from viewing the source using the "view source" option.
However, the selected peer review winner of 4/28/03, http://atlantacelticfestival.org reveals this message when you click on view source:
<!-- YOU ARE NOT AUTHORIZED TO VIEW THIS PAGE -->
Am I just misinterpreting what is being said here? Could someone please clarify this?
Microsoft Buys Into SCO Group's Unix
[May 19, 2003] The software giant licenses SCO Group's Unix intellectual property, as SCO presses its claim that Linux has misappropriated key Unix code.
Sun, Oracle Offer 'Unbreakable' Relationship
[May 19, 2003] UPDATE: The longtime partners become a 'virtually linked company' with consolidated support and development using Sun Fire systems and Red Hat Linux.
Amazon.com Updates SDK with Web Services
[May 19, 2003] Go ahead - steal this cart. Amazon hopes Web services will encourage developers to use its shopping cart.
Gateway Joins Recycling/Trade-in Trend
[May 19, 2003] As the computer maker continues to evolve, it looks to cash in on the growing number of companies that allow trade-ins of old for new models..
Pressplay To Become Napster
[May 19, 2003] Universal and Sony throw in the towel on their online music subscription venture, in an ironic twist of ownership for the New York-based Pressplay.
The Threat of Eternal Spamnation
[May 19, 2003] Interactive marketers must overcome customer wariness in the wake of the spam deluge, says e-mail expert Hans Peter Brxndmo.
Microsoft Joins Security Firms in Virus-Warning Pact
[May 19, 2003] The company partners with Network Associates and Trend Micro on the same day a new e-mail virus was detected masquerading as a missive from Microsoft's tech support.
Opera Debuts Latest Version for Linux
[May 19, 2003] The company updates its browser for Linux with a host of new capabilities, including a built-in email client.
Yahoo! Kicks Off Wide-Ranging Search Campaign
[May 19, 2003] UPDATE: Following disclosures that reveal just how critical search is to Yahoo!'s revenues, the portal launches a campaign promoting the key feature.
Online Sales Soared 48% Last Year
[May 15, 2003] UPDATE: Did you leave your shopping cart at the checkout? A new study predicts on-line merchants will spend more technology dollars this year to keep you online.
Every week a site selected each week for review. Each week, reviews of the previous week's selected site are chosen for publication on the HTML Goodies website.
The current week's selected site is published in Goodies To
Go and in the Peer Reviews section of the website.
Current contact email addresses for submitting your site and
for submitting reviews are published in Goodies To Go.
If you would like to have your site reviewed, sign up for the Goodies To Go newsletter in the Navigation Bar on the left side of this page.
For full details about this program, see http://www.htmlgoodies.com/peerreviews
Did you ever wish your newsletter was an easy two way communications medium? Ploof! It now is!
If you would like to comment on the newsletter or expand/improve on something you have seen in here, you can now send your input to:
We already receive a lot of email every day. This address will help us sort out those relating specifically to this newsletter from all the rest. When you send email to this address it may wind up being included in this section of the newsletter, to be shared with your fellow readers. Please don't send your questions to this address. They should be sent to our mentors: see http://www.htmlgoodies.com/mentors/
Sometimes you can't win for trying!! Last week I wanted to explain why we use "<." (see Q&A Goodies, above) in this newsletter instead of the HTML code for a less than symbol. To do so, I referenced the code itself -- & L T --. I have spaced it out here because...., yep, you guessed it! -- somebody couldn't understand the difference between the symbol and the code I referenced because their email program interpreted the code and displayed the symbol!! As a reminder, I use a period after the symbol because it show up that way in every email program, and because using the codes, & L T and & G T, would create the need for you to perform two global edits before using the example, as opposed to the one required by "<." This scheme works well, but boy, it can be hard to explain it in an email newsletter!
And Remember This . . .
On this day in...
1897 Oscar Wilde released from Jail
Wilde, who was born and grew up in Ireland, graduated from Oxford with honors and was famous for his wit at parties, was jailed in 1895 after being sentenced to two years of hard labor after being convicted of being a homosexual. Married and father to two children, Wilde was "accused" by the Marquess of Queensbury of being involved with the Marquess' son. Homosexuality was still considered a crime in England at the time. His first trial resulted in a hung jury, but a second jury believed the evidence presented. Wilde was known for his flamboyant style and lavish wardrobe. Many of us are still very familiar with his accomplishments which include "The Picture of Dorian Gray", "The Duchess of Padua", "The Importance of Being Ernest" and "Lady Windermere's Fan".
Born today were: in 1890, North Vietnam's Ho Chi Mihn; 1925, black nationalist and civil rights activist Malcolm X (Malcolm Little); 1945, Musician Pete Townshend (you know Who!); 1952, singer Grace Jones; 1956, actor Steve Ford (son of former U.S. President Gerald R. and Betty Ford)
Thanks for reading Goodies to Go!
Archive Home Page.