Paperback: 360 pages
Publisher: New Riders Press; 1 edition (April 12, 2008)
Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 0.6 x 9.1 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #3,320,074 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #22 in Books > Computers & Technology > Digital Audio, Video & Photography > Adobe > Adobe Fireworks #203 in Books > Computers & Technology > Digital Audio, Video & Photography > Adobe > Adobe Dreamweaver #296 in Books > Computers & Technology > Programming > Languages & Tools > CSS
Dreamweaver is the software that eases the construction of websites by providing for "what you see is what you get (almost)" construction. CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is a web building tool for separating content and format in web site design, making the updating of sites easier and taking up less memory space on the host computer.This book attempts to teach the reader how to use Dreamweaver to create sites that use CSS. After a chapter laying out the fundamental rules for CSS, the authors provide a number of tutorials including building a new style sheet (the repository of the CSS rules), migrating a table-based layout to CSS, using liquid and then elastic CSS layouts, and finishing using a combination of Dreamweaver and Spry, another web design tool, to create a site.The book says it's aimed at the Intermediate/Advanced level and based on my experience, I guess that I'm at the Beginner level. I've constructed table-based websites with Dreamweaver that work well and look good. I understand the fundamentals of CSS. But this book left me in the dust. In the first tutorial, the authors took me step by step through the process of using Dreamweaver, telling me exactly which menus to use and which submenus to fill in, and though I had to refresh my memory from time to time by looking at (X)HTML and CSS texts, I was able to complete the tutorial. But as the authors moved to later chapters, the instructions on using Dreamweaver became less and less specific, so that by the half-way mark, the reader was being told what code was desired without any handholding through the menus. For an occasional user like myself, it was just too much and I soon found myself flipping back and forth, and using menus even though I had no idea why I was making the selection.
The book begins with some background information on the (X)HTML Document, CSS and the concept of laying out HTML pages with CSS. Three of the seven chapters give a step-by-step examples (with downloadable sample files) for a Fixed Layout, Liquid Layout, and Elastic Layout Web sites. In Chapter 4, the authors demonstrates how to use Dreamweaver CS3 to migrate a Table-based Layout to CSS Layout. In Chapter 6, Stephanie and Greg show how to build a Gallery Site with CSS and Spry.The book has a very pleasant style and layout with color images and side notes. Even with its technical context, the examples were very easy to read and follow, even if you're not doing the examples online. Stephanie and Greg also presented a few great tips and tricks for using Dreamweaver CS3 and CSS, eg, the faux column technique which gives the illusion of two equal height columns.I've been a Dreamweaver user for a few years. Late last year I learned about Dreamweaver CS3 (through Adobe's eSeminar series) and learned CSS from another great book by O'Reilly called "Learning Web Design ". It was a good, but rough, background to start designing websites with Dreamweaver CS3 and CSS. I've been waiting for this book for a long time. I read three chapters in the first week and was able to learn a lot of new techniques and tips I already used on my next design project.However, a few things can be added to this book to make it even better. Definition and explanation of CSS best practices and Web standards would be helpful, specially in understanding some design decisions in the examples. Also, Dreamweaver CS3 has many many choices for HTML layout. This book only covers three of them.