Web QnA #1 of many… I hope.
One of my friends has these questions for me regarding web design/ development. Will go through each in details, as much as possible.
Q1. I’m just starting out with web coding, markup. How do I get into Web Development?
Q2. I see a lot of people talking about C, HTML, Java, etc. What all things are necessary if I just consider Websites as my starting point?
Q3. Any references/resources that’ll help understanding website creation?
Q4. Any web standards that one needs to keep in mind?
Q5. Do readymade frameworks help?
But in the recent years, the terminologies have increased in number and we have more specific titles like Front-End Engineer, UI designer, UX designer and so on and so forth. It’s better if one gets to know about the specific titles and their scope of work.
If you have just started writing mark-ups and css, following are a few suggestions on how you can become a pro in HTML, CSS and hence, make a solid foundation for Development:
- Don’t start learning from scratch by visiting http://www.w3schools.com/ – yes, DON”T. But, this is what you should do – Bookmark the link and visit it regularly to learn about all the attributes, properties, selectors. You should train yourself to learn the difference between overflow: hidden, auto etc. You should learn about pseudo classes. The website is a one place repository for everything; so, make full use of it.
- Don’t underestimate HTML. A proper, semantic, structured HTML is something developers love and so does Google and Apple. Write proper HTML, know when and when not to use DIVs, don’t use DIVs for every element you use, don’t think that tables are a strict no-no for web designing – use them for tabular data display, name your ids, classes meaningfully – ‘redtext’ makes more sense for a class than ‘homeparatextred’.
- Remember – to start with Web Development just think that you need to take data from database and throw into a page for display and vise-versa. That’s it! Makes life easier.
- Grow the habit of solving puzzels, problems. Logic is everything in programming. Markup is not programming in it’s true sense; it’s just Mark-up. The better you are in math, logic, the better programmer you’ll be.
A2. If you consider just Websites as your starting point, just practice, practice, practice HTML, CSS. Don’t get carried away by the HTML5, CSS3 hype just yet! You’ll get to them but I’ve seen many who try to plunge directly into the latest HTML5 ( “Why shall I waste my time learning HTML4 and CSS2 when the latest technologies are HTML5 and CSS3?”) and end up writing shitty code.
Don’t create dummy websites for practice. Atleast, I don’t get motivated if I try to even practice something on a dummy site. Create something for real – A personal website, may be! Don’t restrict to creating only one page. Challenge and create more pages and try out different styles and keep improving your design.
Copy from the best websites and practice more to create something better! Then, try to create something from scratch to make it atleast half as good.
- Jeffrey Way
- Khoi Vinh
- Thomas Scott
- The FWA
- Ethan Marcotte
- Ryan Carson
- The Big Web Show
- Dot Net Magazine
- Web Designer Magazine
- Jacob Cass
A4. Try to keep a very neat structured mark-up, CSS. Keep validating your web pages – however, focus more on writing neat and don’t get overwhelmed by strict validation rules. If you can, download the ebook or buy the paperback of Zeldman’s http://www.zeldman.com/dwws/ Remember, the primary motive behind writing proper markup is for proper browser support – you can never control who your end user is going to be, so be as perfect as possible from your end.
Clear concepts of fluid, fixed-width layouts, F and Z based layouts, color, typography that usually don’t fall under “standards” but will give you solid foundation for everything else.
A5. Frameworks! I think you should read this: http://www.alistapart.com/articles/frameworksfordesigners/
Answer to your question, btw: Yes, the help, if you already know good amount of HTML, CSS, PHP – you’ll be more productive and efficient and no, if you’re just learning – stay away and write everything from scratch.
Happy webbying! <- no real term!