Wednesday, January 17, 2007

A List Apart: Articles: How to Grok Web Standards: "Articles

No. 230
January 09, 2007
How to Grok Web Standards
by Craig Cook
Published in: CSS, HTML and XHTML |
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Many web designers, myself included, come to the web with a background in the graphic arts. We think in pictures, not in code. When we first begin designing for the web, we’ll use HTML and CSS crudely, as a means to an end—a method of arranging pretty boxes in space—without grasping the true nature of the box itself or what it contains. Altering that strictly visual mentality is the highest hurdle to overcome when a graphic designer first dives into semantics and web standards. For the visual designer, really understanding web standards means you’ll have to change the way you think about design.

The word ‘grok’ comes from Robert A. Heinlein’s Zen-hippie science fiction opus Stranger in a Strange Land. It’s a verb from the Martian language that means something along the lines of ‘to understand completely.’ To grok "

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