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[closed] What's so bad about tables? (83 posts)

  1. manstraw
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Well, I'm not about to value judge someone's opinion. I'm just interested in examples.

    I thought I would add that I just checked my non techie sites. IE is averaging 77% for a high, and dips to around 55% for a low. Firefox takes second, and then there are a sprinkling of other browsers. Safari is showing itself some in my stats, which surprises me, as I don't have anything that leans to the mac (although I use Macs, but not safari).

    And in case anyone is interested, I've taken a different approach to complying with IE6's incorrect implementation of the box model and other non compliance issues. Instead of a css hack, I install http://ie7.sf.net on the site. It rewrites the DOM, fixing display errors in IE6, and bringing it into compliance. I even choose to do this for business sites. Each of my customers have accepted the fact that the page takes slightly longer to display on IE6, and that it requires javascript. I wouldn't recommend people do it for a business site generally, but I've found that virtually everyone has javascript on, and it hasn't been an issue. Because I feel it's Microsoft's fault for taking so long in updating their browser, I am choosing to penalize them with slower render. Firefox and other *modern* browsers enjoy the faster rendering. I now freely use position: fixed and other such css elements that we can't normally use because of IE6.

  2. lhk
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Hi again,

    did I say that CSS is going the way of Betamax? No I didn't. I said, that W3C is twisting the arm of the one browser which WAS the main standard before they started. And that's illogical.

    As to links, I said it several times, you won't get any. I never ever hand out links. Period.

    But how about writing CSS - crossbrowser-compatible - backwards-compatible - for a 5 column with 2 headers (one spanning the 5, one spanning only 3 columns width) and footer table for me, with thin outlines of every cell, a gap top and bottom, different background colors and - of course - no graphics used for any of this, shrinkable and stretchable into any direction, ... and please make that whole thing less than 600 bytes in size including the html part of it? If you pull that one off, we talk again.

    I just did that in html. Took me not even a minute. Filesize is 585 bytes, exactly. How about yours?

  3. lhk
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Hi manstraw,

    ...uuuuuuuuh - don't start me on Javascript...

    *shuddering*

  4. musyoka
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    lhk: talk is very cheap. While I respect your position on not providing links (examples) supporting your claims it certainly makes your claims less credible. Thanks for the interesting read but I agree that CSS is the way to and tables should be limited to tabular data. As for your claim about W3C "armtwisting" you should read up on the history of IE. For me IE never rose to the status of being a standard, as ubiquitous as it might be.

  5. lhk
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Hi ladydelaluna,

    I believe you misread some parts. I do code CSS sites. I just don't twist my clients' arms into doing so, and I very readily advise against CSS whenever there is a reason not to. That's the point I'm making here - absolutely unlike the CSS-fanatics here.

    As to technology: we have email, cell phone and video-conferencing today, but I haven't noticed that telegraphs and normal phones have ceased to exist. Just like cash hasn't disappeared simply because some people use credit cards.

    If people in general behaved like W3C fanatics these days behave, we'd have neither telegraphs anymore today, nor phones, nor still recordplayers for HiFi-enthusiasts, VCRs or watermills for that matter. Funnily all these technologies still have their valid niches and no one debates whether or not they may stay where they are.

    To astonish you a bit more, one of my uncles (who is a forrester) recently engaged two heavy horses and their drivers to transport wood out of the forrests he is caretaker of. He also engages the most modern harvester on the market, for a different stretch of woods. I find nothing extraordinary in this, given the stance of W3C fanatics, I guess they would.

    I deal mostly with European customers and visitors, and as I said, the lowest I get here is 75-80% IE, and that *is* with sites mainly tech oriented. What may make a difference in the stats is that we have practically nil webTV and like users here, most go online via either dial-up lines or broadband (normal DSL only) using a computer or - rarely - a laptop. Perforce almost everyone but geeks is online with a Windows-powered computer, few bother to install a second browser. This is even more pronounced with Easteuropean sites or African sites, where they aren't yet even completely migrated to 486 comps or browsers above 4.0.

  6. ladydelaluna
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    "I deal mostly with European customers and visitors, and as I said, the lowest I get here is 75-80% IE, and that *is* with sites mainly tech oriented. What may make a difference in the stats is that we have practically nil webTV and like users here, most go online via either dial-up lines or broadband (normal DSL only) using a computer or - rarely - a laptop. Perforce almost everyone but geeks is online with a Windows-powered computer, few bother to install a second browser. This is even more pronounced with Easteuropean sites or African sites, where they aren't yet even completely migrated to 486 comps or browsers above 4.0."

    So then why not agree that design decisions should be related to your target audience, and leave it at that? Why argue against CSS based layouts as a whole just because YOUR targets don't view it properly? The stats I gave you were pulled right from pmetrics, I'd even be so willing as to give you the login and password to see for yourself... The sites are all linked from one or the other of my own business sites, so it's not like I've anything to hide here... my client's stats are what they are, just like yours are what they are - yet every single time there's a question about "which is better" - you appear, and you vehemently defend your preferences as what YOU think should be standard.

    For the record - you can't dare compare tables to vinyl records or the like... There's a classic quality in vinyl, whereas I've yet to see a site using table based layouts be considered "classic".

    As for the search queries you gave earlier, I took a look at the first page, and I know you refuse to admit as to whether or not you did have anything to do with any of them, I will say this - the only sites I saw that I felt looked the least bit professionally designed were NOT using table based layouts (and I'm ignoring sites like imdb.com and the like)... those that were, looked like utter crap if you ask me. I sure hope you had nothing to do with any of those on the top 10.

  7. vavroom
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    I think there's a saying to the effect that "there are none so blind that those who won't see". <shrug>

  8. Doodlebee
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Exactly. I agree with ladydeluna - and also as I've been saying. Designers work <b>towards their audience</b> Lhk - no one here has bashed table-based layouts, but we have offered opinions - like you - based on our experience and use with our audience - like you. Which was the basis of the original question.

    The answer to that question is that you should determine who your audience is, and what they use the most often (as we have stated several times). If you're designing for an audience that uses old browsers, then by all means, use a table-based layout. No one is saying you can't. But if you prefer to move forward in your designs, and keep with a more progressive audience (because that's what your audience *is*), then learn CSS, and learn it well.

    I do, however, find it interesting that the one person who is vehemently defending table-based layouts has moseyed on down to calling us, who are a little more forward-thinking and hopeful of progression to a better system, names such as "geeks" and "fanatics", and assuming that we "fanatics" "twist our clients arms" into using CSS over tables. I, personally, do not - in fact, the majority of my clients seek me out to convert their table-based sites to CSS. I do no marketing of my business at all, actually - it's all word-of-mouth...and I must say that I'm perfectly happy for people to create table-based layouts, because I get paid quite nicely to convert them! Keeps paying for my family vacations - so keep 'em coming, I say ;)

  9. ladydelaluna
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    well said, as usual, doodlebee - and i too appreciate the opportunity to freshen up tired old table based layout sites for my clients by switching it up to a CSS based layout - and they love the results as well! oftentimes my clients seek me out for that, and then wind up signing on for continuing SEO services which nets me a monthly payment i sure like to get.

  10. Michael Bishop

    Posted 8 years ago #

    Please be reminded this is a WordPress support forum, and not a web designers forum. Also please keep the discussion to a civil and friendly tone. Any further venture from such, and the thread may well find itself suffering the fate of other O/T threads of late that crossed lines.

  11. CharlesKrause
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    There is a very good, non-geek, reason for divorcing content and formatting - which is the drive behind CSS based pages.

    Making a division between the content and the layout means that the content can be made - in theory - universal. THAT should mean something to clients. They can either have a table based page that is only viewable on 90% of computer based web browsers, or they can (eventually) have a web site that is visible on browsers, phones, content aggregarators, search engines, and available as a "web service".

    CSS and XHTML (which are really interim steps towards XSLT, XML, and XML style sheets) are NOT "geek driven" technology being "forced into place by a standards organization". They are ways to make publishers content available to the maximum possible number of consumers regardless of their platform.

    If publishers insist on using 1990s web styles and standards, and only reach 80% of the market, they are going to get smoked by those that are willing to embrace the (right now, unfortunatly, tricky) technology and capture 95% of the potential audience.

  12. manstraw
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    I would still appreciate the link to your websitebaker assertion. Am I correct in assuming this isn't a website you are responsible for? If so, then you should have no reservation in providing a link to your claim.

    CharlesKrause - thanks for bringing this back to the heart of the matter. It's why companies, including Microsoft, participate in developing standards. Let's not forget that Microsoft is a member of w3c.

    Oh, and I generally never use javascript (I'm a server side kind of guy). I use it for the one task of forcing ie6 into compliance because the 6 year old browser is the one that needs the help, and can darn well pay for it.

  13. vkaryl
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    One needs only stop to consider the vast number of platforms now available for accessing one's website(s) in order to "get" why tables for layout no longer makes sense. Of course, tables are sensible for tabular data and will always be so - just as with databases and spreadsheets.

    Bottom line: the single biggest argument against tables for layout is the proliferation of "non-traditional" devices which expect to view one's webspaces on entirely non-traditional viewports.

    [Edited for clarity....]

  14. whooami
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    way back on page 1 of this thread lhk said,

    "I've yet to see site stats with less than 80-75% IE users, most are up somewhere around 95%. This won't change unless companies and shops cease to sell their computers with Windows pre-installed."

    I can show you one:

    Firefox:

    Firefox 1.5.0.4 : 22.6 %
    Firefox 1.5.0.3 : 0.5 %
    Firefox 1.5.0.1 : 0.5 %
    Firefox 1.5 : 0.4 %
    Firefox 1.0.7 : 35.6 %
    Firefox 1.0.6 : 0.2 %
    Firefox 1.0.4 : 0.4 %

    Grand total for FF: 60.6 %

    --------------------------

    Internet Explorer:

    Msie 7.0 : 2.6 %
    Msie 6.0 : 21 %
    Msie 5.5 : 0.6 %

    Grand total for IE: 24.3 % <----

    Right out of awstats.

  15. carho219
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Another positive side of CSS, other than keeping content separate from layout, is that the browser can cache the CSS-file. This acctually makes several CSS-based websites faster even if the first page entered on the website can be a bit slower than a table-based site. Websites that check download speed etc. don't take this into account either which makes table-based websites look better than what they really are...

    The stats for one of the websites i develop (it's for a small college in Sweden) show about 60% MSIE and the rest a mix of browser with Firefox at about 20%. Everyone has geneeration 5 browsers or higher which makes CSS a really good idea.

  16. lhk
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Hi again,

    @miklb: Given that WP has by now achieved quite some notoriety for trouble and lack in the design part, I do believe that design discussions ought to be part of WP. If you still think that not, I have no problem with that ;-)

    @ladydelaluna: You're still misunderstanding and misrepresenting what I say. I'm not argueing that one switch back to tables and do away with CSS. While I can understand a CSS-fanatic coming to that conclusion by applying one's own (CSS-only-and-for-everything) stance to that of the other party, it's close to being an insult to someone of my opinion, which is that CSS at best is one solution of many, for one situation and not for others.

    And sorry, tabled design is very much a classic. Looking at the VAST majority of CSS-designs out there, and right now I very literally mean EVERYTHING but maybe a minuscule sliver 0.000001%, all I see are CSS sites EMULATING tables. Given that you can do much more and quite different things with CSS, doesn't it astonish anyone, that what it's most used for is recreating a tabled design in divs?! And this not just by the recently "converted" designers, but even by those swearing on the "huge variability" in CSS right from the start?

    I've seen so many CSS/XHTML files these past years, which bend over twice and thrice backwards to achieve the MOST likeness to tabled design as possible, often hopping through the most elaborate hoops of coding to do that (in spite of the fact that just this can be achieved with a much, much leaner code in tables themselves). You can't notice that and still think tables and tabular page design isn't a classic.

    @manstraw: I made two else identical installations for a client, both on the same server, a WSB one and a WP one, so he could compare and decide which system to use.

    I for myself did some comparing on performance and cross-browser/backwards-compatibility because it was a perfect casestudy for me too. Both relatively small CMS, both sites with the content separated from the design, and as the design and setup was practically identical, comparison was easy. I didn't compare sheer performance of the CMS software, instead I only compared and analyzed pageloads and pageweights. And the tables clearly won out there.

    I'm not even saying that with a more complicated design than what I usually do this might not have been different. But using a simple, straightforward classic two-column layout, even including one nested header table, the tabled design still won on actual size and loadtime.

    The ratio was somewhere along 1 (WSB-tables) : 1,6 (WP-css) and to me at least that speaks a clear language. And the WP installation was not even truly cross-browser-fast, whereas the tabled WSB displayed nearly identically everywhere.

    In case you're interested, the client decided on WP in the end, because he liked the admin interface better, I finished the installation for him (with a resulting ratio of 1:1,8 after that) and he's happily using it by now. He is on a fast server, with lots of bandwidth, he can stomach the money he has to pay for that easily, so it doesn't really matter for him whether WP rakes up more of that than WSB. On a slower server or one with less bandwidth allowance I'd have quite clearly told him to go for the other solution.

    If you look at the bare files called and their sizes, it's only logical why the tabled design wins out. As I already said, the size of such a simple table code is far smaller than the size of the CSS+html emulating the same table for all browsers and backwards. It's quite funny how you all here tend to negate that little fact.

    @vkaryl: I'm a webdesigner, many if not most people I am in contact or friends with are some way or the other net-savvy, tech-oriented and have professional relationships with the net.

    I know of no one (literally: not one person) who does more than bid on Ebay, watch violent little video snippets or write an email with these socalled "non-traditional" devices. I have yet to meet someone who actually surfs with his pda or cell phone. It's impossibly expensive, it's slow like hell, it's uncomfortable and you need to carry around a magnifying glass to read.

    And what's even more interesting: everyone (literally: every person) who has a pda or other "non-traditional" device also has a computer/a laptop and surfs on those.

    Currently, and due to discomfort for a long long time yet, I see no reason to provide content for devices which are not commonly used to view this type of content, unless there is a truly good reason to do so. One of these very good reasons would be the intranet site of a firm handing out pdas to their employees for quick referencing. I can think of very few other equally good reasons.

    Seriously, who would look at a site with hours-long reading content on a device where 10 minutes cost him three bucks (while at home he pays at most 1cent for the same time and can read much more and much more comfortably)?!

    Until we've reached that sci-fi age where glasses project the whole screen onto your retina and this service costs as little as dialup internet does, there is to me little sense in trying to cater to this for the vast majority of sites. And if we sometime reach that point of technology, we don't need to adjust, as the projection will be as good as sitting in front of a fullsized screen.

    I wonder what you think are the benefits for a normal content-driven site and even the majority of commercial sites to be accessible via pda or cell phone? Does anyone here truly believe, that any major shopping is done that way? Does anyone truly believe people have so much leisure time and are so rich to sit around and surf (expensively) instead of doing what one usually does when leaving the house? What is that projected target audience for this? How much income will it generate for a site?

  17. lhk
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    @charleskrause

    There is no reason why a tabled design couldn't be separated from content just as well as CSS design.

  18. lhk
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    As for stats...

    Typical youth and techoriented site:

    MS Internet Explorer 74.7 %
    Firefox 11.5 %
    Safari 9.9 %
    Opera 2.1 %
    Unknown 1.3 %
    Mozilla 0.1 %
    Konqueror 0.0 %

    Typical non-tech oriented site:

    MS Internet Explorer 87.8 %
    Netscape 7.5 %
    Safari 1.5 %
    Firefox 1.4 %
    Mozilla 0.8 %
    Opera 0.5 %

    Whether or not people use Firefox depends much on their social/technical background. Students on a college are way more likely to use FF, than 40 or 50 y/o non-tech surfers.

  19. manstraw
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    lhk - OK, you refuse to provide links to any one of your assertions. I don't understand why frankly.

    I tend to negate your 'fact' about filesizes when comparing table based design versus css designs because my experience is exactly opposite of what you state. I've cleaned up plenty of table based designs and have reduced file sizes in *every* case.

    I personally know two people who use pda type devices (one is a pda, one is a cell phone) to surf the net. I happen to live in a small town on the Canadian prairies, it's not just a big city thing. When I ask them why they do this, they don't have a particularly good answer except to say they want to. There are some sites (that happen to be pda friendly) that they like to frequently check in on. They also frequently check their email with their pda device.

    I also know someone who uses a screen reader program to read sites he browses. I don't know too much about the software, except that when navigation links are on the top of the page, it's apparently quite a drag to listen to the navigation first every single time he goes to a page. Because of this, I use put my links at the bottom of the html, and use css to display them at the top. I'm not about to sacrifice people like this for the sake of some behind the times majority. I don't decide who I design sites for. They visitors make that determination.

    I'm about done with this topic. I haven't been provided with links to the assertions made. I fall back to my own experiences with css versus tables. My personal observations are that css based sites use less code, load faster/render faster, and can do things table based layout cannot.

    Nice chatting with you all!

  20. vkaryl
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    lhk: I have numerous clients who surf and shop on their phones, as well as play games like Oblivion (I'm personally amazed they can afford to do this, but it's definitely an "each to her own" choice as to use of money, y'know). It may be entirely dependant on age specs and lifestyle demographics, as well as what part of the country.

    I also have a couple of blind clients who use screen readers.

    It's all down to forward thinking and personal options, I believe. Simply a case of "you go your road and I'll go mine". No need for anyone to get upset, most of us who replied were responding only to the original question.

  21. lhk
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Hi manstraw,

    as I explained, I don't hand out links to client sites, ever. That's a policy which at times has gained me considerable on my bank account, and it's a question of integrity. After that client decided on the WP install I killed the WSB one anyway, that was more than half a year ago.

    As to sizes:

    I suggested you (or anyone else here) come up with a CSS file and the relevant template which together are less than 600-700 bytes (bytes NOT kilobytes), as roughly 600 bytes is what the whole template in tabled html is.

    If - as you say - CSS is always leaner than html, well then it shouldn't be a problem for you to write that CSS+html. Do it and prove me wrong, as you say I am wrong.

    I'll reiterate:

    5 columns, 2 headers (one spanning all, one spanning 3 columns), fine lines around every cell and the table, a footer, a gap between top and the browser edge and bottom and the browser edge. A different color to each column. NO background graphics or other images to achieve that effect. And all of this under 700 bytes including the html, and of course backwards compatible and cross-browser-fast. Oh, and no serverside programming of course.

    You say you can do that, try it. I say it's not possible, as you will end up at the very least in the 8-10 kb range, my guesstimate is that you'll end up with way more.

    And there's absolutely no need for any links in this little test which shows perfectly what I am talking about.

    Well, maybe Canadians have cheaper access to cell phone networks, here you averagely pay 2-3 dollars for 10 minutes online. No one I know here has the dough to do this, unless he can't do it differently.

    You again failed to tell me just how much you calculate a commercial site is making out of such users.

    As to nav below content, without CSS enabled it's at least as cumbersome to constantly scroll up and down as listening to the nav cited again and again. And I doubt there are even as many people engaging a screenreader as there are people surfing with an old browser or one which has CSS disabled.

  22. CharlesKrause
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    'There is no reason why a tabled design couldn't be separated from content just as well as CSS design.'

    Go ahead. Try it. What do you have to do? You have to strip the tags back out of the code to do it. You have to add another, fairly resources intensive step. Try doing that with a massivly popular site like Amazon, or Ebay, and you WILL need to invest in more processing hardware, as opposed to coding the pages with divorced logical description and layout, and offload the formatting on the end-user. No investment required. A little smart application by the WEB DESIGNER, and no expensive HARDWARE upgrades needed.

    From your comments, I'm guessing you just don't understand the resons behind the technology. The technology did not pop unto being because some "geeks" decided it would be "cool" to do. The technology exists for a reason, to perform a needed function, and to enable developments in needed direction.

    I'm sorry you feel that there is no need for you to support "non-traditional" devices, because I think that if you are a web-designer as you claim, you'll shortly be out competed and by those who do.

    It seems to me that you are mistaking your personal experience with clients and consumers for the totality of web use out there.

    As for CSS emulating tables - again, you don't understand. CSS isn't about making DIFFERNT layouts - layouts are dictated by functionality, and there are only so many ways you can arrange a page. CSS is about making the layouts that exist more flexible, efficient, and about splitting logical structure and formatting.

    It really doesn't matter if only 10% of people use "non-traditional devices" - or even 1%. If you don't think those are signigicant changes in "market share" with several hudred million users, your business is not long for this world.

    As for the "it is too expensive to surf with a PDA or phone so I don't have to support it" argument - how long have you been working with information technologies? Havn't you been paying attention to the "cost of access" curves? Hell - 10 years ago cell phones were extraordinarily expenisive just for voice. Now, if I shop carefully, I can get unlimited voice trafffic, data, and long distance. Don't make the mistake of assuming what exists right now will always be the case. You have to project the trends - and connection costs are a pretty steady curve over time spans of decades.

    The companies that plan for those changes will basically shut out the ones that notice the trend to late and try to "catch up".

    You seem to be out here trying to "convince" people that the "old ways are best" and this "new fangled" stuff is just a pain-in-the-ass we could all do withought. You may be right - but I suspect that darwinistic market forces will prove you wrong - and business-wise at least, you'll have to adapt or die.

    Good luck.

  23. CharlesKrause
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Another point.

    Yes - a single page can be coded with tables in less file size than it takes to do a <div> structure with CSS. Even though the HTML code is significantly smaller, the CSS more than makes up for the size reduction.

    A large website is different. The CSS is shared over multiple pages. The savings in size are on a page by page basis.

    E.g.

    Case 1:

    Web page (table) = 40K (big page)
    Web page (div) = 25k (still big page)
    CSS = 30k

    Net gain with CSS = -5k

    Case 2

    Web site (tables) = 40K/page x 50 pages = 2Mb
    Web site (div) = 25k x 50 pages = 1.25mb
    CSS = 30k

    In case 2, the savings are 720k

    Unless you have really small sites, CSS will win

  24. CharlesKrause
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Another point

    Do a large website - 50 pages. Code it in tables, hard code the formatting into the HTML

    Now have your client change the color scheme and layout.

    Now you edit 50 pages.

    Do it with CSS

    Now have your client change the color scheme and layout.

    You edit one file.

  25. Samuel Wood (Otto)
    Tech Ninja
    Posted 8 years ago #

    As to technology: we have email, cell phone and video-conferencing today, but I haven't noticed that telegraphs and normal phones have ceased to exist. Just like cash hasn't disappeared simply because some people use credit cards.

    I find this discussion interesting to read and have no real stake in it, however I did want to comment on this little tidbit.

    I haven't had a landline phone for 4 years now. I dumped my landline back then when I noticed that I hadn't used it in over a year. I use my cell for everything.

    While I still use cash for small/quick transactions, my credit card gets a heck of a lot more use.

    And when was the last time you used the telegraph, really? ;)

    While it's true that all these things have not actualy ceased to exist, they do get phased out of the majority of usage. This is perfectly normal.

    Sure, for setting up a quick and dirty page layout, I use tables. I use them mainly when I'm doing rapid prototypes, to demonstrate some layout or effect or when I'm making something to be printed quickly. Doing tables is easier with some tools.

    But for any sort of long term usage, or anything that other people are actually going to see, I use CSS for a few reasons. One of those is that CSS provides a much finer grained layout control. Another is that it's *way* more search engine friendly. Yet another is that it's alternative browser friendly (text-to-speech browsers, mobile, etc) when you do it correctly. There's a lot of good reasons to use CSS instead of a tabular layout scheme.

  26. Dalton Rooney
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    manstraw -

    Let me preface this by saying that I'm a CSS person, and would never choose to design with tables. But I'm forced to work with tables as part of a site that I regularly maintain, and have yet to figure out how to replicate it exactly in CSS.

    Here's a representative link for you: http://mlik.org/sample.html

    Try resizing your browser and watch how the columns stretch.
    How would you replicate this exact effect in CSS?

    The criteria is that we have three columns, all of which stretch vertically according to the content of the center column. The catch is that each band of color in the border colummns must stretch to remain 20% of the total vertical height of center column.

    3 column layouts are a dime a dozen. I've used this demo in the past: http://builder.com.com/5100-6371_14-5268973.html

    But this effect is weirdly specific - easy to do with a table, but I've been racking my brain on how to do it in CSS without using javascript to determine the height of the center column.

  27. manstraw
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    If you like, I'll code something up later. I've just popped in on my lunch. I had not intended to participate in this thread any longer, but I'll treat your request as separate from that.

    There is more than one way to approach this particular request. I'll be happy to code an example that conforms to the css standard. One issue that I'm not inclined to address is the goofy box model of IE6. I stated previously that I use a javascript program to rewrite the dom, and that's about as far as I'm willing to go to accomodate ie6 these days.

  28. Dalton Rooney
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Hi Manstraw -
    I appreciate the offer, but there's no need to work up the code for me. In fact, I could use the practice of doing it myself - all I need is a push in the right direction. What would you suggest?

    Using ie7.sf.net to correct for IE's issues is fine, but I would prefer it work in Firefox and Safari without javascript.

    Cheers,
    Dalton

  29. jeroenl
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    Just a complement to everybody posting in this thread. Talking about tables vs. CSS without ending up in a big old flamewar... I'm impressed, kuddos to all mature people here.

    This thread deals with one of those topics I usually avoid like it's the plague, because in my experience allways ends up in a big nasty mess.

    ;)

    Personally I prefer CSS, but it can be a pain to get it right accross browsers sometimes.

  30. manstraw
    Member
    Posted 8 years ago #

    dalton, I was just looking at (um, bad dog me, I should be working ...shhh) the code for that page, and I see you have a blank table above the written content. Is that extra table there for a reason? I'm wondering what you're really after here. If it's to decorate the paragraphs, I might do it one way. If it's to have a decoration down the side of the page, independent of the paragraphs, I might do it another.

    Also, it might be a shortcoming of mine, but I find it difficult to explain a concept without showing actual code.

    edit: I just reread your explanation, and I think I understand what you want a little better.

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