The Rewards of Using CSS

Soon after the very invention of the Internet, the true purpose of the world wide web had been lost in the midst of a swamp of tables and images. Many web designers were concentrating on design above content and websites started displaying differently in different browsers and resolutions. Tables broke, and content was strewn meaninglessly across pages of clashing colors and tacky images taking minutes to load on our beloved 56k modems.

CSS is a relatively modern web design technology, but even in its infancy it is clear that it is the key to creating an  Internet that is better for everyone. CSS holds many advantages for both the web developer and the end user that older, and much more primitive methods could either not support or, if they did, only extremely erratically. CSS is used to style a websites layout, fonts and coloring, and tells the browser how to render the elements in a page on screen.

Standing for ‘cascading style sheets’ and invented by Norwegian software developer Hakon Wium-Lie in the  October of 1994, CSS slashes loading times and can be accurately interpreted cross platform. Hakon Wium-Lie invented CSS for one main reason – that being to separate content from design. All CSS rules should be kept in an individual file, and these rules are called to each X/HTML page so that changes made in one file have affects across a whole website – thus making modification of designs an extremely simple task.

Working cross platform means that your website which looks great in Internet Explorer 6 on Windows will look just as good on Safari on OSX or Firefox on that obscure distribution of Linux that that potential client of yours uses. CSS isn’t only brilliant cross platform, but ‘cross resolution’, too. It can be used to make layouts automatically resize to fit on a viewers screen, regardless of the resolution they use – in fact, it can even be used to make images resize to fit on a viewers screen. That’s 100% Javascript free – just one line of code, under twenty characters. No messy code, and no broken website if a viewer has Javascript turned off or are on a browser which doesn’t support Javascript.

Cutting out all of that useless table, frame and Javascript markup from your site not only boosts loading times  monumentally, but reduces the load on your web host, saving bandwidth and, therefore, precious money.

You can already see why using CSS instead of tables, frames and Javascript is the best thing you can do to make your website load quickly (yup, even more so than that new web hosting package you were looking at the other day). But what about those of us who know a website should look great as well as function great (we are web designers, after all) – well, CSS doesn’t cease to impress when it comes to this matter. The fact is that CSS actually gives designers more control over a page than ever before – from the font family, to line spacing, the style of bullet points in a list to how the page should look when it is printed; CSS does it all.

CSS gives designers a level of control that has never been possible before, it loads faster than ever before and uses less server resources. If your website uses tables, frames or excessive JavaScript for tasks that have much smaller and faster solutions then your website just isn’t cut out for the Internet of the 21st Century.

If you are looking for a web design company that will design and build your new or existing website using CSS, why not contact Strawberrysoup – a dedicated website design business focused on standards compliance and accessible websites?