Changing from all tables to tables and divs

Posted on 2005-05-03
Last Modified: 2010-04-25

I currently use all tables. I would like to know everything it takes to be good with divs (CSS).

Question by:weikelbob
    LVL 33

    Accepted Solution

    This is an ironic question for the Dreamweaver TA, because to become proficient with CSS, you will have to break your reliance on Dreamweaver.  Once you have mastered hands-on HTML & CSS, you can decide whether or not Dreamweaver is a useful tool for you.  This is because learning web dev via a WYSIWYG editor, it is the software that uses the designer rather than the designer who uses the software.  In other words, the designer is limited to the imagination of the software and whatever point & click features are most prominent.

    So, put Dreamweaver away for a while and start with a basic text editor (like notepad).  Why?  Because it will force you to do everything yourself.  Once you are proficient - as noted above - you can select whatever time saving tools you want to use, because then they'll be doing what you want them to do and you'll understand what they're doing (for better or for worse).

    The best place to start (IMHO) is with the back-to-basics tutorials at, starting with the HTML, XHTML, & CSS tutorials.  There are other good resources, too, but these are the ones I'm most familiar with and they're often recommended here on E-E.  This is very important: take the time to go through each step of each tutorial carefully and don't just read all of the examples, DO all of the examples.  When you're fully comfortable with and understand one step, move on to the next.

    What else do you need?  Well, E-E for one.  You know you're really learning something when you find yourself asking a lot of questions.  I don't know of a better place to ask them than here.  You'll find the HTML, CSS, and Web Development topic areas here invaluable (as the Dreamweaver is for DW questions).  If you mention that you are learning, you'll find there are experts who will take extra time to help and make sure you're on the right track.

    Finally, take your time.  Anything worth doing is worth doing right - especially if you plan to make a living at it :)  Think of it in terms of this Zen saying: "Before a person studies Zen, mountains are mountains and waters are waters; after a first glimpse into the truth, mountains are no longer mountains and waters are no longer waters; after enightenment, mountains are once again mountains and waters once again waters."
    LVL 7

    Author Comment

    Sounds good, Humeniuk. I am not going to start right now. I can't thank you enough for your insight.

    LVL 33

    Expert Comment

    Glad to help, Bob, and thanks for the A.  And I know that it's tough to make a change like this (I pretty much followed the exact course of action above - still do, really, as we never stop learning).  In the end you will agree that is was very worthwhile.

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