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Murach's HTML, XHTML, and CSS

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Author/s    : Anne Boehm
Publisher   : Mike Murach & Associates
Category   : Web design, HTML and JavaScript
Review by : Katrina Owen
Rating        : 8 horseshoes

Murach's HTML, XHTML, and CSS is an excellent introduction to clean, correct, modern (X)HTML and CSS. It is likely to be highly beneficial to novices and advanced beginners.

The book starts out with a 30,000 foot introduction to what the internet is and what web pages have to do with anything. It then proceeds to give the reader a solid foundation in modern HTML/CSS concepts and practices. I was particularly pleased to see that validation was brought up early -- in chapter 2. After the first 6 chapters, the reader can cherry-pick from the chapters in section 2 per their interest and needs, as they are stand-alone introductions and how-tos to a variety of topics, from working with forms, embedding media, and basic JavaScript usage. The final section of the book, gives a quick overview of the end-to-end process of actually creating a website including topics such as accessibility and usability.

Each chapter includes a large amount of interesting and helpful diagrams, examples, and technical bullet points to help the reader quickly gain insight into the important points covered.

The cover says "Training and Reference", though my perception is more training than reference. I'd suggest Apress' "HTML and CSS Design Patterns" for use as a reference once you've mastered the concepts in this book.

In short: A very valuable learning resource for beginners to reach level of skill and productivity that allows them to deliver high quality code in a fairly short amount of time.

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