This page contains a number of tools and references I’ve found useful. For a more comprehensive (and current) list, visit my Delicious Bookmarks page.
- Cascading Style Sheets
- Content Management Systems
- Information Architecture
- Web Design
Cascading Style Sheets
- W3C: CSS Validator: Make sure your CSS code adheres to the standards by using this tool. Online and offline versions are available.
- CSS Zen Garden: The Beauty of CSS Design: Witness the power and elegance of CSS at this site, which presents the same content reshaped by a half-dozen difference style sheets.
- css/edge: Another CSS demonstration site, this one created by guru Eric Meyer and dedicated to CSS design that’s at the bleeding edge. It includes things like dynamic menus created using nothing more than an unordered list and the hover command. Note though, that the tricks here are literally at the edge and many may not work in all browsers.
- css-discuss: A listserv dedicated to the practical application of CSS. It also includes an impressive Wiki that gathers together advice about how to work with style sheets.
- css-discuss Searchable Archive: Name pretty much says it all
- css-discuss Wiki: An online encyclopedia that complements the discussion list of the same name by recreating many of its posts as entries. Sections include “Using”, “Learning” and “Testing”.
- CSS Layout Techniques: for Fun and Profit: A collection of CSS-related resources, including layout examples.
- A List Apart: Flexible Layouts with CSS Positioning: One of the great challenges with the Drew web site is coming up with a design that handles multiple columns well, and allows for a dynamically resizing center column that does not overlay the page footer. This article addresses that issue in an articulate, well-constructed manner that includes examples.
- Styling <hr>: An article explaining how to style XHTML horizontal rules using CSS. It includes suggestions for getting the rules to show up the same in multiple browsers, as well as notes about potential pitfalls (as well as what browser those problems appear in).
- Cascading Style Sheets: The Definitive Guide: A comprehensive guide to cascading style sheets. Published by O’Reilly, written by Eric Meyers, ISBN-13: 978-0596527334
Content Management Systems
- CMS Matrix: A tool for determining which CMS will meet your needs. Includes entries — including a breakdown of capabilities and user-supplied ratings — for many different CMS solutions.
- Drupal: An open-source PHP/MySQL based CMS (though some might call it a web platform instead; it’s quite flexible). It powers the ITS, Library and Special Collections web sites at Lafayette.
- WordPress: A lightweight content management system/blogging platform. We’re using the Multi-User version at Lafayette to host department, personal, club and organization web sites.
- SIGIA-L List and Mail Archives: An e-mail list dedicated to the discussion of information architecture. This page includes archived messages going back to 2000.
- Information Architecture for the World Wide Web: A comprehensive guide to thinking about how to structure the data that drives your Web site. Published by O’Reilly, written by Louis Rosenfeld and Peter Morville, ISBN-13: 978-0596527341
- PHP.net: The home for PHP on the Web. Includes the latest news about the programming language, mailing lists, faq and an online version of the MySQL manual.
- PHP For the World Wide Web: A good, easy-to-read introduction to PHP that’s chockful of useful examples. Published by Peachpit Press, written by Larry Ullman, ISBN: 0321245652
- A Programmer’s Introduction to PHP: A more in-depth look at PHP, written for those with programming experience. I use this primarily as a reference guide. Published by Apress, written by W.J. Gilmore, ISBN: 1893115852
- PHP Cookbook: A collection of PHP solutions to common programming challenges. Includes programs for working with forms, dates, functions, encryption, xml and much more. Published by O’Reilly, written by Dan Sklar and Adam Trachtenberg, ISBN: 1893115852
- Alertbox: The home page for Jakob Nielson, a well-known usability expert. He publishes columns about current issues in usability every two weeks, and the site includes an extensive archive dating back to 1995.
- Don’t Make Me Think: A common sense approach to Web design that focuses on how visitors actually use sites, outlines common problems encountered on the Web, and offers advice on how to conduct cost-effective (cheap) usability testing. Published by New Riders, written by Steve Krug, ISBN: 0789723107
- Evolt: A community for web developers, focusing on a variety of design and technical issues. Particularly useful is “The List”, which is a sort of spiritual successor to the old “WebMonkey” list that was so popular in the late 1990s It’s a high traffic list that deals in all sorts of Web minutia.
- Web Developer Extension for Firefox: An incredibly useful tool for Firefox that puts just about everything Web developer need directly at their finger tips. It does neat tricks like outlining table cells, displaying image sizes, generating speed reports and re-sizing the browser window to different resolution-sizes (i.e. 640×480 pixels). It will also submit your pages to various validators (XHTML, CSS, etc.). There’s also a Mozilla version.
- Designing With Web Standards: A book that discusses different approaches to adopting Web standards. Published by New Riders, written by Jeffrey Zeldman, ISBN: 0735712018 ISBN-13: 978-0596527341
- WC3 XHTML: The official specification for XHTML 1.0 (Extensible HyperText Markup Language) from the World Wide Web Consortium.
- HTML & XHTML: The Definitive Guide: The fifth edition of this venerable tome covers the basics of HTML and its successor, XHTML. Published by O’Reilly, written by Chuck Musciano and Bill Kennedy, ISBN: 059600382X