HTML and CSS Reference
CSS provides both absolute and relative measurement units for defining element dimensions, lengths, and
distances. The appropriate units should be chosen according to the overall design and layout of a web site (see the
section “Sizes and Proportions”). Unreliable or browser-dependent positioning and improperly combined units can
result in unreadable content or limited functionality. The overlapping order of layers might also be a problem if it
makes the content unreadable.
Web standards provide a way to develop reliable, fully functional, interoperable, device-independent, future-ready
web sites. However, they cannot guarantee optimal code length by default. Even if each character in the source code
has its meaning, that is, none of them is unnecessary, code length might still be far from optimal. Incorrect structuring
in the markup and especially the ignored inheritance in CSS (see the section “Ignored Inheritance”) can increase
complexity and length, resulting in larger file size, slower download and longer rendering time (see the section
“Nonoptimal Code Length”).
In this chapter, you learned about the importance of web standards, the benefits of standards-based web design,
and the resources where open standards can be accessed and standardization stages followed. Proper standards
implementation is independent from site popularity and the latest web design trends. Software tools with incorrect
or incomplete standards implementations and unskilled content authors produce the most nonstandard markup and
style sheets. The only way to maximize interoperability and secure your web sites for the future is to implement web
In the next chapter, I will discuss language and character settings on servers and in markup to ensure proper
character representation and provide advanced hints for software agents that search and process web documents.
The internationalization settings of web documents typically precede coding and can be considered as one of the first
steps in standards-based web design.
Standards Project. Accessed 24 October 2014
Dardailler D (2010) W3C PAS FAQ. World Wide Web Consortium.
Hazaël-Massieux D (2003) Buy standards compliant Web sites. World Wide Web
Consortium. http://www.w3.org/QA/2002/07/WebAgency-Requirements . Accessed 24
W3C (2014) Standards. World Wide Web Consortium. http://www.w3.org/standards/ .
Accessed 24 October 2014
ECMA International (2014) Formal publications. http://www.ecma-international.org/
ISO (2014) World Wide Web standards at the ISO website. http://www.iso.org/iso/
Organization for Standardization. Accessed 24 October 2014
Authority. Accessed 24 October 2014