HTML for Bloggers is a course intended for publishers who want to learn just enough code to make better blog posts, and be able tweak their own templates. When we discussed if bloggers should learn HTML and CSS, we talked about this course in terms of a series of “hacks” rather than a full on start to finish resource, and that’s exactly what we’re going to do. Read on for an introduction to the course.
What is XHTML?
XHTML is the eXtensible Hypertext Markup Language, and it’s not nearly as scary or hard as it sounds.
XHTML is what we use to markup text and images so that a web browser or other device can display our pages. It’s how we make lists, images, and links in our posts.
What is CSS?
CSS is what we use to style the text and images within our pages. It’s how we make text wrap around images, and how we make links change background color when you hover over them. CSS, or Cascading Style Sheets are responsible not only for how things look, but how they are positioned..
In this course, we’ll be focusing mostly on simple styles, as that’s in line with the target audience, but we will touch upon CSS positioning, and link to more in-depth resources.
Why Should You Care?
Modern publishing systems make knowing XHTML and CSS unnecessary. They provide handy buttons to format posts and upload images, and even some limited WYSIWYG functionality. So, if you have all of that, why would you want to learn to code yourself?
Many wouldn’t. Those that would, are those that publish professionally, or those that would just like to have more control over how things work on their blogs. Knowing a little about the mechanics of XHTML and CSS will enable you to write better, more professional looking entries.
Unfortunately, it won’t make you a better blogger though, that’s something else entirely 🙂
What Will You Learn?
As hinted at above, this course is being written for publishers, not designers. If you want to become a web designer, there are far, far better resources out there for you. W3Schools make a great starting point.
What you will learn here includes:
- How to handle lists, images and links in posts
- How to style those elements to fit your post and your blogs look and feel
- How to tweak your own templates
- Some of the theory and ideals of blog design
- Some hacks for working with advertising
- Resources for further learning, and tools of the trade
I’ve probably missed some things, as im kind of making this up as I go along but, we’ll add to it as we go, and eventually add a proper index page here.
Contributing to HTML for Bloggers
One reader asked if we’d accept contributions to this book: Absolutely, if you’d like ot contribute then either email me at [email protected] or send me a private message so we can collaborate.
Alternatively, you can post in the design forum or to your Performancing blog, and we’ll include the most useful ones we see.
like most of us, Im busy with a whole bunch of stuff all of the time, but I’m still hoping to crank out something on a weekly basis for this course. In the meantime, if you have suggestions, requests or ideas that you’d like to share, please do!
Thanks, i am looking for small html explanation. i have found it.
they sound like a good idea to get down on perf somewhere for sure, but they’re not really html/css stuff…
maybe a “blog hacks” module so users could submit hacks like those?
im going to be working on a site review module also btw, we’re about to take much greater control over perf now the majority of metrics work is done so expect some quick releases and upgrades shortly
Ahmed – I think the way that users can most easily achieve all those things is too simple for this guide:
1. Install Drupal
just to clarify:
hacks such as optimizing the title tag to show your post title, or how to convert your http://domain.com/?p=2 type urls into http://domain.com/keyword.html urls – this sort of stuff fits in this collection of hacks, correct?
I’m very pleased that you decided to offer this. For over two years, I have been teaching myself as I encounter something new I want to do.
This sounds like a much more effective way to go about it.
I’m really looking forward to this. More knowledge never hurts, and when it could improve my blog that’s a great thing.