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billbenson
12-09-2008, 10:06 PM
I just looked at the source for yahoo. I do that from time to time. The last time was certainly within the last year. No idea when.

The last time I looked the page layout was with tables. Its now with CSS. There was one table in there. I didn't look to see what it was, but could have been 3rd party code.

A lot of major sites have been reluctant to use CSS for layout instead of tables because of browser issues. When you see someone like Y making the change it certainly is a sign on the wall that says the days of table layout are ending. It wouldn't surprise me if table layout vs css affects or in the future will affect seo as well. I've never seen anything conclusive on that, just opinions, but I've always been of the belief that if you can get rid of on page clutter you are better off from a seo aspect. That includes js, html tags (like font), and tables.

I have no evidence of table less layout affecting seo. I do think it is interesting when the big boys are making the shift to css layout.

vangogh
12-09-2008, 10:41 PM
I hadn't noticed Yahoo making the switch to css. Last time I looked the layout was still tables. Maybe the change came with the recent design changes they made.

I agree that reducing page clutter is good, though I've not seen evidence css is automatically better for seo. I think it's more to do with better code leaves behind less road blocks to being spidered. There are all sorts of theories about it and I agree it would be good if standards compliant code led to better ranking. But search engines are ultimately interested in ranking content not code.

orion_joel
12-10-2008, 01:21 AM
I think, but am not entirely sure, if the new version of my business site (Orion Networks in sig) is primarily using CSS or not, i think the primary layout features are CSS with a couple of tables to better organize specific area of the layout.

I am using a predefined template though so this is really why i cannot tell you for sure one way or the other.

vangogh
12-10-2008, 02:38 AM
Joel for the most part it's using a css layout. For some reason the menu and login form are inside a table. They don't need to be, but I'm guessing whoever developed the template decided it would be easier for them to align things using a table.

billbenson
12-10-2008, 11:15 AM
VG, certainly old sites with old html and good info will continue to rank for quite some time. I just have a feeling, both for the reasons you mentioned (easier to spider), and conforming to standards its good practice to get rid of on page clutter and conform for new pages. If it doesn't matter today, it may tomorrow.

vangogh
12-10-2008, 12:06 PM
I hope you're right since I develop css driven sites to standards. I'd be more than happy to gain an extra advantage in search traffic simply for doing what I already do. Still I don't see it happening any time soon. There are just too many quality content sites that are lacking in quality code. The average person doesn't care about the code behind a site. They care about the content and about the site loading fast enough and it working. Some of that is certainly controlled by code, but still the average person isn't concerned with the code itself. Just that the site works.

Search engines are directing people to sites, not code. If the information is good enough to rank and the code isn't causing technical problems for spidering and indexing it's going to rank.

On the other hand Google has an accessible search engine for the visually impaired (http://labs.google.com/accessible/) and sites that are coded well do seem to rank better there. So some technology is in place to rank sites based on how well they're coded.

Hopefully that will translate over to the main search one day. I'm not counting on it, but I'd be happy to see it happen.

cbscreative
12-10-2008, 01:15 PM
I've heard many arguments and opinions on this issue, but I have strong evidence to suggest that it does make a difference. If all things are equal between two sites, I believe the better coding wins. I don't take this to extremes though because I don't equate "validated" code to clean code. Validated is fine, and I think there needs to be a standard, but I don't get legalistic about it.

Rather than talk about theory and opinion, let me share an experience I had. I had a client with a well aged site that was reasonably well designed so very little had to be done with the look and feel. The site had a reasonable number of inbound links, but almost every key term needed had the site in "oblivion" for ranking.

I proceeded to clean up the code, make good use of alt tags, convert the layout to CSS to draw more emphasis to the content, work on some usability issues, pay careful attention to details, etc. Bottom line, when I was done and we launched the revision, my client was showing page 1 Google results in 3-4 days for key terms. Since code cleanup was essentially the only thing this client needed, I know for a fact that it makes a difference. It is NOT the only factor, but it is an mportant one.

I learned years ago that bots use "top down logic" in reading a web page. CSS allows you to create pages with top down logic, tables do not. I have not seen anything that would cause me to doubt the importance of having top down logic in your page code.

None of this should ever take priority over the humans that will read these pages once you get the results. You have to balance search engines with human eyeballs. Both are important.

billbenson
12-10-2008, 01:22 PM
I just think older sites or pages will get grandfathered in, but eventually you will be held to a higher standard for new pages or sites.

Like I said, pure conjecture, but...

On edit, we cross posted on this Steve CB :) By top down logic, I assume you mean putting content at the top of the code. I think that using good design and SEO practices can only help you.

cbscreative
12-10-2008, 02:18 PM
Yes, I do mean content at the top of the code. If you use tables and have a two column structure, the first column is at the top of the code. Typically, the second column would be your main content, but if you have a few blurbs in the first column, it will be given slightly higher priority in those simple little bot brains. They can often sort out the difference, but every little bit helps in my experience.

billbenson
12-10-2008, 03:24 PM
Ya, I completely agree with you on putting the content at the top. Particularly on a new site which may not get the whole page spidered on the first few visits. I have yet to come up with a 3 column css design that works using float or relative positioning across all browsers putting the content above the left column though.

vangogh
12-10-2008, 04:21 PM
Let me rephrase a few things I said. First I think clean code is very important, though the importance is more to do with development and maintenance and usability than it is to do with SEO. All of the above overlap though so clean code can improve SEO to a degree. Usually with SEO it's more that poor code can hurt you than clean code can help you.

As an example say your home page navigation is created with Flash and you have no other links on the page. Search engines don't really read Flash well so odds are they may never index any page beyond your home page. Fixing that by either changing the navigation or creating an alternate html navigation for spiders would seem like it improved your optimization, but again it's more that the Flash navigation was hurting you than the html navigation is helping you. There is a difference.

Steve with the site you gave as an example I think it's hard to determine what changes had the effect of improved ranking. You changed a lot of things and any or all could have had an effect. Most likely the increase in ranking was due to a combination of things, but it's not proof that any one change you made had an effect. You could have done everything with the exception of converting the layout from a table to css and might still have noticed the exact same results.

Bill the older sites ranking well is most likely that they had an advantage in quantity and quality of links due to being online as long as they have. It's possible that the age of the site played a role, but it's more likely the age of the links is why they rank so well.

When it comes to css vs table layout I don't see any evidence that one or the other is better for SEO. I wish the evidence pointed to css, but it doesn't. Search engines want to rank content. When comparing pages for ranking they looked at the content stripped of all the code anyway. I can offer you lots of reasons why you should use css over a table based layout, but SEO isn't one of them.

cbscreative
12-10-2008, 06:05 PM
Vangogh, I certainly wouldn't argue that the sum total of all the changes helped the site I used as an example. That's exactly why I made the changes is that I knew they would help when all were combined. I don't believe that any one of them would have had the same effect on their own.

The one thing that I still favor CSS for is the top down logic because I have not seen any evidence that top down logic is a myth. Can it help on its own? Maybe in a situation of local results and limited competition, but it certainly appears to help as a contributing factor.

I like to look at the "what if all things are equal?" question. If everything were equal between two competing sites, then what might push one above the other? This is where attention to smaller details could pay off. If the only difference were CSS vs. tables, who would win? I don't claim to know for sure, but I suspect CSS would have the advantage.

billbenson
12-10-2008, 06:22 PM
My only point is that it may matter in the future. You never know. I think a clean design probably helps to some degree today including putting body text at the top but like steve cb I have never seen anything definitive on it.

As a sidenote, I'm working on a custom cms that writes pages optimized as I see fit from my template and filling out a form page. I'm doing it to quickly put up pages optimized and structured the way I want. It writes static pages from the info in the db as opposed to pulling info from the db on every page load. I can still have dynamic info on the page or pull stuff from a db if I want. I wrote one a number of years ago, but I wanted to redo it. The old one accommodated obsolete things like recip linking etc.

The reason I mention it is it seems like something like this would allow site developers to develop sites optimized as they see fit more quickly. The intent is not to replace a wp blog or ecommerce software, but rather to put those in subdirectories and use it for the top level and add the SEO you want easily at the top level. For informational sites, it could replace a wp site and get rid of the required updates and maintenance.

Just a thought.

vangogh
12-10-2008, 06:26 PM
If the only difference were CSS vs. tables, who would win? I don't claim to know for sure, but I suspect CSS would have the advantage.

That's the issue and I've yet to see evidence either way. Now I'm going to develop sites with a css layout for a variety of other good reasons, but I just haven't seen anything to convince me it'll make much difference when it comes to SEO unless that difference is indirect. For example a css site should load faster than a table based site. That could mean more people sticking around the site and thus more people linking to your content. The links would likely lead to improved ranking and in a sense you could say the css improved SEO.

cbscreative
12-10-2008, 06:50 PM
Yes, even with SEO off the table, there are plenty of other good reasons to use CSS.

vangogh
12-10-2008, 10:14 PM
Absolutely. The first site I ever built was developed using DreamWeaver. it was a tables driven site. I knew as soon as I was done there was a better way and saw quickly it was hand coding with css. I spent a couple weeks reading a few books and learning and have been developing with css ever since.

Anything to help separate the structure and presentation is a good thing. The more modular you can make your code the easier it will be to maintain and reuse.

Business Attorney
12-10-2008, 10:34 PM
I'm curious. I have generally coded everything I do by hand and have used css, but there are a couple of places where I have tables of data. I have read that using tables to design the page layout is "bad" but that using it for real tables of information is OK. An example my the list of California LLC forms and filing fees (http://www.limitedliabilitycompanycenter.com/california.html).

I am sure i could probably figure out a way to do it with <div> tags but is that really necessary? Frankly, too, the kind of information that I put in tables is not the key text on the page, so I'm not sure that I even care if the spiders get indigestion on it, as long as it doesn't hurt indexing the main text.

seolman
12-10-2008, 11:32 PM
Nice thread - let me jump in. I like Steve's comment about how bad code hurts you more than anything. We do use CSS layouts by default on all our sites and in our experience, in almost every case where we've swapped a site over to CSS from old style layouts, we've seen a definite improvement in ranking. I tend to think this has more to do with the robots grabbing more text based on either time limits or character limitations.

I must admit I'm ignorant about this guys. How much of the text is actually spidered on a long web page starting from the <body> tag? I read about it some time ago and I can't recall - is there is a limit...(2,048 characters???):confused:

<edit - sorry Dave - jumped in before you posted :) >

seolman
12-10-2008, 11:37 PM
I'm curious. I have generally coded everything I do by hand and have used css, but there are a couple of places where I have tables of data. I have read that using tables to design the page layout is "bad" but that using it for real tables of information is OK. An example my the list of California LLC forms and filing fees (http://www.limitedliabilitycompanycenter.com/california.html).

I am sure i could probably figure out a way to do it with <div> tags but is that really necessary? Frankly, too, the kind of information that I put in tables is not the key text on the page, so I'm not sure that I even care if the spiders get indigestion on it, as long as it doesn't hurt indexing the main text.

It's not "bad" to use tables. That's a myth. Use the code that is appropriate to your needs. The search engines don't really have any problem reading tables but they are a lot more cumbersome to manage than CSS tables in terms of making changes in fonts, borders etc. Once you get used to using CSS tables you'll never go back to old style tables again. Use what you are comfortable with. It's not likely making any real difference to your rankings.

vangogh
12-11-2008, 11:33 AM
David it's not only fine, but recommended to use html tables to present tabular data. That's exactly why those table tags were created. The issue with tables is when they're used to layout the entire page.

Search engines can spider and index pages written with tables just fine. You can certainly code something with tables that won't be spiderable the same way you can code something with css that won't be spiderable. Some of the ideas for why css was better for seo came from the thought that the content that appears first in your file is given more importance than the content that comes later. With tables it was possible your most important content ended up somewhere down in the file even if it was at the top of the page when viewed through a browser.

With css you had more control. You could for example have important keywords in your footer, but write your code in a such a way that the footer appears first in the html file. I think search engines have evolved beyond seeing content at the top as the only important content, though it may still play a role.

Another thought with css is that it's generally going to be much cleaner code than the same page code with tables. Less code means less potential for error that could trip up a spider. Still a talented web developer could write cleaner table code than an untalented developer could write css code.

Ultimately I don't think it matters to search engines whether you use css or tables. Either can be spidered, indexed, and ranked. Whether or not the page has problems will have more to do with who's writing the code than whether or not css or tables are used. Any advantages to css would tend to be slightly more advanced and in my opinion haven't been proven.

That's not to say you shouldn't use css to layout a site. You should (though again using tables for tabular data is the correct way to present that data)

Then again everything you know about css and tables is wrong (http://nettuts.com/videos/screencasts/everything-you-know-is-wrong/). The link will take you to an article about 'css tables' which are different than html tables and will likely be the way forward in laying out a site. So a couple of years from now we can argue whether or not we should use css or tables or css tables and really confuse everyone even more.

billbenson
12-11-2008, 11:52 AM
I must admit I'm ignorant about this guys. How much of the text is actually spidered on a long web page starting from the <body> tag? I read about it some time ago and I can't recall - is there is a limit...(2,048 characters???):confused:



I think it all eventually is, but not necessarily on a new site or page on the first pass. One more reason proper tag usage is probably important. You said from the start of the body tag, but the bot may skip down to the first heading tag? Who knows, but its very plausible.

vangogh
12-11-2008, 03:00 PM
I think those kind of limits were more an issue in the past and probably one reason behind css being good for seo. Less code meant more of the file could be read by spiders. I think the official word from search engines is there are no file size limits to spidering, but I think a few people have tested and there is a cut off. I want to say 10,000 characters or bytes, but please don't trust me on that.

If I'm remembering correctly the limit is one that shouldn't affect web pages other than those that are very, very, very long.

seolman
12-11-2008, 10:46 PM
Thanks guys. I was thinking the limit was huge. I will say we often upgrade sites to CSS layouts and it's common we see improvements in their rankings. I can't pin it down to any one thing but we can be sure a lot if little things are happening that may all add up to better treatment by Google:


pages load faster
less code for the SE to pick through
obviously this makes content to code ratio higher


I've also wondered if there isn't some sort of intangible benefit given to pages with better quality code by the engines. The engineers writing the code for the spiders certainly must appreciate pages that are compliant vs. pages that are not. Just as we get frustrated having to build in IE hacks, they must get a little frustrated having to build in "work-arounds" for bad code. I can't imagine they would enjoy giving high marks to pages that have lousy code. It's just a human nature thing I wonder about.

vangogh
12-12-2008, 12:55 AM
It's hard to say sometimes what had the effect when you make big changes. Recoding a site is a pretty big change.

While the engineers who code the spiders and the algorithm probably do appreciate good code, the business people making the decisions just want to show the best content in the results. Search engines need to have the best results (or the appearance of the best results) in order to get people to use the search engine. You and I might appreciate nice code, but realistically when we're searching we just want information. We want answers to our questions. If those answers and the information we seek happens to be on a page with poor code do you really care?

Ultimately it's the information we're after and so search engines want to present that information for us regardless of the underlying code.

seolman
12-12-2008, 11:36 PM
I guess the point I'm trying to make is: pages that have ugly code may pose more challenges for the Engineers and so (hypothetically) limits we are unaware of may be placed on the material spiders scan, time spent, characters read, etc (we simply can't know).

Example: spider hits unknown block of code X, does it:

a) bypass until it hits something it recognizes?
b) spawn another spider to continue while it makes a query trying to determine what type of code this is?
c) give up and move on?
d) go to the local micro-brewery and buy a wheat beer

Obviously this type of data isn't always shared with us. Therefore there may be advantages we are unaware of to having pages with clean code.

Executives are always pushing the ideal - engineers will be directed to carry out their directives but reality will dictate that limitations built into the software and human nature will determine what really happens.

It's those intangibles that I think are responsible for clean pages bypassing old code when we do the CSS upgrades. In many cases we even set up the URL's to be identical to the old site so Google doesn't get confused and old incoming links are still valid. It's a fun thing to watch.

vangogh
12-13-2008, 03:43 AM
I can understand the idea of the code presenting more challenges. But I don't think ugly code is necessarily what leads to those challenges. I'd say there are definitely show stoppers though, that stop spiders in their tracks.

Perhaps when the code is so bad the spider gets depressed and commits suicide, leaving little spider bits to further uglify your code.

I do agree that code can be written poorly enough to cause spidering problems. One of my selling points as a web designer/developer is that I write code that makes spiders happy. I guess what I'm saying in this thread is that the poor code isn't necessarily a css vs tables sort of thing. You can write good or bad code using either. Spiders don't have any inherent problems crawling table based code and so that code shouldn't be a show stopper by default. It might be because it's poorly written table based code, but it's the poorly written part and not the table part that causes the problem.

Now I'll still argue that css is the better way in general and if there one or the other (css vs tables) is going to be better for search engines I would think it would be the css. I just haven't seen evidence that css alone vs tables offers enough search engine benefits to list that as a reason for using css. I think you should still use css for site layouts and I think there are more indirect benefits where search engines are concerned. CSS usually results in better overall code and a faster more usable site. That should lead to real people spending more time on your site and visiting more often, which should lead to more links and more word of mouth. Also if search engines are looking at user behavior on sites that would also be a benefit.

Hmm? Maybe if your code is really that bad it angers the spider, which turns into a code eating pacman and you wake up in the morning to a mostly empty page strewn with bits of code showing clear signs of spider bites.

seolman
12-13-2008, 12:30 PM
Perhaps when the code is so bad the spider gets depressed and commits suicide, leaving little spider bits to further uglify your code.

Maybe we could whip up some spider anti-depressant code and sell it to Google. Make gazillions.


I do agree that code can be written poorly enough to cause spidering problems. One of my selling points as a web designer/developer is that I write code that makes spiders happy. I guess what I'm saying in this thread is that the poor code isn't necessarily a css vs tables sort of thing. You can write good or bad code using either. Spiders don't have any inherent problems crawling table based code and so that code shouldn't be a show stopper by default. It might be because it's poorly written table based code, but it's the poorly written part and not the table part that causes the problem.

Exactly - my point is far more about bad code (not old code or even deprecated code). I have no problem with well written tables or even old style HTML. A lot of the sites I optimize are old and have a lot of old deprecated code in them and I do little bits of clean up here and there but this has nothing to do with ranking.

I apologize for not better defining what I meant by "bad code". I should have made this clearer at the outset. I hereby chastise myself and deduct one dark chocolate candy from my menu this week.:(


Now I'll still argue that css is the better way in general and if there one or the other (css vs tables) is going to be better for search engines I would think it would be the css. I just haven't seen evidence that css alone vs tables offers enough search engine benefits to list that as a reason for using css. I think you should still use css for site layouts and I think there are more indirect benefits where search engines are concerned. CSS usually results in better overall code and a faster more usable site. That should lead to real people spending more time on your site and visiting more often, which should lead to more links and more word of mouth. Also if search engines are looking at user behavior on sites that would also be a benefit.

Couldn't agree more. Had I defined "bad code" better at the outset this would have been more obvious and I wouldn't be out one dark chocolate candy this week. The moment CSS came out I flipped out like a Woodstocker on Acid and started tinkering with it. Now I can't imagine building a site without it. Forget search engines - it's simply the best thing available right now for controlling the look and feel of a site.


Hmm? Maybe if your code is really that bad it angers the spider, which turns into a code eating pacman and you wake up in the morning to a mostly empty page strewn with bits of code showing clear signs of spider bites.

Nah - that's a rumor passed on by grown children of Area 54 conspiracy theorists...or maybe by me when I tried to actually code something decent at 3am...

cbscreative
12-13-2008, 01:43 PM
I wonder how the spiders are doing with this thread.

vangogh
12-14-2008, 02:44 PM
Steve this thread will soon be the go to thread for all spiders who are feeling a little sad or angry. We might need to change the thread title to "Spider Therapy" or something similar.

Spider anit-depressents? I like your thinking Dave. I can already see the gazillions rolling in.

You were fine with the way you defined or didn't define 'bad code.' I think the whole concept of improving your seo because you fixed things that were hurting you as opposed to the improvements giving an advantage. That's why I keep pointing it out. It's more for people coming in and reading later.

In the end you still want to write good code, not so much because the good code helps, but because the bad code hurts. Maybe it's just semantics, but I do think it's an important difference worth noting, especially when debating the effects of the code.

That's why I don't think css by default is better. It tends to be better because those of us using css are probably writing better code than people still hanging on to tables.

Who told you about area 54? No one is supposed to know about area 54. At least you didn't bring up area 52. Oops.

seolman
12-15-2008, 11:21 PM
Spider anit-depressents? I like your thinking Dave. I can already see the gazillions rolling in.

Let's keep this to ourselves...thank goodness so few people read any of my posts...


That's why I don't think css by default is better. It tends to be better because those of us using css are probably writing better code than people still hanging on to tables.

I agree. It's less about CSS than just knowing what SEO is truly all about.


Who told you about area 54? No one is supposed to know about area 54. At least you didn't bring up area 52. Oops.

Now you've done it...I'm not going to explain why Pez dispensers suddenly appeared and then 45 records were suddenly replaced with new technology. You'll have to.

vangogh
12-16-2008, 01:02 AM
Shhh. No one is supposed to know the connection between Pez dispensers and 45s. Am I dating myself to admit I owned a few 45s?

cbscreative
12-16-2008, 01:07 PM
I had an 8-track player at one time, it was even stolen. I was sooo glad to see cassettes replace that horrible idea, especially when they made them smart enough to automatically detect the end of one song and beginning of the next. The one thing I do miss about albums is the nice big palette for cover art. CD's just aren't the same for that.

vangogh
12-16-2008, 03:09 PM
My first stereo had an 8-track player. In order to play cassettes I had to purchase something that fit inside the 8-track. It would play cassettes, but at a slightly slower speed because of the set up. The stereo also had an AM/FM and a turntable. Oh, the memories.

seolman
12-18-2008, 02:27 AM
I remember when the 8 tracks used to drag and we would get some hilarious sounding songs...ahh the memories.

vangogh
12-18-2008, 01:21 PM
I never used my 8-track all that much. They were already falling out of use when I had mine. I do remember having recorded songs onto one. They were on 4 separate tracks. I guess it was 2 tracks per recording. I think each of those 4 tracks held about 4 or 5 songs each. After awhile I knew which songs I liked best on each of the 4 so I might listen to the 1st song on track 2 and then the second song on track 3, etc. I probably never listened to all the songs on any one track since I would jump to one of the others.

That may all soung confusing, but I'm betting anyone who ever had an 8-track kind of knows what I'm talking about.

It wasn't too long before I bought a separate cassette deck and I mostly just played albums. It wasn't until I was in college or maybe even after I graduated that I had a CD player.

Jagella
01-30-2009, 04:07 PM
That's a very relevant topic, Bill. I recently started using CSS layout for my website. It's easy to do using Dreamweaver, and I don't use tables anymore.

Here's what David Sawyer McFarland has to say about CSS page layout:


The designers of major Web sites like ESPN.com, Wired.com, and Macworld.com have abandoned table designs in favor of CSS because CSS offers easy format updates and smaller file sizes (which means faster downloads). (1)

CSS layout is much more flexible than table layout which for me is one of the “easy format updates” that McFarland mentions above. Rather than wrestle with table cells placed rigidly in rows and columns, I can move a page element anywhere on the page and even overlap other elements.

Jagella

(1) David Sawyer McFarland, Dreamweaver 8: The Missing Manual, (Pogue Press/O'Reilly; Cambridge; 2006) p. 293-294

Jagella
01-30-2009, 04:29 PM
I proceeded to clean up the code, make good use of alt tags, convert the layout to CSS to draw more emphasis to the content, work on some usability issues, pay careful attention to details, etc. Bottom line, when I was done and we launched the revision, my client was showing page 1 Google results in 3-4 days for key terms. Since code cleanup was essentially the only thing this client needed, I know for a fact that it makes a difference. It is NOT the only factor, but it is an mportant one.

Steve, you might strengthen your case for the SEO benefits of CSS layout by posting more examples of positive results you've gotten with CSS. Repeatability is an important factor in building a case.

Jagella

orion_joel
01-30-2009, 11:02 PM
That was one of my motivations for using CSS, the fact that i did not have to rigidly align to the borders and confines of a table. If i want to place something outside the main flow of content in the center, i am sure CSS will allow it where, with Tables i would have had to have an additional table that covered the entire 100&#37; then a smaller table or cells in the middle to do the main content.

Jagella
01-30-2009, 11:44 PM
That was one of my motivations for using CSS, the fact that i did not have to rigidly align to the borders and confines of a table. If i want to place something outside the main flow of content in the center, i am sure CSS will allow it where, with Tables i would have had to have an additional table that covered the entire 100% then a smaller table or cells in the middle to do the main content.

I understand that a lot of people have trouble with coding tables. I'm thinking, though, that tables do “encourage” a grid-based layout. A lot of designers favor such layouts. Nevertheless, grids can be achieved with CSS layout too; you just need to take care to line things up.

Jagella

vangogh
01-31-2009, 12:25 AM
Tables impose too rigid a structure. You have so much less flexibility with tables than you do with css. For example if you change something in one table cell it not only affects that cell, but all other cells in the same row and column. Many times that won't be an issue, but it can become a problem often enough.

Jagella
02-01-2009, 12:22 AM
Tables impose too rigid a structure. You have so much less flexibility with tables than you do with css. For example if you change something in one table cell it not only affects that cell, but all other cells in the same row and column. Many times that won't be an issue, but it can become a problem often enough.

If I know my web-design history, tables were originally developed to hold data in tabular form similar to spreadsheets. Of course, developers soon found tables handy to arrange images and other page elements horizontally. When I started coding web pages, I tended to just arrange everything vertically as in a word processor. After studying web design further, I soon realized that I could make good use of tables to make my pages shorter and give them more of a professional polish. Once I became acquainted with CSS and its more flexible layout options, I abandoned tables. Like frames, I think tables may be on their way out and good riddance.

Jagella

seolman
02-01-2009, 01:47 AM
Once I became acquainted with CSS and its more flexible layout options, I abandoned tables. Like frames, I think tables may be on their way out and good riddance.

I couldn't agree more Joe. The way of the dinosaurs. How many of you are old enough to remember the launch of these (I was just a kid when the Commodore came out but I had one :)...

Commodore 64
Apple II
Visicalc
Tandy TRS80
8086
286
386
486
Pentium

vangogh
02-01-2009, 01:55 AM
I remember every single one of those. One of my friends had a Comodore 64, which we mostly used to play games.

seolman
02-01-2009, 01:59 AM
I remember every single one of those. One of my friends had a Comodore 64, which we mostly used to play games.

Yeah me too. I started coding on a Xerox II IBM clone with 64K Ram (wow). I wrote an inventory management system in dbase I. Then just for kicks I wrote another massive program in Basic related to the design of reverse osmosis desalination systems. Ah...those were the days! I could have wallpapered the entire office with the printout.

vangogh
02-01-2009, 02:13 AM
Believe it or not I wasn't into computers all that much as a kid. Most people assumed I would eventually work with them, but at the time they mostly bored me. It wasn't until the internet came along that I really had much interest, though I did learn things like Basic and Fortran while in high school and college. I didn't do much with either at the time though.

seolman
02-01-2009, 02:29 AM
I only used my computer skills in relation to other businesses for years. Then over the past 10 years I finally started working in web development and programming more full time. For years before that I was primarily involved in high tech membrane separation technology.

vangogh
02-01-2009, 02:45 AM
I've held other tech jobs before this one. I was an engineer for a couple of years and my last two jobs were for a startup and then as a software tester. The web is really what hooked me on all this stuff. The startup I worked for made ebooks before people cared about ebooks. They used an html like code and I found I could move around in the code faster than I could move around in the regular text. Next thing I knew I taught myself html and haven't looked back.

orion_joel
02-01-2009, 08:29 AM
The only one i can remember the release of was the Pentium, however i think one of the first computers i had was a 486, i think. First laptop i found myself with was a very second hand 386 though.

vangogh
02-01-2009, 11:36 AM
The first computer I ever owned was one of the first Macs ever made. The school I went to was one of two that started requiring students to buy a computer. We purchased them through the school and the computers had the school logo built into the case, which for us meant a raised "D" in the school font in the lower right of the case.

I'd be lying if I said I did a lot with that computer, though.

seolman
02-01-2009, 03:55 PM
You young whippersnappers...why, when I was a young computer scientist, the alphabet only had 18 letters! Keyboards were made of exotic hardwoods in the Phillipines by slave laborers and smuggled into the country by pirates (mostly Vangogh's family). Most of us had to walk 22 miles to work every day (uphill both ways). We had to type by candlelight 'cause electricity hadn't been invented yet!

http://www.beranked.com/images/old-guy1.jpg

vangogh
02-01-2009, 05:20 PM
What a flattering picture of you Dave.

You had it easy though. When I was a young scientist there were only 3 letters in the alphabet and none were vowels. Our keyboards were chisels and stones and we had to walk 50 miles uphill and under water in the snow. And we didn't have feet.

Oh and fire hadn't been discovered yet so there were no candles.

orion_joel
02-01-2009, 11:31 PM
How have things changed from your day them Dave. The keyboards are probably still made under half slave labour. They also for some odd reason decided that we needed for times the number of keys as letters on the keyboard.

Also i am sure that to some extent most of the electronic's is smuggled to some extent in some parts of the world. Mobile Phones of the grey market variety anyone.

I am thinking the other point, they changed the keyboards from wood to plastic because to many typists tried typing to fast and knocked their candles over setting fire to their keyboards. Oh i am glad to be away from these type of era keyboards you boys are talking about.

cbscreative
02-03-2009, 11:49 AM
Things sure were rough for you guys. Technology was doing a great job of moving along nicely, and then along comes Vista. Microsoft must have wanted to be nice and give Mac a chance to gobble up some market share.

For the record, I have Vista, I am on my Vista laptop right now, but I have it because it's a necessary evil, not because I actually wanted it. My office computer is XP Pro, and I intend to keep it that way for quite a while yet. But then again, I've made my feelings about Vista known plenty of times.

nealrm
02-03-2009, 01:12 PM
Dang, you guy are making me feel old.

The first computer I owned was an 8086, it did not have a harddrive, a floppy or a mouse. But it did have 16K of memory and a 4mhz processor. (for the youngsters the K and the mhz are not typos) I had to convince my teachers to allow me to handin computer printed papers. They were certain that the papers would be on 14 in green bar.

vangogh
02-03-2009, 01:51 PM
That first Mac I owned did have a 3.5 inch floppy drive. The internal hard drive was something like 199kb if I'm remembering correctly. Amazing to think we could ever do anything with so little space.

Steve, I have a Mac again, a Macbook Pro and through Parallels virtual software I have both XP and Vista installed for testing and for those one or two things where I still need it.

By the way how did we get from a conversation on css layouts to one about what kind of computers we own.

rezzy
02-03-2009, 02:23 PM
By the way how did we get from a conversation on css layouts to one about what kind of computers we own.

Who knows but Iam about to join in. My dad has a IBM PC jr, and we used it for the longest. I remember going to stores and getting the message board phone number and dialing into another machine seeing ASCII images and to print "graphics" you had to load another library for the dot matrix printer.

Looking back on Windows 95 and 98 they seem so limiting and buggy. I remember having to copy the drivers to the computer or save the disc because without them you couldnt add even basic drivers.

I think Vista has become ME. We show Microsoft that we wont take anything you give us. I hate to hijack this thread but, has anyone used Windows 7?

orion_joel
02-03-2009, 09:00 PM
I have actually been using Vista on both my laptop and desktop PC, to date very few issues at all, been running both for over 3 months. The one issue i found was with windows extraction software, it would die when extracting more then a few files. However this is a very quick fix with Winzip.

cbscreative
02-04-2009, 11:27 AM
Amazing to think we could ever do anything with so little space.

What's just as amazing are the price tags of those computers. Not only are we getting so much more now, we're paying a lot less. I had an instructor back in 01 who once told a story about a company getting a 1 MB computer that needed to be brought in on a forklift and had a $70k price tag.

vangogh
02-04-2009, 11:35 AM
That story doesn't surprise me. I think my original Mac with the 199kb hard drive costs about $2400. That was in 1984 too so $2400 was a lot more than it is now.

cbscreative
02-04-2009, 01:13 PM
Yeah, when you consider the limits and costs back then, it's no wonder they shaved the 19 off the year dates to reduce the need for storage space. It later led to some big concerns about Y2K, but every little bit counted. And then there was the now famous words of Bill Gates who once said no one could ever possibly need more than 64k.

orion_joel
02-05-2009, 12:08 AM
Not everyone gets it right all the time, i believe even Bill Gates is Human, at least i do not think it has been proven otherwise.