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Friday, October 03, 2008

Modern Client Side Web Development!

Web technologies change faster than anything else in the software domain. Being a old-timer in web development and being too busy with other stuff in the recent past, I hadn't been paying much attention to Web 2.0 or other stuff like ASP.NET and AJAX (beyond just being familiar with the terms). However, I could still tell a Web 2.0 site from the older style. The saga started when I realized that there is a lot of stuff available on Yahoo! User Interface site for web developers. It's amazing how much effort Yahoo! has put into it.

Trends
The first shock I got when reviewing the modern trends was that HTML tables are out of fashion! The second shock I got was the separation of HTML and CSS (with the help of CSS2 and CSS3) to the extent that you don't see any style markup in well developed sites (Hint: look at the page source).

Another significant shift is the plethora of client side scripting frameworks. It's really difficult to decided which one to choose. In fact, web development jobs now require you to know at the least one of prototype, script.aculo.us, jQuery, MooTools, etc.

Books
I started looking deeper and found that the first thing an old-timer should do is to learn CSS, and there is no better place to start then the concise book, CSS Mastery. A runner up would be The Art and Science of CSS.

Online Content/ Articles
Much of what has to be learned is seeing how others have done a particular gimmick. I found the following sites to contain very nice articles on page layout in general and CSS in particular:


Happy Web Development! This is how the web should have been from day zero (yeah, I am a C++ programmer).