Review: Foundation Website Creation

by Web Teacher
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★★★★★ Foundation Website Creation with CSS, XHTML, and JavaScript by Jonathan Lane, Meitar Moscovitz and Joseph R. Lewis is from Friends of ED (2008). I recommend this book. It is not the usual heavy dose of XHTML and CSS that I normally like. This book is more comprehensive. It begins with a history of the web, chapters on project management and planning, covers the basics of XHTML, includes both a basic and a more advanced chapter on CSS, goes into JavaScript basics, and finishes up with a look at testing, launching, Ajax, social software and server-side technology.

Chapter 4 is Writing Markup with HTML and XHTML. In about 50 pages, the authors managed to cover the most important facts of HTML and do it in a standards-based way. The first CSS chapter is Chapter 5, Exploring Fundamental Concepts of CSS. Chapter 6 goes into more detail with Developing CSS in Practice From Design to Deployment. Then Chapter 7 covers Creating Interactivity with JavaScript. Surrounding those four key chapters is a complete manual on the management, planning, business use, and deployment of a website. The book has 10 chapters with an afterword called The Business of the Web, but don’t be fooled into feeling that the basics are overlooked. They aren’t. Chapter 6, the one with more detail about CSS is 70 pages long. However, including the rest of the concepts needed to successfully build and maintain a website along with the basics gives his book a real edge in terms of usefulness.

I think it would be a good book for an introductory or overview class. As soon as I finish writing this review, I’m headed over to the WaSP InterAct Curriculum site to add it to my list of recommended readings there.

One small point that prickled a bit. Several chapters conclude with a “Profiling Profession” section about a real person. All the real people are men. I know the three authors have worked with some women who could have been profiled. They even mentioned some in the Acknowledgments. If this book were a tech conference with three male speakers who only talked about the work of other men, I would urge people not to attend. But it isn’t a conference, it’s a book. Therefore, this is just a small complaint about a book that is excellent overall.

Summary: Comprehensive look at website creation.

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3 thoughts on “Review: Foundation Website Creation

  1. Pingback: Meitar Moscovitz (maymaym) 's status on Tuesday, 28-Jul-09 08:37:09 UTC - Identi.ca

  2. Thank you so much for the 5-star review of our book, Virginia. It’s gratifying to hear that you found the technical chapters so comprehensive and accurate. I agree with you that interviewing a woman for one of the profiling profession sections would have added some valuable diversity to the book although I personally had no direction in that part of the book.

    I was also excited to read that you wanted to add this text to the WaSP Interact Curriculum, but when I went to view the site I couldn’t find this text as part of a course. Have I missed it somewhere?

    Finally, as it would be helpful for us, do you think you could add your review to Amazon? Thanks again for the kind words and the helpful feedback!

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