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Take a tour of a workflow that optimizes CSS code for easier navigation, organization, and readability. In this course, author Justin Seeley covers best practices for writing CSS in an easy-to-read format, commenting code, developing a table of contents, and adopting other methods that help produce "cleaner" code. The course also contains tips for speeding up development with some online tools and simplification techniques.
Once you've thought out the structure of your CSS document and the structure of your overall website, it's time to start mapping out all the different sections of your CSS document using something called a Section Heading. This is where we define all of the areas that we've mapped out inside of our table of contents and give them a specific are which we're going to work on here inside of the CSS. So the first thing I'm going to do again is start off with a comment. In this case I'm going to create a little bit of space down from the bottom of this, maybe two to three lines. You have to be careful not to create too much whitespace here, because remember, too much whitespace is not a good thing. But in this case I think two spaces should be enough, and I'm going to then map out a smaller section heading something like this, and we'll just do two lines of asterisks just like this and then underneath there I'm going to type out a number one, and I'm going type out Universal Styles.
Then I'll go underneath that, and I'll type out a couple of more lines of asterisks. Now this sort of defines that area for me, letting me know that there is where that area starts and stops. Then I could start declaring all of the different items that go underneath that. I can take this, and I can just copy it, and I can go down, and I can paste that in and then I can just change the number. So I can do something like 2, and that will be Header and Nav Styles. Then I'll go down and paste. This is going to be Main Body Styles.
Then we'll go down, paste, and we'll go back up here to make sure we get everything right there, number 4 is Side Bar Contents. We'll change that. Here we go and then 5. That will be Widget Content. Then I'll go down and paste. Then 6, this is going to be our Footer. Then finally 7. That is going to be our Comments & Forms section.
Now I have all of these different areas set up with section headings, and I can go underneath each one of these, and I can start to type out my CSS document for this theoretical web page that I am working on. This helps me keep my content nice, ordered, and neat. I have different sections separated with these nice little comment declarations here letting people know exactly where different areas of my website start and stop making it easy for me to find that area when I need to come in and edit it and also making it easy for other people who work with me to come in and find it.
If I happen to be selling this as a commercial WordPress theme or Drupal theme or whatever it might be, then the end user who ever purchases this can come into the CSS document, and let's say I wanted to change a widget. They can just come to the top, they could say, okay, that's listed at number 5. So I would just scroll down until I see a number 5, and once I find that, oh, that's where the widget content starts and then I would begin my search for whatever it is I'm looking for within that section. When I got to the Footer content that means oh, I've gone too far. I need to go back up into that widget content and find what I'm looking for.
So again, this is almost like making a roadmap for you or for someone else who wants to view your code and make changes in the future.
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