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CSS Web Site Design

Using float for layout


From:

CSS Web Site Design

with Eric Meyer

Video: Using float for layout

What you see here is the Javaco site, without the columns, which is why it looks kind of weird and in this video, what we're going to do is create those columns or at least a basic version of those columns using floats, that is by floating the columns. So, in our markup, where there are two divs, there's one, this div, with an idea of content which encloses all of the main content, which we can think of in our design as the quote, unquote, left-hand column and then there's a div with an idea of sidebar, which has all the stuff that goes on the right in our design.
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  1. 14m 34s
    1. Welcome
      28s
    2. What is CSS?
      5m 34s
    3. Design tour
      2m 38s
    4. Using the exercise files
      1m 20s
    5. Installing the Web Developer toolbar
      4m 34s
  2. 25m 56s
    1. XHTML essentials
      3m 55s
    2. CSS essentials
      5m 17s
    3. Embedded style sheets
      2m 20s
    4. Linking a style sheet
      2m 19s
    5. Linking to multiple style sheets
      2m 20s
    6. Using linked and embedded style sheets together
      4m 21s
    7. Using imported style sheets
      5m 24s
  3. 57m 48s
    1. ID selector essentials
      6m 38s
    2. Class selector essentials
      4m 9s
    3. Best practices for classes
      4m 52s
    4. Grouped selection
      4m 2s
    5. Descendant selectors
      6m 44s
    6. The sources of style
      6m 38s
    7. Specificity
      8m 21s
    8. Making things important
      4m 32s
    9. Inheritance essentials
      5m 12s
    10. Making things really unstyled
      4m 2s
    11. User style sheets
      2m 38s
  4. 39m 3s
    1. Box model essentials
      7m 35s
    2. Simple floating
      5m 3s
    3. Using float for layout
      5m 5s
    4. Fixing column drop
      5m 35s
    5. Clearing essentials
      4m 20s
    6. Float containment
      6m 35s
    7. Creating a navbar from a list
      4m 50s
  5. 38m 3s
    1. Coloring text
      4m 13s
    2. Defining color in CSS
      8m 12s
    3. Coloring backgrounds
      6m 35s
    4. Applying background images
      4m 19s
    5. Manipulating the direction of background images
      2m 52s
    6. Positioning backgrounds
      7m 23s
    7. Background shorthand
      4m 29s
  6. 58m 28s
    1. Altering line height
      7m 32s
    2. Font style and weight
      5m 45s
    3. Sizing fonts
      9m 59s
    4. Using font families
      10m 38s
    5. Font shorthand
      6m 5s
    6. Justifying text
      4m 56s
    7. Vertically aligning text
      4m 22s
    8. Transforming text
      3m 49s
    9. Text decoration
      5m 22s
  7. 44m 40s
    1. Margin essentials
      14m 21s
    2. Adding borders
      6m 52s
    3. Padding
      9m 17s
    4. Using negative margins
      7m 19s
    5. Margin collapsing
      6m 51s
  8. 20m 38s
    1. Styling tables and captions
      5m 23s
    2. Styling table cells
      6m 30s
    3. Styling a column with classes
      4m 51s
    4. Styling links inside table cells
      3m 54s
  9. 30m 40s
    1. Styling for specific mediums
      4m 3s
    2. Creating a print style sheet
      6m 35s
    3. Hiding layout for print
      4m 11s
    4. Styling for print
      6m 34s
    5. Complex styling for print
      4m 37s
    6. Creating a footer
      4m 40s
  10. 37m 23s
    1. Getting started
      1m 11s
    2. Setting global styles
      4m 4s
    3. Defining masthead and navbar colors
      3m 27s
    4. Layout of the navlink bar
      3m 38s
    5. Using columns
      4m 49s
    6. Setting content styles
      1m 53s
    7. Creating the sidebar boxes
      5m 42s
    8. Creating the sidebar form
      3m 23s
    9. Completing the sidebar
      3m 29s
    10. Making a table
      3m 12s
    11. Creating a footer
      2m 35s
  11. 1m 28s
    1. Goodbye
      1m 28s

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CSS Web Site Design
6h 8m Intermediate Sep 12, 2006

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

CSS gives Web designers control over the appearance of their web sites by separating the visual presentation from the content. It lets them easily make minor changes to a site or perform a complete overhaul of the design. In CSS Web Site Design, instructor and leading industry expert Eric Meyer reviews the essentials of CSS, including selectors, the cascade, and inheritance. The training also covers how to build effective navigation, how to lay out pages, and how to work with typography, colors, backgrounds, and white space. Using a project-based approach, Eric walks through the process of creating a Web page, while teaching the essentials of CSS along the way. By the end of the training, viewers will have the tools to master professional site design. Exercise files accompany the training videos.

Subjects:
Web Web Design
Software:
CSS
Author:
Eric Meyer

Using float for layout

What you see here is the Javaco site, without the columns, which is why it looks kind of weird and in this video, what we're going to do is create those columns or at least a basic version of those columns using floats, that is by floating the columns. So, in our markup, where there are two divs, there's one, this div, with an idea of content which encloses all of the main content, which we can think of in our design as the quote, unquote, left-hand column and then there's a div with an idea of sidebar, which has all the stuff that goes on the right in our design.

So the first thing we are going to do here is we're going to float the content div and give it a width, I'm going to give it an em-based width, cause I'm all about the ems as I'm sure you are and 40em is, you get 40 times the font size. So if the font size happens to be, you know, 15 pixels than it's going to be 600 pixels wide. I'm just going to hit the reload and I'll warn you right now, that as strange as this looks, when I hit Reload it will be worse, but just for a moment, don't panic.

If you squint, you know, really hard and look closely you can see that the content div, The Legendary Origins of Tea bit, is actually over on the left. Instead of taking up the whole width of the document. Now, I'm going to take that sidebar and also float it. This one, we're going to float to the right and I'm going to give it a width as well, an em based width as well, I'm going to make it 17em and when we go back and hit Reload, there you go, the sidebar is now floating to the right and has that, you know, specific width. So, these guys are floating to the left and to the right respectively, and are keeping themselves to their sides and if we actually shrink the browser window down a bit, you can see that they get closer and closer until all of a sudden the sidebar disappears. It actually doesn't disappear, it just drops down below the left floated content bar, because the way the floats work is if you have two close there, next to each other, that's fine as long as there's enough room for them both, but if you get to the point where they can't go next to each other without overlapping, then they don't overlap, which ever one comes second in the document source, drops down below the first one. That's just the way flows are defined to behave. So, because there's not enough room here for the sidebar in the content divs to float next to each other, the sidebar since it comes after the content div in the markup, in the document source it drops down. Now if we scootch this back out, eventually, there is enough room and suddenly they snap back into place, which is kind of an interesting effect, but clearly not really what you would want in a design that you deploy.

There is also the problem of this great big gap between the two. There's one way to deal with that, although it's not necessarily ideal. Instead of floating the sidebar right, we can float it to the left and if we hit Reload, what you can see is that the content div floats the left and then, that leaves space for the sidebar div to float, and since it floats to the left, it floats left until it comes right up against that content div, like literally, they are effectively touching, and the reason they are next to each other, is that there's enough room for them to be next to each other, but again, if we take the browser window down, when we get to a certain point, there goes the sidebar, it has dropped down and this time, since it's floating left, it drops down below the content div, but it goes all the way to the left instead of to the right, because before we had right floating, now we have left floating.

If you're in a situation where you have one float dropping below another and you're not quite for why a good way to diagnose it is to throw in a background. So for example we might put in a background of FFA on the content div and in that way, we can see its extent and we can, you know, in this case it's as a little leisure, where we can see exactly where it ends. So, no matter, you know, whether the sidebars floated right or floated left, by giving the content div some kind of temporary background, it doesn't matter, you know, what color you use, as long as it's something you either like or can see, or both, this a good way to see the extent of the content.

Now with this set up, we do still have the dropping problem and the problem of the two columns, are so widely separated from each other, at least in this case and that separation can vary depending on the with of the browser window. So in the next movie we're going to discuss how to address both of those by using a little negative margin trick to put these two columns right next to each other, with a constant width, space between them.

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