Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training
Illustration by John Hersey

Inserting checkboxes


Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training

with James Williamson

Video: Inserting checkboxes

Checkboxes are very common form elements that allow your users to make a single selection. Grouped together, they allow the selection of multiple related items. This gives you an alternative to using radio buttons, which only allow for a single selection. Dreamweaver gives us a choice when placing checkboxes in our form. We can either insert them one at a time or within a group. Even though our form has a lot of checkboxes, we'll place them individually so that we have full control over the accessibility and structure of our checkboxes.
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  1. 2m 57s
    1. Welcome
      1m 8s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 49s
  2. 7m 50s
    1. What is Dreamweaver?
      3m 16s
    2. Learning web design
      2m 22s
    3. Current web standards
      2m 12s
  3. 43m 9s
    1. The Welcome screen
      4m 5s
    2. Windows and Mac interface differences
      2m 23s
    3. The Application toolbar
      4m 7s
    4. The Document toolbar
      4m 40s
    5. Arranging panels
      8m 19s
    6. Managing workspaces
      7m 32s
    7. The Properties Inspector
      5m 54s
    8. The Insert panel
      6m 9s
  4. 25m 45s
    1. Basic site structure
      3m 11s
    2. File naming conventions
      1m 49s
    3. Defining a new site
      4m 35s
    4. Managing sites
      4m 51s
    5. Managing files and folders
      6m 36s
    6. Working with browsers
      4m 43s
  5. 27m 21s
    1. Creating new documents
      5m 16s
    2. New document preferences
      3m 6s
    3. Setting accessibility preferences
      4m 56s
    4. Working with starter pages
      3m 46s
    5. Managing starter pages
      10m 17s
  6. 30m 2s
    1. Basic tag structure
      2m 15s
    2. Adding structure to text
      8m 20s
    3. Creating lists
      9m 59s
    4. Getting text into Dreamweaver
      5m 59s
    5. Importing Word documents
      3m 29s
  7. 1h 17m
    1. Understanding style sheets
      2m 16s
    2. The anatomy of a CSS rule
      1m 48s
    3. Setting CSS preferences
      6m 36s
    4. The CSS Styles panel
      10m 2s
    5. Controlling CSS through the Properties Inspector
      5m 14s
    6. Using the Code Navigator
      7m 21s
    7. Using CSS Enable
      6m 45s
    8. Understanding element selectors
      8m 11s
    9. Understanding class selectors
      8m 49s
    10. Understanding ID selectors
      5m 59s
    11. Understanding descendant selectors
      6m 51s
    12. Attaching external style sheets
      7m 44s
  8. 1h 47m
    1. Working with units of measurement
      7m 11s
    2. Declaring font families
      9m 39s
    3. Controlling font sizing
      9m 9s
    4. Controlling weight and style
      8m 0s
    5. Controlling line height
      8m 29s
    6. Controlling vertical spacing with margins
      12m 3s
    7. Controlling spacing with padding
      5m 39s
    8. Aligning text
      8m 26s
    9. Transforming text
      5m 36s
    10. Writing global styles
      15m 42s
    11. Writing targeted styles
      17m 37s
  9. 1h 32m
    1. Understanding image types
      5m 3s
    2. Managing assets in Dreamweaver
      12m 51s
    3. Setting image accessibility preferences
      4m 20s
    4. Setting external image editing preferences
      3m 52s
    5. Placing images on the page
      7m 37s
    6. Photoshop integration
      5m 54s
    7. Modifying Smart Objects
      5m 51s
    8. Alternate Photoshop workflows
      8m 8s
    9. Modifying image properties
      11m 14s
    10. Styling images with CSS
      7m 11s
    11. Using background graphics
      9m 3s
    12. Positioning background graphics
      11m 6s
  10. 55m 16s
    1. Link basics
      3m 37s
    2. Setting site linking preferences
      2m 14s
    3. Creating links in Dreamweaver
      11m 1s
    4. Absolute links
      5m 8s
    5. Using named anchors
      11m 19s
    6. Linking to named anchors in external files
      2m 44s
    7. Creating an email link
      5m 24s
    8. Creating CSS-based rollovers
      13m 49s
  11. 1h 34m
    1. CSS structuring basics
      2m 56s
    2. The Box Model
      13m 21s
    3. Understanding floats
      6m 53s
    4. Clearing and containing floats
      8m 56s
    5. Using relative positioning
      4m 8s
    6. Using absolute positioning
      7m 18s
    7. Creating structure with div tags
      12m 7s
    8. Styling basic structure
      10m 34s
    9. Creating a two-column layout
      10m 37s
    10. Using Live View and CSS Inspect
      7m 51s
    11. Using Browser Lab
      9m 39s
  12. 56m 22s
    1. Reviewing table structure
      7m 41s
    2. Importing tabular data
      5m 13s
    3. Creating accessible tables
      9m 56s
    4. Using thead and tbody tags
      4m 0s
    5. Basic table styling
      8m 45s
    6. Styling table headers
      7m 52s
    7. Styling column groups
      4m 22s
    8. Creating custom table borders
      5m 1s
    9. Styling table captions
      3m 32s
  13. 1h 43m
    1. How forms work
      3m 0s
    2. Reviewing form design
      3m 2s
    3. Creating accessible forms
      7m 33s
    4. Setting form properties
      4m 6s
    5. The fieldset and legend tags
      4m 32s
    6. Inserting text fields
      5m 58s
    7. Inserting list menu items
      5m 26s
    8. Inserting checkboxes
      7m 50s
    9. Inserting radio button groups
      6m 22s
    10. Inserting text areas
      4m 12s
    11. Inserting submit buttons
      3m 37s
    12. Basic form styling
      12m 0s
    13. Form element styling
      8m 52s
    14. Styling form layout
      11m 49s
    15. Adding form interactivity
      2m 47s
    16. Using Spry validation widgets
      12m 49s
  14. 1h 23m
    1. Planning for templates
      10m 51s
    2. Creating a new template
      10m 37s
    3. Using editable attributes
      13m 43s
    4. Creating optional regions
      6m 23s
    5. Creating new pages from a template
      9m 17s
    6. Applying templates to existing pages
      6m 9s
    7. Working with nested templates
      7m 56s
    8. Working with repeating regions
      12m 58s
    9. Modifying templates
      5m 41s
  15. 40m 14s
    1. Behaviors overview
      3m 47s
    2. Hiding and showing elements
      9m 18s
    3. Spry overview
      4m 4s
    4. Using Spry widgets
      11m 36s
    5. Adding Spry effects
      3m 6s
    6. Using the Widget Browser
      8m 23s
  16. 28m 18s
    1. Inserting Flash files
      5m 4s
    2. Setting properties for Flash
      6m 27s
    3. Dreamweaver and Flash integration
      6m 6s
    4. Encoding Flash video
      6m 10s
    5. Adding Flash video
      4m 31s
  17. 45m 28s
    1. Running site-wide reports
      6m 33s
    2. Checking for broken links
      5m 41s
    3. Checking for browser compatibility
      8m 3s
    4. Adding remote servers
      8m 0s
    5. Uploading files
      7m 20s
    6. Managing remote sites
      9m 51s
  18. 34s
    1. Goodbye

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Watch the Online Video Course Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training
15h 22m Beginner Apr 30, 2010

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training, Adobe Certified Instructor James Williamson explores the tools and techniques of Dreamweaver CS5, Adobe's web design and development software. This course covers both the ins and outs of Dreamweaver, as well as recommended best practices for crafting new web sites and files, the fundamentals of HTML and CSS, and how to ensure clean and accessible code. The course also includes how to use tools in Dreamweaver to create and style web pages, manage multiple sites, and add user interactivity with widgets and scripting. Exercise files are included with the course.

Topics include:
  • Defining and structuring a new site
  • Creating new web documents from scratch or from templates
  • Adding and formatting text
  • Understanding style sheet basics
  • Placing and styling images
  • Creating links to internal pages and external web sites
  • Controlling page layout with CSS
  • Building and styling forms
  • Reusing web content with templates
  • Adding interactivity
  • Working with Flash and video
James Williamson

Inserting checkboxes

Checkboxes are very common form elements that allow your users to make a single selection. Grouped together, they allow the selection of multiple related items. This gives you an alternative to using radio buttons, which only allow for a single selection. Dreamweaver gives us a choice when placing checkboxes in our form. We can either insert them one at a time or within a group. Even though our form has a lot of checkboxes, we'll place them individually so that we have full control over the accessibility and structure of our checkboxes.

So here I have the join.htm page open and our checkboxes are actually going to go in another section so we're going to scroll down a little bit and find our Tour Profile region. So go ahead and scroll down and find that. After Tour Profile hit Return to create a paragraph and type in 'I am interested in the following tours:.' So this looks like a label but it's not. It's going to be a paragraph and it's going to act as a sub-heading to the individual checkboxes themselves.

Now I'm going to hit Return to go down to the next line and we're going to begin putting in our checkboxes. Now we have several checkboxes. I think we have about 9 of them to place in so this is going to take us a little bit of time. However I do want to discuss the structure of what we're going to do here before we do it. Each checkbox is going to be in its own paragraph. That's going to make this form for the time being very tall, taller than it needs to be. Later on, when we discuss styling our forms with CSS, we'll move those checkboxes into a three-column layout, which is going to be a much nicer visual presentation. But for right now we're just going to build the initial structure.

Okay, so I'm going to place a checkbox on the page and you could find those right up here in your Form objects. They are in this little group right over here on the left-hand side and you just want to go ahead and click to insert a checkbox. Once again our accessibility attributes come up and the first one we're going to place on the page has an ID of backpack. The label for this will be Backpack Cal. So these are our tour packages. We're going to attach the label using a for attribute. We're going to have it after the form item. So notice how Dreamweaver switched automatically. Before this particular form item it was always before the form item.

Checkboxes and radio buttons are typically after the form item, so Dreamweaver at switches that automatically. However you should be aware of that just in case you wanted the label before it. The Tab Index here is going to be 110, a little further down in the form. Go ahead and click OK and there is our first checkbox. Now, I just did a very common mistake when you're placing checkboxes on the stage. Did you see I placed a colon in the label? I've got that everywhere else so you sort of getting a habit of doing that and you're like colon, colon, colon, okay good. Then you do it here and you go, oh yeah, I don't need that. So just go ahead and delete that and remember when you're doing radio buttons and checkboxes, that sometimes the rules are a little different.

Okay, now we have a lot of these to do so I'm just going to go ahead and do these in order placing in all the attributes. Just take your time. Don't worry about doing this quickly. We want to make sure you're doing it right instead of quickly. Speed comes with repetition. So I'm going to hit Return to go down to next. Once again I'm going to insert another checkbox. The ID for this one is going to be calm and the label for this one is going to be California Calm, with no colon I might add. The Tab Index here is going to be 120 and the other two options I can go ahead and leave the way they are.

I'm going to click OK and I'm just going to keep going. Now remember, after each one of these I'm going to insert a brand new paragraph by hitting Return. I am going to insert another checkbox on the page. This one's ID is going to be hotsprings and the label for this one is going to be California Hotsprings and the Tab Index for this one is going to be 130. Scrolling down a little bit more so I can keep an eye on these. I'm going to insert another checkbox. The ID for this one is going to be cycle and the label is going to be Cycle California.

Tab Index for this one will be 140. So we're just going up in increments of 10. Our next checkbox is going to be desert for the ID, the label is going to be From Desert to Sea, and the Tab Index for that one will be 150, and I guess From Desert to Sea would be better than Form Desert to Sea, right? Yeah, typos. Got to love them. All right. So I'm going to insert another checkbox and the ID for this one is going to be kids and that's going to be Kids California and the Tab Index for that is going to be 160.

The next checkbox ID will be nature and the label for that will be Nature Watch and the Tab Index for that is going to be 170. As I mentioned before I'm going through these kind of quickly but if this is to be you're first time ever placing checkboxes on the stage, you may want to pause the movie and go through each one of these individually and just verify that everything is exactly the way that you need it. I'm going to insert another checkbox on the page. This one's ID is going to be snowboard, the label will be Snowboard Cali with an I, and the Tab Index there 180.

One more. Place another checkbox on the page. This one's ID is going to be taste, the label is going to be Taste California, my favorite tour. The Tab Index is going to be 190, and there we go. Now we're done with all of our checkboxes but just so we can see the properties of that, go ahead and select any one of your checkboxes. It doesn't matter. Notice that each one of them has a checkbox name and then a status as to whether it's checked or unchecked. Now that points out something. There is supposed to be a checked value here and each one of these has absolutely no checked value.

Now, the checked value, much like with a radio button or a list menu item, that is the value that is sent to the form processing. So that is absolutely crucial. So we're going to go back up to our first checkbox and we're just going to start adding these to our forms. So although the accessibility attributes is a great dialog box, don't just assume that that is all of the information you need for these form elements. So with the first one selected the checked value for this one is going to be backpack. Now I'm going to use exactly the same thing that we used for the IDs for each of these.

So calm for California Calm, hotsprings, cycle, so you can just click on that. Take a look at the ID that's over there on the left-hand side of the Properties Inspector and just go ahead and type that in again. Or if you don't feel like typing you can obviously copy and paste those. Just remember to go through each one of those and make sure that the ID that's over here in the checkbox name is also what's going to be in the checked value. Now again that's an arbitrary value. It can be whatever is necessary for the form to process correctly and whoever is programming your form processing should let you know what you need.

In this case, let's say we were sending an e-mail. We could go ahead and create a field with an e-mail that would say Tour Interest and then it would just have the list of all of these that happen to be checked. So taste, calm, hotsprings, that would give us an idea as to which tours this person was interested in. Now while we have our checkboxes for each of our tour packages, they are not looking great. Not to fear, we'll be styling them shortly but for the moment I want you to focus on the fact that checkboxes allow a little bit more flexibility than what we're about to do next, which is radio buttons, and you're going to use checkboxes anywhere that more than one answer is allowed.

They're also very helpful when the question is a simple yes or no. You can use one checkbox and give the user the option of either checking it or not. This is a very common way to have people sign up for newsletters or online offers. Now we'll continue building our form in our next movie by adding a form element that is very similar to checkboxes as we insert radio buttons and radio groups.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Dreamweaver CS5 Essential Training .

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Q: After creating a website following the instructions in the course, the header background graphic appears correctly in all browsers except Internet Explorer 6 and Internet Explorer 7.  The graphic works properly in IE 8. What can be done to make the graphics appear in IE 6 and IE 7?
A: To make the header background graphic appear, wrap the header div tag in another div tag and give it an ID like “mainHeader.” The problem stems from a bug in Internet Explorer that prevents the browser from dealing with absolutely positioned elements that are right next to relatively positioned elements.  Following the steps above should solve the problem.
Q: In the tutorial, the author links the Tool Tip to the word "More" at the bottom of the thumbnail photo field. I can't figure out how to place the <a> "More" on the thumbnail photo field.
A: In the example, there is a paragraph that wraps an <img> tag and the word "More," which is surrounded by an anchor tag (<a>). The author uses CSS to make sure the parent div tag of the thumbs floats to the left, and is only wide enough for the image. This causes the link text to break down onto another line. Then, the instructor uses CSS to align the link text to the right of the <img>. The link itself is a void JavaScript function, ( javascript();). This gives you a "dummy" link without returning you to the top of the page as the "#" dummy link tends to do.
If you were manually typing the text in, you could select the image, hit the right arrow button, and begin typing. The text should then appear on screen.
Q: In this movie, you are making changes to the HTML in order to customize the text layout on your page (i.e. h1, h2, and h3 tags as well as strong and em tags). I'm wondering why you are not using CSS to do this (i.e. font-size, font-weight). Do you typically use one method, or is it customary to do use both in a layout, and if so, what guidelines would you suggest to determine which to use when?
A: We modify the page's structure through the use of h1, h2, and other heading tags. So when we are choosing heading levels, we're not concerning ourselves with typography; we're establishing page structure. A heading is chosen to denote the level of importance for the heading, not typography.
CSS should always be used for presentation, not HTML.
Q: In the “Understanding ID selectors” movie, the author states that only one ID tag can be used per page, but then he adds two ID tags. Can you please clarify this for me?
A: You can use as many IDs per page as you wish. They just must all use a unique name. Therefore if you assign an element the ID of "header" no other element on THAT page may use the same ID.
Q: I noticed that in this course, the instructor uses this code on his CSS external sheet: @charset "UTF-8"; I was under the impression that this code wasn't necessary. The W3.org site is unclear on the matter. Is it necessary? Is it a best practice? Is it an older form of CSS?
A: The characterset attribute is added automatically by Dreamweaver, and there’s no practical reason to remove it. While it's not needed (the HTML page should indicate which encoding to use for the page) it is helpful if the CSS file is ever imported or used on a page where the characterset isn't specified. Think of it as a safety net for characterset encoding. Not necessary, but not harmful either.
Q: I need to add captions below images that I insert in pages of text. I played all the lessons in Chapter 5 (Adding Text and Structure) but none dealt with captions. I hope the author has an answer or can refer me to a source.
A: In HTML 4 and XHTML 1 (which is what Dreamweaver CS5 uses by default), there wasn't really a way to add captions below your photos. Most web authors would "fake" captions by having paragraphs of text below their images and using CSS to position and style the captions in the desired manner. Many would use a class such as .imgCaption to control the styling. To do this you would essentially position the text underneath the image through CSS (often by grouping the image and the paragraph in a div tag) and italicizing the text.

However in HTML5, there are new elements that allow us to associate images and their captions, the figure and figcaption element. Our author James Williamson just finished a course on HTML5: Syntax, Structure, and Semantics which details how to use it.

HTML5 Doctor also has a nice article on the figure and figcaption elements at http://html5doctor.com/the-figure-figcaption-elements/.
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