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Understanding the structure of an XHTML document

From: XHTML and HTML Essential Training

Video: Understanding the structure of an XHTML document

In our last lesson we talked about this information at the top of the document that needs to get cut and paste into each of your documents, in order for it to be a valid XHTML. Let's take a look at what this is and exactly what it all means. This first line is the XML declaration. You will notice it's XML; it is not XHTML. XHTML is an application of XML and this is the version being used. So this XML declaration has the version of XML and the character encoding that's used in the document. The version will always be 1.0 and the encoding will depend on what language the document is in.

Understanding the structure of an XHTML document

In our last lesson we talked about this information at the top of the document that needs to get cut and paste into each of your documents, in order for it to be a valid XHTML. Let's take a look at what this is and exactly what it all means. This first line is the XML declaration. You will notice it's XML; it is not XHTML. XHTML is an application of XML and this is the version being used. So this XML declaration has the version of XML and the character encoding that's used in the document. The version will always be 1.0 and the encoding will depend on what language the document is in.

For most Western languages utf-8 will work fine and that's the default. If you're using a language that uses different types of characters then western languages, like for instance Japanese or Chinese or Russian, that uses a different set of characters, then you may want a different character encoding. The next line is the DOCTYPE. This tells the browser what type of document this is, which type of XHTML is being used. This one is XHTML 1.0 Transitional and that's what you'll for most of your standard HTML documents.

The other two types are Strict and Frameset, and we'll look at those in a minute. In a Transitional document, you have available all of the HTML 4 tags. You have Center, you have Table, you have Font and all of the presentation markup, all the tags are available in HTML are available in XHTML 1.0 Transitional. So if we look at this document in the browser we see that there is a yellow box and it has some text in it. So here in the document, we see that yellow box is made by the table element and the text is inside of a paragraph element and it has the font tag for specifying the font and the size.

And that looks like this in the browser. In our strict document, you will notice that the DOCTYPE says XHTML 1.0 Strict. The Strict documents do not have available any of the presentation. The center tag is not there, the table tag is not there, the font tag is not there. All of these things have to be done with style sheets. And so at the top of the document we have a style sheet and then down here is the content. So that document looks like this in the browser.

There is the strict version. You see it's virtually the same as the Transitional version. There is the Transitional and there is the Strict. You can accomplish the same things with style sheets that you can with the tables and the fonts. Finally, the Frameset document is for documents that have frames. We'll cover frames in more detail in a later lesson. There in nutshell, you have three frames available, frame sources. It goes red, yellow and then blue HTML. That looks like this in the browser, having red, yellow and blue.

So those are our document types. Again, you will be using the XHTML 1.0 Transitional document type for most of your documents.

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XHTML and HTML Essential Training

59 video lessons · 80322 viewers

Bill Weinman
Author

 
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  1. 5m 10s
    1. Welcome
      1m 16s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 23s
    3. Choosing a text editor
      2m 31s
  2. 15m 46s
    1. Introducing HTML and XHTML
      2m 53s
    2. Understanding versions of HTML and XHTML
      2m 25s
    3. Exploring a simple XHTML page
      4m 47s
    4. Understanding the structure of an XHTML document
      2m 58s
    5. Understanding document containers
      54s
    6. Creating and using templates
      1m 49s
  3. 42m 4s
    1. Understanding how empty space is formatted in XHTML
      2m 42s
    2. Using paragraph tags
      2m 42s
    3. Aligning paragraphs
      2m 49s
    4. Understanding block-level and inline tags
      1m 24s
    5. Controlling line breaks and spaces
      5m 43s
    6. Formatting text with phrase element tags
      3m 28s
    7. Formatting text with font markup elements
      3m 24s
    8. Adding document structure with headings
      3m 25s
    9. Formatting quotations and quote marks
      2m 19s
    10. Preserving pre-formatted text
      1m 30s
    11. Selecting a typeface
      4m 33s
    12. Selecting a type size
      2m 11s
    13. Using ordered and unordered lists
      5m 54s
  4. 7m 48s
    1. Using inline images
      3m 17s
    2. Flowing text around an image
      2m 4s
    3. Breaking lines around an image
      2m 27s
  5. 22m 34s
    1. Working with hyperlinks
      7m 46s
    2. Using relative URLs
      3m 5s
    3. Specifying a base URL
      2m 4s
    4. Linking within a page using fragments
      4m 28s
    5. Creating image links
      5m 11s
  6. 22m 56s
    1. Introducing tables
      4m 37s
    2. Formatting tables with CSS
      8m 50s
    3. Aligning images with tables
      5m 7s
    4. Reviewing an alternative solution using CSS
      4m 22s
  7. 14m 31s
    1. Introducing frames
      7m 56s
    2. Hiding frame borders
      3m 15s
    3. Creating inline frames using iFrame
      3m 20s
  8. 20m 50s
    1. Introducing forms: part 1
      10m 37s
    2. Introducing forms: part 2
      7m 45s
    3. Using CGI with forms
      2m 28s
  9. 25m 42s
    1. Introducing CSS
      3m 11s
    2. Understanding levels of inheritance
      6m 10s
    3. Learning CSS syntax
      11m 23s
    4. Using units of measure in CSS
      4m 58s
  10. 1h 45m
    1. Comparing table layout and CSS layout
      1m 25s
    2. Exploring the finished web site
      2m 37s
    3. Building a document header
      8m 18s
    4. Placing a banner and a contact button
      8m 13s
    5. Laying out a main menu
      6m 55s
    6. Creating a layout template: main body area
      13m 31s
    7. Creating a layout template: sidebar area
      5m 17s
    8. Creating a layout template: footer content
      4m 46s
    9. Building a main home page: main body content
      11m 24s
    10. Building a main home page: sidebar content
      8m 52s
    11. Creating a page with a menu, graphics, and formatted links
      13m 26s
    12. Creating a page containing an ordered list
      6m 44s
    13. Creating a page containing video
      10m 45s
    14. Touring the finished site
      3m 45s
  11. 53s
    1. Goodbye
      53s

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