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Using image links

From: HTML Essential Training

Video: Using image links

It's very common to use images as links. Let's look at how this is done. We will make a working copy of links.html. I'm going to call this copy links-working.html and I am going to open this in my editor. You will notice here's a link, and this link is a text link. If I open this in the browser, you will see that it looks just like that, and it's got this little text link. And if I click on that, it takes you to my page on my server. And that's exactly what we would expect.

Using image links

It's very common to use images as links. Let's look at how this is done. We will make a working copy of links.html. I'm going to call this copy links-working.html and I am going to open this in my editor. You will notice here's a link, and this link is a text link. If I open this in the browser, you will see that it looks just like that, and it's got this little text link. And if I click on that, it takes you to my page on my server. And that's exactly what we would expect.

Now if I change this to an image and do this, img src ="images/paper-small.png," that's a file in our exercise files in the images subdirectory here. And if I save this and take a look at it in the browser, hit Reload, we have this nice little image of a piece of paper from my desk. And you notice that when I hover the mouse over it, the mouse pointer changes into a little cartoons glove hands pointing at something.

And if I click on that, it takes me to the target of our link. So, that's easy enough. There are a couple things we need to know about this though. For example, if I'm being cool and I want to put all of this on separate lines-- maybe my image tag is going to be a little bit long or maybe I just like to organize my code like this-- I would like for that to work, because that actually looks pretty cool to me. So if I reload this in the browser, you'll notice right there, there is a little purple underline, and it would be blue if we hadn't clicked on the link already.

What it is is you remember how HTML handles space, so all of this whitespace here is being folded into one space character and that space character is inside of the link, so it's being underlined as if it were a text link. Because if I were to just type some text here and save that and reload, you see that comes up underlined and in purple, and that becomes part of our link. So instead, what we have here is just this whitespace. Now some browsers will do this; some browsers won't. Some browsers are smart enough to say, oh, you didn't really mean to put a space there.

But fortunately there's a way for us to tell the browser we really didn't mean to put a space there, and that's like this. I take the end of that image tag and I just move it down to the next line and put it right before the . And when I reload the page, our little anomaly is gone. Now it's also possible on some browsers for the other side of the image to get one of those. So I can do the same thing here. I can take that begin tag and I can put it over here, and in fact, some browsers even want the whole opening image.

They don't want a space between that beginning of the angle bracket and the name of the tag. And I can take all of that stuff and I can put it up on that line above, if I want to, and this still works just fine. Now there's another potential problem here, and what I am going to do is I am going to open this in a very old version of Firefox so you can see this. Most modern browsers don't have this problem, but there are still some old browsers out there that do, so you need to be aware of it. So I am going to close Firefox here, and I am going to go ahead and I am going to open this with Firefox 1.5.

Now you'll notice that my image has this whole purple box around it, and in the olden days of the web, that was considered pretty cool, because it meant this is a link and it made it obvious to people that that was link. And today, we mostly don't want that, because frankly, it's ugly, and it doesn't look right. So what I do is I create a style. And in that style, with CSS, I say, "a img" like this, which means all of the image tags that are descendents of a tags will have this style in it, and I say border-style: none, like that.

Now when I reload this, you notice that the little blue box is gone. Now, just so you know--I am going to comment this out and reload and you see our blue box is back-- there is another way to do this. and the other way to do this is with another attribute to the image tag called border ="0" like that. and when I save that and reload it, you will notice that our border is gone. And that's actually the way that we used to do in the days when this browser was current. But this is actually obsoleted by the current HTML5.

On the other hand, if you're looking to support really old browsers, you may come across some really old browsers that don't support CSS, and if you want those to work right, well, then you are going to want to use an older version of HTML, because they probably don't support HTML5 either, and you're going to want to know about this border="0". So border="0," that's the old way that it was done from a HTML4 and before that, but the new way to do it of course is with style sheets. And we use the image tag as descendent of the a tag and simply this border-style: none, and that works just fine.

So using images as links is a very common technique. HTML makes it easy to support this design decision. Be sure to test your code on a number of different platforms and browsers, as there are some potential discrepancies with how the links are rendered.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for HTML Essential Training
HTML Essential Training

82 video lessons · 102026 viewers

Bill Weinman
Author

 
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  1. 5m 24s
    1. Welcome
      56s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 37s
    3. What you need to know about this course
      2m 51s
  2. 22m 0s
    1. What is HTML?
      4m 12s
    2. Examining the structure of an HTML document
      7m 50s
    3. Understanding tags and containers
      6m 4s
    4. Exploring content models in HTML5
      2m 23s
    5. Looking at obsolete elements
      1m 31s
  3. 27m 19s
    1. Understanding whitespace and comments
      3m 53s
    2. Displaying text with paragraphs
      3m 37s
    3. Applying style
      8m 5s
    4. Using block and inline tags
      6m 34s
    5. Displaying characters with references
      5m 10s
  4. 16m 36s
    1. Exploring the front matter of HTML
      2m 9s
    2. Applying CSS to your document
      3m 59s
    3. Adding scripting elements
      4m 54s
    4. Using the meta tag
      3m 34s
    5. Optimizing your page for search engines
      2m 0s
  5. 24m 59s
    1. Controlling line breaks and spaces
      2m 46s
    2. Exploring phrase elements
      1m 44s
    3. Using font markup elements
      1m 5s
    4. Highlighting text with mark
      1m 29s
    5. Adding headings
      1m 38s
    6. Using quotations and quote marks
      3m 2s
    7. Exploring preformatted text
      1m 45s
    8. Formatting lists
      2m 28s
    9. Forcing text direction
      3m 49s
    10. Suggesting word-break opportunities
      2m 29s
    11. Annotating East Asian languages
      2m 44s
  6. 29m 15s
    1. Introducing CSS
      55s
    2. Understanding CSS placement
      6m 55s
    3. Exploring CSS syntax
      10m 34s
    4. Understanding CSS units of measure
      3m 3s
    5. Some CSS examples
      7m 48s
  7. 22m 5s
    1. Using images
      4m 13s
    2. Flowing text around an image
      4m 55s
    3. Breaking lines around an image
      3m 3s
    4. Aligning images
      5m 25s
    5. Mapping links in an image
      4m 29s
  8. 22m 28s
    1. Understanding URLs
      2m 41s
    2. Working with hyperlinks
      3m 28s
    3. Using relative URLs
      4m 20s
    4. Specifying a base URL
      2m 19s
    5. Linking within a page
      4m 12s
    6. Using image links
      5m 28s
  9. 17m 2s
    1. Exploring list types
      3m 52s
    2. List elements in depth
      7m 44s
    3. Using text menus with unordered lists
      5m 26s
  10. 15m 30s
    1. Introduction to HTML semantics
      4m 9s
    2. Exploring an example
      4m 56s
    3. Marking up figures and illustrations
      2m 33s
    4. Creating collapsible details
      3m 52s
  11. 11m 18s
    1. Embedding audio
      5m 19s
    2. Embedding video
      5m 59s
  12. 11m 53s
    1. Creating ad-hoc Document Object Model (DOM) data with the data-* attribute
      4m 53s
    2. Displaying relative values with meter
      2m 57s
    3. Creating dynamic progress indicators
      4m 3s
  13. 4m 49s
    1. Overview of HTML5 microdata
      1m 8s
    2. Exploring an example with microdata
      3m 41s
  14. 7m 3s
    1. Understanding outlines
      52s
    2. A demonstration of outlining
      6m 11s
  15. 13m 1s
    1. Table basics
      7m 29s
    2. Exploring the semantic parts of a table
      2m 32s
    3. Grouping columns
      3m 0s
  16. 9m 55s
    1. Frames overview
      54s
    2. Using traditional frames
      4m 26s
    3. Exploring inline frames using iframe
      2m 7s
    4. Simulating frames with CSS
      2m 28s
  17. 53m 7s
    1. Introducing forms
      10m 24s
    2. Using text elements
      10m 12s
    3. Using checkboxes and radio buttons
      2m 37s
    4. Creating selection lists and dropdown lists
      5m 14s
    5. Submit and button elements
      8m 48s
    6. Using an image as a submit button
      2m 15s
    7. Keeping context with the hidden element
      3m 0s
    8. Setting tab order
      2m 7s
    9. Preloading an autocomplete list using the datalist feature
      5m 26s
    10. Displaying results with output
      3m 4s
  18. 19m 47s
    1. Touring a complete site
      2m 14s
    2. Touring the HTML
      8m 44s
    3. Touring the CSS
      8m 49s
  19. 29s
    1. Goodbye
      29s

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