Looking to polish lackluster HTML skills
March 27, 2011 9:41 AM   Subscribe

Where to find good resources for the brave new world of web coding?

A long time ago, I started to teach myself HTML. I never really got past the very basics (ie no Javascript, only limited CSS). Now I'd like to get back to this. Are there any good online resources for such a thing? I know that this depends largely on what sort of site I'm designing, but let's say for the time that I am just looking for a primer. I tried weeding my way through the WC3 schools stuff and it just didn't take. Thanks.
posted by Gilbert to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 61 users marked this as a favorite
posted by PickeringPete at 10:06 AM on March 27, 2011

I have a whole bunch of suggested online reading and resources on my blog; the blog itself is mostly devoted to teaching web development, and its approach may work for you. (I recently put it up as a Metafilter Project). I suspect that that W3 schools material was a little dry, and that you may want something lighter, with more narrative structure; something like WebMonkey may appeal to you.

I hope this helps - I'm looking forward to reading other suggestions you receive.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 10:08 AM on March 27, 2011 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Google: HTML, CSS, and Javascript from the Ground Up:
Are you looking for a basic understanding of how UIs are created on the web or do you want to brush up outdated UI development knowledge? Or maybe you'd like to learn more about the medium you're designing for and gain basic tools for prototyping designs? Do you want a better understanding of the web and how Google makes the pages that are its face to the world? If so, "HTML, CSS, and JavaScript from the Ground Up" is for you.
And for when you need a reference, gotapi is snazzy.
posted by asymptotic at 10:11 AM on March 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

a good tool to use is Firebug, a Firefox download. That will allow you to work with your code in the browser and also learn visually how other pages are structured.
posted by catrae at 10:42 AM on March 27, 2011

"download" should be plug-in, sorry!
posted by catrae at 10:42 AM on March 27, 2011

Best answer: HTML Dog.
posted by ixohoxi at 10:59 AM on March 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

There is also the Opera Web Standards Curriculum, which includes a broad range of information about web development in addition to basic HTML and CSS. (here's a direct link to the table of contents)

Personally, I'd stay away from W3Schools. They aren't actually affiliated with the W3C, they have a gazillion ads on their site, some of their information is wrong (see W3Fools, which also has good links for learning resources), and there are better sites like the afore-linked HTML Dog and the Mozilla Developer Network to get you up to speed.
posted by andeles at 11:16 AM on March 27, 2011 [2 favorites]

The screencasts and beginner stuff on CSS Tricks is all excellent. He's a great teacher.
posted by backwards guitar at 11:17 AM on March 27, 2011

A List Apart is a great resource for design and strategy. They also publish a series of short, well-written books that offer a great introduction to new topics--the HTML5 and CSS3 books are great (though they assume a lot of familiarity with the core concepts).

I'm also fond of the Missing Manual series--CSS: The Missing Manual is a good starter, for example.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 11:32 AM on March 27, 2011

If you are a hands-on person who learns by doing, I am presently working on these very skills using a series of online tutorials:


http://www.w3schools.com/css/default.asp (w3schools is also an excellent resource, in general)


and for the next level:


best of luck, it's fun to think about others paralleling my adventure!
posted by Alcibiades. at 2:05 PM on March 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

You could audit a course or two for free through iTunes. Stanford and MIT both have lots to offer. For example, CS106A (through Stanford) gives a very gentle intro to Java.
posted by monkeys with typewriters at 6:23 PM on March 27, 2011 [1 favorite]

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