Chapter 1. Coloring Your World

In This Chapter

  • Introducing the style element

  • Adding styles to tags

  • Modifying your page dynamically

  • Specifying foreground and background colors

  • Understanding hex colors

  • Developing a color scheme

XHTML does a good job of setting up the basic design of a page, but let's face it. The pages it makes are pretty ugly. Back in the old days, developers added a lot of other tags to HTML to make it prettier, but it was a pretty haphazard affair. Now, XHTML disallows all the tags that were used to make pages more attractive. It's not really a loss because, today, XHTML is almost always written in concert with CSS (Cascading Style Sheets). It's amazing how much you can do with CSS to beautify your XHTML pages.

CSS is used in many ways. It allows you to change the color of any image on the page. CSS lets you add backgrounds and borders. You can use CSS to change the visual appearance of elements like lists and links, as well as customize the entire layout of your page. CSS allows you to keep your XHTML simple because all the formatting is stored in the CSS. It's also very efficient because CSS allows you to reuse a style across multiple pages. If XHTML gives your pages structure, CSS gives them beauty.

This chapter gets you started by describing how to add color to your pages.

Now You Have an Element of Style

The secret to CSS is the style sheet, a set of rules for describing how various objects will be displayed. As an example, look at basicColors.html in Figure 1-1.

Tip ...

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