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HTML & XHTML: The Definitive Guide, 5th Edition by Chuck Musciano, Bill Kennedy

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Named Frame or Window Targets

As we discussed in Section 11.4.1, you can label a frame by adding the name attribute to its <frame> tag.[74] Once named, the frame may become the destination display window for a hypertext-linked document selected within a document displayed in some other frame. You accomplish this redirection by adding the special target attribute to the anchor that references the document.

The target Attribute for the <a> Tag

If you include a target attribute within an <a> tag, the browser loads and displays the document named in the tag’s href attribute in a frame or window whose name matches the target. If the named frame or window doesn’t exist, the browser opens a new window, gives it the specified label, and loads the new document into that window. Once this process has been completed, hypertext-linked documents can target the new window.

Targeted hypertext links make it easy to create effectivce navigational tools. A simple table of contents document, for example, might redirect documents into a separate window:

<h3>Table of Contents</h3>
<ul>
  <li><a href="pref.html" target="view_window">Preface</a>
  <li><a href="chap1.html" target="view_window">Chapter 1</a>
  <li><a href="chap2.html" target="view_window">Chapter 2</a>
  <li><a href="chap3.html" target="view_window">Chapter 3</a>
</ul>

The first time the user selects one of the table of contents hypertext links, the browser opens a new window, labels it “view_window,” and displays the desired document’s contents ...

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