Thought we’d exhausted text elements? Headers, paragraphs, and line breaks are just the rudimentary text-organizational elements of a document. The languages also provide several advanced text-based structures, including three types of lists, “searchable” documents, and forms. Searchable documents and forms go beyond text formatting, too; they are a way to interact with your readers. Forms let users enter text and click checkboxes and radio buttons to select particular items and then send that information back to the server. A special server application then processes the form’s information and responds accordingly; for example, filling a product order or collecting data for a user survey.[*]
The syntax for these special features and their various attributes can get rather complicated; they’re not quick-start grist. We’ll mention them here, but we urge you to read on for details in later chapters.
The three types of lists match those we are most familiar with:
unordered, ordered, and definition lists. An unordered list—one in which the order of items is
not important, such as a laundry or grocery list—gets bounded by
</ul> tags. Each item in the list,
usually a word or short phrase, is marked by the
<li> (list-item) tag and, particularly
with XHTML, the
tag. When rendered, the list item typically appears indented from the
left margin, preceded by a bullet symbol. [<ul>, 7.1.1 ...