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CSS vs Tables

09 Aug 2009

How many CSS layout vs. Table layout articles have you read? (or how many have you written?)

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Is it worth debating any longer? The argument has been won. CSS layout is the supreme champion, the one layout technology to rule them all. Table layout lays whimpering and lonely - subjugated to the corporate intranets and wanna-be web designers.

Here I am, doing my first free lance web design work. I say to myself, “I’m doing it right. I’m going to do a 100% pure css layout. I’ll be the envy of all my friends!” After 8 hours of work, I come to realize, as I have so many times before, that I JUST CAN’T DO A CSS LAYOUT!!!

When I start cursing at the computer, when my blood pressure rises, when I start I thinking “I’m going to have to refund this guys money because I can’t make this site!” When any of that happens, its time to take a new approach. Maybe not a better technical approach, but an approach that helps me keep my sanity.

…and so I humbly resign myself to using a table layout.

4 hours later, I’m done. Completely done. (Most of that time was spent figuring out how to cut up graphics in photoshop) . The site looks just like the photoshop mock up he loved. I am Happy.

I am a practical man. I get paid by the hour. I’m not going to build a site using a technology that makes more work for me. I don’t care if the site will impress my web friends. All I care about is, Will it impress my client? Yes it will. My client isn’t viewing the source of the page, and if he did, he wouldn’t know what it meant. He only cares that the site is pretty.

It’s a matter of priorities really, he wants it to look nice. If looks is what he wants, then that’s where I’m going to spend my time.

Oh and BTW, when I say CSS LAYOUT, I mean a layout that works on IE6,7,8 and FF.