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Review of Project Cool Guide to HTML

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The Project Cool Guide to HTML

(pub.Wiley, authors Teresa Martin and Glenn Davis)

Don't judge a book by its cover. I would never have picked up this book based on it and I honestly expected it to be disappointed because of it. So I was wrong. If you are new to web development, the first few chapters of this book will give you a start at HTML. It won't teach you everything you need to know but there aren't many books that will. It will give you a start, a beginning point, and you can go from there to more advanced reading about the craft of web development.

If you are not new to web development, start at chapter 9. There's much in chapters 9-12 that all of us who have been in this business for longer than we'd like to remember need to be reminded about. I wish I'd had chapter 10 (Preparing Forms) as a reminder when I was designing a web data collection site a couple of months ago. We forget, those of us who've been in this business for a while, that not everyone understands the Web. We're exposed to it all day; we eat it, sleep it, breathe it. Our clients/customers don't. We have to be reminded that KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) is good, that explaining what we want people to enter into that form is vitally important to us when we extract what they've entered.

The authors themselves say chapter 9 is the most important. I'm not sure that I agree with them. There are reminders all along the way that most of us forget as we strive for newer, cooler, more intricate sites, and somewhere along the way we forget the basics. Not one of us can afford to forget the basics.

What's cool is entirely subjective but what's good and what works is not. I'd have never picked up Project Cool in a book store. I'd have been put off by its name and its cover, but I'd have missed out on being reminded about some very basic, very important things that make a web site a very good web site.

Project Cool is nicely done. I just wish it had another name and another cover. Color me jaded. I've been around this business too long. The title and the cover turned me off. The book is a winner.

Linda G. Brigman

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