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Showing 1-6 of 6 reviews(3 star)show all reviews
on October 26, 2003
New Riders publishes nice looking books, but many of them, this one included, suffers from a lack of professional editorial oversight. A book that sells for $45.00 should be proofed a little more closely. The book's companion site lists dozens of editorial errors that should have been caught before the book went to press: [...] After spending this much on a slim paperback volume, the last thing I want to do is spend an hour paging through the book, hand-correcting editorial errors that New Riders' editors should have caught in the first place.
Otherwise, Meyer's command of CSS is evident, but this is not the book that it could be. The presentation is hampered by its organization into "projects", and the reader must slog through details of Meyer's application of strategies in his own projects to find ideas that can be used elsewhere.
CSS is a great technology, but users are in need of something better organized, better presented, more comprehensive, and less crippled by rampant editorial gaffes.
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on October 5, 2003
Like many others, I bought the book based on on-line raves. I thought it was great at first but now the blush is off the rose. The book IS a more informative and user-friendly intro to CSS than the others I have (many are "look what I made, mommy" books by designers...nice visuals but not the best learning tool). Some of the lessons were a struggle so, fortunately, there were the free tutorials from w3schools.com to help with the rough spots.....never thought of myself as a slow learner until now.
Then, just when you think CSS will answer all your prayers, you get seriously gored by the infamous NN4 incompatibilities and then IE problems crop up.
What this and every other book lacks is a decent chart reference which shows browser incompatibilities like the great cheat sheet programming cards from visibone.com BUT, I shouldn't have to buy this kind of critical tool, it oughta be a pullout or be in the appendix.
Until a better book comes out, prospective buyers should go ahead and get this one PLUS Meyers Programmers Reference (ISBN #0072131780). Round it out the Visibone cheat sheets for quick reference and to keep those nasty NN4 and IE4 nightmares from giving you an ulcer. Between all this stuff and the W3C School site (PS:which also has HTML and CSS validator links and other very cool stuff), even I was able to master CSS...but it takes more books and programmer's aids.
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on August 8, 2003
I give this book 3 stars, because it does a very good job of explaining and dealing with common issues in CSS. Unfortunately, the designs themselves are on the whole horrible - sorry, it's the only word. It's a shame that the author didn't get some designs from a graphic/web designer to complement what are on the whole excellent explanations of dealing with real world CSS issues, especially as he makes design comments, he's not qualified to make. Have a look at excerpt 10 in the sample pages to get an idea. This is an important issue because one of the powers of CSS is that it can be used to integrate the design and the content in a meaningful and elegant way. On the positive side, often the small pointers that he has for labelling css are particularly good, and I regularly find myself going 'ah, that's so useful'. If your CSS skills are well up to scratch perhaps look at Zeldman's 'Designing with Web Standards' as a possible alternative, but if your still working your way through the CSS in the real world then this is a very useful and practical book and I for one (with 8 years of web-building behind me) find it useful.
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on December 23, 2002
The problem with CSS books is that they always take two tracks: They're either a rote reference of the specification, or they're random "projects" that the author either thinks are interesting or, more likely, just happened to complete himself at work, so he feels qualified to write about it. Eric Meyer on CSS is the latter, and it suffers greatly for it, especially if you don't just happen to need exactly the kind of site he likes to create. Which, quite frankly, are unexciting, especially when you consider some of the impressive CSS on the Web today. But the big problem is that core CSS topics are only mentioned--often in passing--when they solve a problem for a project. You'll get no run-down of the importance between various positioning styles, for example, until the CSS he uses throughout the whole book suddenly doesn't work and he has to try something different. Don't get me wrong, this book isn't worthless, but everyone here is acting like this book is a cure-all, and it's not. If you want to master CSS, you will still need several books, none of which are perfect.
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on March 4, 2004
Eric's writing is great, however, for a thin book with limited content, my opinion is that New Riders Publishing got greedy with the pricing of the book. $45 retail in the stores?! For the price I expected a book with more meat, more content as opposed to a few tips and tricks. For the price, New Riders could have at least included a disk with all the samples that you are required to download online if you wish to work along as the book is intended. In the book, what Eric has done is to show a few CSS tips and cool tricks, his writing style is very good and his tips are great, however, there isn't enough of it in this book. Don't buy it new, or at least not in the retail stores, it isn't worth the price.
If this is a must have book for you, buy it at Amazon's online price, used, or somewhere such as nerdbooks.com and avoid the FULL $45 retail price such as charged by places like Books-a-Million!!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on June 23, 2004
After all that I've read about Eric Meyer, I must admit I was left wanting after reading this book. The experience reminded me of certain teachers I had in college: very bright, knew what they were doing, but did not know how to effectively convey their knowledge to others. For instance, his erratic use of varying units of measure within the same CSS rule - usually without explanation - goes against most all professional design convention, making the resulting code both difficult to learn AND difficult to maintain (VERY confusing for subsequent Web technicians needing to modify the work).
Buy the book - but buy it USED.
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