new web site/help re: format and resolution
greetings, any and all. i am a new user and would be very grateful indeed for any help that anyone might offer.
i'm starting a new business website: www.english2china.com/.
my question is specific, at the moment, although any other comments would also be appreciated. As for the site itself, i 'put it together' myself using kompozer, however i've been told that the web pages do not appear correctly in other browsers/OS's.
can anyone verify that there is an issue that i must resolve and perhaps let me know whether this is a CSS problem? i know nothing about this at all and it doesn't seem easy to 'pick it up' quickly without any prior skills (which admittedly i lack!).
thanks in advance. sz
I see a couple of issues really quick- blue text on a blue background is difficult to read. I see very, very tiny icons for... something ¿email? The general style is a large, forced-width table extending beyond the width of the window. Vertical scrolling is acceptable, but web page should never need to scroll horizontally.
Now, as to the compatibility issues. I'm seeing a lot of <big> and <small> tags. I have no idea what these are, and many browsers probably don't know what to do with them either. <div align="left'> Well, what are you aligning? Are you aligning the contents inside the <div> or aligning the <div> wrt it's parent element? You need to be very exact when giving instructions to a browser, otherwise anything can happen. And from your post, anything -is- happening.
I suggest a serious re-write of the website. Most wysiwyg editors are crap, and create more problems than they solve. There are a few good ones, I hear. I only write in raw code.
Finally, you site should be validated (http://validator.w3.org/ ) This should make it work in all browsers.
much obliged for the preliminary comments. as you can easily note, i am a 'neophyte' and i don't pretend to know what i'm doing. but if it's possible to learn, i'd like to give it a try.
the tiny 'email' links at the top left are from the top image...i don't know how to use .psd to remove these 3 'non-links'. The coloring of the links, i.e., blue on blue is one of the issues i'm trying to resolve...the link colors maybe appear differently in different browsers?
my screen resolution is pretty wide and so i designed the page to this size. i am trying the validator you suggested. i will also try to remove the big/small tags. to be honest, i've been working with the wysiwyg rather than the code, but i will try to work that out asap.
any other comments would be appreciated...from anybody. thanks in advance. the site being developed is: www.english2china.com/.
Golden rule for web developers to test in a variety of browsers, so that you can see for yourself. IMV the latest versions of Firefox, Opera, Chrome, and Safari will usually be OK since users of them will probably be enthusiasts who will allow updates as they happen. IE is another matter. Some users will just stick to what came with their computer, others will be forced to stick to a version as low as IE6 because of corporate legacy software issues. Accordingly you need to test at least in IE6, IE7 and IE8. That can be a problem if you are just running one computer - but that can be got around with IE Tester.
FWIW, in Firefox I would say your text layout could be improved, and, if you feel you must use tables, you should get rid of the rendering of the cell borders. Personally, I am with EasyTech: get your coding right, and then tidy up the look. If you can't do that, hire a professional to get your site up and running.
Download the GIMP for cropping the picture. It's free, its as good Photoshop-2-3 versions behind. I've heard Square Space being advertised a lot. It's a new on-line wysisyg editor, free on a trial basis.
Basically, if you your code is perfect, you don't need to do much for compatibility issue. (IE , especially 6 and below, don't always obey the rules though. I think their market share is small enough to not worry about it.) Where browsers really differ, is in handling bad code. In the past, people would deliberately write bad code because that is what made it work in IE.
You mentioned that you have a large monitor, but your website is trying to sell a service. Don't make your customers get larger monitors. You have no control over their monitor's size, brightness, contrast, white balance, etc. If your web site looks good on an 800 by 600 monitor, that is safe. Some people will argue that 1024 by 728 is a small enough for today's market.
Very useful information and I wanted to thank you. I've abandoned IE as my everyday browser...i finally was sufficiently chastised by your advice to download firefox and of course i feel somewhat free. unfortunately, i have 2 online jobs that both require IE and windows to operate. emulation, etc. doesn't seem to work on these sites and i suppose they get their allotted kickbacks from the big M. But what do I know...
I am also going to try out the site developer program you mentioned, dave. it does seem like just what i need. i have thrown together at least 15 not entirely functional websites in my life and i suppose like mickey rivers, the not very famous yankee outfielder once said: 'there comes a certain point in your life where you should concentrate on your strengths.'
as for GIMP, i think i'll give it a miss. i have made a few template .psd sites, but they too alas proved unsparingly defective. much obliged again for the good guidance...very excellent site and feedback.
Did you know that Safari can "mimic" different web browsers? If I want to watch "The Guild" on MSN video, I simply tell Safari to send the "Internet Explorer 8.0" user agent and it lets me watch it. If I don't falsify the user agent, I am politely informed that the video will not work. I'm sure Firefox can do that too with the right plug-in.
Of course, Safari will still have problems with Active-X components, so this may not always be feasible.
The best Solution for a developer, is to get a Mac. Install VirtualBox, and install Windows into that. With "Spaces" you can have 1 your various desktops devoted to Windows, and the rest for getting work done.
I have an MS in Online Teaching and Learning. I combine that with the standard 'old guy' thick as a brick syndrome. In fact, I studied the former in order to overcome the latter. I've done a damnably fine job in some regards, but as you all well know specialized skills require specialized training. Masters degrees are notoriously theoretical, and alas, I never went to the local junior college to actually learn anything useful.
I mention this because I have 'tried' oh so many things. But I'm certainly not going to outsmart the code dudes at Blackboard or ETS. If you're interested in trying to access either of these without IE, I wish you better luck than I have had. I tried a few plug ins and I also tried Linux. Like I say, these 'big boys' are likely getting something back at the other end and both require windows and IE. I work for both of them so I know what I know...admittedly not a whole hell of a lot.
I like squarespace...it might be worth $8 a month to have something so simple. I wonder if there are any disadvantages to having a blog web site...it seems easier to work with and I have seen online courses presented in this format that looked just swell...thanks again!
Last edited by srz; 11-13-2009 at 09:06 PM.
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