technologies to learn

 

Overview

HTML5+CSS2.1 & 3 alone makes for fast pages! people like that. people also like dynamic content, which can be achived with JQuery and Javascript/Ecmascript-262. usually this is enough for any average joe. and maybe PHP+MySQL is enough to make basic servable dymanic pages for any average joe. HTML5+css alone would mkae a 20K page as opposed to the heavily loaded graphics from other web sites which bog down browsers (but look aethetically beautiful and/or professional). you can still have a professional-looking site which is HTML5+css3 if you work hard at it.

list of technologies to learn, in order

  1. w3c's html 4.01, 3.02, 5, XHTML 1.0/1.1, XHTML5, whatwg working group's HTML5, all w3c's HTML-related documents. the current HTML5/XHTML5 standard document includes the same tag definitions for XHTML5 and HTML5,they only differ by singletons (void elements/tags) and . HTML5 is now just called HTML and it's been declared a living standard, which means it's always changing.
  2. file structure of HTML
  3. how to properly nest tags! no tag soup please!
  4. graphic design, including:
    1. color theory
    2. color systems
    3. graphic design rules: rules, rules broken
    4. layout
    5. If you are doing business stuff, how to make logo graphics
  5. drawing/painting/illustration (art skills), along the lines you think you will need. preferably digital. I learned the hard way that you will need these skills. you will probably need to create professional-looking images, not cartoons. but cartoons MAY come in handy once in a very long time. you need to learn especially how to draw and paint and outline and illustrate using Bezier curves! those are hard to control if you don't understand them and they are used in everything, mainly because you can make any curve you need with no need to over-supply control points on the end like splines do.
  6. CSS, CSS Mobile: CSS 2.1, then CSS3 current snapshot (it's big, these are just the modules - not completely implemented by browser vendors - for that see a book)
    • rounded corners
    • linear gradients, repeating linear gradients, radial gradients,
  7. JavaScript/ECMAScript 262 - client-side script, cross-browser. O'Reilly Javascript, book: Javascript bible 7th ed. (BC chapters which are 1/2 the book are on cdrom and also in the book Javascript Examples bible), book: Javascript Examples bible, w3c JS APIs, [optional, for people with some left-brained programming skills]. please note that JavaScript is not Java. very different. book: Javascript: the Definitive Guide, 6th Ed
  8. SVG 1.1 graphics (XML code with a specific set of tags and file structure
  9. HTML DOM, events [optional, for people with some left-brained programming skills]
  10. O'Reilly Dynamic HTML, O'Reilly Javascript and DHTML cookbook, Danny Goodnman, [optional, for people with some left-brained programming skills]
  11. JQuery or YUI or JSExt - client-side animation, menus, slideshows, modern client-side web stuff
  12. JavaScript API - client-side scripting stuff you can use to do really neat things, includiong audio manipulation
  13. PHP (mainly) or ASP.Net+ADO.net (expensive hosting, hard to set up) or JSP (expensive hosting, hard to set up) or all of the above if you are going to be a web designer (server scripting language), Perl scripting language (CGI) [optional, for people with some left-brained programming skills] or ColdFusion (CFML) for folks who can't understand scripting and only understand tags and don't mind paying through the nose for hosting and software. book: o'reilly PHP+MYSQL
  14. SQL (Structured Query Language - a Relational DataBase Management System (RDBMS) language): SQL database server. avoid Microsoft Access, it is not multi-user. MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server (an Express free version is available for development use), maybe PostgreSQL (PDF - US) [optional, for people with some left-brained programming skills], good book is SQL: The Complete Reference
  15. Mobile Web, Mobile CSS (cell phone pages - store your pages in /wap/ to be recognized by phones) [optional]. mobile content is pretty big right now. it's just that web designers are just not developing for it!
  16. Java (fit this in somewhere, you may need to write an application in it sometime, such as a mobile app) You will need the Java SDK to develop with and compilewith javac.exe There is a specific kind of Java for mobile devices and a different one for computers.
  17. HTMLGoodies.com databases/SQL Primer even takes you thru creating the database.
  18. HTMLGoodies.com HTML Primer even takes you thru creating the database.
  19. HTMLGoodies.com Javascript Primer even takes you thru creating the database. book: Javascript: the Definitive Guide, 6th Ed
  20. HTMLGoodies.com PHP Primer even takes you thru creating the database. book: o'reilly PHP+MYSQL
  21. AJAX - might have security problems with Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) though. read some O'reilly or WROX books on AJAX
  22. Perl - there are plenty of good perl books out there. read some O'reilly or WROX books on AJAX. Perl is used for CGI scripts like formmail.
  23. XML - free-form data structures as tags (you really should invest in Altova Mission Kit for messing with XML, keeps it validated, and creates schemas nicely). Notepad++ makes a good editor for this and there is a plugin for formatting and checking basic syntax and is free. book: Professional XML
  24. DTD - there is only 3 books on the planet on this subject (book: Developing SGML DTDs, book: Inside XML DTDs: Scientific and Technical, book: Structuring XML Documents) and most are out of print (ugh). this is method #1 for validating an XML document or HTML document or SGML document or whatever document with custom tags.
  25. XML Schema - this is method #2 for validating an XML document or HTML document or SGML document or whatever document with custom tags. O'reilly has a nice book (bird book by Eric van der Vlist).
  26. XSLT - transforms XML into whatever you like,such as HTML5+CSS. no scripting required. book: Mastering XSLT, book: Professional XML
  27. XPATH - not sure what this is yet, could be interesting. book: Professional XML
  28. Ruby on Rails. books
  29. JavaScript server-side scripting as an option? yes, it's there! book: Javascript: the Definitive Guide, 6th Ed
  30. Python (though I don't like snakes - had enough of that business in the Garden of Eden!) just go tobarnesandnoble.com and search for python.