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November 2010The monthly newsletter by Felgall Pty Ltd

My Word

It's Time

Some of you may have noticed that some of the instructions on my web site on how to write web pages does not match to how those pages are actually written. The problem is that I first created the web site over ten years ago and what can be done and what should be done with coding web pages is a lot different now to what it was back then.

My site was originally written as completely static web pages and every time I wanted to change the layout of the pages I had to apply the changes separately to each page. After about the third or fourth such yearly update to the layout it was starting to take way too long to apply the changes to each page separately and so I configured the site to use server side includes and moved common sections of the page into includes where changing the content of the one include updated the layout of most of the pages of the site. That change made it easier to make changes to the appearance of the pages.

A couple more years and the browsers that required a lot of the page layout code to be incorporated into the HTML finally died. Since then I have been recommending a complete separation of the definition of how the page should look into the CSS.

Unfortunately my site still had plenty of code that used to be required but had now become inappropriate spread across all the pages. Some of these inappropriate codes such as the layout tables that were essential back in 2000 were removed and some of the other tags and attributes that are appearance specific have been gradually replaced by CSS. In many cases the CSS has been directly substituted into the HTML as a 'temporary' measure in progressing the site toward using proper HTML 4.01 / XHTML 1.0.

Unfortunately there is still lots of outdated code directly in the separate pages plus there are a number of things that I could have handled a lot better if I had used PHP instead of server side includes to share the common sections of the page. This means that to properly fix the HTML in the site I still need to update each and every one of the now over 2000 pages on the site separately in order to bring the site right up to date with the way the HTML and CSS is written.

The longer I leave this the more pages I am going to need to change and so my plan now is to do a major redesign of how the pages are coded as soon as possible. It will then take me several months in my spare time to work my way through all of the pages to update them to use current standards and work with my new design which will hopefully allow me to make all of the future changes to the site that do not affect the content of specific pages by just updating one file.

On Site

I will be continuing to write more tutorials on PHP Security and on mySQL but these may be a little slower coming as I devote a part of my time to the site redesign.

What's New

The following links will take you to all of the various pages that have been added to the site or undergone major changes in the last month.

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