Mean What You Say

Angelo Simeoni

In a genuine effort to act more grown up, I’m putting down style and picking up markup. Getting back to roots not only feels good; it also makes for a handful of decent realizations.

Websites should distribute content with consistent meaning to many devices on many platforms. Use of proper markup can make this a rich and meaningful experience.

It’s easy to maintain this coding standard. I’ll show you how to start.

Start the next page you’re working on by just writing the markup. Don’t add any style in this phase. It should feel strange for some of you. That’s good.

While you go along, keep asking these questions.

  1. Does the page read like a book? (pay attention to order)
  2. What does this content mean to say here? (it’s your element)
  3. How can this content be logically grouped together? (defines divs and spans)

Once you’re done with all the content, then begin to add style as you see fit. Try to only make changes by adding hooks into your existing markup (e.g. classes & ids).

HTML Dog is a good place to start picking up some useful and under-used markup elements. Remember to say what you mean. Your site is only as meaningful as its markup.