If you’re brand-new to web design, it’s often easy to get overwhelmed at all the different technologies and terminology used in web development. Trying to understand what you need to learn first, or even making sense of it with that in mind, I want to take a moment to define exactly what CSS is and Where it fits in a larger scheme of web design.
CSS, or Cascading Style Sheets, is a style sheet language developed to control the presentation of markup language documents, like HTML. You can think of HTML as controlling the structure of the web while CSS controls the best way that I can think of to display that vision is to think of HTML as the structure of a new building.
CSS, on the other hand, serves as the skin of the building and determines what the outside of the building is going to look like.
Cascading Style Sheet is a style language that describes the layout of HTML documents. It also controls the look and feels of web documents. We can apply one style on many elements, many styles, and also many documents.
For example, using Cascading Style Sheets we can manage fonts, colors, margins, lines, height, width, background images, advanced positions and many other.
These styles are usually contained in an external file that can control a single document or entire web site. The term cascade refers to how these styles are applied to pages. One of the major benefits of CSS is that it allows us to enable highly modularized web design. While this is a bit of an oversimplification, you can think of web sites as being controlled and constructed by five main elements.
Now in some cases, a web site might use all of these elements, while in others it might only use HTML and CSS. This modular approach means that you can change each of these elements independently of each other.
In terms of CSS, you can change the entire layout and design of a page without ever changing its content or structure.
You also speed development and site maintenance by controlling the formatting for an entire site through a small number of CSS files. Separating style and structure in this way helps your content become more portable as well.
You can define separate styles for different types of media so that your page looks one way on the desktop and receives a more optimized design for print and mobile devices.
As more and more devices consume web content, this allows you to control the presentation of your content within that device without having to change the structure of your file.
Regardless of how complex the site is, I think it’s pretty easy to see how important CSS is to the overall process of creating web sites. Anyone wanting to learn web design should regard CSS as an essential skill.
- In the 90s originally, browser defined styles and was used for controlling how HTML documents looked within that browser.
- Cascading Style Sheets 1.0 released in 1996, followed 2.0 in 1998.
- Early Cascading Style Sheets Support.
- Early browsers did not focus on interoperability or standards.
- Many had proprietary features and elements.
- Cascading Style Sheets specifications were not as formal as they are now.
- Therefore No browser ever fully implemented Cascading Style Sheets 2.0.