Jeremy Smith's blog

Entry Is Labelled

Outdated HTML Guides

From outdated HTML guides

FILLED WITH OUTDATED guides for HTML and CSS, is the web-at-large more hazardous than helpful to the masses trying to learn how to design web pages?

We are guilty of hosting an outdated HTML guide. Check out the number one search result for html introduction. It's our very own Introduction to HTML 2.0. Don't get me wrong, though. This guide is very well written and was very useful. After all, it was done by Eric Meyer, author of Eric Meyer on CSS, while he worked at Case Western. And, at the time of its publishing in January of 1995, it was a bleeding edge document.

But, these days, it's getting a little long in the tooth. And, while I am opposed to removing it, I think a nice section at the top of the page serving as a friendly pointer to more recent HTML help web resources would be very useful.

Molly suggests pointing users at Dave Shea's "Standards Resources for Beginners". That's not a bad idea. But, rather than expect someone to go hunting through the comments, I would just give them a pointer to W3Schools Online Web Tutorials. That link, I would imagine, will stay up to date into the foreseeable future; and has a wealth of documentation.

Sometimes, I feel bad thinking that a fledgling person trying to setup his or her first web site or just trying to get to the point of cutting their teeth on HTML for the first time... end up at the Case hosted tutorial and end up way more confused than they started.


  1. gravatar

    Yes indeed, it is outdated, but since Eric Meyer is now legendary, in fact a true css guru, I think I'll not be the one to make the decision to remove it!

    Of course, I agree, it could/should be edited, or noted on the page that we are keeping the document active with clear intentions for archived purposes only.

    That W3Schools link is a good one, but kind of overwhelming for a first timer. Are there any other good 'pure virgin' HTML tutorials that anyone knows of? Intro to: ?


  2. gravatar

    I think these are all good points and we obviously should add some new links for people, as well as indicate that this is something of an archival document. But given that it was Eric's I thought I'd go to the source. I've emailed him for his opinion, and I'll let you know how he responds.

  3. gravatar

    Why do we have to archive it? Doesn't do this for free?

  4. gravatar

    If an organization or individual finds a need to "archive" a copy of a web site, I would not rely solely on the Internet Archive to insure it will always be made available. If you do, you are at the mercy of their policies and future funding. Also, you must worry which version was archived and cannot make changes or notation as needed.

    Maybe that guide shored be added to Digital Case.