Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Is Web Design Ruining Your SEO Efforts - 5 Things NOT to Do!

Search Engine Optimization is often thought of as a set of tips & techniques that, if done right, can shoot up your website ranking in search results and get it to the top! This is only half-truth though.

The process of optimizing a website starts right from the time you think about building a website. Yeah... contrary to popular belief, SEO is not something that follows website launch. Rather it is what you need to base your design process on. And just like there are best practices to optimize your website, there are also other stuff that can potentially have a negative influence on your SEO efforts.

So just as much you need to do the right things, you also need to make sure you don't do the wrong things:

Here are some design elements that you absolutely must NOT apply:

Drop Down Navigation or Mouse-Over Menus

This was a rage till recent past! Drop down menus not only saves real estate on a page but is a great way to arrange the navigation elements cleanly... Not to mention the sleek drop-down boxes that add to the visual appeal! However, when it comes to search engine optimization, drop down navigation drops down the value. Search engine crawlers cant fill out forms even if there's just one pull-down. So, they cant get to those pages... least of all index the contents.

So make sure you have an alternate means of navigating those pages so that search engine crawlers can get there. You can include text links in the footer of your web pages or use image links or an image map. Also, chuck JavaScript and use AJAX or divs to get the same drop down and ensure search engine appeal at the same time.

Flash or JavaScript for Primary Navigation

Even though search engine crawlers have come off age and become smarter at indexing Flash contents, I don't think its worth the risk. If your primary navigation needs Flash, Java or JavaScript to function, that puts a big question mark on whether search engine crawlers will parse through or not. Remember, search engine crawlers have a limited ability to deal with Flash, Java and Javascript. So any links that you put there have a good enough chances of not being seen by the search spiders.

A more reliable option is to count on semantically marked up HTML. You get what you want on your navigation pathway and search engine crawlers get what they come for.

Fully Flash Website

Graphic artists and ardent designers would swear by Flash but when it comes search engine appeal, its better to mellow down your 'flashy' instincts. If you want to score well in Google SERPs, then you have to create what is called search-friendly design. And as mentioned earlier, inspite of the increasing Flash-consciousness of search engine spiders, they still have a preference for plain text.

Keep the main textual elements of the page out of Flash along with all the page titles and section headings. And if at all (despite all the red signals) you have to use Flash, make sure you have an alternate text version within div tags. Also, don't forget to use SWFObject, a standards-friendly method to embed Flash content.

Frames for Design

For one, Google clearly dissuades the use of frames as they tend to cause problems with search engines, bookmarks, emailing links etc. In fact, it can be a nightmare to scroll through a website that has frames. Since part of the page moves while others stay stationary, it gets pretty difficult to follow where to read and where to scroll. Moreover, not all browsers support frames so you can lose a considerable amount of audience. Worse of all frames create additional maintenance and server load.

So... really.. You are better off without it!

Pop Up Boxes

Pop-ups rely on JavaScript! And this is a roadblock for search engine crawlers just hate. Not only does the content within pop-ups not get indexed but they are a nuisance for website visitors. No wonder most people have installed pop-up blockers. And in case you dint know, Google toolbar and Yahoo Companion toolbar have built-in pop-up blockers

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Kabir_Bedi

Monday, July 26, 2010

HTML <!DOCTYPE> Declaration

Definition and Usage

The doctype declaration should be the very first thing in an HTML document, before the <html> tag.

The doctype declaration is not an HTML tag; it is an instruction to the web browser about what version of the markup language the page is written in.

The doctype declaration refers to a Document Type Definition (DTD). The DTD specifies the rules for the markup language, so that the browsers can render the content correctly.

HTML/XHTML Elements and Valid DTDs

Doctypes Available in the W3C Recommendations
HTML 4.01 Strict

This DTD contains all HTML elements and attributes, but does NOT INCLUDE presentational or deprecated elements (like font). Framesets are not allowed.

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/strict.dtd">

HTML 4.01 Transitional

This DTD contains all HTML elements and attributes, INCLUDING presentational and deprecated elements (like font). Framesets are not allowed.

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/loose.dtd">

HTML 4.01 Frameset

This DTD is equal to HTML 4.01 Transitional, but allows the use of frameset content.

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Frameset//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/frameset.dtd">


XHTML 1.0 Strict

This DTD contains all HTML elements and attributes, but does NOT INCLUDE presentational or deprecated elements (like font). Framesets are not allowed. The markup must also be written as well-formed XML.

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Strict//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-strict.dtd">

XHTML 1.0 Transitional

This DTD contains all HTML elements and attributes, INCLUDING presentational and deprecated elements (like font). Framesets are not allowed. The markup must also be written as well-formed XML.

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-transitional.dtd">

XHTML 1.0 Frameset

This DTD is equal to XHTML 1.0 Transitional, but allows the use of frameset content.

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Frameset//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-frameset.dtd">



This DTD is equal to XHTML 1.0 Strict, but allows you to add modules (for example to provide ruby support for East-Asian languages).

<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.1//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml11/DTD/xhtml11.dtd"<

Source : http://www.w3schools.com

What Beautiful HTML Code Looks Like

I originally wrote this over two years ago. It was getting a little long in the tooth, especially now that HTML5 has come along and made HTML far more beautiful than even XHTML 1.1 was. So I updated it!

I can’t help but view source on every nice looking website I see. It’s like if you had x-ray glasses that allowed you to see any person you ever saw in their underwear at will. How could you not? It’s just so tempting to see if a beautiful website is built with beautiful code as well, or if its beauty if only skin-deep. Code? Beautiful? Sure. After all, Code is Poetry. This is just HTML, so it can’t be quite as intricate and elegant as a dynamic language, but it still bears the brush strokes of its creator.

It gets me to thinking, what makes beautiful code? In HTML, it comes down to craftsmanship. Let’s take a look at some markup written they way markup should be written and see how beautiful it can be.

It’s big enough to print out and tape up inside your locker to impress your friends. Well, it might be a bit of an awkward size. I’ll make the PSD available in case you want to alter it.

* HTML5 – HTML5 and it’s new elements make for the most beautiful HTML yet.
* DOCTYPE – HTML5 has the best DOCTYPE ever
* Indentation – Code is indented to show parent/child relationships and emphasize hierarchy.
* Charset – Declared as first thing in the head, before any content.
* Title – Title of the site is simple and clean. Purpose of page is first, a separator is used, and ends with title of the site.
* CSS – Only one single stylesheet is used (media types declared inside stylesheet), and only served to good browsers. IE 6 and below are served a universal stylesheet.
* Body – ID applied to body to allow for unique page styling without any additional markup.
* JavaScript – jQuery (the most beautiful JavaScript library) is served from Google. Only a single JavaScript file is loaded. Both scripts are referenced at the bottom of the page.
* File Paths – Site resources use relative file paths for efficiency. Content file paths are absolute, assuming content is syndicated.
* Image Attributes – Images include alternate text, mostly for visually impaired uses but also for validation. Height and width applied for rendering efficiency.
* Main Content First – The main content of the page comes after basic identity and navigation but before any ancillary content like sidebar material.
* Appropriate Descriptive Block-Level Elements – Header, Nav, Section, Article, Aside… all appropriately describe the content they contain better than the divs of old.
* Hierarchy – Title tags are reserved for real content, and follow a clear hierarchy.
* Appropriate Descriptive Tags – Lists are marked up as lists, depending on the needs of the list: unordered, ordered, and the underused definition list.
* Common Content Included – Things common across multiple pages are inserted via server side includes (via whatever method, language, or CMS that works for you)
* Semantic Classes – Beyond appropriate element names, classes and IDs are semantic: they describe without specifying. (e.g. “col” is much better than “left”)
* Classes – Are used any time similar styling needs to be applied to multiple elements.
* IDs – Are used any time an element appears only once on the page and cannot be targeted reasonably any other way.
* Dynamic Elements – Things that need to be dynamic, are dynamic.
* Characters Encoded – If it’s a special character, it’s encoded.
* Free From Styling – Nothing on the page applies styling or even implies what the styling might be. Everything on the page is either a required site resource, content, or describing content.
* Comments – Comments are included for things that may not be immediately obvious upon reviewing the code.
* Valid – The code should adhere to W3C guidelines. Tags are closed, required attributes used, nothing deprecated, etc.


Understanding border-image

The new CSS3 property border-image is a little tricky, but it can allow you to create flexible boxes with custom borders (or drop shadows, if that’s your thing) with a single div and a single image. In this article I explain how the border-image shorthand property works in today’s browsers.

The basic idea

The border-image shorthand property has 3 parts:

border-image: url(border-image.png) 25% repeat;

Essentially, these allow you to specify:

1. An image to use as the border
2. Where to slice that image, dividing the image into 9 sections
3. How the browser should apply those sections to the edges of your element

The pertinent details

Let’s look at each part of the process in a little more detail. The first part is easy, and is familiar from the background-image property. For demonstration purposes I’ll use this image, which is 100px x 100px:

Slicing your image

The second part can have from one to four values, much like the border-width property, and they are specified in the same order: top, right, bottom, left. You can use percentages or pixels. Strangely, the percentages require the “%”, while pixels should be listed without the “px”:

border-image: url(my-image.gif) 25% 30% 10% 20% repeat;
border-image: url(my-image.gif) 25 30 10 20 repeat;

In this case, since my image is 100px x 100px, the two rules above are equivalent – they slice the image in the same places. I’ve added some dimensions on my image to demonstrate:

Repeat, Round, Stretch

border-image will always place the corner sections of your image into the corresponding corners of your element box, but the third part of the shorthand rule tells the browser how to treat the middle sections of your image — the ones that will go along the edges of your element. Repeat (repeat, or tile, the image) and stretch (stretch, or scale, the image) are pretty self-explanatory. Round means tile the image but only so that a whole number of tiles fit, and otherwise scale the image. Right now, Safari and Chrome interpret round as repeat. There can be up to two values: one for the top and bottom edges of the element, and one for the left and right. Here’s an example with the top/bottom value set to repeat, and the left/right value set to stretch:

#example-one {
border-width:25px 30px 10px 20px;
-moz-border-image:url("border-image.png") 25 30 10 20 repeat stretch;
-webkit-border-image:url("border-image.png") 25 30 10 20 repeat stretch;
border-image:url("border-image.png") 25 30 10 20 repeat stretch;


border-image won’t do anything if you don’t specify a width for your border. For browsers that understand border-image, your image slices will be scaled to the specified width. If you use the border shorthand property, it provides a nice fallback for browsers that don’t:

#example-two {
border:50px double orange;
-moz-border-image:url("border-image.png") 25 30 10 20 repeat;
-webkit-border-image:url("border-image.png") 25 30 10 20 repeat;
border-image:url("border-image.png") 25 30 10 20 repeat;

Or you can specify each width individually (in this example I’ve specified widths such that the image slices aren’t scaled at all):

#example-three {
border-width:25px 30px 10px 20px;
-moz-border-image:url("border-image.png") 25 30 10 20 repeat;
-webkit-border-image:url("border-image.png") 25 30 10 20 repeat;
border-image:url("border-image.png") 25 30 10 20 repeat;

Using a plain border at the same widths as your border-image won’t always be ideal, however, so you may want to use conditional stylesheets to give IE some different border styles altogether.

Source : http://css-tricks.com/understanding-border-image/#more-6883

Friday, July 23, 2010

Web on the Cell and Importance of XHTML

Cellphones are the new face of the web. Getting the Internet into cell phones proved a smart idea and today the number of users that browse websites on phones has risen considerably. Thanks to technology that now we can access the net with that little thing on our palms. The prime reason for the Internet over Cellphone popularity is the wireless mobility that it offers. All we need is an Internet connection (offered by both service provider and cell phone manufacturer) and the World Wide Web is in our hands.

XHTML plays an important role here. While coding any website, the programmers keep the website compatibility in mind. There is however a special XHTML language version for cellphones called XHTML-MP (Mobile Profile). However, many phones that have built-in browsers go just fine with XHTML alone. Systematized, hand written, table-less XHTML coding perfectly supports the browsers at cell phones.

Earlier, WML was the primary markup language for mobile web. Well that was way back. Today, XHTML is preferred over WML and works fine with cell phones.

So while doing XHTML, compatibility issue is not the only concern for browsers in PC or laptop. It also occurs for browsers in cell phones. But this again would depend on the target audience. For instance, if you are an online jewelery vendor, chances are high that your target audience uses 3G phones that have in-built browsers. This defines the need for pixel perfect website designing, adhering to all the XHTML rules.

This doesn't mean that a large scaled business needs professional XHTML and a medium scaled doesn't. Businesses are always long-term. What seems today a small scaled business enterprise might become a medium scaled business tomorrow and a large scaled business the day after. This would certainly change your target audience from an economically stable to a high-class privileged group. Professional XHTML thus becomes mandatory for all business websites that intend to stay in the market for long.

Thus, as long as there is web on the cell (the journey has just begun, and yet to go miles ahead), the need of XHTML cannot be negated.

For Website Designing and Development Services
Web Development in India
eMail : varadesigns@yahoo.com
phone : +91 9247457705

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Manish_Rawat

XHTML Web Design - Top 10 Benefits

If you are still using HTML in your web design, consider transferring it to XHTML as it is the wave of the future.

As new browsers are developed they will be using XHTML more and more because it is compatible with a wider range of devices.

What is XHTML?

XHTML is a combination of HTML and XML (Extensible Markup Language). XHTML consists of all the elements in HTML 4.01 combined with the syntax of XML.

Top 10 Benefits of Using XHTML in Web Design

1. Clean code

All XHTML tags must have closing tags and be nested correctly. This generates cleaner code.

2. Search engine spiders

Because XHTML documents have cleaner code they can more easily be spidered by the search engines.

3. Faster loading

Web pages that don't contain errors and have clean code will load faster in all browsers.

4. Reduce bandwidth costs

Lean XHTML documents mean you will use less bandwidth and therefore reduce costs particularly if your web site has 1000s of pages.

5. Backward compatible

XHTML documents are backward compatible with older, non-XHTML compliant web browsers.

Instead of sloppy HTML tags, your pages will now contain XML tags that are always properly closed and nested correctly.

6. Increased interoperability.

Unlike old-style HTML pages, valid, well-formed XHTML documents can easily be "transported" to wireless devices, Braille readers and other specialized web environments.

7. Greater accessibility

Because XHTML pages follow strict rules and avoid non-standard markup, they are more accessible than HTML pages.

8. New developments

All new developments will be in XML (of which XHTML is an application).

9. Integration

XHTML has the ability to cleanly integrate HTML with other XML applications.

10. CSS.

XHTML works in conjunction with CSS to create web pages that can easily be updated.


By making the switch to XHTML for your future web designs, you will not only get into the habit of writing cleaner code, but if combined with CSS create designs that load faster and are more search engine friendly.

For Website Designing and Development Services
Web Development in India
eMail : varadesigns@yahoo.com
phone : +91 9247457705

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Herman_Drost

XHTML Equals to Browser Compatibility

XHTML is the big in-thing in web designing these days. It is the fastest growing trend that has now become a highly sought after service. So what is XHTML, and how does it guarantees browser compatibility? Let us study it in some detail.

Plato once said, necessity is the mother of all inventions. HTML, which was once a popular source code, is now overshadowed by XHTML, i.e., Extensible Hypertext Markup Language. Earlier there were few web browsers. But as different web browsers have also marked the industry with its advent today, it becomes important to please all of them (as you don't know which browser the end-user uses). XHTML allows the site to divide the content from its appearance through CSS (Cascading Style Sheet). This makes the layout equally appealing and compressed for all web browsers.

Web has crossed its comprehensible boundaries. It started with being on our system desktop, shifted to laptop screens, and has now reached our cell phones and Personal Digital Assistants. Hence it not only becomes important, but mandatory to do valid XHTML Coding for cross browser compatibility. This takes us to the question of 'Valid XHTML'.

If there is valid XHTML, is there any invalid XHTML as well? What is valid, and how could one guess whether a particular coding is really valid or not?

There are many websites that display the "VALID XHTML" tags in the form of images, text and/or banners. This means that they conform to the W3C's (World Wide Web Consortium) coding standards. To ensure that valid XHTML remains valid, W3C, an international standards organization, has laid out few rules for XHTML coding. Designers follow these rules/guidelines while coding XHTML. Valid XHTML, allow me to compare it, is just like White hat SEO- it pays you the long way. Just like grey hat or black hat SEO can be done easily, but doesn't pay you for long, invalid XHTML can't reap you benefits for long.

So if the XHTML service provider tries to play smart by displaying "Valid XHTML" in its website, without mentioning the "W3C standards", you might want to check its credibility again. An XHTML provider, who has met all W3C standards, would flaunt about it!

For Website Designing and Development Services
Web Development in India
eMail : varadesigns@yahoo.com
phone : +91 9247457705

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Manish_Rawat

Keys to Building a Successful Small Business Website

A small business website serves the primary function of providing information about the business, the products, and the services. The purpose of creating such a site is to attract visitors, create inquiries or leads, and generate more business. A small business website should be able to market the products and services over the Internet and create a sense of need in readers so as to achieve greater conversion rates. So what are the keys to building a good small business website?

* Quality content is of utmost importance. No matter how attractive a site looks, it is ultimately the content that will hook people and keep them coming back. After all, when you recommend a site to a friend, do you do it merely because the site looks good or because the information available is helpful, useful, and interesting? To ensure the online success of a site, it is extremely important to have unique and fresh content. You can try blogs, or can update content at least once every week. Remember that search engines are not too fond of stale sites either and if you have not added new content in a long time, it is bound to reflect in the form of poor search engine rankings.

* Reciprocal link exchange is a great way of directing visitors to your site. It basically means that you share links with other sites to ensure mutual traffic. Reciprocal linking constitutes an important part of search engine optimization. As a website owner, you can submit your site to various reciprocal link exchange directories so that even if a visitor is on a different site, he/ she can get directed to your site. This considerably increases chances of greater sales. In addition, reciprocal link exchanging influences better ranking in the search engines.

* It is important to pay attention to the site's structure. If it has flashy graphics, too many advertisements and pop-ups, or loud music, chances are that visitors will get distracted and leave the site. You should also ensure that your site is easily navigable. This plays a crucial role in the success of your online business because unless visitors are able to locate what they are searching for, the entire point of having an online presence is defeated.

There is a lot more creating a small business website. To get expert advice and help, visit onlybusiness.com.

For Website Designing and Development Services
Web Development in India
eMail : varadesigns@yahoo.com
phone : +91 9247457705

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Linda_Garcia

Monday, July 19, 2010

Tips for Web Design that Crosses Cultures

The internet has the potential to put a global audience at your fingertips, but there’s far more to reaching across cultural divides than simply putting your website out there and waiting for people to visit it. There are issues to do with language, design and SEO that all need to be addressed before your website becomes truly accessible ‘world-wide’. Thankfully, though, there are a number of simple tricks you can apply that will make it all a less daunting process.

Translate your content

This is perhaps the most obvious but also the most important tip. English is arguably the most commonly used language internationally, but it still serves as a native tongue for only about 20% of the world’s population. Clearly, an English-only website will be inaccessible to a huge percentage of your potential online audience of 1.8 billion people.

There are various ways to translate your content and the method you choose may reflect budget and time constraints. The easiest way is to add a translation widget such as Google Translate or Babelfish to your site, allowing visitors to translate text to the language of their choice. Remember that any text embedded in Flash files won’t be translated – which is (yet another) a good argument against using too much Flash.

If you’re confident in using inline functions, you can build inline translation code into the site using Ajax, in connection with geolocation, to facilitate a smooth immersive translation process that directs the visitor to the correct language version, as determined by where their ISP is hosted.

If you do use machine translation, try to make your original content as simple and direct as possible and avoid specific cultural references, as these will invariably not translate well.

If budget allows, having your copy professionally translated is the optimum choice. Using a native speaker from the target market will ensure that meaning and nuances will carry over to your translated site and any linguistic or cultural mistakes can be avoided.

Use horizontal navigation bars

Not all languages read from left to right like English. Scripts such as Arabic and Hebrew read from right to left. While CSS makes it easy to flip a vertical navigation bar (which would normally be located on the left-hand side for a left-to-right language) and script direction from one side to the other, using a horizontal bar located across the top of the page will add a sense of continuity and cohesive design to localized versions of your site.

Use Unicode UTF-8

Unicode UTF-8 is the ideal character encoding tool. Compatible with over 90 different written languages or scripts, it’s also supported by all the major browsers. Even if you see no need for a localized site in Arabic or Simplified Chinese right now, using UTF-8 will give you the flexibility to create one in the future and it also incorporates all the additional characters from extended Latin alphabets (such as the German Ä, Ö, Ü and ß).

Bear in mind that some scripts and languages will take up more space than others to convey the same information and this may affect your page design.

Use appropriate colours

The use of colours can enhance a site’s visual appeal and help convey a theme or emotion, but some colours have different connotations in different cultures. White, for example, can signify marriage in the west but is associated with death and mourning in much of the east.

Tailor your design to the market

Some cultures (such as Japan and China) can be defined as ‘high context’ cultures. These cultures have a tendency to draw information from context and situation. ‘Low context’ cultures (including Germany, Scandinavia and North America) tend to look for explicitly worded and expressed information. In terms of website design, this means that sites with a more visual and immersive feel may be better received in high context cultures and sites with concise, clear layouts and text will appeal more to low context cultures. As an example, take a look at Nokia’s clearly structured and information-heavy German site, with prices and products listed on the front page, and compare it to the more visually oriented Chinese version.

Localize your SEO

There’s little point having a beautifully designed series of websites which are accessible to a range of different cultures if nobody can find them. SEO keywords can vary tremendously from location to location so don’t just translate your keywords directly. A little research may reveal that colloquialisms, alternative terms or even misspellings are more commonly used in your new target market. Research keywords not only on the local versions of search giants like Google but also on any major local competitors such as Baidu (the leading search engine in China).

For Website Designing and Development Services
Web Development in India
eMail : varadesigns@yahoo.com
phone : +91 9247457705
Source : http://css-tricks.com/cross-culture-design/

Present Trends in PSD to HTML & XHTML Conversion Services

Have you ever wondered the outcome of such a major boost in the the web industry? Such a flooded demand for the PSD to HTML/XHTML/CSS conversion service providers for all your business needs have catered the scope of a wide variety of service providers in this arena who can actually try and provide the best possible services they can at affordable prices.

To be able to meet the business requirements, and that too, when we are living in the world of globalisation, outsourcing these services serves a lot of purpose. To be able to bait more and more customers and come up with the most effective conversion results in terms of the traffic your site is able to draw, the various business organisations hunting out for these conversion service providers.

And, if we see the other way round, the importance of such conversions is that you get a chance to fit in to the particular set of service. You get a chance wherein you can actually focus on to the popular design format. A well professional set up is capable to focus on to converting your PSDs to XHTML or HTML.

To be able to turn your dream online business venture into a reality wherein, with the help of these web design and development agencies, you add a new touch to your site, which is able to live in this cut-throat we world. Slicing these PSD files and converting them into clean, semantic and hand-coded coding into HTML/XHTML/CSS codes so that your website does not get lost in the crowd. Since, the need for these service providers is increasing day by day, and in turn, the number of these service providers as well. The web industry is loaded with the local as well as the option of outsourcing these services from the global market.

Not only this, but most of the web design and the development companies comes as a complete package, and caters to the need of the various business enterprises. And, there is no denial to the fact that they offer the best possible services at cost competitive prices because of the growing competition the market is witnessing in the current market scenario where each and every individual seek out for the ways to enter in to the world of Internet and enjoy the fruits.

For Website Designing and Development Services
Web Development in India
eMail : varadesigns@yahoo.com
phone : +91 9247457705

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Manish_Chauhan

Thursday, July 15, 2010

HTML 5 Tag Reference

<article> Specifies an article
<aside> Specifies content aside from the page content
<audio> Specifies sound content
<bb> Specifies a user agent command
<canvas> Define graphics
<command> Specifies a command
<datagrid> Specifies data in a tree-list
<datalist> Specifies an "autocomplete" dropdown list
<details> Specifies details of an element
<dialog> Specifies a dialog (conversation)
<embed> Specifies external application or interactive content
<eventsource> Specifies a target for events sent by a server
<figure> Specifies a group of media content, and their caption
<footer> Specifies a footer for a section or page
<header> Specifies a header for a section or page
<mark> Specifies marked text
<meter> Specifies measurement within a predefined range
<nav> Specifies navigation links
<output> Specifies some types of output
<progress> Specifies progress of a task of any kind
<ruby> Specifies a ruby annotation (used in East Asian typography)
<rp> Used for the benefit of browsers that don't support ruby annotations NEW
<rt> Specifies the ruby text component of a ruby annotation.
<section> Specifies a section
<source> Specifies media resources
<time> Specifies a date/time
<video> Specifies a video

For Website Designing and Development Services
Web Development in India
eMail : varadesigns@yahoo.com
phone : +91 9247457705

Source : http://www.w3schools.com/html5/html5_reference.asp

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Advantages Of Tableless Websites

HTML was originally designed as a semantic markup language intended for sharing scientific documents and research papers online. However, as the Internet expanded from the academic and research world into the mainstream in the mid 1990s, and became more media oriented, graphic designers sought ways to control the visual appearance of the Web pages presented to end users. To this end, tables and spacers have been used to create and maintain page layout.

Problems then started to arise from the use of these techniques. As many webpages are build with tables nested within tables, this resulted in large HTML documents which use more bandwidth than documents with simpler formatting. With slower performance, the internet slowly begun to decline and the Web development industry shrank. Because of this, several UI development was carried out by coders with greater knowledge of good coding practice. It was around this time that many became critical of messy coding practices and the idea of tableless design began to grow.

Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) were developed to improve the separation between design and content, and move back towards a semantic organization of content on the Web. According to popular Web design outsourcing Philippiness companies, the term "tableless design” implies the use of CSS to position HTML elements on the page but it should be noted that tables and CSS are not mutually exclusive. Many experienced HTML coders use CSS to manipulate tables frequently.


There are several advantages through the use of tableless websites, these includes:


As a result of the separation of design (CSS) and structure (HTML), it is also possible to provide different layouts for different devices, e.g. handhelds, mobile phones, etc. According to different Web design outsourcing Philippiness companies, it is also possible to specify a different style sheet for print, e.g. to hide or modify the appearance of advertisements or navigation elements that are irrelevant and a nuisance in the printable version of the page.


In tableless layout using CSS, virtually all of the layout information resides in one place: the CSS document. Because the layout information is centralized, these changes can be made quickly and globally by default. The HTML files themselves do not, usually, need to be adjusted when making layout changes. If they do, it is usually to add class-tags to specific markup elements or to change the grouping of various sections with respect to one another.

Bandwidth Efficient

Clever implementation of tableless design can produce web pages with fewer HTML tags thus reducing page download times. According to web design consultants and Web design outsourcing Philippiness companies, using external style sheets to position page elements means more mark up language may be cached and further reduce download times for subsequent pages using the same resources.

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Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Why A Professional Logo Design is Valuable to a Small Business

Why A Professional Logo Design is Valuable to a Small Business Imagine doing business without your most important tool: a computer, your knowledge, your personal assistant, or the telephone. You sit, unable to work. Without that tool, your company's future success would be in danger. And the same is true of any company functioning without a professional logo design.

Logos as Identification

The importance of logos may be traced back to the industrial revolution. Images on crates and boxes helped differentiate between mass-produced goods. That's why you can tell Morton® Salt, for example, from other salt packages at a glance. And if you're going to advertise, don't bother—not until you have a professionally designed logo that will be instantly recognizable. You could do more harm than good.

Logos for Professionalism

Would you want to do business with unprofessional company? Neither would your clients. A custom logo can give a five-person service firm an air of professionalism that is equal to that of a thousand-person company—and when you are competing in a global market, a professional image is essential.

Logos for Brand Identity

With a professional, custom logo, you can build a brand and go beyond simple advertising. You can use viral marketing with related products that promote your brand as a lifestyle.

Many companies think of themselves as brand-marketing companies. Starbucks® and Tommy Hilfiger® are two examples. In Tommy Hilfiger's case, all product manufacturing is hired out. What makes Hilfiger clothing instantly identifiable is the trademark red and white logo prominently displayed by Hilfiger customers. AT Starbucks®, coffee, music, clothing, and more other products build the Starbucks® brand.

It's Your Logo

You would not conduct business without your most important tool, nor should you conduct business without a professional logo that identifies your company. We live in what has been termed a "branded world": consumers purchase products based on brand reputation, and even promote brands by wearing logos on their clothing. Is your logo worthy of being worn on a customer's chest? If not, it may be time for professional logo design.

Designated trademarks and brands are the property of their respective owners. The brands listed in this article do not sponsor, affiliate, or endorse the products or services described herein. Morton Salt is a registered trademark of Morton International, Inc. Tommy Hilfiger is a registered trademark of Tommy Hilfiger Licensing, Inc. Starbucks is a registered trademark of Starbucks U. S. Brands. LLC.

What Does Your Logo Say About You

In the marketing world, a lot of attention is given to the concept of “image”, both on an individual product level and for a corporation as a whole. Researchers know the perception of a product or service can be vastly different from actuality. Business owners are faced with the difficult task of communicating to their consumers exactly what benefits they will derive from using their product or service vs. the competition’s offering.

One way businesses do this is through their logo, or their corporate identity. Part of a logo’s impact comes from repetition, the very act of seeing a familiar symbol on a continual basis. Every company, every branded product or service needs a logo for this purpose.

Because logos are everywhere, it is essential for a logo to have meaning; to present to the subconscious mind of the consumer a message about the corporation and/or the product it represents.

Of all the factors that comprise corporate image , the most significant one is that of integrity. Integrity, in itself, has components: honesty, loyalty, determination, strength, completeness, dependability.

Another element that is important for a corporate or product image is value; the consumer must perceive that they will be receiving something of worth for their money.

Leadership is another factor; it connotes a knowledge of the marketplace and the ability to conduct business in such a manner that others in the field acknowledge this company’s worth.

Innovation is another important component of image. Businesses want to be seen as creative, knowledgeable and able to meet consumer needs with the newest and best products and services.

To build such an image through logo design requires the use of all of the tools a graphic artist has in his armory: fonts, color, placement, size, pictures and design motifs. Logo designers know that some images require a sense of movement in the logo design; some need the strength of heavy block lettering; logos for products for infants, for example, would be best served with soft pastels and lines that are rhythmic and flowing rather than having sharp angles.

Any entrepreneur seeking a logo for his company or product should first choose the elements he or she wants to present as a communicator of the corporate image.

Knowing the relative weight of each factor, a logo designer can then create a logo that catches the public eye and imagination, sends a subliminal message about your company’s image and indelibly imprints the logo in the consumer’s memory.

There are four options for actually getting the design work done. From a freelancer, an ad agency, from an online logo design specialist like LogoWorks, or by doing it yourself. All have benefits and drawbacks, but for most small businesses hiring a freelancer or using an on-line company are the most effective and affordable methods.

Article Source : http://www.logodesign.com/logo-design-article-display/1/Why-A-Professional-Logo-Design-is-Valuable-to-a-Small-Business-/

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Online Logo Creation - Makes Perfect Sense!

There are several things which you need to take into consideration while designing a website. It's the designing of the website that plays a significant part when you are exactly trying to make a fine site that will not only attract more visitors but also drive more revenue for your business. When you are looking for some of the most important aspect of your website, you will surely come across the logo creation task that seems to be more important than the others involved in the whole assignment. Logo creation is a job that can make you feel always great about your business. Logo creation can always make you feel better about the announcement of online business, especially when you are trying to draw quick brand recognition.

In order to create an effective logo for your website, you can hire professionals involved in this venture. But the charges from a professional seem to be high most of the time. At the same time it will take more time for creating the right kind of logo for your website. It may take several approval modes to finalize a good logo for your online business. If you are not keen enough to do such hassling task, then its time to opt for the online logo creation. It's the most vital task that you can accomplish quickly and at the same time you can keep the right hold on your business.

Online logo creation is all about making the business logo in less time, and at the same time you can find out the perfect logo for your online business. There are several websites that are offering free online logo creation facility for web visitors. You can opt for these sites and can select the right kind of logo for your purpose. There is not a better method to get the ideas than research for what already has come & gone before. You may take a close look at all logo successes as well as failures throughout the history. They are all documented on internet and from looking at the history, you may get very good idea what to do & what you can stay away from.

Hire someone who knows the stuff - In case, you cannot come-up with the ideas on your own, next best thing is hiring someone to do that for you. Naturally, you would like to get someone who not just understands the design but understands the business. We have established what the logo is for and it is to get the people to recognize at an instant.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Julian_Wood

Thursday, July 8, 2010

What is XHTML ?

XHTML is almost identical to HTML 4.01 with only few differences. This is a cleaner and more strict version of HTML 4.01. If you already know HTML then you need to give littel attention to learn this latest variant of HTML.

XHTML stands for EXtensible HyperText Markup Language and is the next step in the evolution of the Internet. The XHTML 1.0 is the first document type in the XHTML family.

XHTML was developed by the W3C to help web developers make the transition from HTML to XML. By migrating to XHTML today, web developers can enter the XML world with all of its attendant benefits, while still remaining confident in their content's backward and future compatibility.

Developers who migrate their content to XHTML 1.0 will realize the following benefits:

1. XHTML documents are XML conforming. As such, they are readily viewed, edited, and validated with standard XML tools.

2. XHTML documents can be written to operate better than they did before in existing browsers as well as in new browsers.

3. XHTML documents can utilize applications like scripts and applets that rely upon either the HTML Document Object Model or the XML Document Object Model.


XHTML has a more strict syntax rules in comparison of HTML. XHTML gives you a more consistent, well structured format so that your webpages can be easily parsed and processed by present and future web browsers. It also makes your website more easy to maintain, edit, convert and format in the long run.

Since XHTML is an official standard of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), your website will more likely will be more compatible to more browsers and will be rendered more accurately. XHTML combines strength of HTML and XML and XHTML pages can be rendered by all XML enabled devices.

XHTML defines a quality standard for your webpages, if you follows that then your web pages will be counted quality web pages and W3C certifies those pages with their quality stamp.

Web developers and web browser designers are constantly discovering new ways to express their ideas through new markup languages. In XML, it is relatively easy to introduce new elements or additional element attributes. The XHTML family is designed to accommodate these extensions through XHTML modules and techniques for developing new XHTML-conforming modules. These modules will permit the combination of existing and new feature sets when developing content and when designing new user agents.

Basic Understanding:

Before we proceed further, lets have a quick view on what are HTML, XML and SGML.
1. What is HTML ?
This is an SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language) application conforming to International Standard ISO 8879. HTML is widely regarded as the standard publishing language of the World Wide Web.

2. What is SGML ?
This is a language for describing markup languages, particularly those used in electronic document exchange, document management, and document publishing. HTML is an example of a language defined in SGML.

3. What is XML ?
XML is the shorthand name for Extensible Markup Language. XML is a markup language much like HTML and was designed to describe data. XML tags are not predefined. You must define your own tags according to your needs.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Adding Video to Your Website

Before you add any video to your web page, it's important to understand that videos can take up a lot of web page space (file size) and bandwidth. Every time someone clicks to view the video they will be taking up some of your allocated bandwidth.

Be sure to check with your web host if you're not sure how much you are provided. If you're paying a monthly fee for web hosting, you could exceed your limits and be charged an extra fee if enough people view your video file.

Uploading the Video

First you must upload/save your video to your web server. You may want to create a folder called "video" and save it there. So the path to your video will be something like http://yoursite.com/video/movie.avi.

Embedding the Video

One thing you should keep in mind is that every web browser treats videos differently. What may work in one browser, may not work in another. So you should use both old and new HTML embed tags. (<object> and <embed>). See the sample code below:

<object width="420" height="360"
<param name="src" value="movie.mpeg" />
<param name="controller" value="true" />
<param name="autoplay" value="false" />
<!-- Code For Older Browsers -->
<embed src="movie.mpeg" width="420" height="360"

* Be sure your width and height attributes match the size of your video. The variables above are just examples. You may want to add a few pixels to allow for the player controls.
* The movie.avi is the path to your movie file. You may have to edit the path if your movie is stored in a different folder. If you're not sure, use the complete path http://yoursite.com/video/movie.avi, for example.
* The controller attribute displays the video controls.
* The autoplay attribute tells the browser to play (or not play) the video when the page loads. True means it will play automatically, false means the user will need to click the Play button.
* The pluginspace tag will prompt the user to download quicktime if they do not already have it.

You'll have to modify the above HTML code slightly to fit your website's configuration.

Replace musicfile.wav with the name of the music file you chose to upload to your web server. The code above also assumes you've saved the file in the same location of your homepage (index.html). If you save the file inside a folder on your root then you'd have to change the path slightly.

Let's say you want to load the song on your homepage (page name is index.html). You save the song file to a folder called "music" located off your root/main directory. Then the code you insert in your index.html page would look like something this:

<embed src="/music/musicfile.wav" autostart="true" loop="false">

This is telling the browser to look for the song file at...

If you're not comfortable with using relative paths in your code, then you can use the absolute (complete) path to your music file. For example, your code may look something like

<embed src="http://www.yoursite.com/music/musicfile.wav" autostart="true" loop="false" hidden="true">

Notice the full URL to the music file is listed in the code rather than starting with /music/....

Music File Attributes

After the path to your music file, you'll see a couple of attributes:

The autostart attribute tells the song file how to begin. If you have this set to "true", the song file will begin playing automatically when the page loads. If you put in "false", the sound file will not start automatically and the visitor will have to start the song by using their embedded media player.

The loop attribute tells the song how many times to play. If you have this set to "true" then it will play over and over again automatically. If you have it set to "false" it will play once and stop.

The hidden attribute tells the browser whether or not to hide the media player. It's not a good idea to leave this value at "true" unless you know for sure your visitors don't want to stop the music.

You don't want your music to annoy them to the point they leave because they can't figure out how to turn the music off.

Adjusting the Size of The Media Player

You can customize the look of the embedded/default media player on your visitor's PC by adding a width and height attribute to the code. Be careful as you adjust the size of the player because you can distort it.

<embed src="/music/musicfile.wav" autostart="true" loop="false" width="350" height="200">

Once you have your music file uploaded and coding inserted into your web page, your background music should play when your browser loads. Enjoy!

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Source : http://www.2createawebsite.com/enhance/adding-video.html

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Using Cascading Style Sheets to Create Your Website

Cascading style sheets is the newest and best way to develop a web site. The pages are built better they are easier to maintain and the all around experience is just greatly improved for both the developer and the end user.

Of course with new technology must come new training. Hitting the books back at school may not be an option, especially if building a web site is not really business related but more of a past time activity. Take heart you can still learn the inside information that you need to know to make the best of this great knew way to design web pages.

Cascading style sheets tutorial can easily get you on your way to using CSS layouts and templates.

Where to Find the Tutorials

The best place to find the tutorials for CSS is online. There are plenty of websites that offer this tutorial for free. Many of the websites that offer CSS layouts and templates will also offer the tutorials for proper use.

In many cases if you are not a business and you will not be building your site for profit you can find all the information you need or want right online. You can find e books for purchase online that can be downloaded to your computer and printed out or simply read online.

If taking or looking at a tutorial online is just not for you, there are books that are dedicated to the CSS systems that provide cascading style sheets tutorial. You can purchase the books online, from traditional book stores or get a free loaner from the library.

A lot of folks simply prefer to attend a more formal type class. Many community colleges offer cascading style sheets tutorial classes that maybe only run for one or two days. You usually will not only get some one on one instruction but you will also get a book out of the deal.

Is It worth It?

Is it worth investing the time in a tutorial for using CSS, the answer is a resounding yes. Although the system is pretty easy to use, really understanding what you are doing will really pay off in time and in a reduction in frustration.

You can find free tutorials so the only thing you are investing is your time. Learning something new that will make life easier is always worth the effort.

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Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Chuck_Chass

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Mobile Web Design

Mobile web design involves the development of Internet-connected applications for viewing on a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet PC that are connected to the Internet via a wireless network. This design today still suffers from usability and interoperability problems. Usability problems are difficult due to the small physical size of the mobile phone form factors. Interoperability issues arise from the platform fragmentation of mobile devices, mobile operating systems and mobile browsers. These are two of the toughest challenges when doing web design for the mobile web.

Going forward, the distinction between the mobile web and native mobile applications is predicted to become increasingly blurred, as mobile browsers gain direct access to the hardware of mobile devices and the performance of browser-based applications improve. Persistent storage and access to sophisticated graphics user interface functions may further reduce the need for the development of platform-specific application and web designs.

In order to help web designers, the development of standards are being implemented to improve the usability, interoperability and accessibility problems. The W3C Mobile Web Initiative is a new initiative set up by the W3C to develop best strategies and practices. The purpose of the initiative is to make developing web applications for mobile devices more reliable and accessible.

The W3C has published guidelines for mobile web design and is actively addressing the problem of device diversity by establishing a technology to support a repository of device descriptions. They are also developing a validating scheme to assess the readiness of content designed for the mobile web through its mobileOK scheme. This will help web designers to quickly determine if their content is web-ready.

The registry for.mobi, the mTLD, has released a free testing tool called the MobiReady Report to analyze the mobile readiness of a particular web design. It will perform a free page analysis and provides a Mobi Ready score. This helps web designers determine if their website is mobile ready using industry best practices and standards.

Interested industry groups are exploring and documenting other standards for mobile web design for the purpose of education and training. One such project is the Standards for M-Learning Project.

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Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Claire_Jarrett

Tableless Web Design

Tableless web design, also called tableless web layout, is a method of designing web pages without using HTML tables for page layout. Instead of using HTML tables, style sheet languages are used to arrange the different elements of text on a web page. One of the most common style sheet languages is Cascading Style Sheets, or CSS.

W3C introduced CSS in December of 1996 in order to improve web accessibility and to also make HTML code semantic instead of presentational. HTML was originally designed as a semantic markup language that was intended for sharing research papers and documents online. As the internet became more mainstream, graphic designers looked for ways to control the visual appearance of the web pages that they designed. This caused a number of problems as tables were nested within tables that created really large HTML web pages. CSS was introduced to solve this problem.

Tableless web design using CSS has a number of advantages over tabled web design. One of the advantages is in accessibility. With the number of different devices now accessing the internet, web content can be made accessible to users operating a wide variety of devices from desktops, to mobile phones to PDAs. Screen readers and braille devices have fewer problems with tableless design because they follow a logical structure.

Another advantage with tableless web design is bandwidth savings. Tableless web design creates web pages with fewer HTML tags used purely to position content. This results in pages that become smaller to download. The style philosophy implies that all the instructions for layout and positioning are to be moved into external style sheets. With the basic capabilities of HTTP, since the style rarely changes and apply in common to many web pages, they will be cached and reused after they are first downloaded. This results in a further reduction of bandwidth use and download times.

Lastly, maintainability is also improved with the use of tableless web design. When maintaining a website, frequent changes are often necessary. Under table-based web design, the layout is actually part of the HTML itself. Changing the positional layout of elements on a whole site may require a great deal of effort. In tableless layout using CSS, virtually all of the layout information resides in one place - the CSS document.

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Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Claire_Jarrett

Checking Web Design Changes in All Possible Browsers

I was looking at one local web designer's portfolio a while ago. I noticed that a lot of his websites looked fine in Firefox, but not in Internet Explorer. He was obviously testing only in that browser. Then suddenly the situation reversed as newer sites looked fine in Internet Explorer, but not Firefox.

And there is also a local fancy dress shop who's website you must look at in Internet Explorer, because the images of the costumes do not show in Firefox. Seriously, and these examples are genuine, this is a major problem as many customers will just see the problems, fail to navigate the website and move on.

What do we need to do?

So what do you need to do? Well the answer is very simple. Install the latest versions of Internet Explorer, Firefox and Chrome onto your computer and check that the website works in all of them and make the necessary changes to get them displaying correctly.

But, this is not enough. My own website statistics that I have accumulated from the visitors to several websites last month show that although these three browsers will only cover about 72% of visitors. You need to be also testing in older versions of browsers, especially Internet Explorer. If you can also test your website on the 2 previous versions of Internet Explorer then you are covering over 90% of website visitors. But for this, you need old versions of the browsers installed on other machines. Not always that easy, but with 20% of visitors using the 2 old versions of Internet Explorer, a necessary task.

Is this enough? There was one last well represented browser in my statistics and that was Safari, for the Mac. Thankfully there is a PC version of this as well that seems to perform the same on both the PC and the Apple Mac.

How do we do this?

Now I am not saying that this is easy, but to get the best from your website you probably need at least three PCs - with current, previous and older versions of the browsers installed on each. For more extensive testing, each should also have a different screen size, from 1024 pixels wide right up to 1600 pixels wide.

Are your visitors the same?

How would you know for yourself whether these figures are accurate for you? Well, I would doubt that another website would exactly match my experiences. More technically targeted websites probably get more technical people, who are more likely to use Firefox and up to date browsers. On the other hand, certain niches of websites are more likely to attract people on older browsers who are not maintaining the security through updates.

There is a simple answer and this also shows you if you need to test on other browser than those listed above. You install a tracking system such as Google Analytics and every quarter or 6 months, review the browsers that your visitors have been using and check that you are testing the experience on the popular browsers. Also look at your bounce rates by browsers and if any are particularly high, that could indicate that there is a problem with that browser.

Moving forward

The big problem we have is that there are new versions of browsers being issued all of the time and we just cannot keep up to date with every change. Instead, we should cover the vast majority of users and watch for trends developing in our traffic.

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Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Keith_Lunt

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Design Usability and Graphics Compression

The first thing that we should know about the two most popular Internet Browsers, Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer, is that they don't display web pages in the same way.

To make matters even more confusing, neither do PC or Mac computers display images the same way. In short, images created on a Mac appear much darker on a PC, and images created on a PC appear much lighter on a Mac. Pixel size differences (72 pixels per inch on a Mac and 96 pixels per inch on a PC at 640x480) make font sizes vastly different.

So, there has got to be ways around these differences, right?

Right.... To an extent. What we'll cover in this article are a couple of tips to make sure that your pages are displaying nicely regardless of the system or browser, and to help your pages download as quickly as possible no matter what they're being viewed on.

Step One: Compress the Graphics
Before we do anything else, we have to make sure that our graphics have been optimized for the web.

Most graphic programs have an option under file called "Save for Web". Once you have created the graphic you need, made sure you like it exactly as it is, and are ready to upload it for your website take a minute to open this original, great graphic in your software and click this option.

When you click Save for Web, you should be able to preview the end result before actually saving. In Photoshop, you will be given this option and a "slider" that lets you move from maximum to low quality when saving as a JPEG. As you move between qualities, you will notice that the file size drops or increases. Look even closer, and you will see a spot that shows approximately how much time it will take to download that graphic on various connection speeds.

The actual method for optimizing your graphics will vary according to the graphics software you are using. The end result is the same - you NEED NEED NEED to take a minute and create the highest-quality vs. lowest file size image that you can.

The two main Internet graphic formats, JPEG and GIF, have some compression built in. There are major differences between the two formats, as we'll see, and there are always ways of compressing that image down just a bit more to squeeze as much time out of it as you can.

Is a loose compression method. In other words, to save space it just throws away parts of an image. The JPEG algorithm first divides the image into squares (you can see these squares on badly compressed JPEGs - commonly called "pixellating"). Then it uses a math equation called Discrete Cosine Transformation to turn the square of data into a set of curves that go together to make up the image. Depending on how much you want to compress the image the algorithm throws away the less significant part of the data (the smaller curves) which adds less to the overall "shape" of the image. This means that, unlike a GIF, you get a say in how much you want to compress an image by. However, the loose compression method can generate unwanted effects such as false color and blockiness.

Here are two examples of JPG's using different compressions.

Stands for Graphics Interchange Format. It's a loss-less method of compression. This means when the program that creates a GIF squashes the original image down, it takes care not to lose any data. It uses a simple substitution method of compression.

The maximum compression available with a GIF depends on the amount of repetition there is in an image. A flat colour will compress well sometimes even down to one tenth of the original file size while a complex, non-repetitive image will fare worse, perhaps only saving 20% or so.

One problem with GIFs is that they are limited to a palette of 256 colors or less. Also, because you have no control on the compression amount, download speeds will greatly vary when using a GIF. Personally, I recommend using GIFs only when you need them for animation and relying on the flexibility of a JPEG for anything else.

Anti-aliasing is a technique used to make curved edges appear smooth on a computer screen.

It's mostly used with large font lettering but can be used with graphics also. The effect is achieved by using intermediary colors at the borders, which obscure the hard edges.

Anti-aliasing is a clever way of getting around the low resolution of computer screens and making your text appear as smooth as if they'd just come from a glossy magazine.

When using text in a graphic or using a graphic to replace text always anti-alias the text. In Photoshop, you are given this option right in your toolbar - just tick the checkbox.

More information on Anti-Aliasing will be available in a separate tutorial.

Step Two: Take a look or Two
Since there is such a big difference between platforms and browsers, make sure that you "test-drive" your graphics - and layout in general, for that matter - before you decide that you're "done". Try to view your site in as many different browsers as you can get your hands on, and then take a look at it on a different platform - If you use a PC, see how the other half surfs on a Mac, and visa versa.

Another step you should take to help reduce download speeds on your page is to use the Height and Width tags on your images. WYSIWYG Editors will usually do this for you. If you do your html by hand, make sure that there is a height and width specified for every image on your page.

Finally, the more that you recycle the images you use throughout your site, the better the visitor's experience will be. Once an image is in the browser cache, the
browser will not download it again. This means that if you use the exact same navigation bar image for ten separate pages, the browser will only download it once.

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Source : http://www.webdesign.org/web-design-basics/website-usability/design-usability-and-graphics-compression.6072.html