CSS-based designs are becoming all too popular in many websites these days. Without taking the time to fully examine what “semantics” are doing to a website, many designers are making the switch to CSS-based design, simply because it is what the popular action to take is. Tabular layouts are often rendered more correctly than CSS/division layouts, take less time to debug due to this, are just as accessible (if not more accessible) to non-graphical clients, help organize the code of a page more effectively, and are just as standards-compliant as “semantic” layouts when coded properly. For these reasons, I feel that it is important to take a new look at using tables to design websites, and perhaps even make recommendations to the W3C to create new tags that will help designers organize and manage websites even more efficiently than tables can.
That’s the conclusion of Noel Forbes. I am not a semantic fanatic, but this whole article just left me irritated. No I don’t think being ultra-strict with your markup is necessary, but there should always be a method to your madness and that is what semantics leads us towards. Is Noel right in thinking that semantics are overrated?
Today was supposed to be a dissection of Craigslist, but this caught my eye and wanted to hear your thoughts.
UPDATE: And I was just being cute with the title. There is some good content in this new ezine so I will probably check it out again.
Originally posted on September 1, 2005 @ 1:39 pm