I’m proud to announce that the latest book is in stores and online everywhere now. As the new co-author for this long-running and very popular series, I thought I’d take a moment to introduce myself and tell you what makes this book special.
My education as a web developer started prior to the first edition of HTML For Dummies, but I do vividly remember first learning HTML way back in 1993. The entire process of writing and publishing web pages was new to me (and to almost everyone) back then, and I had many questions.
I remember the frustration of following a tutorial and realizing that there was some required piece of knowledge that wasn’t being mentioned. Without that one piece of the puzzle, which I didn’t even know how to ask about, there seemed to be no hope of me making the leap from web user to web author.
Eventually, however, I would have an “ah-ha” moment that would carry me to the next stumbling block and I’d be forced to bumble around in the dark a while longer. Over time, I got really good at learning new web development skills — but it wasn’t the most efficient way to learn.
When books on HTML and web development started coming out, I gobbled them up. Before we even met, several of Ed Tittel’s books were indispensable references during the first decade of my career as a web developer.
I met Ed in 2000, when I was teaching Cold Fusion and Active Server Pages at Austin City College, and he helped me get my start as a computer book author. After writing and co-writing several books, I got burned out on writing books and took some time off…about 10 years, to be more precise.
I came out of my book-writing retirement to write WebKit For Dummies in 2011. Working with the team at Wiley was a great experience, and contributing to the For Dummies series is quite an honor for me. When Ed asked me to step in as his co-author for Beginning HTML5 and CSS3 For Dummies, I replied “YES!” within 1 minute of getting his email.
I had already been thinking about how I would approach writing a new HTML book, and I was excited to find that Ed’s vision for the book was very close to mine and both of us were very much in line with the vision of the editors at Wiley.
Our first decision was: This should be a book for beginners. We wanted to reach way back into our memories and remember every frustration we had when we were getting started, and figure out a better and more complete way to teach the basics.
Next, we decided that this should be an HTML5 book, and XHTML would be mentioned as little as possible (and preferably not at all). I felt (and still feel) very strongly about this issue. Without going into the details (I’ll save that for a later post), XHTML is the markup language that very nearly killed the web. With HTML5 now widely supported by web browsers, there’s really no reason for anyone to learn, or try to use, XHTML.
Of all the books that I’ve worked on with other authors, this one was the smoothest and most enjoyable. It is truly a pleasure to work with Ed, and I’m confident that we put together a fantastic book.
I hope you enjoy reading and learning from Beginning HTML5 and CSS For Dummies as much as we enjoyed writing it. If you have any comments or questions, please let us know!