designing with tables.. frowned upon?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by kymac, Jul 26, 2009.

  1. kymac macrumors 6502a


    Nov 4, 2006
    so im a graphic designer who has done several websites.. and have always made my website layouts in photoshop and imported into dreamweaver etc.. is this technique dated and out of style? i've heard that tables are frowned upon in the webdesign world.. how do you go about designing without tables? any good tutorials for the new trends in webdesign?
  2. Greedo Guest

    Jul 26, 2009
    maybe 'outdated' more than frowned upon. tables are originally meant for tabular data, and most websites are not full of tabular data. so using tables for layout is really more of a workaround than anything else.

    best practice now is to use (X)HTML and CSS - which conceptually is separating the content (HTML) from the style (CSS). The content is marked up without regards to style, only to semantics, or "meaningful" markup - so headers are <h1>, <h2>, paragraphs are <p>, etc... and then the CSS is used to style the content.

    best way to learn IMO is - specially these:

    CSS Website Design and CSS for Designers which talks a bit more about the theory - good if you are already a designer.

    you can find free 30-day passes online if you do not have an account.

    HTML + CSS is way, way easier and far more logical than the old way with tables and such.
  3. wheezy macrumors 65816


    Apr 7, 2005
    Alpine, UT
    Tables are fine if you're designing for yourself, but if you want to eventually market yourself to other firms or claim to be cutting edge, you need to learn CSS as mentioned above. It's an awful lot more powerful than tables are, much easier to update, better for SEO... many many reasons.
  4. NathanCH macrumors 65816


    Oct 5, 2007
    Stockholm, Sweden
    It took me a LOT of convincing to move from tables to divs. No matter what anyone said, I didn't do it. But one day I tried it and I will never look back.

    Learn the proper way despite your own personal preferences, even if you think it's completely stupid. Eventually you will understand why tables are no longer an industry standard. :)
  5. Greenhoe macrumors regular

    Dec 17, 2008
    DON'T EVER DESIGN in tables. Yes it is out dated and Yes it is frowned upon and horrible SEO. Once you learn CSS and using DIVs you'll design 10x faster. Also if you ever get into CSS there is some amazing ridiculously things that can be done which is when web design starts to really get fun

    It may seem like it's hard and taking longer at first but I guarantee you that you will wonder why you ever used tables in the first place.

    You'll have better SEO and your code will look beautiful instead of fugly (as long as you organize it nice).

    I was lucky enough to within a year of starting web design that I learned CSS and only used tables for around 6 months and don't know why I ever did once I got good at CSS.
  6. THX1139 macrumors 68000


    Mar 4, 2006
    You can export out divs instead of tables in Photoshop then bring those into Dreamweaver. Photoshop does a pretty good job assigning ids to the divs and it's relatively easy to modify the code once you get into Dreamweaver.

    Oh.. and yeah, tables are for data... not layout.
  7. Dal123 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 23, 2008
    CSS Big subject

    I was going to do tables, but like you say it is so frowned upon. I followed tutorials on but found the CSS only explain the basics, I've just ordered a book should be here in a week or two.
    Quite complicated CSS (For beginners like me :eek:) but necessary.

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