[thelist] can someone build a 100-page website with only HTML/CSS skill?

Zhang Weiwu zhangweiwu at realss.com
Tue Nov 11 10:36:18 CST 2008

Olivier Percebois-Garve wrote:
> I did read it. You are doing assumption on what i think out of nothing.
> having the following in the code do implies any special skills IMO:
> <?php include("header.php") ?>
> //page specific html code
> <?php include("footer.php") ?>
> I dont see what makes SSI easier to use than php.
That's a different case. The case you listed above doesn't require PHP
programming knowledge, but

<?php include("navbar.php") ?>
do require the person to write something in navbar.php, in PHP language
(you can guess it involve some loop at minimum, which means I should
teach concept of program loop).

However "navbar.php" could be a specially prepared PHP script that
doesn't need the website builder to modify it, but reads from
configuration file that is much easier to understand and use than PHP
language itself. Please read another email I wrote in Hassan's thread (I
copied it here) to see what I am trying to do. I pasted it here for easy

> It seems having a properly working navigation bar did hit the limit with
> only HTML/CSS skill. However I am thinking with proper navigation
> generating tools one can still get the navigation bar generated in a
> scripting language (e.g. php) without having to write that generating
> script, instead configure the navigation bar generation script through a
> configuration file. Would be much easier to manage than taking a
> scripting language learning curve.
> I just think such scripts (server-side navigation bar generation
> according to a configuration file) should be already available but a
> short google didn't find an answer. I sketched a tiny program (8 lines
> in awk) to showcase my idea.
> The configuration file:
> $ cat map 
> news_and_events News and Events
> major_initiatives Major Initiatives
> about_us About Us
> 	what_do_we_do What do we do
> 	publications Publications
> 		books Books
> 		journals Journals
> 	books Books
> The script:
> $ cat topnav.awk
> BEGIN { print "<ul class=\"primary navbar\">"; }
> END { print "</ul>";}
> /^[^\t]/ { uri = $1; txt = substr($0, index($0, " ")); current = "unsure"; }
> current_name == $1 {current = "yes"}
> /^[^\t]/ { 
>         print "<li " (current == "yes" ? "class=\"selected\"" : "") ">";
>         print "<a href=\"" uri "\">" txt "</a></li>";
> }
> Result:
> $ awk -f topnav.awk current_name=about_us
> <ul class="primary navbar">
> <li >
> <a href="news_and_events"> News and Events</a></li>
> <li >
> <a href="major_initiatives"> Major Initiatives</a></li>
> <li class="selected">
> <a href="about_us"> About Us</a></li>
> </ul>
> this 8-line script is very limited and only produce the top level
> navigation, but, eh, you get the idea. There must be someone did this
> already in much better way, only need to find it out instead of
> re-inventing the wheel. A designer could have several such prepared
> script around in her 'toolbox' I guess.

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