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Elisabeth Robson

Writing, programming, enjoying life

Category Archives: Blog

CSS3 expands considerably on the selectors you can use to select elements in your page for styling. These selectors are described (along with the selectors previously supported in CSS2.1) in the Selectors Level 3 Module ( This document includes a nice summary of all the selectors in CSS in a table near the top of […]

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One of the topics I get a lot of questions about is CSS3. In Head First HTML and CSS (2nd ed), we cover CSS basics, all of which you need to know to understand new features in CSS3 of course, and we do include some properties and features that are new in CSS3 (where they […]

Eric and I recently completed the second edition of Head First HTML and CSS. Along with a slew of small changes to bring the book up to date with the latest standards, we also removed the chapter on XHTML and added a new chapter on HTML5. It’s still quite mind boggling to see how much […]

Another great question from a reader of Head First HTML5 Programming is about passing functions as values. This comes up when using the Geolocation API: the way you get your location is to call the built-in function getCurrentPosition() and pass in two arguments, both of which are functions. The reader asks: When you call getCurrentPosition(displayLocation, […]

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A couple of weeks ago, I got a great question from a reader of Head First HTML5 Programming: What is a API? Is it like a constructor function or is it just an object or something else? We use the term “API” frequently in Head First HTML5 Programming because the book is primarily about the […]

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On June 27, I participated in an event at The Project Room in Seattle, WA, that brought together ten artists and ten technologists to discuss “solutions”. The event was run just like a speed-dating event, which meant each artist had 5 minutes at a table with a technologist, and a chaperone to make sure we […]

Web Sockets is a new addition to HTML5 that allows you to create a persistent connection with a server for communication. With Ajax, because you’re using HTTP to communicate, the connection between your client and the server must be reestablished each time you want to get get or send data. This is fine if your […]

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I picked up Building Hypermedia APIs with HTML5 and Node by Mike Amundsen hoping to learn more about HTML5, Node.js and how they are used to build web applications. Instead, the book primarily offers specific hypermedia solutions to the “type-marshaling” problem, that is, the problem of communicating between clients and servers. For instance, if the […]

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I got a good reader question today about incrementing variables. This reader is completely new to programming and was getting confused about two common ways to increment variables: count = count + 1; a statement that often appears in a while loop, and i++; a statement that often appears in a for loop, like this: […]

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Today I, and others (Google, Wikipedia, O’Reilly Media, Ignite Show, Boing Boing, and more) are protesting the SOPA and PIPA bills making their way through congress. These bills will undermine the existing laws that have enabled the Web to thrive, creating millions of U.S. jobs. Here’s what you can do: Learn about SOPA and PIPA […]

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