Benjamin S Boyle, Multimedia developer / Experience /


XHTML is HTML that is well-formed and valid XML. HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) is the language used to define the structure of a web page.

I am currently using XHTML 1.1 standard where appropriate. If using tools that do not support XHTML, HTML 4.01 Transitional is the fall back.

Learning HTML by hand

I started coding HTML in my own time in early 1996. We were given some introductory classes at uni as part of the Multimedia degree, but by then I knew the basics. In February 1998 I began working for Squirrel Internet as a web developer, part-time from home. In November I finished my degree and took on the role full-time, contuining when Squirrel launched the Jumbomall until June 2000.

Keeping up with standards

Most recently working as Web Content Master for Education Queensland, I have been looking after web architecture and publishing standards. For this, I keep a close eye on the web standards and trends, particularly W3C initiatives.

Tricks of the trade

Balancing design against usability (and accessibility) is a key issue. Keeping XHTML source code clean ensures that content is optimised for:

I use CSS extensively to achieve a desired layout and style rather than hack the HTML to simulate visual affects (which often reduces accessibility). Where possible I use SSI to include shared content (eg. footers, menus). For web programming, I prefer CGI scripts on the server side (eg. PERL. I consider than client side technology like javascript unreliable, due to issues with accessibility and lack of browser compatibility.

Getting the best from tools

I am fully familiar a number of HTML editors and can easily learn new ones. My preference is for Allaire Homesite, but I have experience with Dreamweaver and Front Page.


Screenshot: EQ Publishing

Screenshot: Jumbomall product search

Screenshot: Jumbomall vault

Screenshot: Queensland Bed and Breakfast Association

Screenshot: Returned & Services League of Australia

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Copyright Ben Boyle 2003.