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This book follows a few typographical conventions that you should be familiar with before proceeding.

A new term is set in italics the first time it is introduced. There will often be a short definition of the term nearby. Program text, functions, variables, and other "computer language" are set in a fixed-pitch font. In regular text, it will also be a dark blue color梖or example, when mentioning the property margin or a value like 10px.

Code blocks are set entirely in a fixed-pitch font. Any blue text within a code block indicates a change to the code from its previous state. Most code blocks show only a fragment of the overall document or style sheet, with the lines to be changed (or inserted) surrounded by unchanged text. This extra text provides a sense of context, making it easier to find the part you need to change if you're following along with the text. Here is an example:


<title>Cleveland Eats: Matsu</title>

<style type="text/css">

/* temporary styles */

table {border: 2px solid red; margin: 3px;}

td {border: 1px dotted purple; padding: 2px;}



Every computer book has its own style of presenting information. As you flip through this book, you'll notice that it has an interesting layout. Here are the layout conventions:


These usually contain detailed explanations that are related to the main text but are not a part of the project itself. They might also offer alternative approaches or ideas to those demonstrated in a project. In every case, they can be skipped without disrupting the project's flow.



These are meant to be helpful annotations to the main text, and there are a lot of them in this book. These are used to provide tips, comments, definitions of new terms, tangential points, or related bits of information.



These indicate a point that might cause problems in some browsers or a similarly grave note of caution.


Web site notes provide guidance as to which files to download or load into a Web browser, or things to check out on the Web.

Finally, at the end of each project you will find a section titled "Branching Out." This will present three short exercises that invite you to try modifying the finished project in certain ways. These "branches" are certainly not the end of what you can do, but they may help you start experimenting with the concepts presented in the project. Think of them as jumping-off points for your own design ideas and also as interesting challenges in their own right. If you can match the illustrations with your own styles, you'll be well on your way to writing creative CSS of your own.

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