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html, Html5, php, etc -- advice on useful starting points/paths

ruby html5

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#1 hoping

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Posted 18 September 2011 - 02:12 PM

Alright, so I've recently started studying html, css, etc and I am curious where to go from here to be useful. My goal is to try to find some extra cash on the side freelancing in the near future. I was starting to learn Python and then move to C# and databases because it seemed interesting, but was going to take too long to be useful. Web stuff is ubiquitous, simpler and seemed like it would be a faster track to being useful while I teach myself the other stuff.

That said what is useful now? Things are progressing so quickly, should I focus on Html5 or just Html? Css3 or just Css? Javascript is a must, but what about php, asp, etc.?? I am curious if anyone can suggest a path to something useful in the freelance endeavor?

As a point of reference, after about two weeks, I am now pretty comfortable with html (with a cheat sheet by my side-I forget tag names easily, but I know what they do and general syntax), I am getting more comfortable with Css, but not there yet. I have seen the javascript and can make out what it does generally when I read it, but I can't wrote . Also, I have written a few VERY basic programs in Python (one to find primes [brute force method], madlibs type stories, and a couple others).

With all this in mind - what should I spend my time studying? I don't want to waste my time on archaic stuff or on things that are not widely accepted or used by the broad spectrum of browsers/servers. You guys are the experts, any help for a newb?

---------- Post added at 05:12 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:55 PM ----------

I just reread my post and it seems a bit presumptuous and left out some other options. Please don't think that I think I can make money after just a couple weeks, however, I think a couple months in with dedicated time studying just what is relevant may prove fruitful (not full time money, just side cash). Also I did leave out xml, ruby and a whole host of other things to study. However, given my near term goals what would you suggest as the most fruitful path? Fruitful = many opportunities that will pay at least something.
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#2 WingedPanther73

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Posted 18 September 2011 - 02:37 PM

PHP and JavaScript are the obvious areas, but C# will let you start working on ASP.NET and desktop applications.
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#3 Aemara

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Posted 18 September 2011 - 03:54 PM

You can start learning html and css only and when you feel comfortable with them, you can read about html5 and css3. However, there is no big difference between the old versions and the new ones. Then when you feel totally comfortable with html and css you can start digging into java script and php.
This site contains good tutorials to enhance your html and css skills and also JavaScript and php.
In-depth tutorials and articles on web design | Webdesigntuts+
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#4 hoping

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Posted 18 September 2011 - 05:38 PM

Thanks WingedPanther.

What about Html5 or Css3. are they widely accepted enough to work with given my goals? How about xml? Any other ideas?
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#5 WingedPanther73

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Posted 19 September 2011 - 09:57 AM

Thanks WingedPanther.

What about Html5 or Css3. are they widely accepted enough to work with given my goals? How about xml? Any other ideas?


One of the big issues with web development is the variety of browsers and support for various technologies. There are still a lot of people using IE6, but Windows 7 is forcing them off that (finally). Generally, if you want better features, use HTML5/CSS3, but be sure to test them thoroughly with the browsers you are targeting. For example, if you want to use the video tag in HTML5, you really need to understand all the issues surrounding it. You'll probably need 2-3 copies of the video in various formats to ensure good performance.

For my money, the browsers to test with are IE9, FireFox, Safari, and Chrome. If you get those four right, you'll be pretty solid.
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