Cool inset Text Effect with CSS3 Text-Shadow

So, I have seen a few tutorials online about using text-shadow to create a basic inset text effect, but they are all lacking the real design aspect that makes the type look like it is actually INSET. That aspect is the inner shadow.

Introduction

I played around with trying to hack box-shadow into background-image in the same way that you can add linear gradients to text, but to no avail.

Well, in any case, I finally was able to get something to work, and yes, it is pretty killer.


insetText

That’s it right there. But, let’s take a look at how and why this works.

First let’s start with defining our class and setting our font. We have styled our div and our body and now we want this text to look like it is stamped into to page.

The CSS

.insetText {
        font-family: Lucida Grande;
}

The next step we want to take is to set the background-color of the text to the color that we want the inset to be. So…

.insetText {
        font-family: Lucida Grande;
        background-color: #666666;
}

Next, we are going to use the background-clip CSS3 property to create a clipping mask using the text to mask the background. Now if you are a designer, you probably already know how a clipping mask works. The color black is transparent to the background and the color white is opaque. Thus, the image behind the mask will show through on only the black parts and the white parts will ‘clip’ it. Remember that, because it’s important.

Remember, CSS3 is not standard yet and may not be supported in older browsers. For now, it’s best to use the standard AND browser specific properties for any CSS3, so…

.insetText {
        font-family: Lucida Grande;
        background-color: #666666;
        -webkit-background-clip: text;
	-moz-background-clip: text;
	background-clip: text;
}

Now, I know. It doesn’t look like that did anything, whatsoever. We are back where we started, right? Wrong, in truth, the background color has been clipped behind the text, so it only shows through where the text is. The problem is that the browser default CSS is to make text black. So, now we simply use color to make the text transparent.

.insetText {
        font-family: Lucida Grande;
        background-color: #666666;
        -webkit-background-clip: text;
	-moz-background-clip: text;
	background-clip: text;
        color: transparent;
}

Now we’re getting somewhere. We have taken transparent text and used it to clip it’s grey background. Here is where the magic happens. We will use the text-shadow property with rgba colors. Since the text is transparent, the entire shadow, even what is normally hidden by the text in front of it, will show. If we offset the shadow vertically, it will appear as if it is on the inside of the text. And if we blur the edges, it should actually appear like an inset shadow, since the darker clipped background fading into the white shadow right? And the shadow that falls outside of the clipping mask should appear to glow slightly, since that it’s closer in color to the contrasting background! So…

.insetText {
        font-family: Lucida Grande;
        background-color: #666666;
        -webkit-background-clip: text;
	-moz-background-clip: text;
	background-clip: text;
        color: transparent;
        text-shadow: rgba(255,255,255,1.0) 0px 3px 3px;
}

Yeah, that looks pretty good, right? I just don’t like how the inside of the text in now white. It looks kind of unnatural, and it really takes away from the outer glow that gives it the inset look. So let’s revise our shadow color by dropping it’s opacity or ‘a’ value to 0.5. Like so…

.insetText {
        font-family: Lucida Grande;
        background-color: #666666;
        -webkit-background-clip: text;
	-moz-background-clip: text;
	background-clip: text;
        color: transparent;
        text-shadow: rgba(255,255,255,0.5) 0px 3px 3px;
}

Perfect! Now we have a completely CSS based inset text effect! We can now add this class to any text element on our websites, without having to open Photoshop or Illustrator, create the document, design the effect, save the image, upload the image, and then place the image in our markup where it will slow down our load time. You would add this to your markup like so…

<h1>This is inset text</h1>

This solution is great for headings. The smaller you make your text the smaller you will need to make your text-shadow.

NOTE: This method is currently only supported by Webkit browser like Google Chrome and Apple Safari.

Thanks for reading, and I hope this helped!

view demo

Posted by: Dhiraj kumar

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Rotating Words With CSS Animations – CSS3 Keyframes Animation Example

In today’s tutorial we’ll create another typography effect. The idea is to have some kind of sentence and to rotate a part of it. We’ll be “exchanging” certain words of that sentence using CSS animations.
Please note: the result of this tutorial will only work as intended in browsers that support CSS animations.
So let’s start!

In the following, we’ll be going through demo.

rotating-words-css-animations

THE HTML

We’ll have a main wrapper with a h2 heading that contains first-level spans and two divisions for the rotating words:

<section class="rw-wrapper">
	<h2 class="rw-sentence">
		<span>Real poetry is like</span>
		<br />
		<span>creating beautiful butterflies</span>
		<br />
		<span>with a silent touch of</span>
		<div class="rw-words rw-words-1">
			<span>spice</span>
			<span>colors</span>
			<span>happiness</span>
			<span>wonder</span>
			<span>sugar</span>
			<span>happiness</span>
		</div>
	</h2>
</section>

Now, ignoring the garbage placeholder text, we want each span of the rw-word to appear at a time. For that we’ll be using CSS animations. We’ll create one animation for each division and each span will run it, just with different delays.
So, let’s look at the CSS.

THE CSS3

First, we will style the main wrapper and center it on the page:

.rw-wrapper{
	width: 80%;
	position: relative;
	margin: 110px auto 0 auto;
	font-family: 'Bree Serif';
	padding: 10px;
	height: 400px;
	overflow: hidden;
}

We’ll add some text shadow to all the elements in the heading:

.rw-sentence{
	margin: 0;
	text-align: left;
	text-shadow: 1px 1px 1px rgba(255,255,255,0.8);
}

And add some specific text styling to the spans:

.rw-sentence span{
	color: #444;
	white-space: nowrap;
	font-size: 200%;
	font-weight: normal;
}

The divisions will be displayed as inline elements, that will allow us to “insert” them into the sentence without breaking the flow:

.rw-words{
	display: inline;
	text-indent: 10px;
}

Each span inside of a rw-words div will be positioned absolutely and we’ll hide any overflow:

.rw-words span{
	position: absolute;
	opacity: 0;
	overflow: hidden;
	color: #888;
	-webkit-transform-origin: 10% 75%;
	-moz-transform-origin: 10% 75%;
	-ms-transform-origin: 10% 75%;
	-o-transform-origin: 10% 75%;
	transform-origin: 10% 75%;
}

Now, we’ll run two animations. As mentioned previously, we’ll run the same animation for all the spans in one div, just with different delays:

.rw-words-1 span{
	animation: rotateWord 16s linear infinite 0s;
}
.rw-words-2 span{
    animation: rotateWordsSecond 18s linear infinite 0s;
}
.rw-words span:nth-child(2) {
	animation-delay: 3s; 
	color: #6b889d;
}
.rw-words span:nth-child(3) {
	animation-delay: 6s; 
	color: #6b739d;	
}
.rw-words span:nth-child(4) {
	animation-delay: 9s; 
	color: #7a6b9d;
}
.rw-words span:nth-child(5) {
	animation-delay: 12s; 
	color: #8d6b9d;
}
.rw-words span:nth-child(6) {
	animation-delay: 15s; 
	color: #9b6b9d;
}

Our animations will run one cycle, meaning that each span will be shown once for three seconds, hence the delay value. The whole animation will run 6 (number of images) * 3 (appearance time) = 18 seconds.
We will need to set the right percentage for the opacity value (or whatever makes the span appear). Dividing 6 by 18 gives us 0.333… which would be 33% for our keyframe step. Everything that we want to happen to the span needs to happen before that. So, after tweaking and seeing what fits best, we come up with the following animation (Fade in and “fall”) for the first words:

@keyframes rotateWord {
    0% { opacity: 0; }
    5% { opacity: 1; }
    17% { opacity: 1; transform: rotate(0deg); }
	19% { opacity: 1; transform: rotate(98deg); }
	21% { opacity: 1; transform: rotate(86deg); }
	23% { opacity: 1; transform: translateY(85px) rotate(83deg); }
	25% { opacity: 0; transform: translateY(170px) rotate(80deg); }
	80% { opacity: 0; }
    100% { opacity: 0; }
}

We’ll fade in the span and we’ll also animate its height.
The animation for the words in the second div will fade in and animate their width. We added a bit to the keyframe step percentages here, because we want these words to appear just a tiny bit later than the ones of the first word:

@keyframes rotateWordsSecond {
    0% { opacity: 1; animation-timing-function: ease-in; width: 0px; }
    10% { opacity: 0.3; width: 0px; }
    20% { opacity: 1; width: 100%; }
    27% { opacity: 0; width: 100%; }
    100% { opacity: 0; }
}

css3-animations-rotating-words

And that’s it folks! There are many possibilities for the animations, you can check out the demo and see what can be applied!
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and find it inspiring!
view demo

 

Posted by: Dhiraj kumar

Image Sprites – How to merge multiple images, and how to split them

An Image Sprites is a single image which is merged with multiple images. The reason why Image Sprites are needed instead of inserting multiple images into a page is to SAVE network bandwidth as well as reduce the number of server requests. Since inserting many images into a page will take longer time to load the pages, merging images into a single will help reduce loading time. For these reasons, I would recommend to use “CSS Image Sprites” function instead of inserting multiple images. Unfortunately, most of designers/developers not support this function as default, but through this tutorial, you would be able to merge multiple images into a single image as well as manipulating CSS.

“Image Sprites” is strongly recommended for Web, because Web themes have many graphics as default. Therefore, reducing the number of images is necessary to let people as well as search engines visit your sites faster than before. Some times ago, I have already posted an example of a cartoon type animation with help of Image Sprites.

Let me give you an example for easier understandings. Here is lots of avatars I have to put into a page. Without Image Sprites, I have to insert 24 individual avatars into a page. It will generate 24 requests of your web server so that it will take a long time to load.

24 image files to load / 24 requests

Just 1 image file to load / 1 request

With using “Image Sprites”, Only one request and one loading time will be generated. Which one do you think better?

In addition, with the help of “Image Sprites”, you can make use of hover effect more easily. In this tutorial, I will describe how to use Image Sprites with hover effects (View Demo).

To get started (Preparation)

  1. You may need to prepare more than two same size images to be inserted into a page like the avatar image file above.
  2. For this tutorial, I will use these 6 images below as an example. All six buttons’ sizes are equal as 33×33.

3 left images will be used for normal links, and the rest of images will be used for hover effects.

This single image below will be used for “Image Sprites”.

Instruction

  1. Download .zip file or View Demo.
  2. Extract the compressed file onto your hard drive.
  3. Open “imagesprites.html” file using any TextEditor (Notepad/Dreamweaver).
  4. I will let you know some parts you need to replace so that you better modify some codes using text editor.
  5. This code is for this example so that your code will be different. You can refer to this code about how it works.
  6. Take a look at this part of the source code below:
.prev-button {
    width: 33px; height: 33px; border: 0px; background:url('/images/controllers.png') 0 0
}
a:hover .prev-button {
    width: 33px; height: 33px; border: 0px; background: url('/images/controllers.png') 0px -33px
}
.play-button  {
    width: 33px; height: 33px; border: 0px; background:url('/images/controllers.png') -33px 0
}
a:hover .play-button  {
    width: 33px; height: 33px; border: 0px; background: url('/images/controllers.png') -33px -33px
}
.next-button  {
    width: 33px; height: 33px; border: 0px; background:url('/images/controllers.png') -66px 0
}
a:hover .next-button  {
    width: 33px; height: 33px; border: 0px; background: url('/images/controllers.png') -66px -33px
}
image sprite
 As you can see, the first image’s position is “0 0” (.prev-button). The second image (.play-button) position is “-33px 0”. Because each width is set to 33px. Hence, the next image’s position should be “-66px 0”. On the other hand, for hover images, their Y position should be “-33px”, because each height is set to 33px.
  1. If you have set all, the next is to insert HTML codes for each image class like below:
<body style="background: transparent; margin: 0pt; ">
<div>
<a href="URL" target="_top"><img class="prev-button" src="/images/spacer.gif" /></a>
</div>

<div>
<a href="URL" target="_top"><img class="play-button" src="/images/spacer.gif" /></a>
</div>

<div>
<a href="URL" target="_top"><img class="next-button" src="/images/spacer.gif" /></a>
</div>
</body>
  1. If you don’t want an image to be linked, remove href= “URL” target= “_top” tag.
  2. Replace class names such as “prev-button”, “play-button”, and “next-button” to yours.
  3. Make sure the classes doesn’t have “.” at the very front.
  4. Modifying codes is done. You can apply this technique to other merged images.
  5. Make sure “spacer.gif” as well as your merged image file are also uploaded to the right place such as “/images/”.
  6. You are ready to check how “Image Sprites” works correctly. You will reduce the number of server requests as well as save network bandwidth with this CSS technique.

Posted by: Dhiraj kumar

CSS tricks and hacks – Latest top ten useful tips

CSS can be complex, and as each new browser version is released, you may well find yourself struggling to keep up with the latest tips and hacks. But those tips and hacks will save your sanity! Here, I’ve put together the ten tips that I find most helpful, to save you the hassle of scrounging around the Web for solutions when time is tight.

1. BLOCK VS. INLINE LEVEL ELEMENTS

Nearly all HTML elements are either block or inline elements. The characteristics of block elements include:

  • Always begin on a new line
  • Height, line-height and top and bottom margins can be manipulated
  • Width defaults to 100% of their containing element, unless a width is specified

Examples of block elements include <div><p><h1><form><ul> and <li>. The characteristics of inline elements, on the other hand, are the opposite of block elements:

  • Begin on the same line
  • Height, line-height and top and bottom margins can’t be changed
  • Width is as long as the text/image and can’t be manipulated

Examples of inline elements include <span><a><label><input><img><strong> and <em>.

To change an element’s status, you can use display: inline or display: block. But what’s the point of changing an element from being block to inline, or vice-versa? Well, at first it may seem like you might hardly ever use this trick, but in actual fact, this is a very powerful technique, which you can use whenever you want to:

  • Have an inline element start on a new line
  • Have a block element start on the same line
  • Control the width of an inline element (particularly useful for navigation links)
  • Manipulate the height of an inline element
  • Set a background colour as wide as the text for block elements, without having to specify a width
2. ANOTHER BOX MODEL HACK ALTERNATIVE

The box model hack  is used to fix a rendering problem in pre-IE 6 browsers on PC, whereby the border and padding are included in, rather than added onto, the width of an element. A number of CSS-based solutions have been put forward to remedy this; here’s another one that I really like:

padding: 2em;
border: 1em solid green;
width: 20em;
width/**/:/**/ 14em;

The first width command is read by all browsers; the second by all browsers except IE5.x on PC. Because the second command comes second, it takes precedence over the first: any command that comes second will always override a preceding command. So, how does all this work?

By placing empty comment tags (/**/) before the colons, we instruct IE5.0 to ignore the command. Likewise, if we place empty comment tags after the colon, IE5.5 will ignore the command. Using these two rules in conjunction with each other, we can hide the command from all of IE5.x browsers.

3. MINIMUM WIDTH FOR A PAGE

A very handy CSS command that exists is the min-width command, whereby you can specify a minimum width for any element. This can be particularly useful for specifying a minimum width for a page.

Unfortunately, IE doesn’t understand this command, so we’ll need to come up with a new way of making this functionality work in this browser. First, we’ll insert a <div> under the <body> tag, as we can’t assign a minimum width to the <body>:

<body>
<div class="container">

Next, we create our CSS commands, to create a minimum width of 600px:

#container   {
min-width: 600px;
width:expression(document.body.clientWidth < 600? "600px": "auto" );
}

The first command is the regular minimum width command; the second is a short JavaScript command that only IE understands. Do note, though, that this command will cause your CSS document to become invalid; you may prefer to insert it into the head of each HTML document to get around this.

You might also want to combine this minimum width with a maximum width:

#container {
min-width: 600px;
max-width: 1200px;
width:expression(document.body.clientWidth < 600? "600px" : document.body.clientWidth > 1200? "1200px" : "auto");
}
4. IE AND WIDTH AND HEIGHT ISSUES

IE has a rather strange way of doing things. It doesn’t understand the min-width and min-height commands, but instead interprets width and height as min-width and min-height — go figure!

This can cause problems, because we may need boxes to be resizable should we need to fit more text into them, or should the user resize the text. If we use only the width and height commands on a box, non-IE browsers won’t allow the box to resize. If we only use the min-width and min-height commands, though, we can’t control the width or height in IE!

This can be especially problematic when using background images. If you’re using a background image that’s 80px wide and 35px high, you’ll want to make sure that the default size for a box using this image is exactly 80 x 35px. However, if users resize the text, the box size will need to expand gracefully.

To resolve this problem, you can use the following code for a box with class="box":

.box {
width: 80px;
height: 35px;
}

html>body .box {
width: auto;
height: auto;
min-width: 80px;
min-height: 35px;
}

All browsers will read through the first CSS rule, but IE will ignore the second rule because it makes use of the child selector command . Non-IE browsers will read through the second one, which will override the values from the first rule, because this CSS rule is more specific, and CSS rules that are more specific always override those that are less specific.

5. TEXT-TRANSFORM COMMAND

One of the lesser known, but really useful CSS commands is the text-transform command. Three of the more common values for this rule are:  text-transform: uppercasetext-transform: lowercase and text-transform: capitalize.  The first rule turns all characters into capital letters, the second turns them all into small letters, and the third makes the first letter of each word a capital letter.

This command is incredibly useful to help ensure consistency in style across an entire Website,  particularly if it has a number of content editors. Say for example your style guide dictates that words in headings must always begin with capital letters.  To ensure that this is always the case, use text-transform: capitalize. Even if site editors forget about the capitalisation, their mistake won’t show up on the Website.

It’s also preferable to use text-transform:  uppercase to capitalise words, as screen readers may pronounce shorter words in capital letters as acronyms. A great example of this is ‘CONTACT US’, which is pronounced as ‘contact U S’ by some screen readers.

6. DISAPPEARING TEXT OR IMAGES IN IE?

IE exhibits a very strange bug whereby text or background images sometimes disappear from sight. These items are still actually present and, if you highlight everything on screen or hit refresh, they’ll often re-appear. Kind of strange, huh?

This problem mostly occurs on background images and on text positioned next to a floated element. To remedy the problem,  simply insert position: relative into the CSS command for the disappearing element, and for some bizarre reason, that’ll usually fix the problem. If this doesn’t work (and sometimes, it doesn’t), assign a width to the offending element in the CSS — that should fix the problem.

7. INVISIBLE TEXT

Sometimes, you may actually want to make text invisible. Invisible text can be especially useful for screen reader users, perhaps to assign a label to a form item, or insert a heading ahead of a section. Don’t want to change the visual appearance by inserting these elements? Make them invisible, and no one using a visual browser will know they’re there.

You may also want to make text invisible if using a print or handheld CSS file, as some information may not need to be displayed on either of these mediums (see below for more on this).

To make text invisible, you can use display: none — easy! This works fine for hiding text from handhelds (if  CSS is supported) and printed Web pages, but isn’t so great for many screen readers.  Screen readers are now becoming too clever for their own good, and some will actually ignore any text that has the rule display: none assigned to it.

Therefore, for screen readers users, a new approach is needed: position: absolute; left: -9000px.  This basically takes the text and positions it 9000px to the left of the left edge of the screen, essentially making it invisible.

8. CSS DOCUMENT FOR HANDHELDS

A separate CSS document can be created for PDAs and mobile phones, and activated only when one of these devices is being used to access your site. More and more Websites are creating separate CSS documents for printing , so Web pages automatically become print-friendly when users choose to print them. You can do the same for handheld devices.

The following command is used to call up the CSS document for handheld:

<link type="text/css" rel="stylesheet" href="handheldstyle.css" media="handheld" />

CSS commands in the handheld CSS file override any equivalent commands in the main CSS document.  So, what commands should you place in this file?
Ideally, you want users of handheld devices to avoid having to scroll horizontally.

To test this, open up your Website in a regular browser window and resize it to 150px in width. Then, open up your main CSS file and insert some new commands at the very bottom of the document. The commands you place here should adjust the layout of the Website so that it doesn’t require horizontal scrolling at a width of 150px. Then, open up a new document, cut and paste these new commands over, and save it as handheldstyle.css (or whatever name you want to give it).

Your Websites offering to users of handheld devices should be quite different to its offering to traditional Web browsers, as the user experience is quite different on a handheld device. For further information, a book such as Handheld Usability , by S.W. Weiss, is a great read.

9. 3-D PUSH BUTTON EFFECT

Back in the early days of the Web, 3-d buttons that appeared to become pushed in when moused over were all the rage. At that time, this could only be achieved through images and JavaScript, but now, with the advent of CSS, we can go retro and re-create this 3-d effect.

The main CSS commands you’ll need are:

a {
display: block;
border: 1px solid;
border-color: #aaa #000 #000 #aaa;
width: 8em;
background: #fc0;
}

a:hover {
position: relative;
top: 1px;
left: 1px;
border-color: #000 #aaa #aaa #000;
}

Aside from these commands, you can insert other commands to achieve the desired presentation effect — the only limit is your imagination!

10. SAME NAVIGATION CODE ON EVERY PAGE

Most Websites highlight the navigation item relating to each user’s location within the Website, to help users orientate themselves. This is a fundamental requirement for basic usability, but it can be a pain: we need to tweak the HTML code behind the navigation for each and every page. Can we have the best of both worlds? Is it possible to have the navigation highlighted on every page, without having to tweak the HTML code on every page? Of course it is!

First of all, you’ll need to assign a class to each navigation item:

<ul>
<li><a href="#" class="home">Home</a></li>
<li><a href="#" class="about">About us</a></li>
<li><a href="#" class="contact">Contact us</a></li>
</ul>

You’ll then need to insert an id into the <body> tag. The id should be representative of where users are located in the site, and should change when users move to a different site section. When on the ‘Home’ page, it should read <body id="home">, in ‘About Us’, it should read <body id="about">, and in ‘Contact Us’, <body id="contact">.

Next, you create a new CSS rule:

#home .home, #about .about, #about .about, #contact .contact {
commands for highlighted navigation go here
}

This basically creates a rule that only takes effect when class="home" is contained within id="home", and when class="about" is in id="about" and class="contact" is in id="contact". These situations will only occur when the user is in the appropriate section of the site,  seamlessly creating our highlighted navigation item.

Posted by: Dhiraj kumar

Clearing floats methods nowadays

At my beginnings as a web designer using Div tags, when I first discovered clear floats I was so happy and it was for sure an “a-ha” moment. Since then, so many things have changed and new clearing methods have appeared. One thing remained the same: the need to clear floats.

In this article, we’ll see some effective solutions for clearing floated elements.

clearing-floats

But first, what is float?

Arranging website page elements was always a struggle for you as a web designer. To achieve your desired website layout, a lot of calculation of box dimensions are needed, and various implementation decisions must be taken as well.

At the beginning, perhaps you used table elements to structure your layout, and even if tables are very intuitive, the table purpose is to list tabular data. You also tried the CSS display values like: tabletable-cell or table-row to build structures, but shortly you gave up as there wasn’t enough support for that.

In the end, you got rid of table markup and skipped to div floats.

So, float is a CSS property which help you aligning and positioning your web page elements.

clearing-floats-simple-example
Simple floats example

Clearing floats

Elements placed after a floated element will wrap around the floated element. To avoid this behavior, you must clear floats. To do that, generally you use the clear property which has four values: leftrightboth and none.

<div style="float:left"></div>
<div style="float:right"></div>
<div style="clear:both"></div>

The above is a common example.

Beside the above example that requires extra HTML markup, below is a list with some clearing methods that I found very useful (and they do not require extra markup):

Clearfix reloaded by Thierry Koblentz

clearfix-reloaded

.clearfix:before,
.clearfix:after{
  content: ".";
  display: block;
  height: 0;
  overflow: hidden;
}
.clearfix:after {clear: both;}
.clearfix {zoom: 1;} /* IE < 8 */

New clearfix hack by Jeff Starr

new-clearfix-hack

.clearfix:after{
  visibility: hidden;
  display: block;
  font-size: 0;
  content: " ";
  clear: both;
  height: 0;
}

* html .clearfix             { zoom: 1; } /* IE6 */
*:first-child+html .clearfix { zoom: 1; } /* IE7 */

Micro clearfix hack by Nicolas Gallagher

micro-clearfix

.cf:before,
.cf:after{
  content:"";
  display:table;
}

.cf:after{
  clear:both;
}

/* For IE 6/7 (trigger hasLayout) */
.cf{
  zoom:1;
}

CSS clearing floats with overflow by Nick La

clear-overflow

That’s it!

You may already know the above techniques and my questions is:  Which one do you use most? Share your opinion with us!

Posted by: Dhiraj kumar

Google Font API and Typekit solutions VS CCS3 @font-face

A quick tutorial here about setting up your website with custom fonts using @font-face.  I am also sharing these alternative solutions, pros and cons.

The aim of this post is to briefly round up your options when using custom fonts in web design.

google-and-typekit-versus-font-face

CSS3 @font-face

The @font-face was first proposed for CSS2 and has been implemented in Internet Explorer since version 5.  However, their implementation relied on the proprietary Embedded Open Type (.eot) format, and no other browsers decided to use this format until Safari 3.1 was released.

Since then, web designers began to use .ttf or .otf fonts for their websites and now this CSS property is well-known.

css3-font-face

CSS

@font-face {
        font-family: '3DumbRegular';
        src: url('3Dumb-webfont.eot');
        src: local('?'), url('3Dumb-webfont.woff') format('woff'), url('3Dumb-webfont.ttf') format('truetype'), url('3Dumb-webfont.svg#webfont57ztNrX6') format('svg');
}

h1 {
  font-family: '3DumbRegular', Arial, sans-serif
}

Pros

  • A lot of available fonts you can choose from. Check this detailed list.
  • It works for all browsers.
  • It has no JavaScript dependency.

Cons

  • It takes slightly longer to implement than Google Font API (more code).
  • Quality of font rendering may differ browser to browser.
  • Your CSS may not be validated, depending on your DOCTYPE.

Google Font API

To use the fonts of Google’s font library, just go to http://code.google.com/webfonts and select a font. If you choose “Cantarell” font for example, include the following code into your files.

google-font-api

HTML

<link href="http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Cantarell&subset=latin" rel="stylesheet" type="text/css">

CSS

h1 {
  font-family: 'Cantarell', arial, serif; /*Add also some font replacements, just in case...*/
}

Pros

  • Free solution from Google.
  • Quick set up.
  • No JavaScript dependency.
  • No need to think about font licensing.

Cons

  • Small number of fonts to choose from. (just for now, I hope)
  • Quality of font rendering may differ browser to browser.
  • No support for iPhone or iPad. Support added from iOS 4.2+ (iPhone, iPad, iPod).

Typekit

Typekit is a service launched by Small Batch, Inc. which, via JavaScript and a subscription service, allows webmasters and designers to embed non-standard, non-system-specific fonts into online documents. It uses the @font-face CSS property and is available to the public as a paid service.

typekit

HTML

<head>
        <script type="text/javascript" src="http://use.typekit.com/typekitid.js"></script>
        <script type="text/javascript">try{Typekit.load();}catch(e){}</script>
</head>

CSS

h1 {
        font-family: "museo-sans-1", "museo-sans-2", sans-serif;
}

Pros

  • Huge fonts library.
  • Good support articles and help section.
  • iPad, iPhone/iPod Touch support (experimental)
  • Control the behavior of your page as web fonts load (thanks @smcbride)

Cons

  • Typekit is a paid service but it also has a free version.
  • JavaScript dependency, and one extra HTTP request for you.

Other web fonts solutions

Conclusion(s)

Now that you found out all the pros and cons, it’s up to you to choose the method that best suits your needs.

Let me know in the comments the solution you like most!

Posted by: Dhiraj kumar

7 tips to organize your CSS

Working often with CSS for my own website or for my job makes me trying always to be organized and that made me thinking about a thing. What is the best way to organize my CSS file(s)? With this article I will try to present you a short guide about CSS organizing.

tips-to-organize-your-css

1. Group your CSS files into a folder

Beside your main CSS file you may want to use also a print CSS file or why not a CSS file for the IE6/7 browser. Placing them together in a folder named css for example will help you improve your website back-end structure.

group-css-files

2. Use efficient selectors

A very important thing for you to know is how browsers understand and read your CSS selectors? The answer is that they read them from right to left. That means that for the selector ul li a span the first thing thing interpreted is span.

efficient-selectors

The id is the selector with the greater specificity so always, instead div#header you should use just #header. This way your file will be less redundant and smaller. Also note that the use of efficient CSS selectors is a nowadays requirement.

3. Comment and separate your CSS rules

Generally, a CSS file contains reset styles, header, content and footer styles and in order to easier browse your CSS rules you should choose a way to separate them.

comment-css

You can choose an simple and easy to notice separator as in the following example:

  /* Header styles */
  /* ---------------------------------- */
  /* Content styles */
  /* ---------------------------------- */
  /* Footer styles */

4. Create a simple color scheme to use for your styles

When you are dealing for example with a CSS file for an web application you will use a lot common styles and colors.  So placing something as following inside a CSS comment could be very helpful for you:

  /* Colors: Light Gray #eaeaea, Dark Gray #828282, Red #c60000 */

5. Use a meaning naming convention for your selectors.

Let’s suppose you need to name your logo, menu and a tagline that are placed inside a header id wrapper. A good approach in this way would be to use namings as:

  • header-logo or h-logo
  • header-menu or h-menu
  • header-tag or h-tag

css-naming-convention

6. Create your own small CSS framework

By doing that you will be able to use these common CSS classes at any time for any elements from your markup.

.full-width{
  width: 100% !important;
}

.min-width{
  width: 1% !important;
  white-space: nowrap !important;
}

.centered-inline{
  text-align: center !important;
}

.centered-block{
  margin-left: auto !important;
  margin-right: auto !important;
}

7. Simple is better

Don’t try to complicate things because simplicity will save you time, effort and why not your remaining hair 🙂

Posted by: Dhiraj kumar