HTML was originally designed as a semantic markup language intended for sharing scientific documents and research papers online. However, as the Internet expanded from the academic and research world into the mainstream in the mid 1990s, and became more media oriented, graphic designers sought ways to control the visual appearance of the Web pages presented to end users. To this end, tables and spacers have been used to create and maintain page layout.
Problems then started to arise from the use of these techniques. As many webpages are build with tables nested within tables, this resulted in large HTML documents which use more bandwidth than documents with simpler formatting. With slower performance, the internet slowly begun to decline and the Web development industry shrank. Because of this, several UI development was carried out by coders with greater knowledge of good coding practice. It was around this time that many became critical of messy coding practices and the idea of tableless design began to grow.
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) were developed to improve the separation between design and content, and move back towards a semantic organization of content on the Web. According to popular Web design outsourcing Philippiness companies, the term “tableless design implies the use of CSS to position HTML elements on the page but it should be noted that tables and CSS are not mutually exclusive. Many experienced HTML coders use CSS to manipulate tables frequently.
There are several advantages through the use of tableless websites, these includes:
As a result of the separation of design (CSS) and structure (HTML), it is also possible to provide different layouts for different devices, e.g. handhelds, mobile phones, etc. According to different Web design outsourcing Philippiness companies, it is also possible to specify a different style sheet for print, e.g. to hide or modify the appearance of advertisements or navigation elements that are irrelevant and a nuisance in the printable version of the page.
In tableless layout using CSS, virtually all of the layout information resides in one place: the CSS document. Because the layout information is centralized, these changes can be made quickly and globally by default. The HTML files themselves do not, usually, need to be adjusted when making layout changes. If they do, it is usually to add class-tags to specific markup elements or to change the grouping of various sections with respect to one another.
Clever implementation of tableless design can produce web pages with fewer HTML tags thus reducing page download times. According to web design consultants and Web design outsourcing Philippiness companies, using external style sheets to position page elements means more mark up language may be cached and further reduce download times for subsequent pages using the same resources.