Chapter 3: Controlling text with CSS

Pixels on a computer screen

Type displayed on a computer screen magnified 200x. Each set of red, green and blue primary pixels makes up one square pixel.

For the expert typographer who has worked with print, the Internet presents a frustrating challenge. The computer screen displays its text at a much lower resolution than even the most basic laser printer. This means that elegant serifs and delicate letter strokes of printer fonts lose their definition on the screen.

Add to this the limited choices we have for typefaces on the web. Any font we use on our web page must reside on the user’s computer, so we limited to a set of fonts common to Windows and Macintosh operating systems out of the fonts that come standard with each.

In this chapter, we will explore how type works on Web pages, and we will learn to use Cascading Style Sheets to control our text.

As a starting point, read Chapter 8 of The Web Style Guide. It will give you a good grounding in basic typography as it applies to web pages, and it will introduce you to Cascading Style Sheets.

Learning objectives

The student who completes this chapter should be able to: