Before we launch into the markup for tables, let’s check in with our progress so far. We’ve covered a lot of territory: how to establish the basic structure of an HTML document, how to mark up text to give it meaning and structure, how to make links, and how to embed images on the page.
This chapter and the next, Chapter 9, describe the markup for specialized content that you might not have a need for right away. If you’re getting antsy to make your pages look good, skip right to Part III and start playing with Cascading Style Sheets. The tables and forms chapters will be here when you’re ready for them.
Are you still with me? Great. Let’s talk tables. We’ll start out by reviewing how tables should be used, then learn the elements used to create them with markup. Remember, this is an HTML chapter, so we’re going to focus on the markup that structures the content into tables, and we won’t be concerned with how the tables look. Like any web content, the appearance (or presentation, as we say in the web dev biz) of tables should be handled with style sheets, which you’ll learn about in Chapter 18.
HTML tables were created for instances when you need to add tabular material (data arranged into rows and columns) to a web page. Tables may be used to organize calendars, schedules, statistics, or other types of information, ...