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XHTML and How to Write It

Because CSS is a mechanism for styling XHTML, you can't start using CSS until you have a solid grounding in XHTML. And what, exactly, is XHTML? XHTML is a reformulation of HTML as XML—didja get that? Put (very) simply, XHTML is based on the free-form structure of XML, where tags can be named to actually describe the content they contain; for example, <starname>Cher</starname>. This very powerful capability of XML means that when you develop your set of custom tags for your XML content, you also must create a second document, known as a DTD (document type definition) or a similarly formatted XML schema, to explain to the device that is interpreting the XML for how to handle those tags.

XML has been almost universally adopted in business, and the fact that the same X (for eXtensible) is now in XHTML emphasizes the unstoppable movement toward the separation of presentation and content.


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