LearnBooks that Inspire


writes on November 24, 2009

Yesterday I had the pleasure of sitting at the back of “Handcrafted CSS“, a workshop led by Dan Cederholm and Ethan Marcotte. The workshop was based on their recently published book of the same name, if you don’t own a copy definitely add it to your holiday shopping list.

As attendees leafed through the book during the breaks I realised how much of I have relied on and enjoyed learning about web design and development from books. Funnily enough Dan’s first book, “Web Standard Solutions“, released in 2004 was the the first book I ever bought on CSS. It turns out it was the first CSS book for many designers I know. It taught me a lot and is still very relevant.

It got me thinking about the most inspiring web related books I have on my shelf. Here in no particular order are my personal top five. Some of them have been updated and superseded but all remain great reference material.

What are your favourites? Link up your must have’s in the comments, I have an Amazon voucher I need to spend and love a good read.


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42 Responses to “Books that Inspire”

  1. For CSS my favourite is “{ speaking in style }” -> http://www.speaking-in-styles.com/index.php/the-book/ After read this book the other CSS books don’t add to much(Not cover CSS3).

    Is really good.

  2. For CSS my favourite is “{ speaking in style }” -> http://www.speaking-in-styles.com/index.php/the-book/ After read this book the other CSS books don’t add to much(Not cover CSS3).

    Is really good.

  3. Can you recommend a great book for those of us with little HTML and no CSS?

  4. Reading well is one of the great pleasures that solitude can afford you.

  5. I havent read those books, i prefer to read novel actually. I’m not a IT type person

  6. I Love Web Standard Solutions witten by Dan Cederholm

  7. Ya, I’m interesting about the cost

  8. im planning to buy a new inspirational books this weekend : )

  9. i love collecting inspirational books

  10. inspiring books are amazing

  11. i become more motivated and inspired in doing things with the help of inspirational books

  12. reading an inspirational book is a good hobby

  13. love old inspirational books

  14. reading an inspirational books is not a waste of time but its a learning and help us motivates in life.

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  16. wanna try all ur suggestions. i really love and enjoy reading inspirational books

  17. inspirational books are amazing

  18. i love reading inspirational books. thanks for the great info guys

  19. simply love reading it so inspiring….

  20. You have a very nice title “think vitamin”. Really sounds good as well as your description is also very informative.

  21. Thanks for the article it really helps.
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  22. Mark Jackson on November 26, 2009 at 8:24 pm said:

    The Crystal Goblet: Beatrice Ward

  23. Putting my vote in for CSS: The Missing Manual by David McFarland. It’s the one book that really gave me my “a-ha” breakthrough moment in understanding CSS.

  24. I second the CSS Mastery recommendation, and Bulletproof CSS. I’m currently reading the Sitepoint JavaScript book and like it so far.

    I happen to think my book, Flexible Web Design: Creating Liquid and Elastic Layouts with CSS, is quite good. 🙂 Andy Clarke and Jeremy Keith, both authors on your top-five, have read my book and recommended it on their blogs/Twitter.

  25. I would recommend Gary Vaynerchuk’s Crush It!. But I think you guys are crushing it already really.

  26. billygoat on November 25, 2009 at 4:34 pm said:

    I learned standards-compliant design from this book:

    Learning Web Design: A Beginner’s Guide to (X)HTML, StyleSheets, and Web Graphics by Jennifer Niederst Robbins and Aaron Gustafson

    I was just tooling around with tag soup before this book. It really drove home the reasons for using standards and weaned me away from Dreamweaver to hand-coding as well. It may be a little bit on the dry side, but makes up for it by being very clear and logically thought-out. I still go to this book as a reference.

  27. Its my birthday next Friday so have emailed these titles to ‘da’ missus as gentle reminders of what she should be buying me, and not a pair of joke socks.

    The wench.

  28. surprised no one has added this yet – the one & only 🙂

    Designing with webstandards – Jeffrey Zeldman

    First book I bought on webdesign – was the one which changed my view and made me *want* to learn handcoding. This book, Jeffrey and Eric gave me my career 🙂

  29. I’d strongly suggest checking out “CouchDB: The Definitive Guide” by J. Chris Anderson; Jan Lehnardt and Noah Slater.

    If you can’t wait for the print version to become available it’s already available to read for free online http://books.couchdb.org/relax/.

  30. For JavaScript: Douglas Crockford’s “the good parts” is invaluable http://oreilly.com/catalog/9780596517748

    It provides a concise but infinitely useful insight into how the language works and should be used (JS needs to be taken more seriously and this books is a great start point and reference)

  31. css mastery (vol 2), good to have a refresh of best practices.

  32. I really enjoy reading Premium White Pro and it really helped me.

  33. A couple:

    “Don’t make me think” by Steve Krug: http://www.amazon.com/Think-Common-Sense-Approach-Usability/dp/0789723107

    And if you programme – and absolute classic: Domain Driven Design by Eric Evans… a big one, but surely a must read:

  34. The book that really inspires me when I was first venturing into web standards is “The Art & Science of Web Design” by Jeffrey Veen .

    It’s an oldie but goodie.

  35. I’ve really enjoyed reading Design Patterns in Ruby. Very inspiring book, I’ve read it several times.

  36. Peachpit/New Riders usually doesn’t disappoint me with their releases, especially Handcrafted CSS. Great list, great resources.

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