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Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.

One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.


We've all heard stories of people who look at a website mockup and say something like "It needs more pop!" or "Make it sleeker" without being specific about what they're looking for. It can be a pain, but this tongue-firmly-in-cheek graphic translates those phrases to language you can actually use.


Keeping up with the latest CSS features can be daunting -- just when you've got your head around key frames and animations, you find out you can do scaling and translation using 3D acceleration. One such gem available in CSS3 is the "calc" function, which can be used to perform maths operations on various numbers and percentages, without the use of JavaScript.


The web becomes more and more capable each day, finding ways to replace what you do on your desktop. In the very near future you'll talk to your web apps, enjoy complex animation without the drain of Flash, and maybe even plug in your guitar. These features and more already exist, and they're coming to the broad internet this year.


Building an impressive web site takes work, whether you love to code or don't know the first thing about it. There are lots of tools which aim to make creating a site easier, but no single option fits everyone's needs. In this post, we'll take a look at a handful of popular options, their pros and cons, and why you might pick them to build your web site.


Chrome: Stylebot lets you easily adjust the style sheets of nearly any page using a button-based control panel or editing the raw text of the style sheet. Most people will use this for mundane applications such as font changes and hiding ads, but using this powerful extension you can completely reskin sites and share your custom CSS with others using the developer's forum.


Last week we taught you how to make a web site from start to finish, including finding a reliable web host to host your site. Here's the complete guide so you have access to all the lessons in one convenient location.


While we happen to love comments and the lively discussion that occurs in them, we understand that not everybody wants to see the comments left by other internet users. Shutup.css lets you apply a custom stylesheet and eradicate comments across the web.


Microsoft's official IEBlog points out one of the less obvious features of Internet Explorer 8's most recent beta: the ability to use alternate style sheets, effectively enabling people to define their own approach to site layout. While it's likely to be some time before this feature is widely supported, it's worth remembering when you're laying out your pixel-precise site design that user interference is likely to be more common in the future.

The CSS Corner: Alternate Style Sheets


Windows only: Free application CSS Toolbox streamlines working with cascading stylesheets (CSS) through auto-completion, syntax highlighting, and several more advanced features that make it stand out from a regular text editor. For those of you who don't know, CSS files are the building blocks that style the web. CSS Toolbox offers advanced features for building out your stylesheets, including a CSS beautifier, validator, and even compressor. This one isn't of much use to non-developers, but if you are a designer (or you have any inkling of learning about web design), this app looks like a real winner. On the other hand, if a solid text editor is all you want, check out our Hive Five Best Text Editors. CSS Toolbox is a free download, Windows only.

CSS Toolbox


Planning to spend some time during one of those mythical "free" weekends whipping your web site into shape? Open Web Design, a free and frequently-updated collection of site templates handed out without copyright, is a great place to start looking. We've posted similar collections before, but Open Web Design trumps our archives for up-to-date designs and breadth of material—images, CSS templates, and standard HTML are all available. The site is free to use, and registration lets you submit ideas and post to a forum.

Open Web Design