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What does CSS stand for

Cascading Style Sheets more commonly referred to as CSS is a styling language that allows you to style your web pages in an efficient and easy manner. It is mostly used to style documents written in HTML, however, it can also be used to style web pages written using XML, SVG, and XUL.

CSS enhances the look and feel of your web pages. Using this styling language you can style HTML elements in various ways such as providing them colors, aligning them in a certain way, scaling their sizes, adding images, and much more. CSS also allows you to style websites that alter their behavior depending upon the device type or screen size.

Things are developed as answers to previously occurring problems. Therefore, CSS was also developed as a solution to a problem. Consult the next section to learn about this more.

Why was CSS developed

HTML is a markup language that was founded to structure the content of web pages, however, in HTML 3.2 certain tags were introduced to format fonts, colors, alignment, and size of elements. These tags made the procedure of formatting web pages extremely time-consuming as these had to be repeated for every single element on every single web page. As a solution to this problem, CSS was introduced by the World Wide Consortium (W3C) which allows users to generate stylesheets and style various web pages all at once.

Now, this makes us wonder what advantages does CSS have that make it so important. Let’s have a look!

Advantages of CSS

In this section, we have summed up various advantages that CSS has.

1. It saves a lot of time and energy by allowing you to make one style sheet for various web pages. You can define styles for various elements in that particular stylesheet and then reuse this sheet for every other web page.

2. It is very easy to maintain a stylesheet in a way that if you want to change the style of a particular element then simply make the change in the stylesheet and the change will be applied to the element on every single web page.

3. CSS is also capable of enhancing the speed of a website since you do not need to style every element separately for each web page which means fewer lines of code and faster loading of web pages.

4. Using CSS you can develop websites that are compatible with various devices. This means that a website will alter its behavior depending upon the device type or screen size.

5. CSS has a wide range of properties that allow you to give an enhanced look to your website in comparison to the style provided by HTML attributes.

What is the Syntax of CSS

The syntax of CSS has been explained below.

A selector represents the element that is to be styled, meanwhile, a declaration consists of CSS properties and their corresponding values that define the style being assigned to that element.

To understand CSS better let’s take a look at a simple example.

<!DOCTYPE html>

<html>

<head>

<style>

h1{

color: red;

font-family: Verdana, Geneva, Tahoma, sans-serif;

}

p{

color:blue;

font-size: 20px;

}

</style>

</head>

<body>

<h1>This is a heading</h1>

<p>This is a paragraph.</p>

</body>

</html>

In the code above, we have first of all defined two elements <h1> and <p> respectively in the body section then in order to style these elements we are using the <style> tag in the head section. The heading has been given a red text color, meanwhile, its font family has been set to Verdana, whereas, the paragraph has been given a blue text color and 20px font size.

Output

This is how CSS is used to style HTML elements.

Conclusion

CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets and is a styling language that allows you to style your web pages in an efficient and easy manner. CSS was introduced by the World Wide Consortium (W3C) which allows users to generate stylesheets and style various web pages all at once instead of using HTML tags to style every single element for every other web page. CSS saves a lot of time, is easy to maintain, enhances the speed of a website, has a wide range of properties, and allows the development of websites that are compatible with various devices.

About the author

Naima Aftab

I am a software engineering professional with a profound interest in writing. I am pursuing technical writing as my full-time career and sharing my knowledge through my words.