Create your own photogallery: Part II

In 'Create your own photogallery: Part I', I began creating an online photo gallery. Using as a template, I reviewed techniques required to reduce the size of a graphically intensive Web site. Additionally, I discussed how frames were preferable for this type of site so as to speed site loading times further.

Now let's look at the code required. To accompany this step-by-step guide, I have included some tips to ensure your site remains centred despite varying screen resolutions.

Note: position your mouse on the frame you are interested in, right-click and select View Source to see the code for that page. To view the source code of the Controller Page (index.html), choose Source from the View menu.


As your controller page, index.html determines the layout of your frames and is therefore the most important page. Within the standard HTML framework (HTML, HEAD and TITLE tags), insert the code below:

<FRAMESET rows="40,*" border="0">
<FRAME src="hnav.html" scrolling="no" noresize border="no">
<FRAMESET cols="20%,*,20%" border="0">
<FRAME src="lnav.html" scrolling="no" noresize border="no">
<FRAME src="middle.html" scrolling="no" noresize border="no" name="middle">
<FRAME src="rnav.html" scrolling="no" noresize border="no">

This creates two framesets. The first inserts hnav.html into the top 40 pixels of the screen going across the page, with the second frameset consuming the remaining space.

The second frameset contains three columns: two take up 20 per cent of the given space (lnav.html and rnav.html), and one - middle.html - sits between them and takes up 60 per cent (the remainder).


This page (the horizontal navigation bar) displays explanatory text in addition to a linkable graphic. Using the online template, view the source of the top frame in which this page lays.

Notice that the table has a width of 100 per cent. This means it will take the entire width of the page, regardless of size. The two outer cells ensure that the inside TDs (containing our graphic and text) will always have a buffer of 10 per cent from the right and left screen edges.

There is also the cell containing an IMG SRC command encap­sulated by an A HREF. This transforms the graphic into a link. Finally, there is the cell containing our formatted instructional text.

lnav.html and rnav.html

These two pages (the left and right navigation bars) are identical except that they reference different photos and links.

View the source of one or both of these pages - you will notice there is a table within a table, in order to centre the thumbnails. Refer to FIGURE 1 to see what this would look like if both tables had a border.

The inside table contains the linkable thumbnails. For example:

<a href="picture1.html" target="middle"><img src="images/pic1_small.jpg" height="80" width="96" border="0" alt="picture1" vspace="2">

The A HREF commands all refer to a target value of middle. Look at index.html and you will see that the frame containing middle.html has an extra property of name="middle". When links target this, the relevant HTML page will open in that frame, replacing middle.html.

The outside table has a width and height of 100 per cent, and its only content is the other table. Note that the inner table has properties of valign="middle" and align="center" - this means it will be centred both horizontally and vertically within the larger table, which represents the whole page because of its 100 per cent size properties. Therefore, regardless of screen resolution, the inner table will always be centred within the frame.


When the Web site initially loads, the file that acts is middle.html. Each time a thumbnail is clicked, however, a different page replaces it. This is a result of the target link mentioned above in lnav.html and rnav.html.

If you click on the first thumbnail on the left, picture1.html will replace middle.html. There are nine HTML pages suitable for the middle position: picture1.html through picture8.html, and middle.html which is used for the homepage position. These files are all similar in format and comprise a large graphic, a text description, and a footer.

Using tables within tables as explained above, you can ensure that the data is positioned exactly the way you want regardless of screen size.

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