Unrequested review of tutorials.delinquente.org

 |  Interwebs, Review

Reviewed: no idea
Site URL: tutorials.delinquente.org

I was tempted to name this review “how not to do a tutorial site”, but I don’t want to break with tradition. On one hand my super spider-sense says that I’m about to commit a major faux pas by reviewing you because you’re only 13, but hey — if you don’t learn the right code now you probably never will.

It always worries me when a person starts a tutorial site and the first thing they put in the sidebar is the tutorial count. Why brag about the amount of tutorials you have (not that you have enough to brag about)? If you have enough they’ll speak for themselves — without the need for counts and amounts and superfluous crap.

Well, just when you thought this tutorial site does not have much tutorials” …what? You’re right, the site does not have many tutorials, but that’s about the only accurate part of that sentence. “We’re adding hundreds out of thousands tutorials here!” …does that mean you’ve stolen thousands but you’re only adding hundreds of them? “Writing tutorials is pretty hard, especially ones that make sense.” …yeah, that must be why you’re having so much difficulty. “It’s Really, really,really hard..” …the R should be lowercase, and there should be a space after the second comma (*and I’d recommend not playing with it if it’s too hard). * don’t worry, you’ll work that one out in a few years time.

I could sit and criticise your grammar all day, and the size of your layout image is that large it causes Firefox to time out but what’s really bothering me is your tutorials. As I’m trying to get this review out to keep the people happy and get to bed relatively early tonight I’m just going to move straight on to ‘em…

Your Intro to HTML tutorial is a direct rip from W3Schools Introduction to HTML. Now, I know it’s free to learn from them, but that doesn’t mean you’re free to rip off the tutorials because you can’t think of anything original.

Your Hover Basics isn’t basic — you shove a piece of irrelevant styling at visitors before you’ve even properly explain the hover pseudo-class. You haven’t explained that it can be applied to various elements (but only works properly in IE on the links) nor the fact that it has to be applied to the a element in a certain order (LoVe HAte — link, visited, hover, active) for the pseudo-classes to work properly.

The block of styling you’re using (same tutorial) contains a lot of crap properties that aren’t needed because you’re not assigning a value (background-color:none;, color:none;, cursor:none; and text-transform:none;). You give completely false instructions: bold and italic should NOT be used with text-decoration: and you’re assuming that everyone has Arial, Tahoma and Georgia (my linux boot doesn’t). I chortled heartily at “1-10pt is a good range” because a) pt is a print measurement and px should be used instead and b) I would hate to see a website using 1pt text!

The tutorial Pseudo-Classes is wrong, wrong and more wrong. It’s like a big football of wrongness, only if you were to kick this it’d just explode the wrongness all over your leg. Possibly the worst simile I’ve ever done but the point still stands: it’s wrong.

Firstly, “Pseudo-class are an interesting group of selectors in CSS” …no, pseudo-classes are not selectors, they are applied to selectors. Interestingly enough I thought this tutorial sounded far too intelligent for you and Googled that first sentence and found the tutorial on dynamicdrive and cssdrive.com — both ironically wrong too. You state :langApplies to an element when it’s in the designated language.” …still wrong. According to W3Schools: :langAllows the author to specify a language to use in a specified element” and I couldn’t put it better myself (so I didn’t). I find it particularly amusing that “you” talk about first-child elements and the cascade and yet obviously don’t know what they are!

Your Comments “tutorial” is relatively pointless and doesn’t cover all types of PHP comments and your Include Function tutorial states “so you now have your first script!” …no I dont’t, I’ve not done anything yet! I’d also disagree that include() is one the most useful functions, but then I guess if that’s all you know you’re likely to rely on it.

Intro to PHP is another you’ve ripped directly from W3Schools and Php Support Checking is typically wrong. Simply naming a file .php, writing a bit of text in it and asking it to load in the browser won’t prove anything — it’ll load anyway. The best way to test for PHP is to use the phpinfo() function, just remember to delete the file afterwards so that malicious visitors don’t find out important information about your hosting configuration.

I had a good chuckle at your “A file editor and CMS” tutorial. It’s called Project 1 on the PHP index page and Project 2 on the tutorial and you’re referencing “the File Functions tutorial” which doesn’t exist — is this yet another stolen tutorial? Stolen or not, this tutorial is incorrect. join() is not “another way of including a page” and there’s no such thing as “phrased PHP”.

Your Getting and Hosting Images tutorial isn’t basic enough — if a person doesn’t already know how to do this then they’re probably not very ‘net-savvy and need more specific instructions. Your code example is also incorrect — you close the tag with a forward slash as if coding for the XHTML doctype but miss the all important alt attribute and fail to mention that the snippet won’t work on the majority of forums/boards (which is where most beginners want to stick their images). Incidentally you’re also using a <textarea> to house the code snippet (as in your other tutorials) which is misuse of the tag. You should convert ’special’ characters in the code to their entity equivalent (&lt;, &gt; etc) and style them with <code> </code> as suggested in my code box demo.

How to Open .zip or .rar Files states that you need to use WinZip for .zip files and WinRar for .rar, this is incorrect. Windows XP comes with a zip utility built in and WinRar extracts both .zip and .rar. You also fail to mention that the versions of WinZip and WinRar are trials and should be removed after 30 days.

I would summarise my thoughts on your tutorials but I’ve already abused the word wrong and don’t fancy writing it again…

For a tutorial site you show very little knowledge of some pretty basic stuff, reflected in the coding of your own pages. You’re missing a doctype (see my tutorial on Validating a Page using HTML 4.01) and you’re using nasty, nasty <iframe>s inside a <table> inside a <div> when you could just code straight into the <div>, customising it with CSS. Your actual pages have a <body> tag but no doctype, <head>, etc and you’re using <img src=""> to create bullets instead of the obviously better answer:

ul {
list-style-image: url(images/bullettut.png);

Your attempt at a no-right-click script isn’t working and because your bold text and links are the same colour it’s confusing as to what is a link and what isn’t. You fail to close the <body> and <head> tags on most pages and the fact that you’re crediting “Brush sites I can’t remember the name of” is appalling.

I would suggest doing a little research on the magical law that is Copyright (i.e. why you’re not supposed to steal tutorials from other sites) and removing your so-called tutorials from the web. As you’re not likely to do the latter I can at least ask (pray) that you take some lessons on basic HTML before writing any more.

Jem Turner jem@jemjabella.co.uk +44(0)7521056376

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