Framing the Web | WebReference

Framing the Web

Framing the Web

by Dan Brown (

Table of Contents


Several browsers can now display a series of HTML files within a splitscreen, or frames, adding a new dimension to Web development. By segmenting the browser window into frames, authors can make more sophisticated hypertext documents. Frames, if used properly, can improve navigability and add a degree of functionality inconceivable with HTML 2.0 standards.

Creating a framed document depends first on building the layout and second on defining the interaction between the frames.

The section on layout describes how to build a framed document with the <frame> and <frameset> tags.

After you've constructed a framed document, learn how to make your frames interact with one another in the section called interaction.

As with any nifty feature, frames often falls victim to over-use. Although we provide no guidance as to when to use frames, don't use them just because you can. You might find framed documents extremely difficult to maintain. Frames are good if you need something to remain on the screen while something else changes, like a table of contents or navigation tools. On the other hand, things like a company logo might not deserve their own frame. Frames add functionality and ease-of-use to a Web site, but they don't change the rules of good design.

This button, appearing throughout the tutorial, will open another Navigator window to demonstrate the code samples. The first time this window appears, reduce its size and leave it on the screen. Subsequent examples will appear in this same window whenever you click the "Show Me!" button.

Comments are welcome

Copyright © 1996 Dan Brown and
Created: May 14, 1996
Revised: Apr. 16, 1998