• Home
  • Script library
  • AltME Archive
  • Mailing list
  • Articles Index
  • Site search

Personal CSS - help


CSS is what gives this site most of its visual appearance: fonts, coloring, etc. But a big problem with CSS is that it privileges the site designer's vision of how the site should look, rather than taking any account of how the user would like to see the site.

There are three not very satisfactory ways around that:

  • Persuade the site's designer to make the changes you want. But that may conflict with what other users want (or need if the site designer is balancing browser-specific issues and so may not be able to do what you want without causing problems elsewhere)
  • Persuade the site's designer to supplied alternate style sheets. But that's not supported well by many browsers
  • Create your own user CSS file. Your browser will merge your CSS styles with those of the site, usually giving your styles priority. That way, you can override and modify the site's CSS styles. User CSS is widely supported by modern browsers. But there is a problem. Your user CSS file will be applied to all sites you see, not just the ones your wanted to tweak.

The Library's CSS feature is intended to overcome all those limitations.

How it works

  • Any Library member can create and publish a set of personal CSS files
  • Any other Library member can then elect to use any published set of personal CSS files
  • If you are using a personal set of CSS files, will add the appropriate CSS files to each webpage

How to use it

The easiest way is to click the List available CSS  link, and select a user's CSS fileset. See if it looks better or worse for you.

The other way, is to add css=user-name to any URL on the site. Assuming user-name has published a set of CSS files, you will immediately be switched to their files.

You'll need to type that as ?css=user-name or &css=user-name depending on whether the URL you are extending has parameters already or not.

Creating your personal CSS files

If you want to give it a go, just click this link for notes on how to proceed. 


This feature was inspired in part by the the CSS Zen Garden  website.
But, unlike CSS Zen Garden, this is more of a live-fire exercise: a set of personal CSS files here will affect the appearance of an entire website, not just a carefully constructed sample page.
Which means you are working with (or against!) legacy HTML that may not always give you the flexibility you want.