Set Up Media Queries to Style for Different Devices
To accomplish the different designs for different devices, you typically don’t change the content of the page. Rather, using Dreamweaver CS5 or CS5.5, you can use CSS3 media queries. Media queries “sniff” out the resolution of the device (in other words, detects it) on which the page is being viewed, then applies different styling depending on that resolution. Next, you will take the page that you have open and apply media queries to the page:
- In the Multiscreen Preview panel, click the Media Queries button. The Media Queries dialog box appears. As it says at the top of the dialog box: “You (can) target your designs for different devices by specifying a different CSS file for each device.”
There are two ways you can approach media queries:
- Set up a “site-wide” media query file.
- Set up a media queries for “this document” only.
Setting up media queries for “this document” only will create a separate style sheet for each device you choose and attach each of those to the open page only. When the page is displayed, depending on the resolution of the device, a different style sheet will be applied. If you have a series of pages to which you want to apply the media queries, you can select the “site-wide” option. As you will see, this creates a style sheet that is attached to this first page in your site. That style sheet contains links to other style sheets. The site-wide option means that if you open another page and click the Media Queries button, it will automatically attach the site-wide file.
Figure 5 Set up a site-wide media query file.
Figure 6 Create a new site-wide media query file.
Figure 7 Name the site-wide media query file.
Dreamweaver adds the site-wide media queries file to your site definition. If you want to change or delete the file, select Site > Manage Sites and edit the site definition. The site-wide media queries file is in Advanced Settings > Local Info.
Notice the Force Devices to Report Actual Width selection. This forces the devices to report the actual screen resolution so that the code that Dreamweaver puts into your page will work. Lots of devices report a different width (usually larger) so that any web pages simply scale (shrink) to fit. Leave this option selected.
Figure 8 Include the default media queries.
Figure 9 Remove the desktop media query.
Next, you will create style sheets for the remaining two devices: phone and tablet.
Figure 10 Create a new style sheet for phones.
Figure 11 Name the new style sheet for phones.
Figure 12 Change the Min/Max Width of the media query.
Figure 13 Create and name a tablet CSS file.
You’ve just told Dreamweaver to create two more style sheets for two different types of devices: phones and tablets.
See What Dreamweaver Has Created So Far
Notice that the styling hasn’t changed for any of the device viewports. That’s because the style sheet you used on the site when you first built the page is still linked. In the next steps, after you take a second to see what Dreamweaver has done for you so far, you will create styles for each device that override the main styles.
- Close the Multiscreen panel, and in the Document toolbar click the sitewide.css link in the Related Files toolbar (located below the Code, Split, and Design buttons, usually). Notice the code in the sitewide.css file. It has two links to the two style sheets created, using @import directives (see Figure 14). It also has max-width and min-width attributes where necessary.
- Now, click the phone.css link in the Related Files toolbar. You should see the phone.css style sheet. Notice how it is blank except for, @charset “utf-8”; (see Figure 15). It seems fair to assume when you hear that Dreamweaver will create a style sheet for different devices that it creates the styles as well. That would be pretty hard to do, given the fact that everyone’s site is different. Click the Design View button.
Figure 14 The sitewide.css file with links to the phone and tablet CSS files.
Figure 15 The blank phone.css file.