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I have a table-less website. I mean I use div instead of table,tr and td.

Is there a difference in loading time for table or table-less sites?

Which one do you recommended? Also, is it a good idea to use a big background image as layout? e.g -> I want to use a newspaper image as background of my news website and a library image for my shop website. Here's example of something that I want.

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Building table-less websites isn't about load time or "beauty". It's about responsiveness. –  Scott Sep 16 '13 at 9:57
This question is a few years late. Look at any half decent website and you'll see they don't use tables except for when creating actual tables, and sometimes not even then. Just FYI, I think table layouts started to fade out in 2000. –  Dominic Sep 16 '13 at 11:15
It has been best practice to use divs for over a decade now. Tables still work fine, although they are better for fixed layouts. Performance wise, it is not an issue. The image is 99.9% of your loading time, so perhaps you should address alternative methods to a full page image if you want a faster loading page. –  John Sep 16 '13 at 12:38
Hi Mohammad! As mentioned by others, tables are just not used any more for layout. The current 'trend' is, in my opinion, frameworks like Bootstrap. I'd definitely take a look at that! –  Yisela Sep 16 '13 at 20:32
Fair question, but one that has been asked 1,293,498 times already. A bit of googling will return plenty of information on this topic. –  DA01 Sep 17 '13 at 15:13
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3 Answers

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All if all you've asked largely subjective questions.

The time it takes to load a website is determined more by the files that are needed to load by the client (images / scripts / css) the types of HTML elements you use are negligible. If you're getting to the point where you need to question the performance of actual HTML tags then you're probably doing something wrong.

Which one is more beautiful? Well, that's a silly question --- no one SEES which HTML elements you've used unless they look at the source code. The way your website looks is more determined by the CSS you use. But using DIVs is better practice, and tables were never designed for website layouts, they were designed for displaying tabular data.

Which one is better? Completely subjective. There isn't a hard and fast rule to making websites. What's your target audience? What look/feel are you going for? There's a lot of questions that need to be answered in order to figure out what the best design is.

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Today, there are many unwritten rules for websites! Aesthetics and fast loading is very important for users and visitors. –  Mohammad Reza Tayyebi Sep 16 '13 at 7:59
There are significant drawbacks to using table elements, such as the fact that they don't animate well. Also, there's a reason table elements evolved in to CSS properties instead. –  Dominic Sep 16 '13 at 11:20
Of course aesthetics and performance are important but whether I use a div or a table will not affect performance like images, scripts, or external resources will. Tables are not to be used for layouts though, that much should be clear. This is an old and wrong way of making websites. –  Johannes Sep 16 '13 at 14:17
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First Rule of web design I learnt, Do Not use tables, unless representing data in a grid format.

Div layers should be used for all layout styling, through Css and not inline styling. There’s also a performance issue when loading the site Divs load up quicker, they also offer much more control then tables.

I highly recommend you read up on a few web design articles just to understand this fully.

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I know many designer do not like to use tables for layout ... but it's way easier than div or the css layout system. and here are the reasons (layout, not design and colors)

1 - Tables layout are fixed and will not change because a div overlapped another div... extremely solid layout.

2- Why people use tables for data because the table (no matter what browser your using) will always out-put the data (text, images, etc) ...because data is important ... in the case of CSS data isn't that important looks are and unless you write CSS code that tells the page to expand the CSS will hide the data to make the site look good.

3-Compatiblity ... Tables (for layout) is way way way more browser compatible than CSS... and if you want CSS to be compatible (regarding layout) you could do 2 things A- Block user from accessing the site until they download browser X B- Add few pages of CSS script to check for each browser and create custom CSS for EACH !!!

I'm not saying to use Tables for everything, but to use them as the main container of the site is the best way to go .... for design (Paragraphs, Headers, Lists, Borders, font type, etc...) use CSS for that it will be easier to update the site design from the CSS files .... and those tend to have high CSS compatibility with browsers in regard to CSS away from layout

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This is absolutely wrong is so many ways. –  Scott Apr 13 at 6:32
It's academic anyway - this "internet" nonsense is just a passing fad. People will be bored of it by 2002 at the latest. Kids don't want to be sat indoors waiting for a noisy desktop computer to load up Netscape Navigator when they could be out skateboarding or playing pogs at the mall. As if. –  user568458 Apr 13 at 12:25
@user568458 Have you seen the trailer for that new film Good Will Hunting? It looks good, I'm going to see it when it comes out in the cinema. –  Dominic Apr 13 at 14:27
"but it's way easier" = purely opinion and one most people would disagree with in this day and age. Try making a responsive site entirely out of tables, for example. –  DA01 Apr 13 at 15:40
@Dominic I dunno, those Damon and Affleck kids look like hacks. I doubt their career is going to go anywhere. –  DA01 Apr 13 at 15:41
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