I recommend immersing yourself in Steve Souder's two books—High
Performance Websites, and Even Faster Websites. As it stresses again
and again, the killer isn't the length of your content, but the number
of files (only so many can be loaded in parallel), latency, expiry
checks and so forth. Positioning of JavaScript is also critical,
although putting it at the bottom can be a real pain. Sounders rules
are built into YSlow as most of you probably know.

LibraryThing's solution—a common one—is to use full CSS and JS on the
dev. server. But on the real server each page has only one CSS and one
JS file. And they have far-future expiry dates. The system changes
their names (which are nonsense hashes) if they change. They've been
compressed too, but that doesn't make much of a difference. Gzipping
them helps more for bandwidth bills than speed. We split up files
across two domains, www and static, because simultaneous download
limits are by domain.

We also toyed with CSS sprites a fair amount, to avoid multiple image
loads—our sprite is—but the
savings aren't that considerable.


On Fri, Jan 14, 2011 at 12:15 PM, Richard, Joel M <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> I sort of agree with Mike on this, but I could play devil's advocate and say...
> If you include comments in your CSS (which I'm sure you do, because we're all conscientious developers and practice good coding standards. :), then removing them and condensing the file down can make it significantly smaller. It may be an extreme example, but YUI's base.css and base-min.css are 2.23 K and 0.89 K respectively. My CSS files often weigh in at well over 15 K before compression.
> Also, keep in mind that these days modern web pages depend heavily on the stylesheet to render in a pretty manner. Therefore the smaller it is, the faster the browser can make use of it.
> Just my two cents... This is also useful:
> --Joel (the other one)
> Joel Richard
> IT Specialist, Web Services Department
> Smithsonian Institution Libraries |
> (202) 633-1706 | (202) 786-2861 (f) | [log in to unmask]
> On Jan 14, 2011, at 11:30 AM, Mike Taylor wrote:
>> On 14 January 2011 16:28, Joel Marchesoni <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>> Hey Everyone,
>>> I'm working on optimizing our CSS files and can't find anything about this on the web. I know that some browsers/systems have issues with really long lines in files and wanted to get some opinions about removing all line breaks from a CSS file to conserve space. I've seen some optimizers that give the option NOT to remove them, but don't explain why.
>> Why bother?  CSS files are tiny compared with the images you're no
>> doubt also loading and literally negligible compared with video.  They
>> get loaded once per session, then cached in the browser.  Messing with
>> the whitespace will have absolutely no perceptible effect on
>> efficiency for anyone who's not using a 300 baud modem.

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