I’m sure this is all very old hat to most web designers, but I’ve added the word semantic to my understanding of how web pages are put together.
I’ve been quite cheerfully pursuing markup to web standards without considering the semantics of the markup.
Designing using CSS isn’t only about ditching table based layouts, but is to enable the separation of style/layout and structured content. It’s the structured bit that I hadn’t got before. The tags that are left in the HTML are just as important as the ones that are moved out to style sheet code.
What is left should be readable on it’s own, without need for the styling/layout. That’s the semantic bit, making sure that headings have h tags, paragraphs have p tags, lists use list tags etc. so that even without any fancy layout the content is accessible to all.
It all makes a lot of sense really