ModestMenus is a lightweight, cross-browser, cross-platform, versatile, CSS-driven menuing system for websites. It's free of cost and free of usage restrictions. It's been downloaded thousands of times and used on websites around the globe.
As many web designers and developers know, there are tons of menuing systems available either for free or for sale on the web. So, why does the world need yet one more? Each system seems to have its own strengths and weaknesses which make it better for some projects and not others. ModestMenus is no exception. It was intentionally created from the outset with certain design differences in mind that make it best suited for very specific purposes. Is ModestMenus right for you? Here's an overview of how this system is generally different from many others:
ModestMenus is lightweight in two senses — filesize and featureset. ModestMenus does not, by default, provide you with many of the bells and whistles available in alternative systems. The menus don't have drop shadows, and they don't fade into and off of the screen. In fact, ModestMenus doesn't offer any sort of special F/X when appearing and disappearing. This is the "modest" aspect of the name. As a result, the amount of code that's loaded into each page using the menu system is much smaller than many other menu systems that offer all the graphical bells and whistles.
One of the most substantial ideological differences between ModestMenus and many other menu systems on the market, is the concept of what exactly a menu is and what can trigger it. Simply put, in the ModestMenus system, a menu is any grouped collection of links and their labels that can either be displayed or hidden depending on whether their trigger was activated. The first major advantage to this method is that you can implement menus in many more ways than is often possible with other menuing systems, because any HTML element that supports an onMouseOver or onClick event, can become the trigger for a ModestMenu (i.e. <a>, <applet;>, <button>, <div>, <img>, <input>, <li>, <object>, <p>, and much more). The second major advantage to this method is that menus exist as separate, re-usable entities outside of their triggers. This means that, for example, completely separate elements on your screen can trigger the exact same menu — you create and name your menu once and then trigger it however, wherever, and whenever you want.
To a certain degree all menuing systems are "CSS-driven." They all use various aspects of CSS to organize and display or hide the menus. What makes ModestMenus different is that it uses pure CSS to define almost everything about how the menus and menu elements should be displayed. Before you can start using many other menuing systems you first have to learn the menu system's proprietary code and syntax to do things like add borders, change colors, set spacing, and generally define what a menu looks like. The assumption of ModestMenus is that you, the person creating the website, already know how to write CSS. (Or, if you don't, that it won't be a problem to learn the basics very quickly.) To ask you to learn some arbitrary commands and code to do what you already know how to do in CSS seems counterproductive. So, ModestMenus completely exposes the style definitions to you in a standard CSS file that lets you use the knowledge you already have to get up and running quicker.
ModestMenus is available for download as a zip or tar.gz archive. The archives contain the source files, documentation, and examples. It's recommended that you always use the latest stable version.
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