1. A basic knowledge of your computer and the Internet. If
you found this web site, you already have it (believe it or
2. A computer. Go figure.
3. A good browser. Again, if you are here, you have one. I
Explorer 5.0 or above. My personal experience with Netscape
browsers have been buggy, but still many swear by them. Other
browsers will work as well, but these two are the by far the
4. A good word processor. Some are having luck with programs
like Microsoft Word, but I am still a huge fan of the simplicity
of Notepad (or Simple Text if you are a MAC fan.)
That's it! That's all you are going to need to walk through these
tutorials. Breathe easy. It's neither hard nor expensive to write
HTML. You probably already have everything you need right on your
computer! That said, let's get started!
Briefly stated, HTML is an acronym for HyperText
Markup Language. Fascinating, eh? Let's break it
down a little.
Hyper - as opposed to linear. Most computer programming
languages have to work in a straight line format. If this happens,
then do this and that and so on. However, HTML is more flexible
in that it does not rely on a series of events to produce the
desired outcome. This means, you, as a web viewer, can come
to this page from anywhere and leave however and whenever you
Text - Exactly what it sounds like. Actual words, phrases
and letters from the English language.
Markup - The actual act of writing down the information
in the proper context.
Language - Again, with the language thing. No real point
to this one, actually. Computer freaks love simple redundancy.
What does all that mean? Not much at this point, really. But,
hey! What's a tutorial without a little boring content. I'll try
to keep that down to a minimum from here on out.
The first thing one needs to know about HTML is that every web
page is birthed from a simple text document. To see what I mean,
all you need to do is open the source of any web page. In Internet
Explorer, you can do this by clicking View>Source on the
menu bar. You can also do this by right-clicking in the view window
and select View Source.
In all honesty, if you did this on my page, you would find a
CSS styles, XML, DHTML... the list goes on and on... This is a
lot more than what we will be discussing in the HTML Basics tutorials
(but don't let that discourage you). Let's take a look at the
bare bones that make up almost every web page.
We'll start by opening up a document in Notepad (Simple Text
for Mac users). If you don't know where this program is, you can
usually find it in your Start menu at Programs>Accessories>Notepad.
The first thing you need to do is save this file as an HTML document.
To do this, click on File>Save As... and save the file as "index.htm"
("index.html" for Mac). This changes the file from a
simple text document (.txt) to an HTML document (.htm). This is
very important since your browser needs to have this designation
to view your page.
Why save this file as "index?" Well, in truth, you
could name the file anything you want as long as it has the ".htm"
at the end. The reason I suggest "index" is to save
a bit of trouble later on. Most sites that you will be uploading
to are set up to default to "index" as the start page.
So, basically, the page that you want to be your "home page"
should be named "index." Subsequent pages can be named
whatever you like. We'll cover this subject more later when we
discuss site uploading.
Now that we have our file saved in HTML format, we are ready
to move on to Lesson