How do I write a Web page?The easiest way to write your own page is to start with a page that already exists on the Web. Of course you could also start a file from scratch, particularly if you're already familiar with the basic tags in HTML, but using a template is a useful and perfectly respectable habit to form.
A Web page is simply a text file, which means you can compose them in your favorite word processor or text editor. The only requirements for Web pages is that you name them with the suffix .html, and that you use HTML for all formatting, images, and links to other pages. HTML is HyperText Markup Language, and it consists of a number of tags that tell a Web browser how to present your page.
Enough background information - here's what you need to do:
- With Netscape, find a page after which you'd like to model your new page.
- While looking at it, go to the VIEW menu and select DOCUMENT SOURCE.
Netscape will go get the source code of that page, and hand it off to a text editor on your computer. So a new window, in another application (eg SimpleText, Microsoft Word, etc) should open on your screen.
- You can now edit this text file however you'd like. Feel free to erase as much or as little as you want, replacing the body of the page with whatever HTML you wish to write.
- You need to give this file a new name! Use FILE and then SAVE AS to select a new name (and location) for this text file, on your computer.
- Use netscape to check your HTML. Before uploading this file for the rest of the world to see, you can have Netscape read it locally. To do this, use the Open File command. Any changes you wish to make can be done right there on your computer, with your word processor. Every time you make changes, save the file and then go back to Netscape and RELOAD it to see the newer version.
How do I make it available to the rest of the world?So you've got this great Web page on your personal computer. You're able to view it in Netscape by telling it to go get it from your local hard-drive. However, unless you're a server, nobody else can access this page. You need to upload your file to the Forum Web server.
It is possible to Netscape to upload to the Forum. To do so, go to the page http://mathforum.org/cgi-bin/upload.cgi. Select browse, and find the file to be uploaded. Double click on it. It's name should appear in the "file to upload" field. If it all looks alright, press "Upload File". Since this page was designed for this workshop, this puts your page right into the directory workshops/nsn96/.
Using Netscape is only good for the first time you upload a file with a given name. To update or replace it, you'll want to use another ftp client. If you find one you like, you can always use it, and never bother with the Netscape page. Here's how to use the ftp client called Fetch:
- Make a note of where you saved your HTML file, and what it's called.
- Open Fetch.
- You'll be prompted to enter the following information:
- host: mathforum.org
- username: nsn
- password: ***** (remember it?)
- path: ________ (leave this blank)
- When the dog stops running, you'll be connected to forum and looking at the contents of directory nsn96. That's one level below where we've been storing most of the workshop Web pages. So click on the black triangle to the right of "nsn96" and drag down to "nsn".
- You'll see a whole bunch of files here. Make sure that there isn't one there with the same name as the one you're about to upload, unless you're purposely replacing an older version.
- To upload a single file, click on PUT FILE ... You'll be prompted with a standard Macintosh dialogue box to find the file on your computer. When you do, double click on it.
- You'll see Fetch working, briefy, and then your file should appear in the directory list.
- Go back to Netscape and check it out. Reminder: the address of the page on site will begin with http://mathforum.org/. If your "Location" window says file://, you're still looking at the file locally, and not on the Internet.
That's it. Any questions?
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