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Recently I have received many questions on how to create web pages or how to get started.


This tutorial is intended for photographers without any prior knowledge of HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) or web page development and looking into learning how to create their own web pages to display their "work of arts". 


I will not be rewriting what has already been written hundreds of times and what is already available in the internet in greater detail.  Again, this is only to get you started and I will lead you to resources that will take you further into more intermediate and advance HTML techniques.  Good luck!




STEP 1:  Basics - Understanding the Web


First let's understand what happens when you start typing "http://..." 


Have you ever wondered where these web pages come from?  What exactly takes place when you type in the URL (Uniform Resource Locator) or address of a site into your browser?  There is an exchange of data communication,  transparent to the user, that takes place.  Here is a basic illustration...






How the Internet works...


You start off by typing in an address in the URL (address) field of your browser. 



When you hit the ENTER key the "request" is then sent to the web server.  The address you've just typed is translated or resolved to an IP address of  the  location of the web server.





The web server then responds back and sends you the page you've just requested for.   When you click on a link, for example "Gallery" in the initial page, the same process takes place all over again.   





That is a very basic description of what takes place.  Of course there are more technical and complex processes that happens in both hardware and software such as CRC (Cyclic Redundancy Check); various web applications such as IIS (Internet Information Services - for Windows) or Apache (Unix / Windows ....ooooh...I could hear the techies now); various protocols; different types of firewalls and/or security; numerous routers to get through; various types of connections, etc.  The list goes on and on.  They are separate topics on their own. 


For this tutorial we don't need to know the in-depth processes that goes on but at least have a general understanding that a lot happens when you surf on the web.  Knowing the "behind the scenes" processes will assist you in designing a web site that is user friendly, specifically targeted for an intended audience and enhance the overall performance of your web site.  I will get into the details throughout the tutorial. 



Basic outline of a web page.


Let's start off with the basic structure of a web page. 







               <TITLE> My Page </TITLE>






               My first web page







See a sample page of the code above.



Simple isn't it?  Copy the above code into a text editor, like notepad in Windows, and save as "index.html".  Open the index.html file with your browser and you'll see you've just created your very first page!  Congratulation!


Now let's break it down and understand what is going on with each section of the code.


Notice that every TAG are paired.  The accompanying tag has a "forward slash" to indicate the end of the TAG. 







Any content that are encapsulated between the TAGS are affected by the function of the TAG.


A better example of this encapsulation...


<B>Rosauro Photography</B> 


This <B> means BOLD.  Any text that is in between this TAG will be bolded.


Other simple tags...





NOTE:  Not all tags need a pair. 

For example...

<HR> - Horizontal Reference (Horizontal line)

<BR> - Break or new line.  To explicitly start a new line.




By this point you probably have an idea whether or not this is for you.  What I've shown you is just a general intro to HTML.  I encourage you to go on further with learning HTML.  At least learn a few more codes.   You'll find it very enjoyable and somewhat interesting.  You never know where it may lead you to.


I highly recommend HTMLGOODIES by Joe Burns Ph.D  Start off with the PRIMERS.  This was actually used by college students to learn from.  So, why were we paying the professors for?  So here you have it... free  education. 


TAGs you should learn (including the ones previously mentioned):




<TABLE>, <TD>, <TR>


<A>, <A HREF>


<OL>, <UL>


Each tag also includes special attributes.

For example:


With <TABLE>, you can specify its BORDER size. 

Sample: <TABLE BORDER="0">  This means the border is not visible.  Good for laying out or separating page content.


With <TD> (Table data), you can specify it's COLSPAN (Column span) and ROWSPAN (Row span).


Sample:      Table below is a simple 3 x 3 table.


<table border="1" width="300" height="100">

(The width and height is specified in pixels.  The dimensions could also be specified in percentage format; i.e. "60%")


This first set of <TR> is the first row.  The next three <TD> are the three columns.
Table Row
  the code "&nbsp;" means space


This is the second row


This is the third row






Now let's add the attributes... <TD COLSPAN="2" ROWSPAN="2">  




Here's the code.


Row 1

     <td colspan="2" rowspan="2">&nbsp;</td>


Row 2


Row 3


Notice Row 1 and Row 2 only requires one extra <TD>.  This is because Row 1 already specified to take up 2 columns to the right and 2 rows below.  Row 3 remained the same.





You do not need to learn all the codes.  The reason I suggest you learn the layout and some codes is so that when you use a web page editor you can go into "code" view and actually add or remove code if the page is not behaving the way you want it to.  Some editors might add code that is not necessary. 


With a web page editor and having knowledge of HTML coding, when you want to insert a table, a link, or an image, you'll actually understand what is going on and how to look for these codes if you need to fine tune them.  These days it is faster and economical to create web pages with web page editors.


If you're too anxious to really get going and not really interested in all this coding stuff then proceed with web page editors section.




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