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Creating Your Personal Website

To create a website, you'll want to know a few basics of HTML (HyperText Markup Language).  It is a formatting language, with codes that place graphics on the page, establish links to other pages, and make text appear bold, italicized, larger or smaller.  The web has many good sites that teach HTML basics, including the list of resources at Yahoo's List of HTML Guides and Tutorials.

You may want to make your website more interesting by adding graphics and "links" to other pages.  Links can point to other locations on the Internet (like the link in the paragraph above or those further down on this page), or point to other pages on your site.  Since I-Land allows you to use up to 10 Mb of storage space on our server, your home page can actually be a group of pages (Actually, that 10 Mb includes whatever space your home pages and associated graphics take up, plus whatever space your stored emails require.).

This page is an example of a very basic web page.  If you want to see the HTML code (also called the "source" code) that makes it look like it does, click on View, and then on Source.  HTML formatting codes are enclosed in triangular brackets like this "< >".  This page will appear in most browsers just as it looks in yours.

Note we said in most browsers.  Your site may not look like you intend it to in ALL web browsers.  When building your web page,  remember that new browsers may only recognize a new HTML feature.  You may want to test your page for compatibility with several version of popular browsers such as Microsoft's Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator, and make a note on your site if it is "best viewed" with a particular browser.

To make it easier to create your home pages, some programs, called HTML editors or web editors, have been developed.  Many newer HTML editors are "WYSIWYG" HTML editors.  "WYSIWYG" (pronounced "wiz' - ee - wig") is an acronym for What You See Is What You Get.  WYSIWYG editors make it much easier to create web pages without knowing details of HTML.  In addition to using standard HTML editors, we often use a WYSIWYG editor like Microsoft FrontPage, which codes the HTML code for you.  WYSIWYG HTML editors are very helpful, but they don't take the place of HTML knowledge when you need to "work the bugs out" of a site.

So what should you do first?  Starting with the Yahoo link above, do some reading and experimenting with creating simple pages, and consider downloading or purchasing an HTML editor such as Microsoft FrontPage.  Some newer web browsers such as Microsoft Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator now include a basic WYSIWYG HTML editor.

If you don't have an HTML editor, use any standard text editor (like your Windows Notepad) to type in your HTML document.  If you create your page in a standard text editor, be sure to save it as a ".html" file!  View your page when you're finished by loading your web browser, clicking on File, then Open, and then typing in the address of where the page is located on your computer (i.e. c:\windows\mypage.html)

Once you're satisfied with your HTML creation, it's time to copy it into your home directory on our system so that it's available on the web for others to view with their web browser.  See publishing your home page for instructions.

While we've tried to provide a basic guide for creating your website, I-Land tech support line cannot provide help on HTML related questions.  If you need more help, please search for additional Internet tutorials and resources using a search engine like Google, consider purchasing a HTML book, or team up with a friend who has already mastered the basics of HTML.