the html language


          Google Webmaster Guidelines

          Web Pages That Suck

starting-up the website

To create a webpage and display it on the Web you need the best dedicated server.

Eventually you will use a commercial server or your employer's but for now, to start the coding and testing of your webpages, you must install a local server. That will allow you to test the HTML code and the Javascript and PHP that we'll look at shortly.

The best package for our needs is called: The Uniform Server.

UniServer is compact - you can install it on a USB device and run it entirely from there.

The package contains the Apache Web server and the MySQL database server. Apache operates from port 80 et MySQL from 3306. If another Web server or MySQL is active, they must be shut down before starting UniServer. Usually, Microsoft IIS is the server active. It starts automatically as a service and you will have to stop it to run PHP on Apache.

Starting the servers:

The files have the extension .html or .php and they must be stored in the udrive of www.

  • To display the webpage that you wrote and stored on udrive (for example, index.html), enter the URL: in the address line of the browser.
    Address is the address of server localhost.
    You could also write: http://localhost/index.html.

  • structure of a webpage

    The basic webpage consists of a main tag and two sections, like this:



                        This section contains
                        instructions for the browser;
                        it is not seen by the user.



                        This is the content of the page.
                        It's what the user sees when
                        he navigates to the webpage.



    Here's what the first part of the HTML code for the homepage of this site, index.html, looks like:

    html syntax

    Note that the first line must be <html> and the last one must be </html>

    The symbols < and > denote a tag. The / a the beginning of the last tag specifies that it is an end tag, that it ends an action. In this case it says that the page is written in HTML code and at the end of the page it says that "this is the end of the HTML code". If, for example, you wanted to have some text in bold you would write it as: <b>bold</b> (the b is for bold). Tags are read and interpreted by the browser but are not displayed.

    The page that you are creating will contain 2 sections: a Header between <head> and </head> and the Content between <body> and </body>

    The page title, <title>, is important because it's used by the browser to identify the page. When you add the page to your Favorites, it's the Title that is saved as a reference to that page.

    The page description, <meta name="description" ..., is used to give a more detailed description of the content for search engines. From a marketing standpoint it's important to have it.

    introduction to seo (search engine optimization)

    You've put in a lot of work, sweat and tears to create a beautiful website. It's normal that you'd want thousands and thousands of people to visit it on the Web.

    But how is a Web surfer from China, Brazil or Kansas going to find out about your website and want to visit it? If you're really lucky your site will be featured on TV for some reason and that will draw a host of visitors. But really, how often does that happen in real life! Maybe your friends will mention your site on their Facebook page or Twitter and that will bring a certain amount of traffic.

    In real life 95% or more of your visitors will be anonymous surfers sent to you by a search engine (Google, for example). And why would Google send visitors to your website? Because you've convinced Google that your website has useful content for its clients.

    SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the science of selling the benefits of a website to the search engines.

    It's a question of knowing what the search engines want from a website and then giving it to them. But the search engines want a long list of things, some very important and many of them trivial. If you play by their rules, eventually the search engines will see the importance of your website and will give it a good ranking. If you get a #1 ranking it means that your site appears as the first one on the page for a given search. And that usually means that you'll get more traffic, more visitors to your site.

    Let's say that your hobby is volleyball.

    You build a website on volleyball : the rules of the game, training techniques, tips and tricks, etc. You put in diagrams, pictures, maybe some videos and lots of brilliant text on volleyball.

    Now, let's suppose that a coach somewhere wants information about training. He does a Google search on "volleyball drills". Google will display 197,000 results for that, at 10 per page. Coach will maybe look at the first 3 pages to find a website that he likes. Now, if your website contains lots of information about drills, you should be on the first page of results and you'd have a good chance of being seen. However, that won't happen if Google doesn't know how good your site is on "volleyball drills".

    And that's what SEO does - it tells Google how good you are.

    The reason why that is covered here is that a lot of SEO is technical in nature - it has to do with the HTML code. When you start designing a website you might as well do it with SEO in mind right from the beginning. I assure you that you will want to get to it sooner or later.


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