The Internet gives us a two-way portal to the world.
Unfortunately, most of us only use the Internet in one direction
(i.e. receiving information). Many people never take advantage
of the full potential the Internet gives - some don't even know
what they are missing. Yet, we can never maximize the usefulness
of the Internet until we take advantage of both sides of the
spectrum and join the vast network of people who supply
information as well.
Creating a website is an easy and inexpensive way to tell the
world what is important to you. You might be surprised how many
people will be interested in your opinions, job, family, or
maybe even your recent backyard barbeque.
When I first began creating web pages, I created a website for
our family (<a
started out as a simple site to just tell what our family has
been doing recently. None of us expected anything from it. I was
so surprised when hundreds of visitors flocked to our site and
our friends sent us emails telling us how much they enjoyed and
appreciated it. Even such a simple site has been so rewarding.
In this course, we will discover how you can easily create your
own site at little or no expense. Some very useful programs
exist that make web development a simple task. No skill is
needed. Experience is not required. Learning HTML is
unnecessary. Simply point, click, drag and drop, let the program
write all the HTML for you, and you're on the road to creating a
<h2 align="center">Let's Start From the Very Beginning...</h2>
A very important first step is to decide what your site is going
to be about. Who is your audience going to be? Is your website
for everybody, or for specific people? What are they interested
in? Be specific. Write it down. Once you are able to formulate
your thoughts clearly on paper, you are ready to proceed onto
the next step.
Next, think about specific pages you want on your site. Write
down everything you think of. Finally, take everything you have
written and organize it into a site map. Making a site map will
help you visually plan the navigation of your site. Avoid
putting too many links on the home page. If the number of links
exceeds 10, group them under several broad links. For example,
if your site is about music, instead of having links for Mozart,
Beethoven, Bach, etc. on the home page, you would have one link
Remember, taking some time to plan before you begin can save you
a lot of trouble in the future. Planning will also give your
site a feeling of continuity, visitors can easily find what they
are looking for, and as a result they will want to come back.
<h2>Web Page Editors</h2>
A web page editor (sometimes referred to as a "web editor" or
simply "editor") is an invaluable tool that will assist you in
making web pages. Requiring no knowledge of HTML, some editors
have a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) interface in which
all you need to do is drag and drop items, and it writes all the
HTML for you. However, some people think that to be really good
at web development you need to be able to code in straight HTML.
Furthermore, they declare that using a web page editor is
"cheating." But the very opposite is true. By using an editor
you can design impressive web pages without even knowing HTML.
I have looked on the Internet for a web page editor that is
free, easy to use, requires no knowledge of HTML, and is
full-featured. While free editors have been made, many are of
poor quality. One editor I found had nothing more than "stone
aged" features - except for the ad it places at the bottom of
each page telling your visitors that they can make their pages
look just as bad for free.
By far, the best editor I found is "Selida." You can download it
at http://www.amaryllis.8m.com and click "download." Note:
Selida is a rather large file. If you have a dial-up connection,
it can take over an hour to download. With an effective program
I found called "Download Accelerator," I was able to download it
in 15 minutes. Check it out at www.speedbit.com.
<h3 align="center">Selida</h3> Selida has a WYSIGYG, so you
don't need to know HTML to use it. The WYSIWYG is called "Design
Mode." For your convenience, most of Selida's features are
accessible from the "Insert" menu. For example, if you want an
image on your page, you would simply click in your document
where you want the image to go, and select "Image" from the
menu. Reducing the complex process of web development to a
simple point-and-click, Selida can help cut out a lot of the
time needed to make your web pages.
Selida also comes with some very useful templates. If you find a
template you like, simply edit it, save it, and you've finished
a web page. It's that easy! (No, it's not cheating.)
I strongly encourage you to start developing your own website.
Even if you don't think you have the skill, you might be
surprised how easy, fun, and rewarding it can be. When I started
working on our family website (<a
simply wanted to learn and enjoy web development. But once I
launched it, I found that it was a lot more than just fun. It
has been very useful and rewarding. One of the best things about
web development is that it's free - if you decide you don't like
it, (which I hope won't occur) you're not obligated to keep
going because you bought an expensive editor and paid for a
year's hosting service. You can even get web hosting for free!
About the author:
Philip Naudus is currently webmaster of three sites. His newest
site is <a href="http://www.xenolth.biz">www.xenolth.biz</a>,
which is made to help webmasters find the best web design
Philip has written a sequel sequel to this article, in which he
discusses free web hosting providers and what to expect of them.
You can find it at <a href="http://www.xenolth.biz/starterkit">