HTML for ACS Use

Ever wondered how you could make your postings in forums, news and similar places more interesting?



HTML is the answer and you can learn the basics in just a few minutes. Read on if you would like to enhance the clearity and usefulness of your postings and make your voice heard.



Line and Paragraph Breaks



The most important thing to notice about HTML is that a line doesn’t break unless you tell it to do so. You break a line by typing <br>, and you separate paragraphs with <p>.













You type in this: And it’ll turn out like this:
This might be a poem &lt;br&gt;
And the next stanza is here.
This might be a poem
And the next stanza is here.
This is one paragraph.
&lt;p&gt;
This is the next.
This is one paragraph.

This is the next.

This is one paragraph.

This is the next.
This is one paragraph.

This is the next.

This one didn’t have a line break, because you didn’t tell it to.





Emphasize your text



You might want to emphasize portions of your text to get your point through. Either by putting it in italics or making it bold.





Basically, you just tell the browser when to start to emphasize and when to stop.













You type in this: And it’ll turn out like this:
Emphasizing is &lt;em&gt;really&lt;/em&gt; useful.
Emphasizing is really useful.
Emphasizing is &lt;strong&gt;really&lt;/strong&gt; useful.
Emphasizing is really useful.




Lists



Lists can help you organize a bunch of information in a clear and readable way. Most widely used are the ordered and unordered lists.





Just as with emphasizing, lists require you to tell when to start and when to stop a list. On top of that you have to mark up each individual part of the list.













You type in this: And it’ll turn out like this:
&lt;ul&gt;

&lt;li&gt; It's easy &lt;li&gt; It enhances readability &lt;li&gt; It looks good

&lt;/ul&gt;
  • It’s easy
  • It enhances readability
  • It looks good
&lt;ol&gt;

&lt;li&gt; It's easy &lt;li&gt; It enhances readability &lt;li&gt; It looks good

&lt;/ol&gt;
  1. It’s easy
  2. It enhances readability
  3. It looks good




Note, that the only difference between the two lists is how you start and stop the list: <ul></ul> makes an unordered list, and <ol></ol> gives you a list with numered items.





Links



Inserting a link to another web page is often very useful. The tag look like this:









You type in this: And it’ll turn out like this:
&lt;a href="http://www.pinds.com"&gt;My web site&lt;/a&gt;
My web site




The page you want to link to is in quotes ("http://www.pinds.com"). The text you want the user to be able to click on is between the <a ….. > and </a> tags.





Summary



You’ve learned the four most important types of tags:





Line breaks:
<p> for paragraph breaks.
<br> for line breaks.



Emphasis:
<em>Italic text</em>
<strong>Bold text</strong>



Lists:
<ul>
<li>item one
<li>item two
</ul>



Links:
<a href=”http://www.pinds.com”>the text to display</a>



This is all you need to make your postings turn out a lot nicer, but there’s a lot more you can do. You’ll find plenty of resources on the web for learning HTML. Some of the more important are:





  • <a href=”http://photo.net/wtr/thebook/html.html”>The HTML chapter of Philip and Alex’ Guide to Web Publishing
  • <a href=”http://hotwired.lycos.com/webmonkey/96/53/index0a.html?tw=authoring”>The Webmonkey guide
  • Claus’ longer tutorial


Good luck!

1 comment

Mind your P's and Q's <p>Well, actually just your P's...</p> <p>In the old days, <b>&lt;p&gt;</b> meant "paragraph break". For backwayds compatibility this is still supported, but it's not great.</p> <p>Nowadays, the pair of tags <b>&lt;p&gt;</b> lorum ipsum dolor.... <b>&lt;/p&gt;</b> are used to indicate the start and finish of a paragraph BLOCK.</p> <p>Blocks are very imortant if you want to manipulate or access the DOM model of your document, even if your use only extends to applying CSS. Correctly nested blocks should also help to speed browser rendering, and improve the similarity in cross-browser rendering.</p> <p>And yes, I do know 'DOM model' is a tautology</p>
By Mark Aufflick on Mon, May 22, 00 at 02:00 · Reply
  Cancel

Leave a comment