|I get messages every day from people asking for help in creating Web sites.
This page provides links to some of the excellent resources available on the Web. It's not intended to be a comprehensive list; if that's what you're looking for, try one of the general reference sites listed below. Instead, this page lists some of the best resources for the major areas of Web page design.
If you can't find an answer here, take a look at my HTML FAQ, which has answers to some of the most common questions I get asked about Web page design.
General Reference | HTML | Colors | Style | CGI | Forms | Counters
Guestbooks | Frames | Java
These sites have large, organized collections of links to information about every aspect of Web page design.
Andrew King's Webreference. A very attractive, well-organized site, with loads of links and substantial amounts of original content.
Web Developers Virtual Library. Thousands of links to resources on Web page design.
HTML Writers' Guild. An excellent annotated list of resources.
World Wide Web section of Yahoo. Lots and lots of links, but not much filtering or organization.
These documents describe the HTML markup language, which is used to create Web pages.
World Wide Web Consortium. The official specifications.
The Bare Bones Guide to HTML. My own entry into the field. A comprehensive yet concise "cheat sheet" of HTML tags, including Netscape extensions, in common usage.
HTML Documentation by Ian Graham. An excellent, detailed (but long) tutorial.
Introduction to HTML by Eric Meyer.
Beginner's Guide to HTML. A tutorial from NCSA, the folks who created the Mosaic browser.
Setting Background and Text Colors
Colors in HTML must be entered in the form of hex triplets. Several pages provide tools to help generate the color codes; choose the one that you find most useful.
Background FAQ by Mark Koenen. A great resource with lots of information about the color tags and links to various tools.
RGB Triplet Chart. This page has a large graphical chart with about 250 colors and their hex triplet equivalents.
Colour Selector. Allows you to select colors for background, text, and links from scrolling lists. Shows you how your choices look on screen and provides the HTML code you need to generate those colors.
Color Codes Chart List. A huge chart listing hundreds of colors in RGB, hex, and named form.
Style and design are often overlooked in creating Web pages, but the way you present information has a tremendous impact on the way people respond to your pages.
My (brief) thoughts on what makes a good home page.
Jorn's thoughts on HTML style.
Yale C/AIM style guide. The dean of Web style guides.
World Wide Wide Consortium style guide.
W3C HTML validator. Lets you check your HTML code to make sure it complies with the official specifications. It is generally a good idea to validate all of your pages before putting them online.
CGI Scripting -- General
Common Gateway Interface (CGI) scripts can be used to perform many powerful functions, including adding forms, guestbooks, and access counters to your pages, as described below. Your ability to use CGI scripts will usually depend on whether your service provider offers access to the cgi-bin directory of the server.
The CGI Resource Index. An organized collection of thousands of CGI scripts and resources.
NCSA's overview of CGI.
Matt's Script Archive.
The sites below offer information on how to write scripts and HTML code to process fill-out forms in your Web pages. This sometimes requires that you put CGI scripts on your server, so you need to check with your service provider to find out whether they support forms.
Instantaneous Introduction to CGI and Forms. Detailed information on how forms work and how to implement them.
Access counters let you see how many people have accessed your page. They are ususally implemented either by using CGI scripts or by scanning the systemwide access log files that your server generates automatically.
Webcounter. Another "third party" counter service that doesn't require a script on your server.
Pagecount. Yet another "third party" counter.
Several of the sites listed in the CGI section of this page include counter scripts.
Guestbooks let people who view your pages "sign in" and leave messages for you and others to peruse. You can create a guestbook manually, as I have, by using a form to gather information and adding the responses to your guestbook page by hand. If you are able to put CGI scripts on your server, you can create a guestbook that updates automatically.
The World Famous Guestbook.
Several of the sites listed in the CGI section of this page include guestbook scripts.
Netscape 2.0 supports a new feature called "Frames" that lets you split up the window into independent scrollable panes, each of which can display a different Web page or image.
The Netscape Frames tutorial by Charlton Rose.
Java is a programming language that allows you to embed small "applets" in your Web pages.
Gamelan. Probably the premier Java site on the Web. Lots of free applets to try out.
These pages contain libraries of public domain graphics and other tools that you can use to spruce up the look of your pages.
Clipart.com. A huge collection of links to free clip art on the Web.
Barry's Clip Art Server. Another large collection.
Rocket Shop. High-quality 3D clip art.
GIF Wizard. Automatically optimizes your GIF files to reduce file size.
Pixelsite. An amazing interactive graphics renderer and some great freeware clipart.
One of the most popular ways of creating animated graphics on Web pages is through the use of animated GIFs.
GIF animation tutorial.
Rose's animated GIF library.
Embedding Sound Files
There are several methods to embed sound files into their pages so that the sound plays automatically when the page is launched.
Embedding sound in Web pages. A tutorial on the WebReference site.
Crescendo help page. Crescendo makes a Netscape plugin to play midi files. This page described how to put these sound files on your pages.
Advertising Your Pages
Everyone wants people to know about their pages. These sites allow you to register your page with various announcement and "what's new" services on the Web.
Submit It!. Lets you use one form to submit your page to about a dozen different places.
LinkExchange. Advertise for free on other sites in exchange for banners on your pages.
Webcom instructions on how to publicize your site.
In general, the best way to figure out how to do things with the Web is to experiment, and to look at what other people have done and how they have done it. Use the "View Source" command in your browser to see how other people have constructed their HTML. Good luck!
Copyright © 1995-2003 by Kevin Werbach. Last updated March 10, 2003.