Introduction To Web Technologies

Written by Richard Lowe

There are literally hundreds of difficult technologies available torepparttar webmaster. Making proper use of these technologies allowsrepparttar 133596 creation of maintainable, efficient and useful web sites. For example, using SSI (server side includes) or CSS (cascading style sheets) a webmaster can change every page on his web site by editing one file.

A few ofrepparttar 133597 more common technologies are listed below.

ASP - Active Server Pages are used to perform server-side scripting. This is a way to get things done onrepparttar 133598 web server, as opposed to, say, JavaScript, which lets you get things one onrepparttar 133599 client (browser). Although there is a Unix and Linux version of ASP, it is primarily intended for use on Microsoft web server based systems.

ASP is useful for tasks such as maintaining a database, creating dynamic pages and respond to user queries (and many other things as well).

CGI - Common Gateway Interface is one ofrepparttar 133600 older standards onrepparttar 133601 internet for moving data between a web page and a web server. CGI is by far and awayrepparttar 133602 most commonly used method of handling things like guestbooks, email forms, message boards and so on. CGI is actually a standard for passing data back and forth and not a scripting language at all. In fact, CGI routines are commonly written in interpreted languages such as PERL or compiled languages like C.

CSS - You use Cascading Style Sheets to format your web pages anyway that you want. CSS is complicated, butrepparttar 133603 complication pays off by being able to create web pages that look much better than otherwise. One very nice feature isrepparttar 133604 ability to define formatting commands in a single file, which is then included in all of your web pages. This let's you make one change to modifyrepparttar 133605 look of your entire site.

HTACCESS - The .htaccess file allows you to set parameters for your web site and folders (directories). The most common use is to protect directories by defining usernames and passwords. Htaccess can be used for many other things as well, including denying access to specific addresses, keeping out hostile spiders and redirecting traffic transparently torepparttar 133606 user. The downside of htaccess isrepparttar 133607 language used is often extremely obscure, difficult to understand and extraordinarily precise. A small error in your htaccess file can disable your entire web site untilrepparttar 133608 error is fixed.

Java - Java is a client-side (meaning it's executed byrepparttar 133609 browser notrepparttar 133610 server) language. It is efficient and very powerful. The primary advantage of Java over ActiveX is Java has a sane security model (calledrepparttar 133611 Sandbox Model), whilerepparttar 133612 ActiveX model is so imbecilic as to defy imagination. Java is also much less likely to crash systems. Onrepparttar 133613 other hand, Java is substantially slower than ActiveX, and there are many tasks that simply cannot be performed in Java because it is denied access torepparttar 133614 operating system and disk itself.


Written by Richard Lowe

Believe it or not, browsingrepparttar web with Internet Explorer or Netscape is relatively new. It wasn't that long ago (ten to fifteen years) whenrepparttar 133595 tools you would use onrepparttar 133596 internet (not repparttar 133597 web) were email, gopher (a menu based browser), archie (a file and directory locator) and FTP.

The letters FTP stand for File Transfer Protocol, and that's exactly what FTP allows you to do - transfer files from place to place. In fact, FTP is by farrepparttar 133598 most efficient (the fastest) way to copy large files acrossrepparttar 133599 internet.

Today many people use a sophisticated FTP client to get files to and from their web sites. This has several advantages overrepparttar 133600 method commonly used by amateurs on free web sites. Many newbies who don't know any better userepparttar 133601 gadgets provided by their free host to edit their sites. The problems with this are many and varied.

First,repparttar 133602 gadgets are not very impressive as editors. Most users who want to create a web site of any size and complexity will find themselves constrained horribly by these tools. Probablyrepparttar 133603 only good thing about these editing tools is they give people a nice, easy way to start creating web sites without a huge learning curve. But take my word for it, you will outgrow them soon enough.

In addition, a major problem isrepparttar 133604 editing is generally done directly onrepparttar 133605 host site. This means you do not have a back up of your site on your own hard drive. If your host decides to close your account, goes bankrupt or just plain is unavailable, you lose your site. If you ever want to have a frustrating experience, just try and call your host and ask them to restore your site from one of their backups!

Other people use products such as Dreamweaver or FrontPage, which include site updating capabilities. These are often very convenient until they don't work or perform unexpected actions. For example, I spent several days trying to figure out why my CGI routines were not working, until I realized that FrontPage was uploadingrepparttar 133606 files incorrectly. From that moment forward, I used an FTP package to upload my files.

Most ofrepparttar 133607 modern FTP clients are very simple to use. You just launchrepparttar 133608 program, enter some basic information (such asrepparttar 133609 site address, account name and password) and connect. Once connected, you can usually just drag and drop files from your own hard drive torepparttar 133610 site.

Precisely why is it a good idea to use an FTP client over, say, FrontPage (or Dreamweaver) or direct editing on a hosts web site?

FTP is fast and efficient - As it turns out, FTP is actually one of repparttar 133611 most efficient ways to transfer large amounts of data onrepparttar 133612 entire internet. Don't believe me? Try transferring a very large file, say a megabyte, using FTP. It really moves, doesn't it?

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