Web Development: The Need to Know Basics

By Chris Rossi

Web Development: The Need to Know Basics

Many articles, books and websites explain the basics of Web development, but they require a lot of time to read (and re-read) to understand fully. This article is not going be like that--it was written to provide quick answers to the basic development questions that many beginning developers need to know.

What is HTML?

Before we get into anything else let’s first go over what HTML is. HTML stands for Hyper Text Markup Language. This is the basic format for the scripting language that is used to construct the Web. The latest version of HTML (HTML 4.01) was developed by WHATWG (Web Hypertext Application Technology Working Group). They are now working on a revised version called HTML5 which focuses on the needs of application developers along with resolving issues found in the previous versions of HTML. Here is an example of what the current HTML code would look like if you were adding an image.

<img src="image_name.jpg" width="251" height="143" />

If you want some further information on HTML and HTML5, check out these pages.

Basic HTML: Introduction

What are Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)?

CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets. It is a style sheet language used to describe the design elements of the websites such as the layout, color, font size, etc. It can allow multiple pages to share the same formatting. This is what it would look if you wanted to define the height, width and background color of a specific div tag.


background-color: #000000;

width: 500px;

height: 500px;


For further information on CSS, check out these pages.

CSS Layouts Without Tables, FilleZilla, Core FTP. Some of these can be downloaded for free while others are "try before you buy" software.

Once you have your FTP Client you will see a box that says “Host”, “Username”, and “Password”. Host is where you would put the IP Address or domain name of your website. Username and Password is where you would put the username and password from your web hosting account. Once you have filled that information in, click Connect and you will see it start connecting to the server. If you have successfully connected you will see the files show up on the right side of the screen. Once you have connected, you can start to transfer files to the server. To do this either double-click on the files you want to upload or right-click and select upload.

How Do I Set Up a Web Host?

The first thing you need to do is to choose your hosting service. There are many hosts out there including Host Gator, UltraEdit and Adobe Dreamweaver,
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