Sixteen Bits Online

APRIL 1996

Teach YourseIf Web Publishing with HTML in 14 Days

A book review by Jim Hume

Author Laura Lemay.
Publisher Sams Net Publishing
Price $53.95
ISBN 1-57521-014-2

Having looked at some of the information available on the Internet to help in the creation of a Home Page on the World Wide Web, I felt the need for a reference book that started with the basics and went through the whole gambit of using HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) and CGI (Common Gateway Interface) scripts.

I subsequently came across Laura Lemay's Teach yourself Web Publishing with HTML in 14 days and believe that it really lives up to its claim that "anyone can learn HTML and Web publishing".

It carefully leads you through everything you'll need to know from the fundamentals of creating a simple home page to the intricacies of designing and creating elaborate Web sites with advanced HTML and CGI scripts.

The book comes complete with a CD-ROM which contains source files from the book and useful third party tools and utilities and instructions for installation in Windows 3.1, and in Windows 95, where if you have the AutoPlay enabled the Guide to the CD-ROM program starts automatically whenever you insert the disc into your CD-ROM drive. There are also Macintosh installation instructions.

The Guide to the CD-ROM program requires at least 256 colours and it is recommended that you set your monitor to display between 256 and 64,000 colours. A screen resolution of 640 x 480 pixels is recommended.

The contents of the book are divided into 14 day parts. Each part providing a logical progression. For example: Day 1 deals with understanding HyperText and the World Wide Web; Day 2 Simple Web Documents, beginning with the basics and then subsequent days and exercises take you on to multimedia images sound and video; designing effective documents; putting it all on line; forms and image maps; other tricks and suggestions; managing larger presentations and sites; some excellent examples of real-life Web presentations; advanced CGI and server capabilities and finally future developments. There are three appendices, containing sources of further information, an HTML Reference and MIME types as well as a comprehensive index.

The explanations are clear and in plain English, the illustrations and layout are, in my view, excellent and it provides the opportunity for the novice to obtain hands-on practice in and writing serviceable HTML documents, before it progresses to more advanced techniques and the the intricacies of designing and creating professional Web sites with advanced HTML and CGI scripts.

It is an excellent reference and primer for both the novice and the advanced user.

Sixteen Bits Online - April 1996