Website – What do I need to know? A story of an undergraduate without computer knowledge..

Social Media Background

Website – Where do I start? What do I need to know?

man at computer desk

Website – first heard by me years ago, too many to remember. I was in University. The second summer there a Professor awarded me a summer Internship.

The internship was based on Geography and involved the recording of old map information. So I asked what was needed.

The answer was that I probably needed a website and a way of collating and producing results online.

Well, what was in front of me was a challenge.  1000’s of old maps that needed sorting by date, owner and location.
I needed to start walking around campus and knocking on some department doors.

The first door was that of the geography department to get an overview of the Internship. They told me I needed to purchase a domain name, find or purchase a hosting space and probably have to link it to an online database!!!
Well, that seemed pretty clear what they wanted, but my head was a buzz of “Oh My God”, “what do I need to do now”?

I decided the best thing to do was to visit the computer science department. And when there, ask a few questions about online databases, and what do I need to make or purchase one?
After a couple or five visits to the computer geeks, I had a better idea of what I needed to do next.

The next eight weeks passed in a flash, I arrived at the university library and purchased books on Mysql and PHP, HTML and several more.

A starting point for a website.

Next, I sat down with a fellow student and he highlighted all the important things to do with HTML. That was a starting point.

It was explained that HTML was the markup language for laying out my site and how I wanted it to look. I started with an old version of an Adobe programme – Dreamweaver.
I was introduced at the same time to w3schools. This introduction of this site made the world of difference to me. Suddenly, there were easy explanations of website technologies and live sample areas for me to practice on. Undergraduate IT knowledge was starting to penetrate my brain.

Soon, everything was starting to come together. HTML coded the basic formatting and layout of text and images. I learnt to add an alternative description to an image I uploaded to the site. CSS (cascading style sheets) allowed me to manipulate the same data and layouts on different pages and saved me time on styling the website.

More to learn – Mysql was next to understand and so back to the sites and books. Mysql is a database that can be safely connected by PHP. I discovered that once you hosted a site and had Mysql on the hosting you could host files, folders, images, text and data relating to any subject matter. Now I could connect to a hosting space and upload the map information and start to produce a library of mapping in line with the internship specifications.

Finishing and moving on.

The internship introduced me to the technologies of the time. Learning the basics of website building was so interesting for me.

Since then the development of web technologies and social media has improved immensely. There has been a move to the responsiveness of websites. I have continued researching new time-saving technologies across all platforms in order to keep up with current trends.

Finally…There is no need to be scared of the plethora of information involved, after all, it only takes the use of a keyboard and a mouse…


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