HTML Howto, Amiga Computing 87, June 1995

“So what is it?”

HTML is simply standard ASCII text as produced by any half decent text editor with embedded commands (called tags) to allow all sorts of fancy things to happen to your text such as include graphics, change the font, embolden things and link to other resources on the Web when viewed through a Web brower.

Tools of the trade

To edit your HTML, you’ll need a text editor – ED on your workbench disks will do though my favourite editor is VIM which can be found on Aminet, like all the files listed below.

Graphics can be included in your documents too, and for best compatibility these really should be in GIF format as while the Amiga Mosaic supports all file formats known by your datatypes selection, other Web clients do not have this facility and are stuck with GIF.

A conversion program to produce GIF files is therefore essential. There’s plenty out there to do this but for shareware I’d recommend ImageStudio as found on Aminet.

You’ll also need the GIF datatype: As AMosaic uses datatypes you’ll need OS 3.0 or better to get inlined images, too.

JPEG files are common as well, so you’ll need the JPEG datatype and some IFF to JPEG converter should you want to produce your own.

If you want to annoy other users, sound links can be made too so you’ll need a conversion program to produce .au files and play them back. Playback can be handled by the AMS suppliment from Commodore which can be again found on Aminet.

Less common over the Web is use of animation, though it is supported by some machines in the form of MPeg or Quicktime files. MPlay will play back mpegs fairly well and XAnim supports mpeg along with Quicktime files too, though is buggy at the moment.

A nice tool to aid HTML composition is called HTML-Heaven from Paul Kolenbrander. This is a program which interfaces to any AREXX compatible editor (like ED) and allows tags entry to be replaced with a single click of the mouse.

Finally, you’ll need AMosaic along with MUI 2 or above.

Now you’re tooled up, let’s actually take a peek at what this HTML stuff is then, shall we?

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