|Web Hosting Deciphered
If you've ever browsed the World Wide
Web and wondered how you could stake your claim on the Internet,
like the millions of others that have done so already, then
web hosting can provide you with the services to do just that.
The Internet is a great way of sharing information and it
is possible for you to take a portion of the web and make
it your own. This article introduces the term "web hosting"
and provides some useful tips for web development once you've
obtained some web space.
What is the World Wide Web?
The "World Wide Web" is the network of computers from all
over the world that communicate with each other using the
HTTP protocol, a language that allows the transmission of
web documents. Be careful as this term is not synonymous with
the "Internet" because it is defined as a network of networks,
where the computers communicate with protocols other than
HTTP. The web is what you see on your Internet browser, the
web pages complete with graphics, sound and other information.
All this has got to come from somewhere, and this is where
web hosting comes in.
The information that you see from your web browser is contained
in web pages. These web pages are kept on computers called
web servers. Web hosting is about the storage of the web pages
so that people can access them. It is possible to host your
own websites yourself but the reasons stopping most people
doing this is that there are issues to consider with having
the right hardware and software to successfully host your
web pages. Your web pages will take a certain amount of space,
users will need to download each page to view them and your
Internet connection needs to be fast to offer good performance
to your viewers. Using specialised companies that offer web
hosting capabilities on their web servers will take most of
these worries away from you but you will need to choose wisely
and weigh up the costs and your needs. In addition to having
access to a web server, you will also need to register a domain
name (for a cost) that uniquely identifies your website.
What Web Hosting Can Do For You
The most basic service that web hosting offers is that it
exposes your web pages for others to see. The other services
are: email capabilities that allow for email to be received
and sent from your server; database capabilities that allow
for large amounts of information to be updated and accessed
on the web; and dynamic content which allows for users to
interact with the web pages you've made.
Poorly designed websites will most likely turn away users
and harm the credibility of the information it contains. Thought
should be put in on the way it looks and the way you intend
your users to interact with the content. It is also recommended
for more complex websites, a structured development process
should be followed. Here is a guide to the logical steps of
· Requirements Analysis: What is the purpose of the website?
What content should it contain?
· Design: How should the pages be linked? What structure should
they take? How should the pages interact with the user?
· Implementation: This step is the actual coding of the websites
in accordance to the previous websites.
· Testing: Does the website do what it should?
· Maintenance: Is the information on the website up-to-date?
Some useful hints for web development below are taken from
software quality aspects but they apply to the development
of websites as well. They are described in terms of web development:
Reliability: Is the website reliable? Do faults allow
for the system to continue running?
Robustness: How does the website respond to incorrect
Performance: How fast does the web page respond to
user's actions? Is it efficient in processing requests and
Usability: Is the website easy to navigate and understand?
Maintainability: Is the website easy to change? Can
new functionality be added?
Portability: What software requirements does the website
require? Will this limit the amount of potential users?
Understandability: How well do you understand the website
When designing your website, keep these quality aspects in
mind as they will help you develop pages worth visiting. How
to choose the way to host your website is half of the problem,
the other half is to create a website that people would want
to visit and come back to. Knowledge of producing a good design
can help you get the most out of your creations.
About the author:
William Ly M6.Net http://www.m6.net