World Wide Web pages are not hard to write. Anyone who knows how to write a coherent sentence can learn the basics of Web authoring in five minutes.

The language of the Web is called HTML, the Hypertext Markup Language.

In six easy steps, you can publish pages on the Web:

  1. Satisfy the prerequisites
  2. Learn HTML
  3. Do the Dirty Work
  4. Enhance your page
  5. Put source material onto the Web
  6. Spread the word

If you have an account, you can have your own home page on the World Wide Web. If you don't, you can probably get one from wherever you are getting your internet account. This tutorial is tailored to Obscure Organization users.


People have written many good introductions to HTML. Here are a few to get you started:


You could create your web directory by hand. I learned how from a GMU tutorial. To take the easy way out, and start a terminal session with Obscure with telnet or ssh. For example, you can type "ssh" at the command prompt or "Run" facility of most operating systems to start this session. After entering your username and password, you need to type command:


This will create a publicly-accessible Web page in your directory. The name of this directory is public_html. The directory is readable by anyone on this server, and through some Web server magic, to everyone around the world.

The address of a web page is referred to as a URL, a Uniform Resource Locator. Your home page address will be of the form:

(Of course, replace the phrase "username" with your obscure user ID.)

You can then use any web browser to view your home page. If you are logged into, you can use the command-line browser lynx to view your home page by typing:


You could also type:

lynx index.html

Lynx can be used in this way to view any local file.

All of your publicly-accessible Web files need to go in the directory public_html. You can change directories to that directory by typing:

cd public_html

You will notice that your prompt now reflects the directory. You can edit your homepage by typing:

nano index.html


You probably want to jazz up your home page with graphics, or some text you have on your home computer.

Remember that people viewing your pages might be doing so from a variety of browsers and connection speeds, so sparing use of graphics is appropriate. Small graphics files (<50KB) are good. JPEG files are better than GIF files for photo-realistic images, and much smaller. Please use them for such images.

If you want to add files to your homepage, you need to get them into your public_html directory.

In your home page, you can refer to these files by adding an anchor tag of the following format:

<a href="/~loginid/mylinks.html">My Links</a>


You need to use sftp or scp to transfer the files from your computer to the server. Tell your SFTP client to connect to '', and put the files into the "public_html" directory.


Once you have a page, tell all your friends about it. You might want to put a reference to it in your .signature file, so that anyone who gets mail from you or reads a news posting from you receives the address of your home page.

You might want to register your home page with Google or other web search engines, so the whole world can find it.

You could announce your page on an Internet forum or mailing list where it would be topical. You might also try submitting it to a community-moderated blog such as Reddit or

If you have questions concerning the web page creation process, please contact:

Richard Bullington-McGuire <>