Navigating the World of HTML

For my social media public relations class, we were given the assignment to learn something about any aspect of social media and present what we learned. Because this is my first time using WordPress, I wanted to learn more about WordPress and how to use HTML code to better my overall experience.

What is HTML?

HTML code stands for Hyper Text Markup Language. According to W3schools.com, HTML is, “a language for describing websites.” HTML code is a markup language, or a set of markup tags that structure the layout of the website. The tags come in pairs: one signifying the start and the other indicating the end of the command. For example, <b> and </b> make the letters between the two tags boldfaced.

Experiencing Overwhelm

HTML is an entirely different language; some of it makes sense, and some of it looks like complete gibberish. When I started to delve into the world of HTML, I became overwhelmed by the vast amount of information. It is impossible to digest everything about HTML in the amount of time to do this project, but I tried to learn the basics and the overall force behind it. This project has further sparked my interest, and I plan on trying to learn more because in today’s society, he who can build a website can conquer the world.

A Little History

HTML was invented by Tim Berners-Lee in 1989 when he created a simple language that allowed the linking of various documents together with customizable formatting. The WHATWG (Web Hypertext Application Technology Working Group) began working on HTML5, and later XHTML merged with HTML5. It is not fully functioning, but for all intensive purposes, it is the latest version of HTML, which has these priorities:

  • The core language should be simple.
  • Markup is based on semantics.
  • CSS is used for style details.
  • Pages are often applications.
  • JavaScript is central.

WordPress and HTML

I found the more I researched that learning HTML does not fully equip you to creating your own WordPress blog. The free version of WordPress has many limitations including not having the ability to customize layouts extensively. Also, WordPress also incorporates CSS and PHP. CSS is the code responsible for the presentation of a webpage; whereas, HTML is the code that indicates the structure of a webpage. PHP goes within HTML to bring in plug-ins and applications. It is necessary to be well-versed in all of these three scripting styles to customize a WordPress blog.

Conclusion

HTML is complicated and organic in nature, always changing, so it is nearly impossible to work on understanding it on the side. I better appreciate outsourcing web designers to create webpages, because they are able to dedicate their time to learning this code. I did learn some basics:

  • How to italicize
  • How to create a heading
  • How to create a list
  • How to publish a picture

I wrote this blog post while trying to implement the basic tags I learned.

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4 thoughts on “Navigating the World of HTML

  1. Bethany, I am currently taking a web design class, and I was shocked at the amount of work that goes into each site. I think I would need at least three or four more semester long courses to become somewhat comfortable with HTML. Are you interested in learning more about HTML, or you calling it quits after seeing the amount of work that goes into it? I cannot decide if I want to try to keep learning about HTML or give it a rest!

  2. I couldn’t agree more, Brynne. It would take me that many classes too. I am undecided. My interest is sparked, and I like the idea of having complete control of design in web in the future. However, I understand the benefit of simply going to an expert and focusing your attention elsewhere. I do not have time to take a class before I graduate, but if I am given the opportunity after graduation, I would take a class.

  3. I can’t help but wonder if we will need it as PR pros? You know what I mean? Will this be dedicated to someone with web design experience or will it become one of the many has PR pros have to wear? Interesting! Looks like you learned a lot!

    • I don’t think we will “need” it, but it gives you more control to know it. So to me, it depends on how independent you like working. If it drives you nuts to have control of the final look of something, it may be a good skill to acquire comparable to graphic design.

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