my web tools

The tools I use.

StoryKettle » Notes » my web tools

Copyright © 2010-2020, Michael M Wayman

The Story Kettle website exists to publish my stories. It contains hundreds of stories, which are text-based and static. The tools I use are described below. See also:

There are many ways to create and maintain the pages in a website:

I use the last method, perhaps because I am a control freak. Note that I have not used any of the above named software products.

What I do – read also story in twelve hours.

(Note that I have used all the software products named below.)

The content, such as a story, I usually type into a word processor (OpenOffice or MS Word) first, in normal format, not in HTML-format. It is easier to spell check or proof read or print out or cut and paste. And now the nitty-gritty of creating the content file in HTML-format:

I use a fairly conservative HTML-format for all the pages, no frames, simple CSS, no Java scripts, nothing dynamic. The pages are constructed and maintained with a simple text editor with syntax-highlighting (KWrite or UltraEdit). Lots of cut and paste. This produces pages that are quite small, fast to load and simple to crawl for the search engines.

I work with a local copy of my website on my PC. I view the pages with a web browser (Firefox and Konqueror and Chrome and Opera and sometimes Lynx). Firefox and Chrome can emulate small screens such as 320x480. I take every opportunity to use other PCs with other operating systems, other software versions, other screen sizes, other keyboards to view the website. And in particular with MS Internet Explorer.

I use the HTML ampersand-semicolon notation for all special characters (eg. the ampersand itself is represented in HTML as & that is five characters). See special characters.

I upload new and changed pages to the server (which I have never seen) with an interactive FTP (Konqueror).

I use a link checker (Linklint), an HTML syntax checker (W3C Markup Validation Service), a graphics picture manipulator (GIMP), a lot of grep, and a few (shell) scripts (dif, lin, par, tud) handwritten by Big Tone to summarise the local website, to check various features, and to do ampersand-semicolon conversions –
TIP: recode UTF-8..HTML <file1 >file2

Reading age is an interesting concept. There are online tests that measure (1) your reading age or (2) the reading age of a piece of text, such as a web page. I occasionally use the latter to test my stories, a reading age of 13 or less is good, I try to write simply.

Notes about software tools

See software links for more information.

Some software tools such as Firefox and GIMP work under Linux, Windows or Macintosh, others are more limited. Some tools such as a web browser and a text editor are often supplied with an operating system (preinstalled).

Some tools include features such as browser, WYSIWYG, link checker, syntax checker, FTP etc. However it is useful to have a text editor, other browsers, other link checkers, other syntax checkers etc. to double check your pages; specially other browsers – also on other PCs with other operating systems, other software versions, other screen sizes, other keyboards to check your website.

Note for Betonköpfe the use of vi, vim or vile is inexcusable.