Headlands: User Profiles

Andrew D. Wright
Beacon Correspondent

          When you get an account on the Chebucto Community Net, you get more than just a place to receive email. You also get a home on the web, a place that you can fix up and call your own. Sitting there in your files area is your public_html directory, your web-space. If you put a web page there, others can see it.

          Quite a lot of people on CCN have built up their pages and it's always surprising what you can find there. People have an amazing range of interests and hobbies and they share them with the world. Some of these pages become very popular and are visited hundreds of times a day, and some are just quiet places; the web version of sitting around a kitchen table with the folks.

          It is fun and often enlightening to browse CCN users' Profiles when they are online with the g)o who shortcut within CCN. You can never tell what you will find or what it will teach you.

          Making your own page is not hard and often the best way to learn how to do something is to see how other people have done it. A web page is made up of something called HTML, or HyperText Markup Language. To see what this looks like, in CCN simply hit your \ key (hit it again to return to normal), and in graphic browsers, look for a menu item called View Source.

          So without further ado, here are some sites that CCN users have made for their own and others enjoyment.


Arts and Crafts

          David Whitzman <an451> is a talented artist and painter whose web site showcases his work. While the site was designed for him by someone else, David Whitzman's artwork makes this place worth a detour with a graphic browser. (Lynx users can make otherwise invisible images reload as downloadable links by hitting Shift and the 8 key at the same time while viewing the page, then they can download the pictures to their home computer for viewing there with a graphics program.)

          Margaret van Gurp <am927> is another talented painter and sculptor whose work is represented online. Her page opens with a self portrait in front of an easel and features several examples of her paintings and drawings but alas, no sculpture. The paintings make this a bright and colorful page and the simple style of her page will not leave Lynx users out in the cold either.

          Kumar Yelubandi <zookumar> has one of the more popular sites on CCN with his daily comic strip Plato's Web Public. Somewhat reminiscent of Walt Kelly's classic Pogo, this "Apricot Pixeltoon" stands up very well on its own terms and its understated humour makes it a worthy bookmark.

          Lee Mathewson <aj514> is hostess of Lee's World, a showcase of her many talents and interests. She designs dolls and knitwear among other things and even runs an online business selling her work. If you're interested in home crafts and gardening, you should take a look at this page.


Bookmarks and Miscellany

          Brian Campbell <aa356> is a man who takes his bookmarks seriously. He has them broken up into organized categories with a focus on Amiga computer sites, but also has links to sites on other subjects including entertainment and other types of older computers.

          William Morgan <aj382> has interesting bookmarks in three main categories: library-related, sports and Micro$oft. His site is geared so it presents well for text and he has chosen colors that show well for graphic browsers also. A simple and cleanly laid out site which looks good.

          Patrick Higgins <ad771> actually has his site on another server, but you can get to either the frames or no frames versions of it from his CCN web page. He has a science-based web site featuring a couple of programs he himself wrote, a well-done computer time line that is worth a detour to see and the usual collection of links including one to Microsoft Chair Bill Gates' home page (which I'd never run into before). The stars of his site though are his excellent background graphics - water ripples and fluid patterns that tile flawlessly so it looks like you're reading his page under the water in a sun-filled swimming pool. An eye-catching page.

          Richard Cumyn <aa038> is a writer with a wide selection of his material online linking from his site. Also present are a number of writer-related links. This is a site that should be a book so you can curl up and read it at your leisure, but as it stands you can keep coming back again and again to read something new each time.

          Wynne Lock <ai922> has a very detailed list of bookmarks in several categories, mostly relating to science and technology. Covering the main sites and adding several off-the-beaten-path ones for each category makes Wynne's bookmarks worth looking at in her easy-to-navigate format. Her personal pages on every major free server are fun to check out too.

          Fara Spence <aj390> hosts the Upstart Crow Writer's Roost which includes resources for writers and an online diary, among other things. Her friends even get a photo and mini-bio on her site, and Fara herself shares a great deal of her life with her online audience, as is the wont of writers. Quite nicely done for graphic browsers, with a background of a book cover setting a nice warm tone to the page, but accessible to text as well.



          If you decide to spruce up your profile, there's some things you should remember. You can't just write the file like you would write a document in a word processor. You have to write it in a format called HTML. It's not hard to learn and the creative buzz you get when looking at your nice freshly created page is well worth it.

          If you primarily use Netscape or IE to surf the net, make sure that the page also looks good with Lynx, the browser that CCN uses. Read these tips on how to make your profile Lynx compatible while still using graphics and all the bells and whistles. If you use Lynx, try to make sure that your profile looks good with Netscape and IE when placing color, fonts, alignment and so on.


You may direct comments or suggestions about this column to:

Andrew D. Wright,  au141@chebucto.ns.ca

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