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HABA Member Web Sites

These are web sites of HABA members, which may or not be of a Blacksmithing nature. If you would like yours included here, please send an email to webmaster.

Don't have a web page yet? See comments below for how to get started.

HABA 2005 Member Web site
Tom Lundquist Bluebird Forge
Guido Schindler Schindler Metalworks
Darryl Guertin DGuertin.Com
Christian Darce Purpleheart Armoury
Richard Boswell Stress Engineering Services
Boswell Farms
Tree Forge
Cathy Porter Catherine Elaine Porter
Gary Evensen Evensen Ironworks
Tom Stovall Katy Prarie Forge
Cowboy Szymanski Phenix Knives
Dave Koenig Tudor Forge
   



Getting Started with Web Pages

Web page technology is easy if you know what to do. If you have not tried it yet then consider these simple suggestions. A good idea is to go to the bookstore and get a book or two about this.

To connect to the Internet you need a dial up account. This is a telephone number your computer calls and connects to the global network of computers full of information about blacksmithing and possible customers for your creations. When you are connected you are in charge about who you receive information from by selecting a url address or clicking on hyperlinks. Soon you have a list full of bookmarks to return you to your favorite or other so noted sites.

The top quality of a good provider is fast connectivity with no busy signals or dropped sessions, and reachable Technical Support. Usually this can be obtained for a monthly fee. Providers are as numerous as weeds in a field, and choosing one you can trust is not as difficult as it used to be. Also, you get a place to receive e-mail through, and usually several mailboxes are provided.

For simplicity this discussion will suggest two options : Earthlink and Everyone's Internet. (Simply click on the underlined hyperlinks and you will be taken there). Both will offer special deals during the year such as first 3 months free. The service will cost $10 - $20 per month and you can be connected for as long as you want to be. They will provide you info on how to set your computer up to establish a link with the general Internet when the modems complete their handshaking protocols.

Ok, so now you are connected, and you want to have a site. There are two easy ways to do this. The first is through your Dial Up Account. They usually provide a significant amount of space on their computer to place your files for the world to see if you let them. The drawback with this method is the name of your site. For instance, when I got started my web page address was http://www.mindspring.com/~us034867/home.html . Not very pretty is it? Most are less cumbersome than this today.

The better way is to obtain your own domain name like hammerdude.com . Both of the example providers offer package deals which usually waive or discount setup fees when you choose their web hosting packages. Note that your dial up provider does not have to be your web host! First you use their tools to find a name not already in service and registered. Names cost money to be registered on a yearly basis. The registry is the master database that directs traffic and connects you to the destination you requested. It points you to the server that has the files you asked for. One of the original providers of this service is Network Solutions .

A typical package provides a year or two of this service, which can be easily paid with credit card.

A good reccomendation for this service is at godaddy.com which can register your name for $9 and host your site at half the cost of many other vendors at $6/month. One feature to look at is the single page web site for only $15/yr which includes tools to build it.

For more sophisticated web hosting and service look at Guidon which is presently hosting this web site.

Now the hard part begins: what do you want to say, and how do you want to say it?

How is easier than what. Many web sites are simple text files downloaded to your computer, with special formatting code to display them and make them responsive to your commands. This is called HTML format. Most browsers have a feature that lets you see and save the coding of any web site you visit. Find one you like and study how it was done. The more sophisticated sites have more complicated programming built in to them. There are tools available to help you program a page. Many programs such as Word have a feature that converts a document to a web page but these are not always appealing. The main HABA page and all of its supporting pages are done with a program called Hot Dog which is an assisted HTML formatter. You can code the formatting totally in your text editor without special tools and software. Being blacksmiths, you can also make all the nails you need to build a house.

Finally you have a dial up account, a web host account, and a page to post on the web. How do you get it there? Many of the host servers will provide you this service within their tool kit. The general way is to use an FTP (File Transfer Protocal) program that is like using Windows Explorer File Manager between your computer and the remote host computer. This requires a couple of settings from your host (ID and password) to configure but is not too difficult when Technical Support clues you in. See ipswitch.com for info on WS_FTP programs. Many other file transfer programs are available for download at sites such as ZDNet which has free and free to try programs.

So that's it in a nutshell. I do this as a hobby, so I know you can get better professional advice. Good luck and let us know when we can visit you on the web!

Happy Hammerin,
Richard Boswell, HABA Webmaster
2004