Meta Tags And Keywords

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Meta tags provide author information and other attributes of a Web page. Meta tags are located in the HEAD section of the Web page. In addition to the Meta tags, the keywords reside in the HEAD section and are invisible when they are placed in Web page code. Search engines use the keywords to index pages. When you type in a keyword in a search engine, it looks for all occurrences within Meta tags of Web pages. It is a good idea to add keywords to your Web pages.

The Macromedia Dreamweaver Help screens explains that: Many search-engine robots (programs that automatically browse the Web gathering information for search engines to index) read the contents of the Keywords Because some search engines limit the number of keywords or characters they index, or ignore all keywords if you go beyond the limit, it’s a good idea to use just a few well-chosen keywords. Enter your keywords, separated by commas, in the text box labeled Keywords. (Macromedia Dreamweaver online Help, 2004) To add keywords to your Web page, open the page in Dreamweaver, go to the Macromedia Dreamweaver Menu:

1. Insert>HTML>Head Tags>Keywords
2.Add words that describe you, the disciplines, and projects you are involved in — here is an example: design, art, multimedia, dimarco, Web portfolio, e-portfolio, computer graphics.
3.After inserting these keywords, your Web pages will look and function the same.

However, they will be more likely to be seen in search engines when information seekers type in the keywords you listed. Review and Conclusion Reviewing the web design lesson, it is important to point out how the technical processes are authored to program the Web page’s capabilities for the user. After opening a sliced page from Macromedia fireworks, we see that the designs we created have been neatly placed into a table based on our slices.

Each slice is a graphic which holds space within a table cell. Each table cell was generated from a slice. Tables can be converted to layers for easier movement and manipulation, or you can simply use the existing table. Table cells can be manipulated using the Properties Inspector. Each table and cell with it has specific attributes that can be changed using the Properties Inspector. The most important navigational element seen in the Web portfolio is the link. Links provide an interactive experience and are the basis of all hypermedia. Linking occurs between pages and other Web sites for the purpose of providing an easy path to locating content. Broken links cut the user off from the content, so they must be thought out structurally and checked during testing phases.

Links need to be consistent throughout the Web portfolio both in visual style and hierarchal position. Top-level navigation and links must stay at the top level on all pages. This is true for sub-navigation as well. Other navigational elements that were discussed include jump menus and drop- down menus which are effective when there are lists of items that need to be accessed by the user. Isolating contact may require you to create a pop-up window. The pop-up window is simply a Web page that has launched from a JavaScript attached to text or a graphic. Opening browser windows is a great technique for the Web portfolio because it allows you to control the window size and literally create a micro site for the portfolio work. Visual feedback in navigation elements is seen in rollovers.

Rollovers provide the user with a change in state of the button or linked graphic. The change of state is typically visual and lets the user know that the navigation element is live and linked to go someplace. Using rollovers should be planned out so that each time rollovers are used they have a purpose and are not simply added to the design for ornamental or entertainment purposes.

Discussion on timelines within Macromedia Dreamweaver showed us how we can add layers to timelines and then structure keyframes along the timelines in which change can occur. Timelines in Dreamweaver allow motion of layers across a Web page and also provides the ability to have a layer be visible or hidden at a certain point in time. Using timelines may not be needed for basic Web portfolios. But, as you start to experiment more and more with Web software applications you can begin to integrate what you have learned into your existing Web portfolio.

Finally, the basic JavaScript commands were discussed in the context of behaviors and handwritten codes. Behaviors are JavaScripts which are ac- cessed inside of Macromedia Dreamweaver. Creating both Windows using open browser window is an example of using a behavior. Writing the JavaScript to close a browser window is an example of handwritten codes. Both applications were examined and you should practice in executing JavaScripts using behaviors and writing basic scripts similar to the close window one. Once you have completed Web authoring using Macromedia Dreamweaver you should have a working, ready to publish Web portfolio.

The Web portfolio would be considered an HTML-based Web site. All you really need is an HTML-based Web site. Loading times, user acc essibility, space needs, and development difficulty are all lessened in the case of an HTML Web portfolio versus a flash based Web portfolio. The scenario is to have a stable HTML Web portfolio that integrates some multimedia components developed in Macromedia flash. The amount of flash components that you place in the Web portfolio is entirely up to you. The next web design lesson addresses motion graphics and audio development using Macromedia flash and Adobe audition.

The web design lesson is somewhat technical in nature. But, again only the most important flash components for Web portfolio inclusion are shown. What I have tried to give you are some simple techniques that you can use to create flash text animations and a simple audio switch which allows the user to turn a Web portfolio soundtrack on or off. Now let’s go to the next web design lesson and examine motion graphics and multimedia production in the context of the Web portfolio.

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