4. Advanced Techniques and Features
4.1 Translating your page into other languages
AltaVista provides the Systran translation software which
allows you to provide your users with the option of translating your pages into
a number of European languages.
To create a translation option from your own page, create a
link named something like 'Translate this page' and use
to link it to
4.2 Checking your web pages for bad links and bad HTML
Once you have published your pages onto the web, there are
various sites which enable you to test aspects of your pages.
The W3C (the Web Standards Body –
) provide a free HTML checker
called “HTML-Tidy” at
You will find this especially useful if you are using Microsoft Word to create
HTML, as it will clean up Microsoft’s HTML and make it comply with the
- Link Check - uses a web robot to check whether links from your site
- HTML check - checks for errors and/or non-standard features in
the HTML of your pages
Use these features of NetMechanic
to check your own page - try the - see the
free sample page
4.3 The META tag: Controlling how others index your page
You can control how your page is indexed by remote search
engines that do robot indexing (e.g. Google), using the META tag to specify
keywords to be indexed, and a short description of your page.
META tags contain both the name of the type of information
that is contained in the tag, and the content of that information. For
<META name="description" content="Graham’s IP page - a ramble about the deficiencies of Australia's intellectual property laws.">
<META name="keywords" content="copyright, intellectual property, moral rights">
Some search engines will then index both fields, so a search
on either ‘IP’ or ‘intellectual property’ will match and
will cause the page to have a higher ranking in the list of search results than
it would otherwise. In some cases the description will be included in the search
results. Otherwise, some search engines only show the first couple of lines of
the page, or just the
4.3.1. Insert a META tag in your page
Meta-tags can be added using [Format | Page Properties |
4.4. Adding a search box – Google Integration
Providing the ability for users of your website to search over
your site is a feature which will add considerable value to the content which
you are making available.
Large sites such as AustLII usually maintain their own search
engine. However, this requires computing expertise and more access to the
hosting machines than is normally available to the general public.
Luckily, Google have made an interface to their search engine
available which will allow you to specify a Google search over the material on
4.5. Converting word processing documents automatically (RTFtoHTML)
allows you to convert word processing documents and other documents which can be
saved as Rich Text Format (also known as Interchange Format) directly into
states "RTFtoHTML may be run for 30 days from the date of acquisition of the
software for the purpose of evaluating the software. After 30 days, you must
either purchase a license for the software, or remove it from your computer
4.5.1. RTFtoHTML User Guide
For details on how to use RTFtoHTML, see the
You will need to refer to it to make effective use of RTFtoHTML.
4.5.2. Creating a document using heading levels
Heading levels (‘Heading 1’, ‘Heading
2’ ... to ‘Heading 6’ are used in HTML to give a consistent
appearance to text which is formatted at that level, irrespective of the browser
used, or its sophistication. In general, ‘Heading 2’ headings are
used as sub-headings under ‘Heading 1’ headings, ‘Heading
3’ indicated sub-headings under ‘Heading 2’ etc.
To achieve consistency over large numbers of web pages, or
large bodies of text, use of headings is recommended strongly.
One drawback of Headings is that all text in a paragraph must
be at the same heading level.
Identification of heading levels in text is also one of the
main ways by which RTFtoHTML automatically converts word processing documents
into sophisticated hypertexts.
On your test page, type some lines of text and format
different lines variously as
Heading 1, Heading 2 etc, so as to see the variations in
4.5.3. Using a pre-existing word-processing document
You will need a word-processed copy of an essay or other
document you have created (or someone else's document that you are entitled to
First , open the document in Word (or other word processor)
(unless it is already saved as rtf). If it does not have any significant
structure, give it a structure by applying Word’s ‘Heading
1’, ‘Heading 2’ etc (from the [Format | Style] menu, or from
the Style window) to headings or other significant structural divisions in your
Also apply a number of style elements such as italics and bold
to some of the text.
Save the re-structured document as Rich Text Format (RTF),
with a .rtf suffix.
Now follow the instructions above for use of
4.5.4. Alternative - without a pre-existing word-processing document
Create a short document of a few paragraphs using Word 6,
using at least 2 levels of headings to give the document some structure (see
above). Also apply a number of style elements such as italics and bold to some
of the text.
Then save the document as RTF (see above), and continue the
exercises using that
4.5.5. Cleaning up converted documents
There are usually a few things which need to be done after
converting a document using RTF to HTML, to ensure that it has maximum utility.
Here are a few to watch out for:
- Pages will often appear entitled ‘Without a Title’. As well as
giving the document a title at the top of the page, you will need to do so for
the title bar - see Exercise 3.2
4.5.6. Using RTFtoHTML to create multi-page web documents automatically
RTFtoHTML is effective in breaking long documents (more than a
few print pages) into a series of interlinked HTML pages. Read the RTFtoHTML
Run RTFtoHTML again over the document you used for the
previous exercise, but this time use it with the flag ‘-h1’ (to
break the document up at level 1 headings) or, if the document is long and
complicated enough, by using the ‘-h2’ flag (to break the document
up at level 2
4.5.7. Other RTF to HTML features
Read the RTFtoHTML User Guide and experiment using at
least one of the additional features: footnotes, tables, images and embedded