Nowadays, because other languages such as XHTML require that tags be in lower case and because many people are calling for the same requirement for HTML, I strongly urge you to code in lower case at all times. It may seem fussy, but cross-platform display consistency is the goal, and that can only be accomplished by having standards everyone follows.
These tags are the bare necessities:
<html> <head> <title> Title Text Goes Here </title> </head> <body>
That is the basic HTML skeleton, but it’s not really as confusing as it looks. I’ve shown the HTML tags in red, but the tags themselves do not show up on a web page unless an error is made. They are in the “source code,” which is simply the underlying text file that contains the HTML code and content you want to be displayed for people to see.
The browser interprets the HTML tags in the source code and displays your content according to those tags. It may help you to understand the concept by thinking of HTML tags as little instruction sets that inform the browser on how to display the actual content. If the above code were a real web page, the words “Content Area” would be the only thing that would show up in a browser window.
Here’s a brief explanation of each tag…
Identifies the language used (file type) for the browser, in this case, a web page is written in HTML language.
Acts as a container for the page title and metadata. The title is necessary, but metadata is not. You can learn more about metadata later, I don’t want to clutter this up with too much information.
The title is the name of the page. The title shows up in the title bar at the top of your browser, as the text for bookmarks unless it’s changed, and in some search engines as the link text. If you look at the very top of your browser window you should see “The HTML Skeleton Explained” as the title of this web page.
Closes the title. The forward-slash ( / ) in front of the HTML element means that command is now canceled.
Closes the head section.
Between the opening and closing body tags is where you place the actual content you want to be displayed to the public.
Closes the body section
Closes the HTML element, end of the page. On the next page, we’ll introduce something new, tag attributes.