From Ordinary Groundling Text to Cyberspace: How Is It Done?

Published: 1996-10-01

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(Widmann is co-Webmaster of CODOHWeb, writer, and family man.)

As co-Webmaster of CODOHWeb, I am constantly receiving articles from around the world to consider for posting to our website. Many revisionist articles are first published in some print format before being considered for the trip to cyberspace. But what exactly does it take to transform an article from the print medium to one on the World Wide Web? In fact, the process is quite involved and oftentimes quite challenging.

The first step is to get the article into a computerized format. In other words, it needs to be typed into a computer via a word processing software package. My software of choice is “Microsoft Word” which runs on an IBM-compatible PC (personal computer). Herein lies the first difficulty.

Many revisionists use word processors which run on Macintosh computers. Typically these two computer systems can't even read a disc created on the other unless very specialized software has been purchased and installed. The next glitch is that even those revisionists who use an IBM-compatible PC may not be using “Word” as their word processor. This is not normally a major problem, since today's word processors are quite adaptable and can read most of the competitor’s formats.

Once I can get the file into my PC, I have to convert it into what is known as "plain text" format. This eliminates all “stylistic” elements of the article; i.e., clears out fonts and point sizes and any formatting. The result is something that resembles what could have been turned out on a typewriter.

The next step is to get the article into an HTML format. HTML is the acronym for Hyper-Text-Markup-Language, the code with which all articles posted to the Web must be written. The standardization provided by HTML allows different varieties of computers and software to read what is posted. However, different web-browsing software can cause the article to appear differently. The most popular "browser" today is "Netscape Navigator." I used to go through the arduous task of doing all the HTML coding by hand, but today I import it into a software package that does the rudimentary coding for me, reducing the time and effort involved.

Now it is time to add various stylistic and aesthetic elements to the article. I go through the article adding different text styles (e.g. italics, bold, etc.) I increase the point size of various headers or titles. Then I’ve got to decide which colors to use for the text and background. This is also the time at which "links" to other articles are added. Each of these elements is triggered by a very specific HTML code.

One of the greatest difficulties I confront is the use of “foreign” words. Special code must be added for any non-English character. Typically I run into many of these in the revisionist articles that are submitted. Sometimes these foreign characters (for instance, German umlauts or the French cedille) are missing or replaced with an incongruous, computer-generated character, occasionally a small square box, or a parenthesis, or even a capital "E." When this occurs. I have to methodically go through the original to determine what the missing or replaced letter should be, and then add the HTML code which corresponds to the correct character. To represent the umlauted German u, for example, used frequently in German articles, I must insert the code "ü". Obviously, the task of coding an entire article can be painstaking.

Once the article meets my standards, it is time to upload it to the Web, in essence saving it to a computer which allows access to anyone in the world. The transformation from print to cyberspace is complete.

Why go through all this work to post revisionist articles to the World Wide Web? The answer is simple; to reach out to those around the globe who are unaware of the revisionist message, to combat the would-be book-banners and book-burners, and to pave the road of truth for future generations.

Additional information about this document
Property Value
Author(s): Richard A. Widmann
Title: From Ordinary Groundling Text to Cyberspace: How Is It Done?
Sources: Smith's Report, no. 36, October 1996, pp. 5f.
Published: 1996-10-01
First posted on CODOH: Sept. 26, 2015, 8:04 a.m.
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