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Basic Content

Content in the World Wide Web is made up of multimedia hypertext pages typically described in HTML. Web pages are multimedia because they can include text, images, audio, video, and other kinds of data. In fact, the Web protocols are extensible to deal with any kind of media. Web pages are hypertext because instead of following a linear sequence like the pages of a book, any Web page can link to any number of other Web pages, in arbitrarily complex ways.

HTML is a description language for structured documents similar to SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language), which has been the standard for professional publishing for many years. A fragment of an HTML document is shown in Figure 12-1, and a browser's rendition of it in Figure 12-2. Tags in the document source[2] describe the semantics of the document, and the details of the visual representation are left to the client software. This is a distinctly different model of description than a system such as PostScript, which describes the appearance of a document but not its structure.

[2] With HTML, a tag is marked by <tagname> in the document. If a tag is used to mark a region of text, the region will start with <tag> and end with </tag>.


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