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Web magic explained to my grandmother

This title is obviously an allegory as my beloved grandmother left the world well before the advent of the internet. As a matter of fact, anyone can be the grandmother who doesn’t understand!

Web design is my profession and understanding the needs of my pairs is my specialty. So here are some answers to question asked by clients, some older and some less. I always understand them since web technology is very complex.


The difference between a domain name and a website

The domain name is like a phone number that leads to the website. The website itself is the actual location on the web. The website (the documents) is like an office or a store with an address (the domain name ).


A website has to be hosted

A website is a bunch of documents and tables in a database, these are stocked on a hard drive which loads the data unto your screen when you dial the proper number. As such the data is never hosted on your computer unless you have a very powerful server! You rent a space on a server and the information is stored on it. You must have a copy of the website at home but no one can access the information except you.


A domain name is a hidden number

The domain name is actually a series of numbers which translates to letters. It’s the same as telephone numbers which represent words. You can have one or many which are connected to a central main server.


Why does some address contain a www and others don’t?

Back in the days, every web address was preceded by a www but nowadays it’s not a required feature. Some people like to use it as it represents more readily a web address. As a general rule, it is not necessary and one can type an address with or without it.


Writing the name of a website on the address bar

Too many people still write the address they are looking for in the search function of their browsers such as Google or Yahoo. There is no need to look up an address which you already have! All you need to do is type the address in the address bar on the top section of the browser, that's all.The page you are looking for will open directly.


A website is very impermanent

Too many people think that a website will last forever online once it is put up. It’s true that a few very simple HTML websites can last for a very long time without maintenance but these will have the marketing impact of a drawing by a 3-year-old.