100% hand coded HTML

100% hand coded HTML

The thought

I've never been happy with folks who figured out how to use HTML editors and called themselves "HTML programmers" since. HTML coding isn't exactly a science, it is relatively easy to comprehend. However, terms like "HTML programmer" make people think it's too difficult for them, thus making them use HTML editor software.

That in itself is not the problem. The problem begins when people don't even realize later what this software does for them – and what it cannot do. In other words, not the use of editor software is the problem, the relying on it is. People start not to realize one can hand code HTML source. This initiative is meant to encourage to try.

The purpose

This document is not meant as yet another HTML how-to. There are enough of those. I'd just like to encourage, rather than assist, here. Anyway, I'm not an expert in HTML coding, so who am I to teach?

The initiative

So what do I want you to do? If this doesn't strike you as completely foolish, and if you code your HTML by hand, I'd like you to put a "100% hand coded HTML" link onto your page (or pages). The criteria of what may bear the logo and what should not are listed below. Note that they aren't fixed or clearly defined, and that they may and should be discussed. Read the following few sections, and then decide for yourself.

The non-criteria

There are several things that other Web authors tend to evangelize for and against which do not matter at all here. Use of frames, style sheets, tables, JavaScript or whatever – it doesn't matter here. This page is awfully simplistic, because I happen to like that (and can't be bothered to update it, if truth be told). Yours may be fancy – but such differences in taste should not keep you from participating.

That doesn't mean that I consider usability, portability, or correctness of HTML unimportant. In fact I'd like to see everyone writing their HTML to these standards. But they are not an issue here.

The criteria

Answer to yourself the following five questions:

  1. Do I code my HTML by hand? (If no, read on – it's not a k.o. criterion!)
  2. Am I capable of coding my HTML by hand?
  3. Can I explain the purpose of each HTML tag on my homepage to a beginner?
  4. Do I try to learn about HTML what I need to know to achieve the results I imagine, instead of looking for software that does the task for me?
  5. If I use a HTML editor, do I do so because it makes things easier, and not because it knows things I don't? (Hand coders say yes here.)

If you said yes to three or more questions, you may use the logo. If you said yes to the first and one or more of the following questions, you may use the logo. If you said no more often, consider if you wish to use the logo at all. :-)

What exactly is hand coded?

This isn't strict in any way. If you use editor macros for writing HTML tags, no problem. If you use search&replace for umlaut characters such as ä, no problem either. If you use validation tools and other helpers, that's not only not a problem – I encourage you to. I do all those things myself, and I still consider my HTML hand coded. So can you.

I flunked. Now what?

I cannot forbid the use of the logo (well, technically I could, but I can't even hope to enforce it ;-) even if you write your HTML with a WYSIWYG editor and don't give it a single look afterwards – however, I'd like to say please don't. Or at least use it in the "Links to Idiots" section of your page. :-)

If you said no too often because you're a beginner, never mind. You'll learn. If you want to. And then, of course you may use the logo. If you said things like "er, no, but I'd like to and I will", count these answers as half-yes's. It's all relative...

I made it. Now what?

I'm pleased to hear that there still are more hand coders out there. You're very welcome to include one of the following logos on your page or pages. You may also alter one of them, or create your own – but in that case please do inform me at ermel@ermel.org so that I can put it up here together with the others.

There aren't any GIF images here anymore; BurnAllGIFs.org explains why.

100% hand coded HTML

The original logo by Erik Meltzer, solid white, for pages with a white background.
JPG, 82*33 pixels, 1,707 bytes. PNG, 1,681 bytes, but looks odd on my browser.

100% hand coded HTML

First logo by Axel Beckert, solid black, for pages with a dark background.
PNG, 64*34 pixels, 1,894 bytes. JPG, 1,447 bytes.

100% hand coded HTML

Second logo by Axel Beckert, solid black, for pages with a dark background.
PNG, 60*30 pixels, 1,916 bytes. JPG, 1,413 bytes.

100% hand coded HTML

Third logo by Axel Beckert, solid black, for pages with a dark background.
PNG, 60*30 pixels, 1,760 bytes. JPG, 1,465 bytes.

100% handmade HTML

"Handmade" logo by Axel Beckert, transparent (I hope), for pages with a dark background.
PNG, 60*30 pixels, 1,860 bytes. JPG, 1,446 bytes.

100% hand coded HTML

The new logo by Erik Meltzer, grey 3-D look.
JPG, 114*31 pixels, 2.141 bytes.

The logo on top of this page may be useful for some purpose or other as well; it's here in the size shown above, 250*150 pixels, as either a PNG (30,494 bytes) or a JPG (11,477 bytes). A double-sized version (500*300 pixels) is also available, as either a PNG (84,504 bytes), a JPG (28,810 bytes), or in the Corel PhotoPaint 9 format CPT (201,509 bytes) with the three lines of text as individual objects.

Please make the logo a link to this page. You may do so by using the following HTML code:
<a href="http://www.ermel.org/handcoded/">
<img src="http://www.ermel.org/handcoded/handcode.jpg"
width="82" height="33" border="0"
alt="100% hand coded HTML"></a>
This is for the original logo – you should alter the link to the image and its size to match if you choose another one.

Alternatively, you may copy the logo to your Web server and incorporate it into your HTML using code like this:
<a href="http://www.ermel.org/handcoded/">
<img src="handcode.jpg"
width="82" height="33" border="0"
alt="100% hand coded HTML"></a>
Of course, again you'd have to alter the image's name, size, and possibly directory to match the one you copied and where you copied it to.

And of course, if your site is designed without pictures, you may also link here with only the "100% hand coded HTML" text instead of the logo.

One last thing

This initiative is quite old by now. I cannot quite remember when it first went online, but the logos on my hard drive are from 2000, and I'm sure it is quite a bit older than even that. Obviously, it has been somewhat less than a roaring success. But people still link to it after all these years, and although I've not invested much time in it, I still am, and will continue to be, interested. So please inform me if you decide to participate in this, and please include your page's URL so I can look at it. I don't mean to judge it or anything, I'm just curious. My e-mail address again: ermel@ermel.org.

Known Participators

This section has been removed, because I couldn't find the time to keep it up to date anyway.

Comments, flames, suggestions? Let me have it at ermel@ermel.org!
Last edited: July 25, 2006

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100% hand coded HTML