Indiana Biographies
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Q I don't have any web space available.  Can I still be a County Coordinator?
A Yes.  There are a number of servers on the web that provide small amounts of free web space.  See the item entitled "Free Web Space" below. 
Contact: Deb Murray 
Q How do I get my biographies on the Indiana Biographies page?
A You don't.  Your biographies need to be kept with your county page on your server. 
Contact: Deb Murray 
Q Why do I have to use text files?  Won't the biographies need to be in html format?
A You don't have to use the text format. Some people prefer text because it's easier to create. There are pros and cons for Text or HTML, it is up to the county coordinator to decide which will work best for them.
Contact: Deb Murray 
Q Can new biographies by typed directly into e-mail?
A Yes, however, please be aware that there are some pitfalls associated with typing biographies directly into an e-mail. Not the least if which will be improperly formatted biographies. That means someone has to do a lot more work to make the biography work on the web.  The other reason is simpler; if you save each biography as a separate file, you will only have to type it once. 
Contact: Deb Murray 
Q Why do I have to leave a message on the Bio-L mailing list when I add new biographies?
A So both the State Coordinator and the Assistant Coordinator have the information on all new biographies.  The State coordinator maintains a list of biographies and a biographies archive. The Assistant Coordinator is responsible for maintaining the names index. 
Contact: Deb Murray 
Q I already have a large number of biographies as html documents.  Do you expect me to convert them all to text files?
A We understand the amount of time and effort that has gone into typing all those bios, Therefore if you are building a County Biographies site from a pre-existing html library, go ahead and use what you have.  This does however significantly increase the workload of the state coordinator and assistant coordinator.  New sites with no pre-existing html library should adopt the text file format. Contact: Deb Murray 
Q Is there a standard way to name the biographies?
A Not really.  As long as the file is in the correct format (DOS Text) and has the ".txt" extension, it should be just fine.  If you use Windows95 to create your biography files, a good way to name them is to use the full name of the subject in lower case without any spaces or punctuation.  For example:  Enos T. Taylor would become enosttaylor.txt.  This is not a requirement, just a good idea.  If you use Windows 3.1x, you could abbreviate the name like ettaylor.txt. Once the file is uploaded to your server, you can then rename it to a more descriptive name if you wish. 
Contact: Deb Murray 
Q I don't know a thing about creating web pages but I am willing to learn. Can someone help me get started?
A Absolutely!  You can contact Deb Murray or Scott Satterthwaite for some pointers.  There is also a sample page you can modify and use.  See the section below entitled "HTML Sources" Contact: Deb Murray 
Q Does my county page have to look just the the sample page?
A Not at all.  In fact, we encourage you to be creative with your web page.  Make it your own creation.  Keep in mind, however, that a lot of graphics on a page make it look nicer but can make it painfully slow when loading. 
Contact: Deb Murray 
Q Where can I find those neat buttons and backgrounds for my web page?
A There are many web site that have graphics collections available for download.  Check the links in the "Graphics" section below.  Or, if you are adventuresome, you can create them yourself.  We use Paint Shop Pro for the job and create all of our own original graphics, backgrounds, and buttons. Contact: Deb Murray 
Q How do I get my page and biographies on my server? 
A You will have to upload them using an FTP program. Contact: Deb Murray 
Q How should I organize my biographies?
A There are no set rules on storing you biographies.  Here are some rough guidelines though:  Keep backup copies of all your biographies on you local PC just in case.  You can keep your biographies in a sub directory on the sever, just make sure the hyper links are correct.  Once you have established a system for naming and storing your bios, stay with it!  
Contact: Deb Murray 

Free Web Space.... 

There are a number of sources available that offer free web space where you can keep your county page.  No attempt will be made here to give instructions for using these sites.  Please visit each site and see what they have to offer.  Some of these sites provide a suite of tools that help managing your page much easier. 

Free www sites: 

HTML Sources.... 

There are hundreds of sites on the web offering instruction on using HTML and creating web pages.  Here are a couple of good ones: 

The NCSA Beginner's Guide to HTML 
HTML Tutorials by John C. Gilson  
So You Want to Make a Web Page


There is no better way to kill a web page than to load it with graphics.  Graphics download slowly from the host server and an impatient users will often hit the STOP or BACK button instead waiting for a large graphic file to download.  Many very successful web pages contain no graphics at all.  The creative use of color, and a clean, well thought out page layout are the real keys to any page.  However, very few of us design web pages this way.  We all like to be individuals and our web pages usually reflect this.  There are a few things you can do to make graphics a little easier to live with.  Use small meaningful graphics on your web pages.  A small graphics used as a HyperLink carries more meaning than does a photo of the family pet.  Try to use GIF files whenever possible.  If you must use large graphics, use an interlaced GIF so the user isn't stuck waiting for each graphic to load completely.  Remember, the purpose of a graphic is to get and keep a visitor's attention. 

Here are some place to get really nice graphics for your page: 

The Graphic Station
Image O Rama
Jelane's Free Web Graphics 
The MousePad           <--- (Genealogy graphics) 
The Non-Stick Looney Page 
The ClipArt Connection 

This page created and maintained by Deb Murray.  This page protected by copyright. Do not copy without consent of the author or the Indiana Biographies Project
Last update 1/02/98