Dummies 101: HTML 4

Overview

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HTML stands for:

  1. HyperTerminal Manual Language
  2. How To Make Lollipops
  3. HyperText Markup Language
  4. HyperText MarkedOn Language
  5. Heavenly Technical Machine Language

Congratulations! If you selected C (HyperText Markup Language), then you're ready...

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Overview

Here's today's quick pop quiz.

HTML stands for:

  1. HyperTerminal Manual Language
  2. How To Make Lollipops
  3. HyperText Markup Language
  4. HyperText MarkedOn Language
  5. Heavenly Technical Machine Language

Congratulations! If you selected C (HyperText Markup Language), then you're ready for Dummies 101: HTML 4 from our popular series of Dummies 101® books. If you selected a different answer...well, maybe it's time to settle down and learn what all the noise surrounding HTML is all about and how HTML can improve your quality of life (and help you build some really cool Web pages).

Dummies 101: HTML 4 combines short lessons, step-by-step instructions, real-life examples, and fun quizzes (like the one you just took) to bring you up to speed on how to use HTML to create Web works quickly and easily. Whether you're new to the wonders of HTML or just in need of a refresher course, this handy volume is packed to the brim with helpful tips and tricks to make learning HTML 4 (from the basics of HTML tags and graphics to advanced features, such as tables and forms) a snap. And the companion CD-ROM comes with all sorts of programs and exercises to use along with the lessons in the book to help you master HTML 4.

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
A book/CD-ROM teaching how to use HTML to create Web pages, featuring short lessons, step-by-step instructions, and ongoing examples. The CD-ROM contains examples, sample files, and software required for the text. Includes chapter objectives, quizes and answers, and exercises, plus margin notes and space for writing notes. For beginning to intermediate users of HTML familiar with Windows. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764502057
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/1/1998
  • Series: Dummies 101 Series
  • Edition description: 2ND BK&CDR
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 8.56 (w) x 10.01 (h) x 0.89 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction

Whom This Book Is For
How to Use This Book
What's in This Book, Anyway?
The parts
Part I: Getting Started
Part II: Building Your First HTML Documents
Part III: Using Graphics in Your HTML Documents
Part IV: Advanced HTML Formatting
Part V: Developing Your Web Site
Appendix A: Answers
Appendix B: About the CD
About quizzes and tests
About exercises and lab assignments
The icon crew
Dummies 101 CD-ROM Installation Instructions
Getting Started

Part I: Getting Started

Unit 1: Getting Acquainted with HTML
Lesson 1-1: What is HTML?
Lesson 1-2: What Does HTML Stand For?
Understanding text
Understanding hyper
Understanding markup languages
Unit 1 Quiz
Unit 1 Exercise
Unit 2: Launching and Using the Software You Need
Lesson 2-1: Getting to Know HTMLpad
Starting HTMLpad
Finding your way around HTMLpad
Lesson 2-2: Getting to Know Internet Explorer
Starting Internet Explorer
Finding your way around Internet Explorer
Recess
Lesson 2-3: Opening a Document
Creating a new document
Opening an existing document
Lesson 2-4: Saving a Document
Lesson 2-5: Testing a Document
Lesson 2-6: Exiting HTMLpad and Internet Explorer
Exiting HTMLpad
Exiting Internet Explorer
Unit 2 Quiz
Unit 2 Exercise
Part I Review
Part I Test
Part I Lab Assignment

Part II: Building Your First HTML Documents

Unit 3: Basic HTML Tagging
Lesson 3-1: Entering HTML Tags
Lesson 3-2: Nesting Tags
Lesson 3-3: Starting Your First Document
Including the <!DOCTYPE> tag
Including the <HTML> tag
Including the <HEAD> and <TITLE> tags
Including the <BODY> tag
Unit 3 Quiz
Unit 3 Exercise
Unit 4: Using Common HTML Tags
Lesson 4-1: Making Headings
Lesson 4-2: Making Paragraphs
Lesson 4-3: Emphasizing Text
Lesson 4-4: Making Lists
Lesson 4-5: Using Horizontal Rules
Unit 4 Quiz
Unit 4 Exercise
Unit 5: Making Links and Anchors
Lesson 5-1: Making Links
Identify the link
Specify where the link leads
Specifying the address
Recess
Lesson 5-2: Linking to Another HTML Document
Lesson 5-3: Linking to Another Web Site
Lesson 5-4: Linking to Specific Locations within Documents
Unit 5 Quiz
Unit 5 Exercise
Part II Review
Part II Test
Part II Lab Assignment

Part III: Using Graphics in Your HTML Documents

Unit 6: Using Your Graphics Program
Lesson 6-1: Starting Paint Shop Pro
Starting Paint Shop Pro
Finding your way around Paint Shop Pro
Lesson 6-2: Saving Graphics in Paint Shop Pro
About GIF files
About JPG files
Saving graphic files
Lesson 6-3: Viewing Graphics in Internet Explorer
Lesson 6-4: Playing with Paint Shop Pro
Unit 6 Quiz
Unit 6 Exercise
Unit 7: Developing Graphics for HTML Documents
Lesson 7-1: What Are Suitable Graphics, Anyway?
Graphics should load quickly
Graphics should complement information
Graphics should be flashy
Lesson 7-2: Reducing a Graphic's File Size
Lesson 7-3: Making Graphics Bigger or Smaller
Lesson 7-4: Making a Transparent Background
Lesson 7-5: Making Graphics Interlaced
Unit 7 Quiz
Unit 7 Exercise
Unit 8: Linking Graphics into Your Document
Lesson 8-1: Adding Graphics to Your HTML Document
Lesson 8-2: Using the Text Alternative
Recess
Lesson 8-3: Aligning Graphics
Lesson 8-4: Using Graphics as Anchors
Lesson 8-5: Using Thumbnails
Unit 8 Quiz
Unit 8 Exercise
Unit 9: Using Image Maps in Your HTML Documents
Lesson 9-1: Deciding to Use an Image Map
Lesson 9-2: Providing Alternative Navigation in a Document
Recess
Lesson 9-3: Marking Clickable Areas in an Image Map
Marking a rectangle
Marking a circle
Marking a polygon
Lesson 9-4: Defining the Links in an Image Map
Unit 9 Quiz
Unit 9 Exercise
Part III Review
Part III Test
Part III Lab Assignment

Part IV: Advanced HTML Formatting

Unit 10: Developing Tables
Lesson 10-1: Deciding to Use a Table
Making information easy to find
Creating text columns
Creating sideheads
Combining text and graphics
Lesson 10-2: Creating a Basic Table
Recess
Lesson 10-3: Applying Additional Formatting
Applying borders
Adding a caption
Adding table headers
Adjusting spacing
Aligning cell contents
Lesson 10-4: Adding Unusual-Sized Cells
Recess
Lesson 10-5: Aligning Tables
Unit 10 Quiz
Unit 10 Exercise
Unit 11: Developing Forms
Lesson 11-1: Deciding to Use a Form
Creating a form
Identifying functions of form parts
Identifying information for the form
Lesson 11-2: Creating a Form
Lesson 11-3: Adding Submit and Reset Buttons
Lesson 11-4: Adding Input Fields
Recess
Lesson 11-5: Adding Check Boxes to Your Form
Lesson 11-6: Adding Radio Buttons to Your Form
Lesson 11-7: Adding Select Lists to Your Form
Lesson 11-8: Adding Text Areas to Your Form
Lesson 11-9: Adding Field Sets to Your Form
Unit 11 Quiz
Unit 11 Exercise
Unit 12: Using Colors and Backgrounds to Jazz Up Your Documents
Lesson 12-1: Using Background Color
Adding a background color
Recess
Lesson 12-2: Coloring Text and Links
Lesson 12-3: Using Graphics for Backgrounds
Unit 12 Quiz
Unit 12 Exercise
Unit 13: Understanding and Using Style Sheets
Lesson 13-1: Understanding Style Sheets
Lesson 13-2: Linking Style Sheets to HTML Documents
Lesson 13-3: Deciphering Style Sheet Code
Lesson 13-4: Modifying a Style Sheet
Unit 13 Quiz
Unit 13 Exercise
Part IV Review
Part IV Test
Part IV Lab Assignment

Part V: Developing Your Web Site

Unit 14: Planning and Organizing Your Web Site
Lesson 14-1: Determining Web Site Content, Graphics, and Theme
Determining content
Determining graphics and theme
Lesson 14-2: Determining Web Site Organization
Recess
Lesson 14-3: Developing a Home Page
Lesson 14-4: Establishing Navigation Menus
Unit 14 Quiz
Unit 14 Exercise
Unit 15: Doing Webmaster (That's You) Stuff
Lesson 15-1: Helping Search Services
Using <META> tags
Using regular HTML tags
Lesson 15-2: Publicizing Your Site
Publicizing individually
Publicizing by using services
Lesson 15-3: Maintaining Your Site
Unit 15 Quiz
Unit 15 Exercise
Part V Review
Part V Test
Part V Lab Assignment
Appendix A: Answers
Unit 1 Quiz Answers
Unit 2 Quiz Answers
Part I Test Answers
Unit 3 Quiz Answers
Unit 4 Quiz Answers
Unit 5 Quiz Answers
Part II Test Answers
Unit 6 Quiz Answers
Unit 7 Quiz Answers
Unit 8 Quiz Answers
Unit 9 Quiz Answers
Part III Test Answers
Unit 10 Quiz Answers
Unit 11 Quiz Answers
Unit 12 Quiz Answers
Unit 13 Quiz Answers
Part IV Test Answers
Unit 14 Quiz Answers
Unit 15 Quiz Answers
Part V Test Answers
Appendix B: About the CD
System Requirements
Putting the CD Files on Your Hard Drive
Running the Launching Pad
Installing the exercise files
Installing MindSpring Internet Access
Installing HTMLPad
Installing Paint Shop Pro
Removing the program files
Removing the exercise files
Custom installation

Index

License Agreement

Installation Instructions

Book Registration Information

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First Chapter

Unit 3
Basic HTML Tagging

Objectives for This Unit

  • Entering and nesting tags
  • Using structure tags
  • Starting your first document

Part I showed you how to use the editing and viewing software included on the CD that comes with this book and the basics of working with text. In this unit, you start creating your first HTML document by using the skills you learned in Part I.

In this unit, you learn how to enter those funny-looking HTML tags correctly, and you learn how and where to include the essential tags in your document. Learning these skills is very important because you use them every time you create an HTML document.

Lesson 3-1: Entering HTML Tags

Tags are the HTML codes that you apply to text to determine document elements. Before you get to the fun stuff, however, you need to know how to enter tags correctly. If you don't enter tags correctly, your document could end up with a lampshade on its title bar -- or at least end up looking nothing like you wanted it to look.

Entering tags is pretty easy, but you do need to pay attention to a few things. First, you enter all HTML tags by using those little pointed bracket dealies (angle-brackets for you purists), as follows:

<TAG> </TAG>

Second, all closing tags start with a forward slash (/), right after the opening angle-bracket. Browsers don't recognize a closing tag if it doesn't have the slash and continue with the style you originally applied until they see a closing tag. We recommend entering both the opening tag and closing tag at the same time so that you don't forget to enter the closing tag. We're told by a reliable authority that people often forget the closing tag. (Right, coauthor?)

Third, almost all HTML tags appear in pairs, called paired tags. (Exceptions do exist, and we point them out later.) Everything that you want the tag to affect goes between the two tags, as shown in the following example:

<TAG>interesting info</TAG>

What's great about HTML is that you don't have to worry about where all the text and tags appear on the page. You can, for example, enter your text and tags as in the following samples or in any combination you can think of:


<TAG> 
interesting info can go like this
</TAG>

or


<TAG> 
interesting info can
also
go like this </TAG>

Notice that we use all caps for the tags. Using all caps doesn't affect whether your browser recognizes your HTML tags, but tags are much easier to see if they're in all caps and, therefore, are also easier to edit that way.

Go ahead and start experimenting with entering opening tags, closing tags, and text in between the two. (Don't jump ahead yet and try to test the results in your browser -- simply practice entering the tags and text.) Start by following these steps:

  1. Make sure that HTMLpad and Internet Explorer are open.

    If you need a quickie refresher on opening HTMLPad and Internet Explorer, check out Lessons 2-1 and 2-2.

  2. In HTMLpad, create a new document by selecting Blank Document from the top right of the New HTML Document dialog box.
  3. Enter <B></B> on the first line -- the B indicates boldface.

    Feels pretty odd starting and ending your words with those brackets, but you get used to the process after a while. Did you remember the closing tag? Go ahead and type the tags again, just for practice.

  4. Enter the following information between the tags: My dog has fleas.

    <B>My dog has fleas.</B>

  5. Press Enter a couple times to get to a new line.
  6. Enter the following tags: <I> </I>
  7. Now put your cursor between the two tags and enter My dog got a flea bath.

    <B>My dog has fleas.</B>

    <I>My dog got a flea bath.</I>

    If you want, practice entering text and tags before moving on to the next lesson. After you're done, you can leave this document open.

    Now that you've got the hang of this tagging business, you're ready to learn how to use multiple tags. On to the next lesson!

    Copying and pasting, and pasting, and pasting...

    Entering all these tags and brackets can be tedious and, well, dull. Don't be afraid to copy and paste tags and text, just as you'd copy and paste text in your word processing program.

    Pay particular attention to how you copy and paste text and tags. If the tags aren't correct after you paste them (if, for example, you inadvertently miss a closing bracket), the pasted tag doesn't work.

    Here's a quick review on copying and pasting:

    1. Select the words and tags you want to copy.
    2. Go to your menu bar and choose Edit-->Copy.
    3. Click your mouse where you want to paste the text and tags.
    4. Go back to the menu bar and choose Edit-->Paste.
      Ta Daaaaaaaa!

    Lesson 3-2: Nesting Tags

    Sometimes you want to apply more than one tag to text. You may, for example, want to make a first-level heading, which you mark with <H1></H1>, and then you may want to make the heading italicized, which you mark with <I></I>. All you do is nest the tags, as shown in the following steps. (You don't need to actually do so now -- you practice this later in the lesson.)

    1. Type your text as follows: How to Tune a Fish
    2. Add the <H1>...</H1> tags, as follow:

      <H1>How to Tune a Fish</H1>

      Nest the <I>...</I> tags inside the heading tags, as in the following example:

      <H1><I>How to Tune a Fish</I></H1>

    In this example, the tags for italic text are nested inside the heading tags. What you need to remember is that whichever tag you start with you also end with; the tag that you place at the front of the text you also place at the end of the text. A good acronym for this process is FILO -- that is, First In, Last Out, meaning that the first tag on the left is the same as the last tag on the right.

    Use the following steps to practice nesting tags:

    1. Make sure that the document you started in Lesson 3-1 is still open or, if you're just starting with this lesson, start a new document in HTMLpad (choose File->New; then select Blank Document from the top right of the New HTML Document dialog box and click OK).
    2. Press Enter a few times to get to a new line.
    3. Enter the following heading tags:

      <H1></H1>

    4. Nest italics tags between the heading tags, as follows:

      <H1><I></I></H1>

    5. Enter the following text between the italics tags:

      <H1><I>How to Make a Marshmallow Sandwich</I></H1>

    You should always enter your tags in pairs, and you should always add to the tags one thing at a time. Don't try to build your text and tags by starting at the beginning of the line and typing across. You start making mistakes -- trust us, we did.

    Okay! Good job. That's the basics of nesting tags -- and you've learned two tags!

    Go ahead and close this document after you're done. (Remember, just choose File-->Close.)You work with a new document in the next lesson.

    HTMLpad shortcuts

    After hours and hours of typing HTML tags (or even after minutes and minutes), applying tags to text can become pretty monotonous. Well, you're in luck! HTMLpad offers drop-down lists and fancy buttons that apply the tag for you. Nifty, huh?

    The easiest way to get accustomed to using these shortcuts is just to try them out. In general, you select the text you want to apply a tag to and then click a button or select a menu item.

    If you want to apply <I></I> tags to text, for example, highlight the text and click the Italic button on the formatting toolbar. (Hint: It displays an italicized I.) If you're not sure whether a button does what you want it to, you can hover for an answer -- move the cursor over the button and don't click anything. A little box appears with a brief description of what the button does.

    Two words of warning: First, you should probably work through much of the book before you dive into the shortcuts in HTMLpad. In HTML, knowing how the system works before you try using the shortcuts really does help. In fact, we don't tell you step by step which buttons you can use, because we want you to get a good feel for hand-coding HTML. You can, however, experiment with the buttons and options as your HTML skills progress. Remember: If it doesn't work as you expect, you can always choose Edit-->Undo or press Ctrl+Z to reverse your last action.

    Second, HTMLpad includes all kinds of HTML tags that we don't really get into in this book. (Only so many pages are available, right?) If you're planning to really delve into this HTML business, we recommend that you pick up a reference book on the subject, such as the HTML 4 For Dummies® Quick Reference by yours truly (published by IDG Books Worldwide, Inc.).

    Lesson 3-3: Starting Your First Document

    Now that you've mastered the art of entering tags and nesting tags, you're ready to start your first real, law-abiding HTML document.

    Every HTML document you start should contain a few basic structure tags. These tags don't affect the appearance or content of a document, but they do help browsers identify document characteristics. Structure tags help browsers know that the document is in fact an HTML document, for example, and provide browsers with names of document headings. Including structure tags is essential, because HTML specifications say that you need to include them, not to mention that most browsers need these tags to display your document.

    You should include the following five structure tags in every HTML document:

    <!DOCTYPE...>

    <HTML>...</HTML>

    <HEAD>...</HEAD>

    <TITLE>...</TITLE>

    <BODY>...</BODY>

    Including the <!DOCTYPE> tag

    The first structure tag is the <!DOCTYPE...> tag -- actually, the (breathe deeply!) <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN"> tag. This tag tells browsers which HTML standard (such as HTML 3.2 or HTML 4.0) the document belongs to -- in this case, HTML 4.0. You use the <!DOCTYPE...> tag to start your document, as the following example shows:

    <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN">

    Fortunately, this tag is the longest and most complicated tag you encounter in your journey of discovery through HTML -- either in this book or in your subsequent HTML adventures. Notice that this tag doesn't have a closing tag -- it's a nonpaired tag. Although most HTML tags are paired, you do come across a few of these nonpaired guys. We point them out to you as you go through this book.

    Including the <HTML> tag

    The next structure tag is the <HTML> tag. This tag encloses the document and reminds the browser that it's an HTML document.

    You add the <HTML> tag to your document as follows:

    <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN"> 
    <HTML>
    </HTML>

    Including the <HEAD> and <TITLE> tags

    The next structure tags you need to include are the <HEAD> and <TITLE> tags. The <HEAD> tag includes a variety of not-really-in-the-document-but-nonetheless-about-the-document information. At a minimum, you use the <TITLE> tag in conjunction with the <HEAD> tag to give a title to your document. The information -- title -- that you put between the <TITLE>...</TITLE> tags appears in the title bar of the browser.

    You add the <HEAD> and <TITLE> tags to your document as shown in the following example:

    <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN"> 
    <HTML>
    <HEAD><TITLE>Uncle Herb's Emporium</TITLE></HEAD>
    </HTML>

    Other information about the document can go between the <HEAD>...</HEAD> tags, as you find out in Unit 15.

    Including the <BODY> tag

    The <BODY> tag is the last structure tag you need to include. This tag indicates that all the information within the opening and closing tags are part of the document body. This tag is the first one that actually affects the content of your document and is not just part of the document's title or heading information.

    You add the <BODY> tag to your document as follows:

    <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN"> 
    <HTML>
    <HEAD><TITLE>Uncle Herb's Emporium</TITLE></HEAD>
    <BODY>
    ...all the stuff about the Emporium will go here
    </BODY>
    </HTML>

    Notice that what you've been doing in these examples is nesting tags inside other tags. The <HEAD> tags you nested inside the <HTML> tags; the <TITLE> tags you nested within the <HEAD> tags, and the <HEAD>, <TITLE>, and <BODY> tags you nested within the <HTML> tags. Nifty, huh?

    Use the following steps to practice starting a document and using the structure tags:

    1. Start a new document in HTMLpad, selecting Blank document from the New HTML Document dialog box.
    2. Start your HTML document with the <!DOCTYPE> tag, as follows:

      <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN">

    3. Add the <HTML> tags, as shown in the following example:
      
      <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN"> 
      <HTML>
      </HTML>
    4. Nest the <HEAD> and <TITLE> tags between the <HTML> tags, as follows:
      
      <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN"> 
      <HTML>

      <HEAD><TITLE> </TITLE></HEAD>
      </HTML>
    5. Add the title Doing HTML Is Fun to the document, as follows:
      
      <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN"> 
      <HTML>
      <HEAD><TITLE>
      Doing HTML Is Fun </TITLE></HEAD>
      </HTML>
    6. Add the <BODY> tags, as shown in the following example:
      
      <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN"> 
      <HTML>
      <HEAD><TITLE>Doing HTML Is Fun</TITLE></HEAD>

      <BODY>
      </BODY>
      </HTML>
    7. Add the following text between the body tags: Hey! I did it! I started my first HTML document!
      
      <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Final//EN"> 
      <HTML>
      <HEAD><TITLE>Doing HTML Is Fun</TITLE></HEAD>
      <BODY>

      Hey! I did it! I started my first HTML document!
      </BODY>
      </HTML>
    8. Save your document as mydoc.htm.
    9. Test what you've done so far in Internet Explorer.

      Remember: You switch to Internet Explorer, choose File-->Open, and open mydoc.htm -- the document you just saved. Your document should look like the one shown in Figure 3-1. In the next unit, you learn the commonly used tags that enable you use to add elements such as paragraphs, headings, and lists to your HTML document.

    Notice that only the information within the <BODY> tags appears on the main screen. The document title appears in the title bar at the top of your screen; everything else works behind the scenes.

    Unit 3 Quiz

    This short quiz can help you remember what you learned in Unit 3. For each question, circle the letter of the correct answer or answers.

    1. The <HEAD> tag is used...
      1. To enclose the document and remind the browser that it's an HTML document.
      2. By the editor to show you where the document starts.
      3. As a place to put your thinking cap.
      4. To top off a beer.
      5. To make a heading in your document.
    2. Which combination of structure tags should you include in every HTML document (even though the tags don't really affect the appearance of your document)?
      1. <!DOCTYPE...>
      2. <!DOCTYPE...>, <HEAD>, and <BODY>
      3. <!DOCTYPE...>, <HTML>, <HEAD>, <TITLE>, and <BODY>
      4. <!DOCTYPE...>, <TITLE>, and <BODY>
      5. All of the above.
    3. In what order do you nest tags in your document?
      1. <HEAD><BODY></HEAD></BODY>
      2. <HEAD><TITLE></TITLE></HEAD>
      3. <H1></H2><H3></H4>
      4. In any order you want.
      5. None of the above.
    4. Which one of the following statements is true?
      1. The opening tag must have a front slash in it.
      2. HTML tags should use rounded brackets.
      3. The way you space out text and tags is extremely important.
      4. Everything you want a tag to affect must go between the opening and closing tags.
      5. All of the above.
    5. Nesting means...
      1. To clean the house before family visits.
      2. To build small trinkets with twigs, leaves, and scraps of trash.
      3. To place one set of tags between another set of tags.
      4. To place more than one tag within a set of pointed brackets.
      5. To scope out a place for your cat to have kittens.

    Unit 3 Exercise

    1. Start a new document in HTMLpad.
    2. Enter the document structure tags, a title, and the text "I'm done with Unit 3!" (Try to do so without peeking at Lesson 3-3!)
    3. Save and test your document.
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