First of all, click on the Edit page button1 on your user page. This will take you to a new page with the title Update Introduction.
If you want to spice up your user page, the easiest way is to simply add smileys.
If you type :-) or <smiley> you get
Typing <angel> will give you
You will find a complete list of the h2g2 smileys here
You can use them in conversations as well. Clicking on a smiley in a conversation will also take you to the smiley list.
Pictures, font colours and other cool stuff
In order to use these, you need to change the style of your user page. Very far down on the Update Introduction page you will find the Change style button. The default style is always Plain text but you need to change it into GuideML.
You will now see two GuideML tags - first <GUIDE> and <BODY>.
It is below these that you will insert your own tags.
Every tag will also have a /closing tag - in this case </BODY> and </GUIDE> should be the last tags after the ones you add yourself.
When you work on your user page, click Update Introduction every now and then, because sometimes, if there is some trouble with the servers or the connection, you might lose a lot of the stuff you've been trying to put in - and that can be very frustrating!Update Introduction saves everything you have done. If your page just displays a lot of text after you have updated it, it might be a good idea to check that the BODY and GUIDE tags are still there.
Splitting up your text into paragraphs makes it easier to read. Start a paragraph with the <P> tag, and finish it with the </P> tag. A very common error message is Bad closing element BODY expecting P which means that somewhere you have forgotten to close a <P> tag with a </P> tag.
If you simply want to start a new line you can use the <BR/> tag. This tag is closed right away, that is why it ends with />. That means it does not need a separate closing tag.
You can also divide your text into sections by using a horizontal line - the tag for that is <HR/> and it looks like this:
This is where you find the h2g2 Picture Library.
Beside each picture you will find the GuideML tag for it, you just need to copy and paste.
The tag for this picture is:
<PICTURE EMBED="CENTER" BLOB="B214996" ALT="Two drummers drumming"/> but we changed "CENTER" to "RIGHT". This way you can choose where to put your picture. Note that the picture tag is also closed right away.
Once you have changed your page to GuideML style, you will have to use tags to put in smileys as well:
<smiley type="smiley of your choice"/> for example "magic"
Font colours, sizes, links and headers
The default font colour is black if you are using Alabaster or Brunel skin, and white if you are using Goo skin. If you want to change the colour, you do like this:
This text is red, and now in Comic Sans, and now bold, and now in size +2, and finally italic.
The tags look like this:
<FONT COLOR="RED">This text is red</FONT>,
<FONT FACE="Comic Sans MS">and now in Comic Sans</FONT>,
<B>and now bold</B>,
<FONT SIZE="+2">and now in size +2</FONT>
and finally <I>italic</I> .
Be a bit careful when using the FONT FACE tag - not all computers have all fonts installed, and if you just specify one font, your text might not show at all to some visitors. To avoid that, give some alternative fonts as well, like this:
<FONT FACE="Comic Sans MS, Arial, Tahoma, Helvetica, Sans-serif">
This makes the browser look on the reader's machine for Comic Sans MS first, if it doesn't find it the browser will look for Arial, then Tahoma, then Helvetica and, if that doesn't work, it will use the Sans-serif fault the user has set in the browser preferences or options.
You can also combine several tags in one if they start in the same way, like the FONT tags:
<FONT COLOR="RED" SIZE="-2">
will give you this with one tag - and you will only need one closing tag!
You can use most of the basic colours, like blue, red, black, white, yellow, green and also magenta, gold, silver and then lightblue, darkblue and so on - but try Preview in skin in both Alabaster as well as Goo and Brunel to make sure your page looks good to all your visitors regardless of their preferences!
To create a link to the user page of another h2g2 researcher you can also use this tag:
This is another tag that is closed right away, because you don't have to add any description - the tag will automatically pick the user name connected with that user number. The user number used as an example belongs to U12.
To create a link to an external site, use this tag:
<LINK HREF="http://www.yourchoice.url">Your description</LINK>
For example Annabella's HTML Help (by the way, this is a very good site if you want to learn more about HTML tags).
If your user page is hidden, it might be because you have put in something that contravenes the h2g2 House Rules or simply because of a broken link.
You will receive an e-mail explaining why your page was hidden, but it might take a while depending on time of day, holidays and so on. If you are sure that you haven't broken the house rules, it might be a good idea to check all your links.
This is a subheader
This is the tag:
<SUBHEADER>This is a subheader</SUBHEADER>
This is a header
This is the tag:
<HEADER>This is a header</HEADER>
This is a very good place if you are looking for more information about GuideML. You will find the Frequently Asked Questions here. It's also the perfect place if you get stuck and need help, because a lot of helpful people keep an eye on new conversations - if you have a question, post it here: GuideML-Clinic
If you use the skin Brunel (click Preferences if you want to change skin) you will see a row of buttons that will insert various tags for you if you click on them.
If you see a user page that you really like, and would like to see the tags, you just change the link like this:
This is Kristina's user page:
To see the GuideML tags, exchange the "U" with "testuserpage", like this:
You can do this with any user page, and if it is an entry (with an A instead of U before the number) you just exchange "A" with "test".
Finally, to give you the opportunity to see this entry in the different skins:
Click here to see this entry in Alabaster
Click here to see this entry in Goo
Click here to see this entry in Brunel
Click here to see this entry in Plain