What is a Web Ring?|
Basically, a web ring is simply a list of web pages linked one to each other. In this case, they are all Acorn RISC OS related pages. If you surf through all the sites in the ring, you will eventually come back to where you started again, thus the name of "ring".
Why use a Web Ring?
I suppose you could ask the web masters of all the participating sites to manually link to the next site, but I'm sure you'll agree that this would soon turn into a mammoth job. As the purpose is to promote and advertise the topic of the ring, it's hoped that rings will grow bigger and bigger - hence the need to an automated system of site management.
What's in it for you?
If you've made a page on a particular subject, you are probably a big fan of that subject, and would like to advertise your site to as many different people as possible - all around the world. In an ideal world, you could email the maintainers of every subject-related web site and ask them nicely to link back to your page. This would soon become a nightmare to manage and organise, so here's your chance to get more people to see your pages! All you need to do is fill out the application form IF you satisfy all the rules first! Sorry, but there are rules...
If you want to join a web ring, you must be sure that the following simple rules apply to you:
I hope you agree that these 'rules' are fair and of benefit to all ring members.
- Your page is related to the topic of the relevant web ring. There is no point joining a web ring about the paranormal if your web site is all about car mechanics!
- You will notify the list administrator if you decide to leave the ring.
- You must be able to add some HTML lines on your page to make the ring's logo and navigation bar appear on your page.
- Your page is non commercial.
How to Join
Joining a web ring is easy. All you have to do is to fill in, and submit, a form with a few details about your web site. When we receive your request, you will receive an email containing an HTML code segment that you can add to your site, together with a unique ID code which references your site.
All you have to do then is to add the code segment to your site and you're ready to participate in the web ring community.
|This [webring name] WebRing site is owned by [owner]|
|Click for next | previous | random | index|
Or learn more about the [name] WebRing
More examples coming soon, including graphical icons
Navigation and control of the web ring is via a cgi script on the Webring web server. This script is called http://www.webring.me.uk/cgi-bin/webring
However, before you can link to the script, you need to add the relevant command in order to instruct the server what to do. There are two main parameters; ring and command.
ring instructs the server which web ring you want to operate.
command actually tells the server what to do.
id tells the server which site you want to start from when navigating the ring.
If you don't specify a command, the server will assume that you just want information on the given ring. For example, the following code will give information on the RISC OS web ring.
You move from one site to another by specifying the ID of the first site (this is usually your own site) and a navigation command stating how many sites you want to jump, and in which direction;
http://www.webring.me.uk/cgi-bin/webring?ring=riscos&id=5&command=next jumps to site 6, ie. it goes to the next site from site 5.
http://www.webring.me.uk/cgi-bin/webring?ring=riscos&id=2&command=add5 jumps to site 7, ie. it goes to the fifth site from site 2.
If you want to navigate the ring you must specify an ID value, or else the server won't know where to start from - in which case it will just start from the first site in the ring.
N.B.The ring is exactly as it says; a ring, so it wraps around from the end to the beginning and vice versa, so jumping back 5 sites from site 2 will jump to 3 sites from the last one. Jumping to the next site from the last site will effectively jump to the first site in the ring.
Some commands don't require an ID value because they look at the whole ring. These are;
http://www.webring.me.uk/cgi-bin/webring?ring=riscos&command=random jumps to a random site in the RISC OS ring.
Although some pre-defined templates are available, these commands should allow more competant web designers to customise the exact look of their web ring segment.