A basic HTML intro, from a great web design resource site, W3schools:
A guide on how to write html using TextEdit (taken from about.com):
If you use a Macintosh, you don't need to buy or download an editor to write HTML. You have a perfectly functional editor built into your operating system -- TextEdit.
For many people this is all the HTML editor they will ever need.
There are only a few steps to creating a Web page with TextEdit:
Open a Finder window
Switch to the Applications folder
Scroll down to TextEdit and double-click on it
Change the format to plain text
TextEdit defaults to a rich text format, so you need to switch it to plain text to write HTML
Open the Format tab
Choose "Make Plain Text"
You can also hit Shift-Apple-T to switch to plain text
Start writing your HTML
Remember that you need to be more careful than in an actual HTML editor. You won't have elements like tag completion and validation.
Save your HTML to a file
This is the tricky part. TextEdit normally saves files as .txt. But since you're writing HTML, you need to save the file as .html.
Go to the File menu
Choose Save As... (or Shift-Apple-S)
Change the file extension from .txt to .html
A popup will ask you if you want to append the extension ".txt" to the end. Choose "Don't Append"
Opening an html file in TextEdit(from www.askdavetaylor.com):
Go to TextEdit --> Preferences... and choose "Open and Save". You'll see:
The key is the first option under "When opening a file": you want to check Ignore rich text commands in HTML files. Check that option, then quit TextEdit.
It turns out you can also do this by manually selecting File --> Open..., choosing the file, and also selecting the option in the Open dialog window of "Ignore rich text commands", but since i'm always double-clicking on files or otherwise launching TextEdit, it's a much easier solution to simply fix the preferences and never worry about it again.
Here is a battery of links that may be useful to you in the formatted poem, our first html-based assignment:
I want you to take a poem or song lyrics, and use text formatting to "design" the text in ways that emphasize properties of the poem/song (for instance, if there is a line that's very angry, perhaps the font is larger and red for that section). I want you to use at least six different text properties (color, font face, size, alignment, etc.) in the course of the poem/song.
Links to CSS text and font info:
The "span" tag (for modifying elements outside of "p" and "header" tags):
Link to CSS examples:
An online resource for getting the text of a poem:
Emily Dickinson, defaced via CSS: