The simplist way to locate a Web page is to type a known uniform resource locator (URL) in the Location box (sometimes labeled Address, URL or Go To) and press Enter on the keyboard. This will retrieve the page which belongs to this URL.
For certain organizations you may be able to guess what the URL is. To try this, we need to break the URL down into its component parts. Lets use the URL in the above illustration: http://www.andrews.edu/library/
- http:// - stands for hypertext transfer protocol. This tells the computer what protocol is being used. New web browsers supply this information making it unnecessary to type it. The punctuation is part of the protocol.
- www. - indicates World Wide Web, information may also be in wais, gopher or ftp format
- andrews. - this is the domain name. This part of the URL should reflect the name of the organization, in this case Andrews University
- edu/ - the domain ending reflects the type of organization, in this case an educational institution. Other endings include .gov (government), .org (non-profit organization), .com (commerical), and .net (network provider)
- library/screens/ - the path the computer followed to reach the webpage. These are directories on the web server
- name.html - file name which is the source of the webpage in view. File names sometimes end with .htm, .asp, or .cgi (it is not likely that you will type a URL ending in .cgi)
The URL for the home page of a web site usually is the domain name and ending only. Thus removing the directory names which occur after the first forward slash (/) would take you to the home page for Andrews University.
To guess what a particular organization's URL might be, identify an abbreviation commonly used by that organization such as ALA (American Library Association) or a significant portion or the whole name of the organization such as amazon (Amazon Books). Add to this the appropriate domain ending, .org for ALA and .com for Amazon. URLs are case sensitive, but lower case characters are used most frequently.
There is no room for mistakes in letters, punctuation or domain endings. You must have it right.