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How to post and embed URLs (web links)

 
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SlantSixDan
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Joined: 31 Oct 2002
Posts: 24426
Location: North America

Post subject: How to post and embed URLs (web links) (Tue Oct 16, 2007 10:33 am) Reply with quote

Often, you want to direct readers to another web page. It might be a page on this site, or an eBay auction, or some other page elsewhere on the web. The location of a web page is called its URL. This board automatically enables properly-formatted URLs, so you can type the following, for example:

http://www.SomeRandomWebpage.com/whatever.html

...and readers will be able to click it to go there. It's easy to break this method, though, if your URL is in the middle or at the end of a sentence. Putting a comma or a period or any other punctuation at the end of the URL will sometimes force the board to consider that extra punctuation as part of the URL, and when that happens the link won't work because the actual URL does not include that punctuation mark. It is good to get into the habit of adding a space before you use a punctuation mark at the end of a URL. Like this:

For information on the electric choke kits, see http://www.slantsix.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12996 . You can order directly from the source described in that link.

Not like this:

For information on the electric choke kits, see http://www.slantsix.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12996. You can order directly from the source described in that link.

This plain method works OK for short URLs, but long URLs are messy when posted on the board. They make every post in the entire thread extra wide, so that it can't be read without tiresome back-and-forth horizontal scrolling. That's why its best to use one of several techniques to make the long link short.

The cleanest way to include a link is to embed it. Here's how it's done, step by step:

You put [url= before the start of the URL

Then you put the URL

Then you put a right square bracket ] at the end of the URL

Then you put whatever text you want people to click on to go to the linked page (this is the "hotlink text")

Then you put [/url] at the end of the hotlink text

Such a construction looks like what appears in this "code" box...

Code:
There is more information on carburetor applications [url=http://www.thecarburetorshop.com/Kdodge.htm]at this lengthy page[/url].


...and it renders (appears to readers) like this:

There is more information on carburetor applications at this lengthy page.

Take care not to put any spaces in between these elements. If there's a space after the [url= or before or after the ] or before the [/url], your embedded link won't work.

Linking to specific posts in a thread

Currently, this board does not number the posts in a thread, so if you want to link to a particular post within a thread, you have to use a workaround to find the posts's URL. Use the board's Search function to find the exact post you want. If you're already looking at the post you want, find some unique keywords in it and note its author, then plug those into the Search function.

Once you're given the search results page, find your target post in the list of results, and right-click/copy link the post title, which is in red text on a white background — not the thread subject title, which is red text on a pink background. The green boxes and arrows in this picture show the location of the post titles in the search results page:



That's the URL you want to embed. For best/cleanest results, delete the search keywords out of the URL you paste into the link. For example, the post URL you copy from the search results page will look like this:

http://www.slantsix.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=141025&highlight=wormdrive#141025

The keyword in this case is "wormdrive" (it was actually "worm-drive"). So, deleting the keyword from the URL, you wind up with

http://www.slantsix.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=141025#141025

and that is the best URL to embed per the instructions above.


Linking to eBay auctions

This is a special case. Some time ago, eBay changed to a very long URL format that contains all kinds of extra characters and words from the item description. Just pasting these ultra-long URLs into a post on the board is impolite, because it makes the entire thread very difficult to read due to excessive width. See for yourself—if the link below were all on one line, it'd stretch the whole post, and the entire thread containing the post, to an ultra-wide width impossible to read without scrolling the window back and forth:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/VALIANT-SLANT-6-DUAL-IDLER-
STRAIGHT-CUT-GEARDRIVE-NEW_W0QQitemZ190163177417QQ
ihZ009QQcategoryZ140694QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcm
dZViewItem

Yuck! Please be a good citizen and don't post long eBay links like this.

There are several ways around the long-link problem. The simplest thing to do is just provide the eBay item number, like this:

Code:
Hey, go take a look at eBay item number 190163177417 . Is this cool, or what?


The advantage is that it is compact. The disadvantage is that it's not a hotlink. Readers must manually copy the item number and paste it into eBay to see the item.

You can embed the long eBay link with the instructions above, which gives this much cleaner result:

Hey, go take a look at this auction. Is this cool, or what?

Another quick workaround strategy for power users is to create a hot key on your computer that pastes the following text in:

Code:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=


Then, all you have to do is paste the item number onto the end, making sure not to add any spaces, and you're all set with a friendly, short link that goes directly to the auction:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=190163177417

This short link works just like any other link, you can embed it if you want:

Code:
[url=http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=190163177417]Wow, check out this auction.[/url]


which gives this result:

Wow, check out this auction.

As an alternative, you can make use of TinyURL . Just copy the original long URL, go to www.tinyurl.com , paste the long URL in, click the "Make a tiny URL" button, and you get a really small URL that goes to the original page you saw and will never expire; as long as the original page with the long URL exists, the TinyURL will go there. So that ugly original eBay URL, 168 characters long, comes out looking like this, just 25 characters long:

http://tinyurl.com/2hr2hg

These TinyURL links, like all others, can be embedded using the instructions above.

Making pictures into clickable hotlinks

This technique combines the [url] and [img] tags to make images into clickable links. It works just the same as embedding links described above, but instead of hotlink text, you've got a hotlink image. Do it like this:

You put [url= before the start of the URL

Then you put the URL

Then you put a right square bracket ] at the end of the URL

Then you put [img]

Then you put the URL of the image you want to make into a clickable link

Then you put [/img]

Then you put [/url] right after the [/img]

Such a construction looks like this:

Code:
The Bendix-Technico/Stromburg carburetor was used on 225s in Australia, but not in the US. It looks like this (click the pic to go to the thread about them):

[url=http://www.slantsix.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=14320][img]http://u225.torque.net/cars/SL6/BXUVb.jpg[/img][/url]


...and renders like this:

The Bendix-Technico/Stromburg carburetor was used on 225s in Australia, but not in the US. It looks like this (click the pic to go to the thread about them):




Last edited by SlantSixDan on Sat Mar 21, 2009 6:11 am; edited 2 times in total
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Slantenstein
2 BBL ''SuperSix''


Joined: 26 Feb 2005
Posts: 19
Location: Westland, Michigan

Post subject: (Wed Mar 05, 2008 6:59 pm) Reply with quote

Thanks Dan!! Great information!!


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VDART
Turbo EFI


Joined: 25 Oct 2003
Posts: 1171
Location: wichita ks

Post subject: (Thu Mar 06, 2008 5:51 am) Reply with quote

Dan-- nice instructions --- thanks


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