16. CGI Scripting
[ Date: 19 Apr 1999 03:43:36 -0400 ]
See Also:[ 026 ] An Easy 1-2-3 Topsite CGi
Check this out.
CGI scripting is possible with WebTV. I've figured out how to do it. While this is the best example of what I can do, its not the one that I'm willing to share. I will show other WebTV viewers how to easily construct a workable topsites CGI/Perl program that requires little maintenance and little knowledge of CGI scripting. To the best of my knowlege, I'm the only person on the network who's accomplished anything like this. All I'd ask in return is recognition for being the first with the guts and intelligence to do it. I've had my ideas ripped off left and right by others on the network claiming them for themselves. I feel that I've finally accomplished something that nobody could duplicate without a written explanation from me on how it was done. If you dig what you see at the above URL, let me know. I'll warn you, the sites listed on my topsites program are dark and subversive in nature, don't let that bias your decision, please look at it from a programming standpoint. Sor! ry, but after being kicked out o f several WebTV webrings (most notably WebTV GIF Sites, a ring that I helped to build) for "objectionable" site content, you might be able to understand why I'm a bit apprehensive about this, the WebTV community has spit on me more than once, so again, please understand my reservations about this. Thanks.
26. An Easy as 1-2-3 Topsite CGI
[ Date: 25 Apr 1999 00:22:47 -0400 ]
Name: Mike Rogers (Black Knightmare)
How to set up a CGI topsite list using WebTV
in 15 minutes WITHOUT having to learn CGI.
Wouldn't it be neat if people linked to your website? Wouldn't it be REALLY neat if people were in competition with one another to see how many hits they could give to your site? That's what a topsites list does.
They're a win-win page-hit machine that generates pagehits for you by appealing to the natural human instict to compete with other people. They also generate pagehits for all of the people involved with the list, so the people who know how to bring traffic to their sites are almost always eager to join them.
You've seen them everywhere, but you don't have a clue how to write the CGI needed to run a topsite list, and besides, you can't do any of that using WebTV anyway, right?
Wrong! You can, and for those of you who don't want to learn CGI/Perl here's a neat little shortcut that'll create a list for you. Free.
Okay, it all sounds great, so how's it done?
- 1.) Get an account with Hypermart, (http://www.hypermart.net) and
activate that account as per the instructions you recieve via e-mail. (*Note: it has to be a Hypermart account, they support CGI scripting, Tripod and Geocities don't, and at present, they're the only free webspace provider where this will work.)
- 2.) Go to Solution Scripts (http://www.solutionscripts.com) and
from their homepage go to EZ Install (http://solutionscripts.com/man/top_sites/ez-install.shtml), follow the instructions given to you on the form.
- 3.) Link to your new list from your homepage.
- 4.) You're done! Easy, right?
Your list is set up, now all you have to do is let the traffic roll in, right? Wrong.
There are literally thousands of topsite lists out there. You have to make yours stand out in the crowd so that high traffic sites will join up and bring new visitors and members to your list. Here are some tips on how to accomplish this:
- 1.) Most important: make an eye-catching banner for sites in the list to display to get votes to your list. The script that I've explained above has an automatic e-mail generator that'll mail the code needed to anyone who signs up, additionally, it'll also mail out the banner code, take the time to set it up, you'll be glad that you did. All you'll have to do is type in your e-mail address on the form and some information on your banner. Its probably a good idea to make your banner before you set up the list, believe me, making a quality banner on WebTV is more difficult than setting up this list.
- 2.) The list that'll be set up for you is in a "raw" form. To customize the look of what's above and below the list itself to integrate it into your website, you'll need to go to StarBlvd's Layman's FTP and edit two files, header.txt and footer.txt, just write everything out as HTML as you would your own homepage, the script is programmed to understand all of it and it will display anything that you'd like, images, links, etc.
- 3.) Finally, try to keep a theme going for the list, my list (is not made using this program) The BlackList Top 100 (http://www.darkserene.com/hell/topsites.html) only allows dark/gothic type sites into it's ranks. By keeping a general theme, you're more likely to pick up new sites and keep visitors coming back for more.
Hope this was helpful, I know myself that these lists work, my newest version of The BlackList has only been around for about 2 weeks [ed: tip originally submitted 25 Apr 99] and already it sees about 300 page-hits every day. Topesite lists are a powerful tool for getting attention for any website!