ASSOCIATES (vol. 4, no. 3, March 1998) -

Table of Contents

                       *THE WORLD WIDE WEB WORKBOOK 
                           a website review by

                            Michael D. Brooks
                         Acquisitions Technician
                         St. Joseph's University

	The World Wide Web is growing exponentially and so are the 
people using it.  The people who often need to know the most about it,
how to use it, and how to help others use it do not always have the 
time or support to learn its intricacies.

	Library staffers are one such group of people who often need to 
use the Web.  However, for one reason or another, library workers do 
not always have the time to review Web sites unless it is a job 
requirement or they do it for their own edification at home.

	On the LIBSUP-L listserv for instance, Web sites are often 
passed along to list members by address only.  Unfortunately, just an 
address is all one has to go on.  Simply knowing of a site is not as 
useful as knowing a little something about a particular site.  Such 
knowledge comes in handy when helping patrons with Web-related 
questions or making  recommendations.  

	The following Web site review is very short (for people with 
limited time) and should prove quite useful to nearly anyone who reads
it.  The site is most beneficial to library staff who cannot take the 
time to show patrons how to use the Web.  It is relevant to library 
work and to personal use--like helping offspring with a homework 
assignment.   If you have never used the Web before or are new to 
using it, then this site is for you.

	It is perhaps one of the easiest ways to learn how to use the 
World Wide Web.  It neither insults your intelligence nor talks down 
to you.  To find out why and how, just point your Web browser to the 
"World Wide Web Workbook" located at for a 
self-paced lesson in navigating the Web.  The folks at the Franklin 
Institute in Philadelphia have created a series of pages that keep the
average person in mind.  And if you cannot point your browser to the 
site, just point any patron to it.  The rest is self explanatory.

	The first thing you will notice about the sight is the large 
print text.  It is large enough to read and the pages are simple 
enough to see without much effort.  They are not cluttered with a 
whole lot of pictures,  advertisements, fancy icons and harsh colors. 
The designers of this site have definitely kept the KISS (Keep It 
Simple Stupid) principle in mind.  Each of the pages has a plain, 
white background with short, easy-to-read paragraphs and graphics that 
compliment the text.

	The sight is really bare bones.  It tells you just what you need
to know to confidently "surf" the Web.  Each page is a separate lesson.  
There are numerous exercises you can try as you learn to navigate the 
Web.  It cannot be repeated enough that these lessons are easy to read, 
and simple to understand.

	Even the most inept computer user will have no problem 
navigating this site.  Why?  Because it tells you how.  But there is a 
note of caution.  You will need a program that runs movie clips.  If 
you already have such a program, then all you have to do is download 
the example.  If you have an older computer system, the images may be 
jerky and sluggish, but this is a minor complaint of an otherwise cool
sight.  It is a failing of your computer, not the site.

	The site allows you to put into practice what you are learning.  
You do not just read about what you can do.  You are actually given 
the opportunity to experiment.  If there is something you are not 
clear on, examples are provided and you are encouraged to apply what 
you have learned with exercises that allow you to actually do 
something and get a clearer understanding of what you just did and 

	During your lessons, you can go back at anytime and review 
something you are unsure of or want more practice in.  Toward the end
of your lessons, you are given the opportunity of visiting other Web 
sites and putting what you have just learned to the test.  There is a 
link called "Educational Hotlists."  Clicking on this link will take 
you to a list of links to other sites of interest that have been put 
together to get you started surfing on your own.  Simply click on 
these links and you will be on your way to exploring the Web like an