GENUKI Maintainers' Pages

Version 1.18

Mandatory Standards


These mandatory technical standards for GENUKI have been devised in order that the GENUKI service, which is distributed across a number of service providers, can collectively demonstrate a common look and feel. This is a major benefit to readers and users browsing for the information they require. It reduces the task of those hosting pages that are being edited by others, and enables us to produce software more easily to automate such features as indexing and statistics, and makes it easier to move pages between hosts when the need arises. Putting this another way, GENUKI's pages are not the place to indulge your individualistic preferences concerning web page look and feel.

The mandatory technical standards we have adopted are not overly restrictive but nevertheless effective in achieving the objectives above.

HTML features to avoid

HTML standards, and current practice, are evolving continually, but the real world always lags behind these developments, and many of our readers and users do not use the latest browsers. Nor do all our users use the same browser.

We have therefore decided to strike a balance between using the latest features with powerful presentation capabilities, and using only those features that the oldest browsers can handle.

Maintainers must avoid the following HTML features:

Information Formats

Most of the information presented by the GENUKI service is in the form of text, either in html or ascii form. Graphics are acceptable, provided they are worth the space and bandwidth they consume in passing their information to the reader.

So, take care in choosing to present "very large" graphics. If you judge that such presentation is justifiable then you must warn users before they initiate download by indicating its size in kbytes, and providing a small thumbnail version of the graphic in the form of a button.

Logical And Physical Structure

The logical structure of the GENUKI service was introduced earlier and is defined fully at How this Service is Organized.

Maintainers must not introduce new topic terms unilaterally, and should take care to position information at the most appropriate locality level, and in the right locality context.

The physical structure of the GENUKI service requires separate pages for each locality, introducing such pages for towns and parishes only as needed. Separate pages must also be used for information on a given topic when this information is more than, say, a paragraph in length.

All pages on a given server relating to a particular country, county, or town/parish must be held in a directory with the same name as that country, county, or town/parish. The opening page for each country, county, or town/parish should normally be in a file called "index.html", although this name depends on the webserver software running the machine holding the pages. On Unix systems the default page loaded when the reader specifies just a directory name is "index.html".

Each town/parish page must be the default file ("index.html" on most servers) in its own directory which should be a sub-directory of the county directory. The directory name should be the town/parish name in full (omitting spaces and with the first character of each word capitalized), e.g., "" (a URL should omit "index.html").

Layout And Content Of Pages

Every country, county and town/parish page must be headed by a standard set of buttons to enable readers and users to move quickly between the levels in the logical hierarchy and return them to the upper levels if they have entered one of our pages through a "back door" such as from a link found by a search engine. See the skeleton county page, or the skeleton parish page for more detail.

Country and county pages must include an alphabetized list of links to their counties and towns/parishes for which information is available. See the skeleton county page for more detail.

This list of links must be followed by paragraphs, in alphabetical order, on specific topics. The prescribed list of subject headings is defined.

In addition to the GENUKI trademark and copyright protection statement, all GENUKI pages must be terminated with the author's name, date of last update, a link to the W3C site to allow HTML verification, and a method of contacting the author in order to report problems and correct errors. The resulting email will be directed automatically to the email address nominated by the maintainer for this purpose in the county database table. Note that this doesn't have to be the email address of the maintainer, simply one that allows problem reports for the county to be received and a response generated. See the skeleton parish page for more detail.

URLs And Local Directory Structures

How To Change GENUKI Standards

Any GENUKI maintainer may propose a change to these GENUKI standards at any time.

The process by which the GENUKI standards are amended is also one of the GENUKI standards.