META lines in HTML files
HEAD part of an HTML file the
tag can be used for various purposes. It's used in 2 ways - the
property you're setting can be chosen using
HTTP-EQUIV=. In either case you set the property's value by using
content= as the next 2 examples show
This affects the header of the document when it's sent, thus helping the browser to display the document
<META HTTP-EQUIV="Refresh" CONTENT="3; URL=http://www.eng.cam.ac.uk/">- after 3 seconds the new page will be loaded in (if the browser's capable of doing so).
<META HTTP-EQUIV="content-type" CONTENT=text/html; charset="EUC-2">- tells the browser the character set used in the page so that 'funny characters' can be displayed correctly
<META HTTP-EQUIV="expires" CONTENT="Wed, 1 Jan 2003 12:00:00 GMT">- the file won't be cached
This tends to be used to provide extra information for archiving purposes. There are many options - you can invent your own too. The following examples show some commonly used features
<META name=author content="Tim Love">
<META name=description content="An introduction to Bridges">- This description is sometimes used by search engines when your page is listed
<META name=keywords content="concrete,bridges,engineering">- to help search engines
<META name=robots content="noindex,nofollow">- This suggests to robots (the programs that provide the search engines with information) that the page shouldn't be read.