How a Website Works

So I want to take just a few minutes to quickly recap how a website works. This is not meant to be insulting, but I find that this is a hang-up when I present at conferences about my gamified class so please bear with me. If you are good to go, then go back to my gamification overview and pick a different post to read.

At a very basic level (if you want to fight me about this, then this post is not for you) the internet is nothing but a series of files that anyone can access. However, instead of poking around on your computer, you are using the internet to find someone else’s computer and poke around on that. At its core that is all that is happening. That being said, there are a ton of problems with the situation I just described, so a long time ago we upgraded the parts and rules of the internet, but the concept remains the same. There are three main parts to how a website works.

User – A visitor to your website needs a device that can access the internet and a piece of software that can read the language of the internet (a browser like Google Chrome).

The Internet – Complicated but for our purposes this is what allows you to type in an URL like and be shown a website. An URL is the human version of the address to your domain (the location on the internet where your server is).

Server – This represents several things but basically this is the computer that holds your files (your website) for you and shows them to the world. This computer is always on and is set up in a special way to allow it to show your site to many visitors at the same time. You will rent the use of a server from a Host.

My other posts about developing a gamified class are all about setting up a server with everything it needs so that when a user connects to your server over the internet they access the best learning experience they have ever had, your gamified class.

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