Power Tools for Technical Communication:
Create Simple Web Pages


In this lab, you create two simple web pages and set links between them. To be ready for this project, you need to have have studied Chapter 17 in Power Tools for Technical Communication and have done at least one other web-page formatting project:
  1. Using a simple text editor or web-page editor of your choice, create a simple web page like the one shown in Chapter 17 entitled My First Web Page. Between the <TITLE> and </TITLE> tags and between the <H1> and </H1> tags, substitute Simple Web Pages.
  2. Copy the following unformatted the text for page 1, paste it into the web page you just started, and name it whatever you want.
  3. Start another web page, copy the following unformatted the text for page 2, paste it into the web page you just started, and name it whatever you want.
  4. Make the first page look like page 1 PDF.
  5. Make the second page look like page 2 PDF. (the graphic is at the bottom of this page.)
  6. Notice several things about this first page:
    • The headers and footers at the four corners of the PDF are created by Acrobat; ignore them.
    • The title and the headings are blue and use Arial font.
    • The indentation of the body text is achieved by using a pair of tags twice.
    • The link on "definition of acid rain" points to the second page.
    • The word "Note:" is bold.
    • The second page is created by Acrobat; ignore that also.
    • Replace your name with your name; center this line, make a smaller font; and make it blue.
  7. Notice several things about this second page:
    • The 5-item bulleted list at the top of the page provides links to the 5 headings in the rest of the page.
    • The headers and footers at the four corners of the PDF are created by Acrobat; ignore them.
    • The title and the headings are blue and use Arial font.
    • The indentation of the body text is achieved by using a pair of tags twice.
    • The second page is created by Acrobat; ignore that also.
    • Replace your name with your name; center this line, make a smaller font; and make it blue.
  8. Put your name, Simple Web Pages, and the date on this document, and show it to your instructor.


Text for Page 1

Acid Rain Experiment

A good way to learn about acid rain is to perform the following experiment. The following explain materials to gather, steps to perform, observations to make, and further explorations to do.

Purpose

The purpose of this experiment is to demonstrate to students how acid rain is formed. For background, see the definition of acid rain.

Materials

To get started, you'll need to gather the following:

some means of measuring pH
water
straw

Procedures

Here's what to do:

Place a small sample of water (approximately 20ml) in a container. Test for and record pH.
Place straw in water sample and have student exhale gently into water for several breaths—at least a minute.
Measure pH of sample again and compare with previous reading.
Have students try and explain what happened and why.

This demonstration works particularly well if you are using a test method that requires you to add a chemical to the water and compare color produced with known pH samples. In such cases, the color will change right in front of students. In most cases, students can lower pH by 2 units (from 7 to 5 for instance) which is actually, of course, a 100-fold increase in acidity.

Note: Once students see how easily water can absorb the carbon dioxide from their breath they begin to grasp why sulfur and nitrogen compounds in air can have such an impact.

Further Exploration

If you have a pH meter and some students with a feel for chemistry, you may want to demonstrate how buffers reduce damage from acid rain. The amount of naturally occurring buffers varies in different regions. Without buffers, addition of acids results in a rather steady decrease in pH. When buffers are present, addition of acids creates little or no change in pH until buffers are used up and then pH changes dramatically. Here are some ideas for other experiments:

Use a larger sample of water and have students design some means of having a steady air flow into the sample(try placing an aquarium pump in an empty aquarium with a burning candle).
Run test with distilled water, plotting changes of pH against time.
Run test with buffered water, plotting changes of pH against time and compare results.

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Text for Page 2

What is Acid Rain?

Acid rain is rain that is more acidic than normal. Acid rain is a complicated problem. Caused by air pollution, acid rain's spread and damage involves weather, chemistry, soil, and the life cycles of plants and animals on the land and from acid rain in the water. This discussion of acid rain covers the following:

Air Pollution: Primary Source of Acid Rain
Acid Precipitation
Dry Deposition
Movement of Acid Rain
Natural Acids

Air Pollution: Primary Source of Acid Rain

Scientists have discovered that air pollution from the burning of fossil fuels is the major cause of acid rain. Power plants and factories burn coal and oil. Power plants use that coal and oil to produce the electricity we need to heat and light our homes and to run our electric appliances. We also burn natural gas, coal, and oil to heat our homes. Cars, trucks, and airplanes use gasoline, another fossil fuel. The smoke and fumes from burning fossil fuels rise into the atmosphere and combine with the moisture in the air to form acid rain. The main chemicals in air pollution that create acid rain are sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides. Acid rain usually forms high in the clouds where sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides react with water, oxygen, and oxidants. This forms a mild solution of sulfuric acid and nitric acid. Sunlight increases the rate of most of these reactions. Rainwater, snow, fog, and other forms of precipitation containing those mild solutions of sulfuric and nitric acids fall to the earth as acid rain.

Acid Precipitation

Water moves through every living plant and animal, streams, lakes, and oceans in the hydrologic cycle. In that cycle, water evaporates from the land and sea into the atmosphere. Water in the atmosphere then condenses to form clouds. Clouds release the water back to the earth as rain, snow, or fog. When water droplets form and fall to the earth they pick up particles and chemicals that float in the air. Even clean, unpolluted air has some particles such as dust or pollen. Clean air also contains naturally occurring gases such as carbon dioxide. The interaction between the water droplets and the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere gives rain a pH of 5.6, making even clean rain slightly acidic. Other natural sources of acids and bases in the atmosphere may lower or raise the pH of unpolluted rain. However, when rain contains pollutants, especially sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides, the rain water can become very acidic.

Dry Deposition

Acid rain does not account for all of the acidity that falls back to earth from pollutants. About half the acidity in the atmosphere falls back to the earth through dry deposition as gases and dry particles. The wind blows these acidic particles and gases onto buildings, cars, homes and trees. In some instances, these gases and particles can eat away the things on which they settle. Dry deposited gases and particles are sometimes washed from trees and other surfaces by rainstorms. When that happens, the runoff water adds those acids to the acid rain, making the combination more acidic than the falling rain alone. The combination of acid rain plus dry deposited acid is called acid deposition.

Movement of Acid Rain

The chemical reactions that change air pollution to acid rain can take from several hours to several days. Years ago, when smokestacks were only a few stories high, pollution from smokestacks usually stayed near the ground and settled on land nearby. This caused unhealthy conditions for plants and animals near the smokestacks. To reduce this pollution, the government passed a law permitting the construction of very tall smokestacks. At that time, people thought that if the pollution were sent high into the air it would no longer be a problem. Scientists now know that this is incorrect. Sending pollution high into the sky increases the time that the pollution stays in the air. The longer the pollution is in the air, the greater are the chances that the pollutants will form acid rain. In addition, the wind can carry these pollutants for hundreds of miles before they become joined with water droplets to form acid rain. For that reason, acid rain can also be a problem in areas far from the polluting smokestacks. Dry deposition is usually more abundant near the cities and industrial areas where the pollutants are released.

Natural Acids

There are also natural sources of acids such as volcanoes, natural geysers and hot springs. Nature has developed ways of recycling these acids by absorbing and breaking them down. These natural acids contribute to only a small portion of the acidic rainfall in the world today. In small amounts, these acids actually help dissolve nutrients and minerals from the soil so that trees and other plants can use them for food. The large amounts of acids produced by human activities overload this natural acidity.

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