On Monday, with the assistance of my gaming buddy Chad, I got myself a domain, and set up hosting for a simple web site. Chad's company, Surface 51, mainly does graphic design, but they also sell web hosting services. (The Surface51 site is all flash, actively dialup-hostile, but it does look slick.) So he could set me up with a site for what I think is a reasonable price, with the added benefit that I have someone I know I can ask for help when I get lost.
Feel free to browse over to www.tigertoy.net (tigertoy.com is taken, though there isn't actually a site connected to it) if you want to see how I'm coming. Nothing there now but a cute picture, but I did prove that I can put a file with my HTML on the server, which is an important starting point.
I'll be trying to spend a few hours working on the site in the next few days. I'm open to constructive suggestions for very simple things I can do with the site, but please bear in mind that I know a little bit of HTML and basically nothing about any other web technology. I am inclined to write my own HTML, as a learning experience, but I'll listen to recommendations of free HTML editing software. I'd also be interested if you can recommend web sites that can teach me what I need to know efficiently, which is to say not a spoon feeding tutorial aimed at a 7 year old intellect, but also not something that blithely assumes I already know all this stuff. A tutorial for smart people would be great; references that are clearly written and well hyperlinked are not bad. Finally, Chad suggests that I find an FTP client that supports SFTP; if you can recommend a free one, that'd be cool. I got the two files I uploaded to produce the placeholder site through the web interface for managing the site, but that's really klunky.