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Discovering the Different Types of Websites

Published on . Updated on .

Deep web

Deep web is a type of website that is not visible to standard search engines.

An example of the deep web is your email inbox. For example, if you want to open your inbox, you need to authenticate yourself, and only then you can access it. Search engines should not be able to index your inbox. If they can, it will be a disaster.

Dark web

Dark web is not strictly a website that has a dark theme. Usually, dark web has a top-level domain of .onion.

Onion websites can only be accessed through the Tor network. The recommended way to access them is through Tor Browser.

Another type of network to access the dark web is Invisible Internet Project (I2P) network.

The purpose of the dark web is to achieve anonymity. This can protect people who are being targeted by governments or dangerous people. For example, Edward Snowden.

Like anything in this world, it can be used to do bad things. For example, gambling, sharing dangerous videos, and other illegal things that would not be easy or impossible with normal websites.


The IndieWeb is a community of independent & personal websites connected by simple standards, based on the principles of: owning your domain & using it as your primary identity, publishing on your own site (optionally syndicating elsewhere), and owning your data.


IndieWeb is about having a personal website and owning your content. You post your content on your own website. This way, your content is yours.

Usually, when you post something on social media, your post is not fully controlled by you. It means if the social media platform is going down, your content will be going down with it. Also, you have to follow some set of rules on what you can post. Otherwise, your content will be taken down.

IndieWeb advocates for people to have their own websites and post their content there. This way, you have full control of your content. You can delete it or edit it. You can have different designs. Freedom. No rules to follow. You can create your own rules.

To communicate with other people, you can use the Webmention protocol. This way, your website can get likes and receive comments.

Gemini websites

The URL starts with gemini:// and then the domain name.

I never access a Gemini website. I do not know how to do it.

Common websites

This includes social media platforms, educational websites, news websites, e-commerce websites, and many others.

This one is what I usually use on a day-to-day basis.

Open web

The Open Web Platform is the collection of open (royalty-free) technologies which enables the Web. Using the Open Web Platform, everyone has the right to implement a software component of the Web without requiring any approvals or waiving license fees.

Open Web Platform - W3C Wiki

Open web is not a different type of website. It is the foundation of any website.

Open web allows anyone to create their own websites without having to pay anything. Anyone can use HTML, CSS, and JavaScript for free. It is free and will be free.

HTML, CSS, and JavaScript are the technologies that follow open standards. They are accessible and usable by anyone.

You do not have to use your money to know HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. The specification for each of them is publicly available.

The specification for HTML — HTML Standard

A list of all CSS specifications — All CSS specifications

The JavaScript specification — ECMAScript® 2022 Language Specification

In my opinion, those specifications are not the go-to resources for people to learn about making websites. Who is going to start learning HTML from the specification page? It would be a nightmare. So, they can be accessed by anyone, and at the same time, they are being avoided by anyone.

Gopher websites

The URL starts with gopher:// and then the domain name.

I do not know how to access a website with Gopher protocol.

I have an example of a website that uses Gopher — gopher://

That website is developed by tomasino — tomasino ( -


I think this is a good source to learn more about Gemini websites — Project Gemini

Learn more about Edward Snowden — Edward Snowden - Wikipedia

Tor Project | Anonymity Online

Deep web - Wikipedia

I2P - Wikipedia

silo - IndieWeb

POSSE - IndieWeb

I have a guide to implement Webmention on your website — Beginner Guides for Applying Webmention

Open Web Platform - W3C Wiki

Web platform - Wikipedia

The web and web standards - Learn web development | MDN

Standards - W3C

Open standard - Wikipedia

The Web Before the Web: A Look Back at Gopher