Here is the second in my web series on good web design techniques, in this posting Ill be going over good and bad use of sounds, as well as some of the different formats available to you when adding sound to your website.
Sounds can be played "inline" or by a "helper", depending on the HTML element you use.
When sound is included in a web page, or as part of a web page, it is called inline sound.
If you plan to use inline sounds in your web applications, be aware that many people find inline sound annoying. Also note that some users might have turned off the inline sound option in their browser.
My best advice is to include inline sound only in web pages where the user expects to hear the sound. An example of this is a page which opens after the user has clicked on a link to hear a recording.
Using A Helper (Plug-In)
A helper application is a program that can be launched by the browser to "help" playing sound. Helper applications are also called Plug-Ins. Helper applications can be launched using the "embed" or the "object" tag. One great advantage of using a helper application is that you can let some (or all) of the player settings be controlled by the user. Most helper applications allows manually (or programmed) control over the volume settings and play functions like rewind, pause, stop and play.
Using The "embed" Tag
The purpose of the "embed" tag is to embed multimedia elements in web page.
The following code fragment displays a MIDI file embedded in a web page.
Note: The embed tag is deprecated. The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) recommend using the object tag instead.
Using The object Tag
The purpose of the object tag is to embed multimedia elements in web page.
The following code fragment displays a WAVE file embedded in a web page.
param name="FileName" value="liar.wav"
Using A Hyperlink
If a web page includes a hyperlink to a media file, most browsers will use a "helper application" to play the file.
The following code fragment displays a link to a MIDI file. If a user clicks on the link, the browser will launch a helper application, like Windows Media Player to play the MIDI file:
a href="beatles.mid" Play the Beatles
So there is just a couple of the ways you can use sound in your website.