Content Delivery Networks

Now that you have some idea of the power of Font Awesome, and how Font Awesome works, you may be wondering, how do I add Font Awesome to my website? Font Awesome utilizes one of the most popular ways to deliver resources on the internet today: a Content Delivery Network, or CDN.

What is a CDN?

Again, let us see what Wikipedia has to say:

A content delivery network or content distribution network (CDN) is a globally distributed network of proxy servers deployed in multiple data centers. The goal of a CDN is to serve content to end-users with high availability and high performance. CDNs serve a large fraction of the Internet content today, including web objects (text, graphics and scripts), downloadable objects (media files, software, documents), applications (e-commerce, portals), live streaming media, on-demand streaming media, and social networks.

Rather than having all your resources located at one computer, a CDN uses aetwork of geographically dispersed servers. This provides several advantages:

  • When a visitor requests content from a CDN, the computer closest in proximity to visitor will deliver the content, ensuring the shortest distance for the data to travel and providing the fastest site experience.
  • For you, this means that you do not have to upload and install a lot of resources on your website. Instead, you will add a line of code that lets the web browser know where to go to load the resources needed to make your website work.
  • The process of bouncing through a CDN is nearly transparent to the user. The only way a user would know if a CDN has been accessed is if the delivered URL is different than the URL that has been requested.

Here is the code needed to add Font Awesome to your website:

<link href="https://maxcdn.bootstrapcdn.com/font-awesome/4.5.0/css/font-awesome.min.css">
                    

This is similar to the external fonts were studied several weeks ago.

Another great feature of using a CDN is this: you do not need to update your website with differnet maintenance versions of the resource you are using. As the web browser is always loading resource, you are not responsible for maintaining these resources directly.

Visit the Font Awesome CDN


Wayne Joness
West Los Angeles College, cs952
Fall 2016