(This isn't really an update, since it's basically a shameless plug, so I've decided to at least make it educational):
There's 3 basic parts to getting a real website up. By real, I mean something like GOOGLE.COM
(1) The first thing to do is register a domain name. Easy. Google.com is already taken, obviously, so think of something else. Then register it. I prefer doing my registrations via GANDI.NET. They are cheap, at 12 Euros per year, and their interface is very clean.
But registering is nothing more than getting, say, a building permit. Sure, you're allowed to go build a house. Even give it a unique name. It doesn't matter whom you've registered with, you still have to park your site somewhere. That part is called hosting. It's easy to confuse the two, so don't. Stop it!
(2) Your host is a computer (maybe more than one) that holds your website data and has a constant internet connection to it. It's also got an address, much like a house. Similarly, that house has a local "post office" of sorts.
So you pay someone to host your website. They give you their "post office" location. You tell your registrar where those "post offices" are. Then, within 24 hours, the whole world will know how to find yourdomain.com
(3) Not totally done yet. You still have to design a webpage. Then upload it to your new host. Whoever does the design for you will know how to handle that, but make sure to give them a separate account, keeping your own administration account to yourself.
Once you have a website registered and hosted with a good provider, you'll also be able to have your own, personalized email account. And here is where I make a plug for the company that hosts me:
Several years ago, I went looking for a host. Checked out reviews. I wanted cheap and high-quality. Who doesn't? Theirs was the only affordable ($60/year) company that had plenty of flexibility and great support. How do I know? Because plenty of people will place good notes and comments, but more important are the bad comments.
Each of the negatives I saw was appropriately and decisively answered by a guy with a Russian-sounding name (the president of the company?) who clearly knew what he was doing. When you buy stock in a company, you want to make sure the management is on top of things. The same goes for hosting.
Details for their packages are in the banner ad in this post and to the right.
What you won't read is how satisfied I am with the professionalism and promptness their support service shows. Their on-line tech support reads your tickets within seconds of submission, usually responding in 5 minutes or less. They've gone out of their way on numerous occasions to solve issues sometimes out of their control.
What can I say? When given a chance to pimp for them, AND make a commission? I'm down for it. Forget contextual ads. Let me post ads on my page that I WANT to brag about. That's the way it should be.