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Old May 24, 2006, 07:45 PM   #1
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easy update website?

I'll make one thing clear before i ask this question, I have built a couple of websites via Dreamweaver but I'm not that versed in this area. I'm a Graphic Designer(print) first, foremost and not a Web designer.

A friend has asked me to help her build a website that she can update easily. She's a musician, so the site will contain music, videos, photos and she will also be posting regular updates. Someone recommended Macromedia's (OOPS!) ADOBE's "contribute" application and then others have mentioned something called "Rails". I have never used either so I don't know which way to go. The other thing is that I'm on a Mac and she's on Windows. In any case, if anyone has any suggestions, tips or past experience with something similar, I would greatly appreciate some feedback. Thanks!!!

..."A society with the mentality of Abundance, destroys the fear of Need."
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Old May 24, 2006, 09:16 PM   #2
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Well, unless you're a programmer then you will probably have trouble making an "easy-to-update" website; especially with that kind of content. It looks like they are looking for a CMS, or a Content Management System.. and the only way to get something that looks good and functions good (IMHO) is to build the system yourself.. which means programming.

You COULD try some open source scripts and see if you can figure them out, though. I can't really suggest any since I make my own.
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Old May 25, 2006, 01:39 PM   #3
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Try Wordpress or Textpattern. They are basically blog CMSs, but allow you to easily create new posts and upload files and images to your site. Stay away from Rails if you don't even know what it is. What you'll need to set up Wordpress or Textpattern:

1. A host with PHP/MySQL support
2. About 5-10 minutes of free time to install (at least in the case of Wordpress; I've never personally used Textpattern)

It's really very simple. Try setting up a test blog at Wordpress.com and see how you like Wordpress! It doesn't have the image/file uploading features like the the one you would install on your own server, but other than that the interface is basically the same.
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Old May 25, 2006, 03:19 PM   #4
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I agree with the Wordpress recommendation - sounds like it's just what she needs.
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Old May 25, 2006, 03:23 PM   #5
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Wordpress is amazingly simple, that or pMachine (it's free also), I've used both on my blog and both are great.
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Old May 25, 2006, 08:43 PM   #6
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Contribute isn't free, but is possibly the simplest to set up, in that it works with straight HTML web pages, with no installation, knowledge of PHP or scripting or anything on that level required by either you or the contributor.

You set up the pages to define what parts are editable and then generate a key for the user to gain FTP access to the server that hosts the site (but doesn't let them know how to get access outside of Contribute). They can then log into the site, edit their bits of the pages, preview the changes and publish.

I use PHP for my own stuff, but my corporate compadre in Oz uses Contribute to let the Marketing bods in the company update their brand sites, and from what i've seen of it, it works well enough that i'll be pushing to use it here also.

I think there's a free trial version.
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Old May 25, 2006, 11:10 PM   #7
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The only one of the above I've used I Contribute. It's a great product for the non-techy, once someone technically inclined sets things up. (I'm not sure how much help it would be with music/media files.)
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