Best web-authoring software?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by law guy, Apr 4, 2003.

  1. law guy macrumors 6502a

    law guy

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2003
    Location:
    Western Massachusetts
    #1
    What are folks preferences between GoLive, Frontpage, or... My interest is to create some pages that beyond what .Mac offers. Sure, .Mac is much more convenient than back when I had to transfer my files through DOS onto a university server, but I'm butting up against what the templates will allow. Thanks for reflections on your web authoring software preference.
     
  2. Rower_CPU Moderator emeritus

    Rower_CPU

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2001
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #2
    Dreamweaver. Period.

    It's pretty much the standard for web authoring at this point.
     
  3. D0ct0rteeth macrumors 65816

    D0ct0rteeth

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2002
    Location:
    Franklin, TN
    #3
    Agreed. Exclaimation Mark!.

    -Doc
     
  4. beatle888 macrumors 68000

    beatle888

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2002
    #4
    rowan, i was wondering about something that maybe you could answer for me. i just started using dreamweaver and they go on about how you can enter values for cell height and width within a table. but then they go on to say that in order to stay compatible with most browser you SHOULDNT enter values for a cells height and width. im confused.

    the book that said that is from new riders. its called Inside Dreamweaver MX.

    heres the actual text.

    Dont set the width and height attributes of table rows or cells to specify these dimensions.......this does not work consistently and will most likely cause table problems.

    then it goes on to say...

    dont rely on splitting or merging tabel cells, some browsers have a difficult time rendering table code containing these attributes, and with a little planning, the same effect can be producted in other ways.

    can you please tell me how im suppose to have a fixed with cell if i cant specify the dimensions.

    and can you explain to me the ways that they say i should use to get the same effect of merging table cells.

    thank you very much.
     
  5. Rower_CPU Moderator emeritus

    Rower_CPU

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    Oct 5, 2001
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #5
    I think they're referring to the fact that specifying widths/heights is not part of the current HTML spec and newer browsers might ignore the values.

    It's better to allow the cells to adapt to the content that fits inside.

    As for column spans, I think it still works fine.
     
  6. wsteineker macrumors 6502a

    wsteineker

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Montgomery, AL
    #6
    Rower's right there. I just finished a site this morning that was a prime example of the aforememtioned problem. Most table cells can be set to auto stretch, so that takes care of width issues. As for height issues, just draw a new table to fit the graphic you're hoping to use and then create cells within that table to fill. It's pretty easy stuff.

    In case you can't tell, I also recommend Dreamweaver. It just rocks. I can't recommend it highly enough. As for companion books, I'd recommend Dreamweaver MX: The Missing Manual by David Sawyer McFarland. It's edited by David Pogue and published by Pogue Press and O'Reilly. The whole Missing Manual series is great, but this one is an absolute gem. Easy for first time users to understand, but thorough enough that even power users can learn a thing or two. It's been an invaluable asset.
     
  7. tjwett macrumors 68000

    tjwett

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    May 6, 2002
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NYC
    #7
    what i do alot is make "spacergifs", atleast that's what i call them. they are usually bars of a plain color and have the certain width that i want. if it needs to appear more than once just use the same image to save load times. usually you can get them to be less than 1k in size though. it's best to use the content of a cell to declare it's size.
     
  8. anneleonard macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2003
    Location:
    Reading, UK (a.k.a. Strongbadia)
    #8
    Re: Best web-authoring software?

    Sorry- no-one else has picked up on this... but frontpage? :eek: PLEASE , whatever you do, don't use frontpage. it produces the most ugly, clunky webpages, and there's much better alternatives.
    I use Dreamweaver MX, there's so many useful little aspects to it, I don't think I'll ever know about all the features that could help me write webpages.
     
  9. losfp macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    Sydney
    #9
    My weapon of choice is HomeSite, but since you can't get it for Mac, at home I have to use Dreamweaver MX - a close and worthy second place winner :) I pretty much use the code view exclusively, and the site/file management features are sweet! now if only it had tabbed code windows...
     
  10. AlphaTech macrumors 601

    AlphaTech

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2001
    Location:
    Natick, MA
    #10
    I'm going to be the non-conformist here and go with GoLive [6].

    When I was looking for a web authoring package I downloaded the trial versions of BOTH Dreamweaver and GoLive (mx and 6). I have to say, the trial version of Dreamweaver blew massive chunks all over the place. With GoLive I was able to see how things would look (very handy preview function where you do NOT have to save the file first). GoLive also has multiple undo's, so you can even go back to the point where you opened the document. That comes in handy if you hit save and then realize that you need to go back a few steps (or more). GoLive also has a built-in, very easy to use FTP client. I use it more then Fetch, even though I purchased Fetch. GoLive can also easily handle flash content as well as anything else you might want to toss into the pages. You can view the pages in several different ways, from layout (graphic) to source (the code) to a split screen, and even a preview (I prefer to preview in a browser).

    GoLive also has an integrated site management system. I'd hope that Dreamweaver has something similar, but with GoLive, I use that small window to show my site folder (on my drive) as well as the ftp clint part. That means it's a simply drag-n-drop to upload/download files to/from my site. I even think that the ftp part of GoLive is faster then Fetch, or at least it doesn't time out like Fetch does at times.

    Hands down, GoLive is a snap to use, and doesn't cost any more then Dreamweaver (they are within $10 of each other). Oh, and creating tables is too easy with GoLive...

    Whatever you do, don't use Frontpage. If you need a way to decide for yourself, download the trial versions of both GoLive and Dreamweaver. I did, and it did help my decision.
     
  11. JupiterZen macrumors regular

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    #11
    Re: Best web-authoring software?

    A simple text editor and a couple of browsers for testing is all a good webdeveloper really needs.

    BBEdit is nice because of the code coloring.
     
  12. AlphaTech macrumors 601

    AlphaTech

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    Oct 4, 2001
    Location:
    Natick, MA
    #12
    Re: Re: Best web-authoring software?

    For the novice/beginner, the web authoring applications are a god-send. For one thing, you don't have to learn/figure out the codes for things like tables. For people that don't know HTML (or XHTML) code, the applications make things very easy.

    BBEdit is decent, but it doesn't have all the functions/features of either DreamweaverMX or GoLive 6.
     
  13. law guy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    law guy

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    Jan 17, 2003
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    Western Massachusetts
    #13
    Have you found the integration of GoLive with photoshop / illustrator to be helpful or not a big deal?
     
  14. AlphaTech macrumors 601

    AlphaTech

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    Oct 4, 2001
    Location:
    Natick, MA
    #14
    I haven't used Illustrator files in my site. Photoshop on the other hand works very well with GoLive. It makes things easier then it could be. Of course, I am talking about PS7, since it's OS X native. I'm using all software in OS X now. I don't even use classic mode any longer, for anything.
     
  15. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2001
    Location:
    VA
    #15
    I've used dreamweaver and golive, they both have their moments. I prefer golive myself, but it basically comes down to what you're happy learning yourself.

    Either one will be able to do pretty much what ever you'd like.

    D
     
  16. iTarzan macrumors newbie

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    Apr 1, 2003
    #16
    Amen brother.
     
  17. JupiterZen macrumors regular

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    #17
    Re: Re: Re: Best web-authoring software?


    I wasn't naming BBEdit for its HTML features, only because it's a nice text editor. Better that using Textedit.

    Webauthoring tools almost always make my brain hurt. Palletes full of buttons with icons just so you don't have to understand what you are doing anymore. Nice if you're fooling around at home, but I don't know anybody who is professionally developing websites that is using an authoring tool like Dreamweaver or GoLive.

    Only handcoded you can get the best cross browser compatibility and the best control over what happens. Coding around the HTML specs to achieve the things that you want.
     
  18. AlphaTech macrumors 601

    AlphaTech

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    Oct 4, 2001
    Location:
    Natick, MA
    #18
    JupiterZen, The guy is asking for opinions on the three packages he listed. From what I take from his comments, he doesn't want to have to learn HTML/XHTML code right away to create the pages he wants. I use GoLive BECAUSE you can use the application for setting up items that can be a pain in the a$$ to set up if you are not a web guru (which I'm not). Setting up tables and such with the packages is a hell of a lot easier then trying to do it via code.

    With that in mind, I typically view my web pages in the source view and make changes there. The main reason I do that is because I am using css, and the pages don't display properly in the WYSIWYG mode.

    ALL of my pages (sans the store and discussion boards) are XHTML Strict encoded. I took the time to make sure they meet the w3 standards for such. The pages display properly in the major browsers (IE, Netscape and Opera) which are the ones I checked with. I have listed on my contact page which versions I tested and which operating systems I tested them under (OSX and windows).

    GoLive ALSO color codes all code type entries, so you can easily see them. It also helps that it colors all text following the call out until you have closed the tag.

    I did have some assistance in learning about coding when I started my site. Before that, I had not done ANY web page creation. With the minimal assistance I received from my friend (who's job it is to create web pages for a large corporation) as well as how GoLive handles things, I was able to learn what I needed to fast.

    I will NOT advocate that the novice web designer jump right into something like BBEdit since that can make it many times more difficult then it needs to be. The web development applications are MORE then just text editors. For one thing, GoLive's ftp part, and site management are god-sends. I use both constantly. I can easily manage my pages with the site manager as well as choose from a variety of templates (if I choose to). I didn't use the templates, since I wanted something different then what they offered.

    I also have to seriously recommend staying clear of any use of Quark 5 or InDesign for web page creation. They do NOT do even a moderate job at it. Quark 5 actually causes serious issues since you can't (or at least not easily) create pages that flow dynamically based upon the window size. That is one of the major things I needed in my site. I wanted to make sure that as long as people keep the window to a resonable minimum width the pages would display properly and not force you to scroll left to right. I hate sites/pages that do that.
     
  19. iGav macrumors G3

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    Mar 9, 2002
    #19
    I'm with Alpha.... GoLive all the way for me.... :)
     
  20. JupiterZen macrumors regular

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    #20
    AlphaTech,

    I agree it's easy to create things like tables and complex frame setups with tools like Dreamweaver. I admit doing it myself time to time. But having to learn the trade myself in the days before these tools even existed, I formed a very good understanding of what I was doing. And I think this understanding of the basics by having to find out yourself will always pay of in the future.

    These tools like Dreamweaver make it look really difficult to even create a simple webpage, with all the options they provide. Doing it by hand might be a little bit harder in the beginning, but HTML isn't much of a real "programming language". And IMO the basics of tags around what they modify is easily understood.

    Than you're off creating simple pages AND you know what you are doing. Without having to learn another complex application like Dreamweaver.

    But maybe I'm just a little to eager to learn how things work. Some people just want to click and go.

    I must agree with you on not even considering things like Quark or InDesign. These apps are created for a completely different purpose and mistakenly got these HTML export options in the middle of the internet hype.
     
  21. beatle888 macrumors 68000

    beatle888

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2002
    #21

    thanks!
     
  22. iJon macrumors 604

    iJon

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2002
    #22
    golive all the way for me. but i never used dreamweaver that much. i used both and i just seemed to pick up on things on golive faster.

    iJon
     
  23. Doctor Q Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #23
    My experience: Front Page (on Windows), Dreamweaver 4, Dreamweaver MX, and a text editor.

    What I use most often: text editor.

    What I recommend: Dreamweaver MX.

    The last version of Front Page I used (about a year ago) didn't even produce proper HTML. Tags were incorrectly nested, so HTML parsers I tried to use choked on its output. The one advantage to Front Page is if you are running the web site on a Windows server with IIS and want to take advantage of the Windows-only features of Front Page and IIS.
     
  24. steeleclipse macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2002
    Location:
    Canada
    #24
    web design isnt really my favorite thing to do, yet it pays the bills. for people like me, Freeway is quite effective. does anybody else like it?
     
  25. filipp macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2003
    Location:
    Sweden
    #25
    I agree with JupiterZen, all a hardcore developer needs is a good text editor, and the browsers to test things in. I have been using Mac for one day now and I have actually started learning BBEdit, great stuff I must say. All this dreamweaver, goLive and so on, you dont make the HTML the way YOU want it, but rather the way macromedia or adobe things you should.

    It takes more brainwork to do web developing in a texteditor, but that's the way I work, no complains ;)

    Go BBEdit!
     

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