Dreamweaver alternative

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by namethisfile, Feb 27, 2012.

  1. macrumors 6502a

    Jan 17, 2008
    Hi, guys.

    Does anyone know a mac alternative to dreamweaver? i have the most rudimentary skills in web coding but i remember using dreamweaver 7 a while ago on a powerpc mac and i think that dreamweaver had somekind of WYSIWYG editor that allowed me to visually see what i was doing as well as buttons of web tools/elements laid out for easy identification. i didn't have to "code" as much as i was laying out and "designing" the page with dreamweaver. i also would like to learn more about css, so an inexpensive program with somekind of visual css editor would also be nice. i quickly looked at what the app store has to offer and saw BBEDIT and CODA. but i really don't know anything about these programs. so, i was hoping that maybe someone here knows or can point me to the right program for my needs.

    thanks in advance.
  2. macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2012
  3. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 17, 2008

    this program looks good for being free. do you have any experience with this program? how does it compare to dreamweaver mx?

    and why is it free?
  4. macrumors newbie

    Dec 15, 2011
    Coda is, according to me, one of the best web design applications there are. Try it for free at their website, and if you like it, you could buy it from the Mac App Store. I really recommend it.
  5. macrumors 6502a


    Sep 2, 2010
    Coda is not a WYSIWYG editor. It's a code editor with built-in browser, ssh, and ftp. But that's not a competitor to the WYSIWYG side of Dreamweaver.
  6. macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2012

    Well it is free because it is an open source software. I believe it is mainly developed by Mozilla community.

    It is not as advanced as the Dreamweaver but it is good for simple stuff and easy to use. I don't use visual editors, I use mainly just a text editor and some css frameworks for web development; but I used Kompozer sometime ago for quick arrangements. It was easy to use and effective.
  7. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 17, 2008
    I downloaded the free trial of coda and quickly realized that it is not WYSIWYG.

    i really like the WYSIWYG editor in dreamweaver. is there a program out that has a WYSISWYG editor?
  8. macrumors 6502a

    Apple Key

    Jan 4, 2012
    Dreamweaver MX is very outdated. Also, you seem to be set on using Dreamweaver, why not just go for it?

    You could also give Nvu a shot.
  9. macrumors newbie

    Dec 27, 2010
  10. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 17, 2008

    i know. dreamweaver mx is old but it's what i have to work with. my hesitance to get the latest dreamweaver is the hefty price tag for what i need it for. so, that is the reason why i am looking for an inexpensive alternative that has WYSIWYG and a toolbar. i am not confident enough to hand code everything.


    huh. flux looks like it's WYSIWYG. i might check it out.
  11. TEG
    macrumors 604


    Jan 21, 2002
    Langley, Washington
    As someone who actually knows HTML, I've been doing a lot of development at work, and I'm simply using Dashcode, as it does all the color coding that I rely on. True there is no WYSIWYG interface, but to be honest, when I use my WYSIWYG in Dreamweaver it is more for preview purposes than actual design.

  12. macrumors member

    Mar 5, 2012
    I have only ever used Dreamweaver, but whilst it is great WYSIWYG, the only way to move forward is to learn HTML, CSS and Javascript. There are so many resources from which to learn and in my opinion in is crucial to do so to become a decent web designer. Like the above poster Dreamwever now has become my previewer.

    I looked at the flux link today and some of the videos - very clever and would get the job done, but I don't think using it anyone would ever get to grips with the coding itself.

    I have found building websites and understanding coding is a learning curve and you can add to the strings of your bow by understanding (or at least being able to use) php, asp and more.

    I have just done aninimation for a home page that untilisies HTML5, JQuery and CSS3 - you would think it was flash and really looks like there is so much more to come over the next couple of years.

    Go on W3C schools and the numerous free resources and dive in!
  13. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jan 17, 2008

    so i dove in to the world of css... there are a number of tutorials on youtube about it including one i was specifically looking for. so, with that, i just needed to get an editor. with coda, even though it's not WYSIWYG, there is a preview button available that lets one see what the page will look like. from there, i followed the tutorials and played around with coda until i learned how to implement css onto my website. I am really happy with coda and at the moment is more than adequate for my website needs....
  14. macrumors 68030


    Jul 30, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    Yep, and in Coda you can bring up a second panel by clicking the button that looks like this +||| in the top right hand corner under the search bar. Then, whilst that section is highlighted, click the preview (globe and magnifying glass) icon.

    If you're working on the site and it's on your computer, this will show you a live view of your site so you can see if anything needs adjusted. If you're working on the site from your web server, it'll update when you save and refresh. Pretty handy!
  15. macrumors regular


    Jul 19, 2011
    new jersey
    I suggest muse by adobe.

  16. macrumors 6502

    Feb 16, 2007
    Waterloo, Ontario
    FWIW, I hand-code websites because I find it faster than using a WYSIWYG editor. I was a PageMill user back in the day, have used several programs since then, and own a copy of Dreamweaver through CS5. I don't think I have launched Dreamweaver in the last year. Once you have a good understanding of HTML and CSS, writing the code becomes second-nature.

    It's not that hard to learn enough about HTML and CSS to eliminate the need for a WYSIWYG editor, and you have a better understanding of your code when everything is complete. One reason I moved away from WYSIWYG editors is that they add another layer to the process. Sometimes you can get away with not knowing what's going on behind the scenes, but when browser-compatibility issues arise, or you need to implement some complex javascript, you need to learn what's underneath anyway.

    This may not be a recommendation for anything you're working on now, but I do echo what most would say about using a text editor to write HTML. I don't think it's just because I'm a stubborn programmer (though that might be part of it).

    PS: If you're planning to use a CMS at any point, you typically don't need to write much HTML, you just implement the design with CSS based on the HTML generated through the system. Most content management systems include a javascript-based WYSIWYG content editor that uses your CSS to preview the styling.

    Lucas Gladding

    Development/Interface Design/Illustration
    www.cashdepositapp.com | www.ledgerapp.com
  17. lucasgladding, Mar 31, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2012

    macrumors 6502

    Feb 16, 2007
    Waterloo, Ontario
    I just watched the video for Muse. I had a great impression up to the point where one of the engineers suggested that he didn't think very many people would be coding to design websites in a few years. He equated hand-coding websites to hand-coding PDF or PostScript, a flawed comparison IMHO. Print is different than web design because the viewer doesn't have control over how content is presented. With websites, the designer/developer needs to consider how the page will change when users override settings. That includes widening a window, changing font sizes for accessibility, etc. Also, structuring your content around the presentation ignores years of web standards work. Separating content, presentation, and behavior simplifies things when integrating into a CSS, or even just when you're making design tweaks in the future.

    Designers have an obligation to learn the medium they work with, or they do their clients a disservice. I'm not suggesting that graphic designers need to be able to write HTML/CSS/JS, just that they know enough about the technology to know when they need to hire someone who does know the medium.

    Sorry, a little off topic, but somewhat relevant.

    PS: The code for the showcase items on the Muse site doesn't inspire much confidence, nor does the behavior when you increase the text size on the designs.
  18. UTclassof89, Mar 31, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2012

    macrumors 6502


    Jun 10, 2008
    weeellll... yes, one has to understand code to master the medium, but that doesn't mean one should hand-code all the time.

    A better analogy than editing PostScript might be doing math: It's critical to know how to add and multiply, but if you're accounting with a pencil and ledger instead of a spreadsheet program, you're wasting a lot of time.

    I think anyone who hand codes everything is not working efficiently.
  19. macrumors 6502

    Feb 16, 2007
    Waterloo, Ontario
    Agreed on all counts, though I should define what I mean by hand-coding. I build the templates in a text editor, use macros whenever possible to speed the conversion from plain text to HTML, and format content largely using tinymce once the templates are done.

    I like the math analogy, but there is already a problem with graphic designers who don't know how to add and multiply, and don't think it's important to know. Understanding how the web works affects design treatments, and you can always tell who knows.
  20. macrumors 6502a


    Sep 2, 2010
    The response to this statement depends on what you mean by "hand code everything"? ;-)
  21. macrumors newbie

    Oct 4, 2010
    I agree, I've been using dreamweaver for a while and decided to try Muse. Its really impressive and quite easy to understand. If you're looking for something a little more hands on but not as expensive as dreamweaver. I'd take a look at rapidweaver.

  22. macrumors 68000


    Dec 7, 2007
    Alexandria, VA, USA
    Another suggestion for a DW MX replacement is:

    Aptana Studio 3

    • Integrated debugger
    • PHP project support
    • GIT integration
    • Built in terminal window
    • Deployment wizard for synchronized setups
    • IDE is easily customizable
    • HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, Ruby, Rails, PHP and Python
    This software requires Mac OSX 10.5 or later with Java 1.5 and comes standalone or as an Eclipse plugin if you wish. I suggested this not because it has a million cool features, but its DW-like features without the slowness or crashing. Download free trial, so won't cost ya nothin' to try.

  23. macrumors newbie

    Apr 4, 2012
    Sydney, Australia

    I have Studio 8.... upgraded to Lion... and now can't use any of the programs... grrr..... so I have a website I made in Dreamweaver 8... can I easily import it into an alternative such as Coda?

  24. macrumors newbie

    Mar 29, 2012
    Flux is really good for those with intermediate skills and is relatively easy to use. If you just want to create a web site visually just use WordPress its really easy to get a nice site up and running.
  25. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 29, 2008
    Sublime 2 or TextMate, DW is "useless" imho

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