Website Design software

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by JuliePgh, Nov 6, 2012.

  1. JuliePgh, Nov 6, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2012

    macrumors newbie

    Nov 6, 2012
    Hi, I currently use HTML and CSS for my website without the aid of YSIWYG software. My site has grown quite a bit since I started and every time I need to make a change to my navigation, I end up having to individually change dozens of pages. I've avoided frames for multiple reasons, but need to change how I do updates.

    I'd like to know what others recommend for software that runs well in iMac, allows me to easily transfer content over, and still gives me flexibility to do SEO and customize the design. Also, my content includes a Wordpress blog.

  2. Moderator


    Staff Member

    Sep 8, 2010
    Detroit, Michigan
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 6, 2012
    I thought of Dreamweaver, but haven't used the software in over 10 years, and there seem to be so many versions of everything now! hank you for the recommendation...I need that as a starting point so I can read up in the features. Do you have a preference of one over the other?
  4. macrumors 65816


    Oct 19, 2012
  5. Moderator


    Staff Member

    Sep 8, 2010
    Detroit, Michigan
    I've not used RapidWeaver, but I do know it's a very popular choice of web developers on the Mac platform. I use Dreamweaver only because I've been using it since it was owned by Macromedia in the '90's - so I'm used to it.
  6. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 6, 2012
    dreamweaver looks overwhelming, as if you need to be a programmer to follow. RapidWeaver seems more straightforward for creating a basic static site.

    Do you think both would allow me to import content, or will I literally have to retype every section of text, relink, and re-add images, of which there are many?
  7. fig
    macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2012
    Houston, TX
    Dreamweaver is, generally speaking, for people that don't really know how to build websites.

    Coda and Espresso are the two best Mac apps I've found for general webdev.
  8. -pete-, Nov 8, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2012

    macrumors member

    Apr 20, 2011
    To be honest I think learning a tiny little bit of PHP can really help you. Here are some basic steps to linking to a navigation.

    1. Write the navigation / content in HTML that you want to use on the page.
    2. Save it as a new file with a .php extension (e.g navigation.php)
    3. Select where on the page you want to insert the navigation and use:
    You can just shove that bit of code in wherever you want to insert navigation and you only have to edit it in one place.

    Note: you will need to have a host that supports php or have to set up a local development server for it to work, this is dead easy to set up with MAMP or something similar
  9. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 6, 2012
    Cool idea. I have never learned php, but I will give it a try. Thank you for the suggestion!
  10. macrumors 65816

    Sep 10, 2007
    Southern California
    yeah learning SSI (server side includes) seved me so much time. This way I could run one header file, 1 navi file, 1 footer file, etc, etc. Then I could make one change and everything flowed good. This was back in the days though. never reall enede up learning more than HTML4.
  11. macrumors 65816

    Jul 14, 2008
    Charlotte, NC
    Coda is my recommendation. Incredibly powerful tool.
  12. macrumors member

    Nov 12, 2007
    Lincoln, Nebraska
    This sounds like a job for a content management system. Drupal is my favorite, and what I use for work; however, it does take quite a lot of configuration to get it to do exactly what you want.

    If you use the page feature of your WordPress blog and create a good template, there's no reason you can't use WordPress as the CMS for smaller (sub-100 pages or so) sites.
  13. Guest


    Sep 2, 2011
    I use both Dreamweaver and Coda. FWIW - you might want to look into Adobe's Creative Cloud which will give you access to all of their products. There are a number of good of books/DVD's/videos to help you learn Dreamweaver. Adobe has their "Classroom in a Book" (with DVD's) series for all of their major products. Server side is very important as well. So is having a hosting plan, some virtual private server and managed private server plans, that allow you access and control of the server side controls.
  14. macrumors regular

    Aug 21, 2011
    Stockholm Sweden
    Add my vote for a CMS. Wordpress is one example.
    It adds a lot of options of adding functionality without basically any work.

    Add a blog -- done in 5 minutes.
    Edit the blog from an iPhone -- done in 5 minutes.
    Add a community where users may enroll -- done in 5 minutes.
    Show pictures as
    ... the list is long.

    // Gunnar
  15. macrumors 65816

    Apr 17, 2012
    Destin, FL

    Wordpress is what I use after years of trying different versions of CMSs. Most say Drupal is pretty powerful, I've just had a hard time turning it over to a client and having them 'run with it'. They seem to get stuck doing what should be really easy. Joomla started out being my favorite, the core is very well thought out, although the same problems happen when turned over to a client. They all seem to gravitate back towards Wordpress. Sure the core is sloppy, but there are so many hooks, it's ridiculously simple to develop on.
    PHP, one code line change propagates throughout the site. Easy peasy.

    But don't listen to my experience. Build your own. You will probably like something else. That's the beauty of choice.

    The main answer is learn a little php and find a CMS that you like. Both will save you tons of time and effort. Plus you will learn little tricks from those that may have a little more experience than you.

    Good luck
  16. macrumors newbie

    Nov 13, 2012
    Ascot, UK
    Add my vote for a CMS

    And if you want a quick taste of Drupal, try Drupal Gardens, which is a sort of online kit version of Drupal.
  17. macrumors regular

    Jan 29, 2010
    Use Sublime Text. It's really customizable and flexible. Once you install package manager you can see how awesome Sublime text is once you install all the great plugins! :)

    Dreamweaver is super bloated.
    Coda was good but just wasn't flexible enough.
  18. macrumors member

    Apr 20, 2011
    I'll agree with this to an extent, Dreamweaver has so many features and support for legacy stuff but the code it produces via WYSIWYG is pretty horrible, its easy to see why it used to be great, but these days... not so much.

    I really like Coda's interface, sure it might not be that flexible but it has 90% of the features I need.

    However if I'm working on bigger projects, need to do back end work, debugging or have to work with a SVN, I have found PHPStorm to be easy to set up, customisable and very fully featured so I would make that the "step up" from Coda.

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