Developing a commercial site - advice requested re: software

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by Cromulent, Oct 25, 2008.

  1. Cromulent macrumors 603


    Oct 2, 2006
    The Land of Hope and Glory
    I'm in the process of developing a commercial website. At the moment I am simply using a text editor and GIMP for all my design needs. For a normal website this would probably suite me fine but this site has a lot of pages and a lot of scripting involved (mainly PHP).

    It would be much nicer to have something to simplify the process rather than having to copy the files across to my dev OpenBSD server by hand all the time and constantly having to recheck how it looks in Firefox.

    Given these requirements would Dreamweaver and Photoshop standard make much of a difference? One of my main aims is to keep the XHTML and CSS 100% standards compliant and I am worried about how much cleaning of code I would need to do to the Dreamweaver generated code. I'm just thinking that a WYSIWYG interface will really improve the layout process for me, seeing as I have about 10 different page styles to do.
  2. chilipie macrumors 6502a


    May 8, 2006
    I'd do one of two things;
    a) Edit the files on the server (or use the OS X web server to run the pages from) to save having to copy them across after every edit, or;
    b) Build static HTML pages and style them, before copying them across to do the server and adding the PHP etc. The main problem I've found with this is finding something that works well in HTML is a pain in the arse to generate from PHP, and having to re-do a load of CSS.

    Although Dreamweaver's WYSIWG view still generates shoddy code, in code view it can be very useful for managing website files. Having used Dreamweaver like that for quite a while, the guys at work have fairly recently weaned me off it on to TextMate, which I've been very pleased with so far.
  3. tominated macrumors 68000


    Jul 7, 2006
    Queensland, Australia
    you want coda and possibly photoshop. Coda is awesome with web languages and has live preview. plenty of mac web devs will prolly say it's among the best web dev apps for mac
  4. ChicoWeb macrumors 65816


    Aug 16, 2004
    I don't know if it will make that much difference for you. You'll still have to check what you do in all browsers. However, in DW there is a tool that will give you tips on what potentially might not work in various browsers.

    My whole team uses DW. We NEVER use it in WYSIWYG mode. However, the entire site find and replace is nice, the manging sites is nice, the Comand Shift U that will immediately upload your file is nice, and the fact that it will tell you if your versions don't match so you don't overide changes is nice. SO, my whole team uses it here just in code view :)d
  5. Cromulent thread starter macrumors 603


    Oct 2, 2006
    The Land of Hope and Glory
    I guess I'll keep plugging away in Smultron then :). Thanks for the advice guys.

    It's not too bad I guess now that I have written a couple of shell scripts for transferring files just need to type two commands at the command line and it is all updated and ready to go again. Just tedious getting the CSS positioning correct.
  6. chelsel macrumors 6502

    May 24, 2007
    trying Coda, always used Dreamweaver

    I'm a Java JSP/Servlet developer. In Windows, Dreamweaver was pretty decent but on the Mac I find it has a number of quirks. The one that is most annoying is when I'm working in "split view" with code on top and the WYSIWYG panel on the bottom. If I click on an element in the WYSIWYG panel the code view doesn't reposition the blinking cursor in code view... small point, but that among other small points is probably why I'll skip CS4 and wait to evaluate CS5.

    I'm evaluating Coda now, but not sure if that's a keeper yet either... if you want to crank out some simple (non-dynamic) sites very quickly then RapidWeaver is a good bet. I love their template system for generating one off sites.
  7. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000


    Dec 7, 2007
    Alexandria, VA, USA
    Regardless of the GUI you use, the key thing is to create what is called a sandbox for localhost testing. This was mentioned earlier in brief, to expand a little if you run a Mac download MAMP and create a couple of virtual hosts and appreciate the speed of testing locally on your own computer with your own browsers, as well as WYSIWYG as suggested by others., That's your alpha server, then upload the files to your client in a password protected dir for prototyping and final testing.

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