Dreamweaver or Coda?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by MegaMan1311, Jan 25, 2008.

  1. MegaMan1311 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #1
    I am a current Dreamweaver user (CS3), and have just found Panic's Coda.

    I use Dreamweaver's code view primarily, but use the WYSIWYG for static text and other little things.

    My question is what are the pros and cons to using Coda instead of Dreamweaver, and vice-versa. Also, what problems would I have as a Dreamweaver user switching to Coda?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Malfoy macrumors 6502a

    Malfoy

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2005
    #2
    if u used the code view in weaver its just personal preference between the 2..
     
  3. Me1000 macrumors 68000

    Me1000

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    Jul 15, 2006
  4. digitalField macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 21, 2004
    Location:
    portland
    #4
    They are both pretty great programs. Coda definitely 'feels' like a Mac-app and provides a slick all in one interface that handles site management, uploading, and development. Nothing that Dreamweaver doesnt do, just does it a little slicker.

    I think the biggest difference other then UI, is that Coda does not have a WYSiWYG editor. all code based. Also, if you are use to how Dreamweaver handles codehinting and auto completion, then be prepared to for things to be very different.

    I have used Dreamweaver for years, and when Coda came out i really wanted to love it. I tried it for a couple weeks, even bought a license for it. But in the end the work flow wasnt for me.

    Tomorrow ill try and outline some of the differences a little better, but in the meantime go download the demo. ;)

    M!
     
  5. elppa macrumors 68040

    elppa

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2003
    #5
    I think it's worth pointing out another thing, maybe not so relevant now but definitely worth baring in mind in the future.

    Adobe/Macromedia have iterated many times on dreamweaver, whereas this is Panic's first go with Coda. It will be interesting to see how the products develop over the next few years.

    At the moment, I think the best summary is that whilst Coda is definitely behind Dreamweaver in features, it provides better user experience and is a lot cheaper.
     
  6. devguys.com macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia
    #6
    I am guilty of fearing change. I have been a Dreamweaver user for years. So in this case I would recommend Dreamweaver. Coda is good but again that fear of change has limited me not to try it much.
     
  7. MegaMan1311 thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 30, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #7
    Thanks for your opinions. Coda looks good. I'm definitely considering switching now.
     
  8. macgruder macrumors 6502

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    Oct 29, 2007
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    UK
  9. MadDoc macrumors 6502

    MadDoc

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    Apr 25, 2005
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    UK
    #9
    Another vote for Coda from here.

    A very satisfied customer.

    MadDoc,
     
  10. VanMac macrumors 6502a

    VanMac

    Joined:
    May 26, 2005
    Location:
    Rampaging Tokyo
    #10
    Dreamweaver

    I'm pretty happy with Dreamweaver.

    Started out with it on the PC, migrated license to mac, and now have latest CS3. I upgraded to the whole Adobe Design Suite, and got a pretty good deal on the upgrade pricing.
     
  11. ChicoWeb macrumors 65816

    ChicoWeb

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2004
    Location:
    California
    #11
    That's funny. I did the same thing. I really wanted to love it, but I noticed after two or three sites, I missed the Auto completion, I missed the fact that I could pull the tab apart into separate windows, and when I started using php and includes, preview was lost. So, I went back to DW. I really loved how "lite" it was, but it just didn't work out for me.
     
  12. BlakTornado Guest

    BlakTornado

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2007
    Location:
    Washington, OH
    #12
    I got CS3 design premium cheap because I'm a student since I needed Flash and Photoshop - although I'd already used Dreamweaver on my PC for making my website.

    Since I was already familiar, I stayed with it and as I got it for an INCREDIBLY cheap price (Compared to full price), I continued with Dreamweaver.

    Personally, I wouldn't switch to Coda if you have Dreamweaver. It's just a waste of $30 (Or however much it is) since you're buying the same thing again.

    There's absolutely nothing wrong with Coda itself, but if you have Dreamweaver too then it's like using TextEdit to write an essay when you have iWork sitting in your applications folder.

    However, I recommend Transit, the FTP client by the same guys. Although you can use FireFTP for free, Transit is one of the leading FTP clients for Mac (Although a new one is in development).
     
  13. Photomax macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle
    #13
    The problem that I have with Dreamweaver is that it is a HUUUUUGE application.

    It depends on what you are doing of course... In the end building a web site is about three things: coding the pages, creating the CSS and uploading the site to the server. I found it better to learn how to code XHTML and CSS than it was learning the Dreamweaver pallets and functions. A lot of designers feel the same way.

    There are some simple code editors out there for free. I found and got used to Creatext even though the project seems to have died. For CSS I use Style Master or the Firefox web developer tools. For FTP work I use Transmit.

    PS: I do own Dreamweaver (part of the CS3 suite) but never really use it...
     
  14. macgruder macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #14
    I couldn't agree more. Basically, (X)HTML is fairly straightforward and is basically independent of the design anyway. The tricky part is usually getting the CSS right, and for this CSSEdit is fantastic combined with Firefox firebug. For me, its
    Set up Apache / PHP /MySQL locally
    SVN locally (xSVN is a nice frontend)
    Code with BBEdit/Textmate for XHTML
    CSSEdit for the final CSS
    Transmit FTP
    (I can see how Coda would fit here instead but you'd still want CSSEdit)

    Most sites I built I use some kind of database system or even Wordpress. Saves me a lot of time.
     
  15. Photomax macrumors regular

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    Nov 26, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle
    #15
    I think getting away from the Dreamweaver way of doing things has some major advantages. Doing so gives a better understanding of the XHTML markup and CSS relationship. The goal of Modern Web Standards is the total separation of content from the presentation. So, in a way the "holy grail" is writing the most clean, minimal XHTML possible and making sure it validates, especially when creating "strict" documents. With a little study this is worth pursuing. Then the real focus is on the good stuff: the CSS.

    I have used several versions of Dreamweaver and always found it "got in the way" of producing a clean easy to understand project...
     
  16. stainlessliquid macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    #16
    Dreamweaver's huge advantage over coda is auto completion. I simply can not live without it. Im not a developer, I dont have the time or care to learn every single css detail. I know enough to know what does and doesnt work by knowing keywords like "float" but there are too many stupid details in CSS that make it too hard to memorize if developing is not your main job, typing in "background" and letting dreamweaver auto-complete with a list of options is way easier than having to memorize the 5 different background properties and all of their sub properties. I never had this problem with HTML but CSS is a fickle bitch with far too many options than it needs.

    Dreamweavers auto completion easily saves me hours of looking crap up on the internet.
     
  17. macgruder macrumors 6502

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    Oct 29, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #17
    CSSEdit has auto completion. I think Coda plus CSSEdit looks a better and cheaper option.

    Really? Which options do you suggest removing? Which details do you feel are the 'stupid' ones?
     
  18. MegaMan1311 thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 30, 2007
    Location:
    USA
    #18
    I should have stated at the beginning that I want an all-in-one app. I don't want 3 or 4 programs to build websites.

    With Dreamweaver, I have 2.
    Dreamweaver for FTP and Editing code
    MAMP for local test server.

    I also should state that Coda does have a auto complete feature now, its just not quite as good as Dreamweaver's, but it is close.

    Hmm... Thanks again for all of your opinions.
     
  19. Photomax macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle
    #19
    This is one of those "many ways to skin the cat" areas...

    There is not right or wrong way here. Its all personal taste really. Some love the full functionality and auto complete feature with Dreamweaver.

    I just never connected with Dreamweaver. I wrestled with learning the program and doing everything the Dreamweaver way. Someone suggested I drop Dreamweaver and instead focus on the code and CSS. In the end doing so paid big dividends for me. The process became simpler and I learned more about what I was doing. Sure there were issues and frustration; mainly with cross browser CSS bugs. But these are well documented and its worth studying them directly.

    Building sites is all about establishing your own personal rhythm...

    For me its Photoshop to build the basic design. I then cut up the banner graphic, background slivers(that get repeated with CSS) and footer etc. I then use a basic code editor to build the basic page: doctype, meta, body, wrapper, content, header, main navigation, lists, columns, headings, paragraphs, and footer. This is all the content. I then preview the code in a browser (no CSS has been built yet) and make sure it validates for the correct doctype I am using. If all is well I then fire up Style Master and use the import XHTML file to create the CSS declarations automatically. I then hand write the CSS values into Style Master without using the editors (I am now able to write it faster this way.) If I make any little error or typing goof then Style Master lets me know immediately. Style Master also gives me a viewing window of the actual page as I edit the CSS if I need it. I then validate the CSS and check the site with various browsers. The main browser to watch for is of course IE 6. If all is well I then upload the files with Transmit. Trasnmit is awesome, fast and easy to use.

    This all works for me. I am running the show not some big software program. Do what works for you and don't look back...

    But for me the fact remains that I became far more skilled at page construction and debugging once I ditched Dreamweaver...
     
  20. michaelsviews macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2007
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    #20
    Go with whats comfortable for you , I bought DW CS3 and am selling it because for what I was doing and editing some CSS, DW is a major over kill for me. SO I am switching to Coda and have been playing and using it for a week now.

    Soon as I sell DW I'll buy coda
     
  21. macenforcer macrumors 65816

    macenforcer

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Colorado
    #21
    Well my big thing is trying to get something on the mac that is comparable to Homesite 5.5 for the pc. Nothing has come close until now. Looks like Coda might fit the bill. I just discovered coda this morning and can't wait to get home and try it out on my Mac Pro.

    Does anyone know if coda has a global find and replace yet? That is a big must have.
     
  22. macsig macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2006
    Location:
    Marina del Rey, CA
    #22
    if you have already DW I don't understand why you should switch, probably you will never use several DW features but, just in case, if in the future you will need, you can use them.

    DW is the most complete web developing tool
     
  23. smagdy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2008
    Location:
    Sweden
    #23
    Yes, I think i saw that feature in their videos..
    http://www.panic.com/coda/developer/

    I am thinking of switching from DW to Coda after I receive my first Mac (MBA) in few days, so am watching all the videos to learn some before I try the demo..

    I wanna second that it has auto complete features as seen in the videos..

    Why I wanna switch?
    Because I want to experience the fastest, lightest, thinnest :) solution to develop websites.. of course Dreamweaver is great but just heavy!

    So will give coda a try and I will be waiting for more features from them to even get better.

    I have 2 questions?
    1) Are all future updates are for free?
    2) Does it run very fast (Mention your Mac specs)? Would it run very smooth on MBA 1.6/SSD ?



    Thanks in advance
     
  24. macgruder macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #24
    Coda seems good. I think that it still pales into comparison with CSS Edit for CSS editing (- is probably true of Dreamweaver too).

    One of the real strengths of CSS Edit is the live (non-destructive) editing. In other words, I can make changes to the CSS, and see the changes instantly (i.e. as I'm typing or clicking).

    I find myself testing changes in CSS Edit and when I'm happy, copying then pasting the code back into BBEdit (or Coda) and committing through SVN.

    CSS Edit itself is not perfect (it needs to show the applied styles better).

    So a combination of Coda plus CSS Edit works well for me. I wish Coda had built in SVN though like BBEdit.
     
  25. smagdy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2008
    Location:
    Sweden
    #25
    Sorry but what is "SVN" ?

    Also does coda has built-in FTP?

    Thanks
     

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