Tips on making the jump from iWeb to Dreamweaver?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by aaquib, Jun 21, 2009.

  1. aaquib macrumors 65816

    aaquib

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #1
    I've used iWeb to make a bunch of sites, but it seems to be a very basic UI with not much freedom. What would you recommend to start using Dreamweaver? I purchased Dreamweaver CS3, but it seems to be much more confusing than what iWeb has spoiled me with :eek:.

    Anyhow, any tips on how to get started? I don't really know PHP, CSS or HTML, but school just ended and I'd be willing to learn! Also, does Dreamweaver require knowledge with those coding languages?
     
  2. Dal123 macrumors 6502a

    Dal123

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2008
    Location:
    England
    #2
    I'm just learning myself. You probably know much more than me, but I bought an education dvd on ebay and I'm learning from that. I was hoping not to learn about code, but it seems for cool stuff you need a bit of code.
    I'm trying to learn how to put google ajax slideshow in at the moment. It's very hard (For me), but people on here are great and every time I come up against a problem I post it here and everyone helps out. It's very handy.
    I would recommend a training dvd but you're probably ahead of this and probably know the basics already.
     
  3. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #3
    Precisely. Exactly why I can't stand it. It's perfectly fine for some people though.

    Anyways, I would be sure to look through the stickies in this forum as they have a ton of info. The W3 Schools web site is one good spot to start learning the basics of web design. Using Google I'm sure you can find plenty of DreamWeaver specific tutorials. I don't use it myself though so can't make any real recommendations.

    As to what languages you need, it depends on what you want to create. It would be a good idea to get very comfortable with HTML and learn what it takes to have a valid page. You'll also want to learn some CSS. For now you don't need to worry about PHP too much. If you download a script that uses it, there will generally be enough documentation for you to custom the script without overly needing to know PHP itself. If you're wanting to take on some more then I suggest learning JavaScript as well as it can be very useful for creating some effects on your site.
     
  4. aaquib thread starter macrumors 65816

    aaquib

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #4
    Well I actually don't even know the basics on Dreamweavet yet (like how to add a text box for me to write in), but have downloaded some
    YouTube videos to hopefully get started. Can you recommend that training video? I see a few on the site Lynda.com, just wanted to know if it was worth buying.
     
  5. aaquib thread starter macrumors 65816

    aaquib

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #5
    Thanks for that link. They seem to have a ton of tutorials on there!
     
  6. Dal123 macrumors 6502a

    Dal123

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2008
    Location:
    England
    #6
    I bought it on ebay for about £5. It does refer to lyda.com so I would say it is one of those. I would suggest to keep looking on ebay and get a bargain. I think to buy it from lyda.com would be around £100.
    It's very handy, and I'm learning other things to help me in other applications.
     
  7. design-is macrumors 65816

    design-is

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    Location:
    London / U.K.
    #7
    Hiya :)

    The best thing to do when making the switch to Dreamweaver is that the best sites are coded in text editors like Dreamweaver, not built by Dreamweaver.

    By this I mean that whilst it has a WYSIWYG interface, you should learn HTML and CSS (at least) and be able to code the site in the 'code view' rather than build it in the 'design view'. This way you will be able to build the site you want rather than the site that Dreamweaver will let you put together.

    Hope that inspires you to learn the finer art of web design/development :)

    There's always plenty of help available (here for example) if you need it - don't be shy!
     
  8. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #8
    ...but help yourself and search first.
     
  9. aaquib thread starter macrumors 65816

    aaquib

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #9
    Thanks for all the help! I found W3 schools very helpful and am currently learning the basics of HTML. Approximately how long do you think it'll take me before I can start practising basic websites (not professionally, just amateur ones to practise HTML)?
     
  10. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #10
    Do not, I repeat, do NOT use HTML for building whole sites. Sure it's a great technology to wet your feet with. But once you are comfortable with HTML you MUST learn CSS to make a good site. Or else you'll be stuck with table sites, and if you ever want to change anything you'll have to dig through your tags to change things. NEVER write a whole site in HTML.

    I can point you to a site a made last year for a web design class (only a basic HTML class) that I think had some good pointers in it. I don't really remember I haven't touched the site in a while.

    http://web.me.com/tuffluffjimmy/final_project/welcome.html

    There's a link for the source code on most pages for easy code checking.
     
  11. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #11
    A couple hours maybe depending on how fast of a reader you are. That's for basic pages of course. The nice thing with HTML is once you learn a new thing you can generally apply it right away.
     
  12. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #12
    That came off sounding really weird. CSS relies on HTML so you have to write your entire page in HTML in order to even use CSS. I'm not sure if you're trying to say not to use HTML for creating a layout, as in table-based layouts or if you're going on about something else, but the way you wrote the post is a bit misleading and confusing. The OP never mentioned using tables for layout either.
     
  13. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #13
    Sorry, I just mean:

    never use a font tag
    never use HTML for the layout
    never use the </br> tag repeatedly to make layout breaks.
    never use html to set a background
    never do much in HTML other than links and a few other minor things
     
  14. aaquib thread starter macrumors 65816

    aaquib

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #14
    Ugh, any more tips? I started watching the Dreamweaver CS4 Essential Training (lynda.com) and right away, I was expected to know coding. Are there any tutorials which will walk me though the coding? iWeb was just so damn simple, DW seems like such a chore. Would you recommend I just play around in Dreamweaver?
     
  15. NathanCH macrumors 65816

    NathanCH

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Location:
    Stockholm, Sweden
    #15
    Yes absolutely! Lynda tutorials are incredibly thorough and by the time you finish one of the lessons you will have learned tons! I also recommend Kelby Training:

    http://www.kelbytraining.com/online/all-classes.html

    I'm personally not a fan of Dreamweaver since it doesn't really teach you any skills, but if you really want to this Lynda training course is perfect for your needs. Not only will it teach you Dreamweaver, but it will also teach you how to code css and xhtml to make a website properly.

    http://www.lynda.com/home/DisplayCourse.aspx?lpk2=758

    One thing though, I recommend KelbyTraining over Lynda now because Lynda's video frame rates are like 5FPS which is extremely annoying, especially when you're paying money for it.
     
  16. angelwatt Moderator emeritus

    angelwatt

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    USA
    #16
    The W3 School link I provided earlier would be good for that. There's also HTML Dog.
     

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