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  1. #1
    SitePoint Member
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    Dreamweaver is one of the most praised pieces of web design software. I tried the demo version and did not like it. I am used to designing my pages with Netobjects Top Page and with a text editor. I do most of my designs by hand, and I frequently switch from HTML code to preview mode. Dreamweaver didn't seem as friendly to hand code as other programs and the controls felt a bit awkward to me.

    I know Dreamweaver offers some powerful options that my current software doesn't have, such as flash. Are these extra options worth the cost of the software? Is it worth it to get used to the Dreaweaver controls? Is there another web design program you would recommend?

  2. #2
    SitePoint Wizard
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    Yes, I would say that it is worth it. Also it depends on weather you are going to use the new technologies available. For example, if you were using any Style Sheets then Dreamweaver would definitely be a time saver. If you were just using plain HTML then I would stick with what you are currently using.

    Here is a good HTML and WYSIWYG editor that I would recommend. Itís called Namo Web Editor and is available from http://www.namo.com. It is significantly cheaper than Dreamweaver and has most of the functions of Dreamweaver. It is a great program for plain HTML coders. Hope this answers your question.

  3. #3
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    if you were using any Style Sheets then Dreamweaver would definitely be a time saver. If you were just using plain HTML then I would stick with what you are currently using.
    I used to have a cascading style sheet on my message board. The message board looked black to people who use the WebTV browser. I read that .CSS files are not comapatible with older versions of WebTV. I try to stick to plain HTML for similar reasons.

    I will download the trial version of Namo. This is the first time I have heard of the Namo web editor.
    Last edited by NVB; Apr 28, 2001 at 15:01.

  4. #4
    SitePoint Zealot DarkMonkey's Avatar
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    this might sound ignorant, but DONT design for "Web-TV"...
    CSS is a vital commodity, it is great, you can do so much with it, and present your content far better, it's also like required, pratically in the html 4.0 standard or something, if Web TV can't acomodate for it, then they dont see your site.

    Am I being ignorant?

  5. #5
    BoOm-Rocka! Smarky's Avatar
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    Dreamweaver is by far the best visual editor. Some people don't give it a chance before deciding they don't like it. You name one other piece of software that can do a better job?
    Garlic bread, I've tasted it, it's the future

  6. #6
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    this might sound ignorant, but DONT design for "Web-TV"...
    CSS is a vital commodity, it is great, you can do so much with it, and present your content far better, it's also like required, pratically in the html 4.0 standard or something, if Web TV can't acomodate for it, then they dont see your site.
    I see your point. Only 2% of hits on my site are from the Web TV browser. I could say they are insignificant, and they need to get a PC. However, I am reluctant to do so because several of the web TV people are valuable members. One of the top 5 posters exclusively uses web TV.

  7. #7
    SitePoint Wizard creole's Avatar
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    I would tend to agree with Dark Monkey...

    However in your case, the most important part is to NOT drive off valuable members. If you can design your page so that everyone sees it, then do it. Who cares if you don't use stylesheets to do it.

    Now, having said that, we should get on Microsoft's A$$ and get them to make sure that WebTV DOES support something as standard as CSS.
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  8. #8
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    didn't know that...

    hmmm - didn't know webtv didn't support .css.
    That worries me a bit - damn!!
    I use a "Dreamcast" to test sites on that type of media - looking at resolution issues etc....seems to display, if not properly, css stuff.

    re: Dreamweaver being great css tool - I have found it a nightmare. I do all stylesheets in notepad, and when I refer to them, the design view has VERY unpredictable and annoying results, while browsers are quite happy

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  9. #9
    SitePoint Guru sowen's Avatar
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    DW to be a great tool, and it is by far my favorite WYSIWYG editor.

    But, as you start to develop purely DIV/CSS layout even V4 starts to be less and less useful.

    One of the big reasons DW became so popular is 'roundtrip editing' of html, ie. if you design a page in DW tweak it in notepad then reload into DW it won't reformat your tweaked code. This is not the case with the DW CSS editor. It adds code, removes indenting and formatting within the CSS file and, when editing CSS ID selectors (preceded by a #) DW and DW-Ultradev hang on a regular basis. This said, having used DW for 5 or 6 months in split screen mode I have learnt a hell of lot about markup.

    Problems or not I have not found anything better

  10. #10
    SitePoint Enthusiast djrs's Avatar
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    I would have to say no. I started editing when the only choice you had was hotdog or notepad and I used notepad and I still to this day use notepad to write php, html, dhtml, etc... I have tried several times to use dreamweaver but I find I can make something in notepad a lot fast then if I was using dreamweaver. With Dreamweaver I get lost in all the "bells and whistles" forgetting the task at hand. (Notepad = elite j/k) Well that is just my 2 cents.
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  11. #11
    Feel my RewiredMind KMxRetro's Avatar
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    I would far and away recommend Dreamweaver above any other piece of software on the market.

    In my eyes, using Dreamweaver to knock together a quick 3x3 column table is a damn sight faster than typing in the relevant tags in notepad.

    Don't get me wrong, I sometimes use Wordpad/Notepad for cleaning things up and always for quick text files with ideas in them, but for most things, Dreamweaver's Code Inspector can do the job. Line Numbering is handy for scripting and DW does it well, just one problem tho.... why does the code inspector jump to the top of the page when you change focus away from it? MOST annoying but bearable.

    Easy control over layout, basic auto preview in any browser, server side preview if scripting, ftp client and file synchro tool built in, it replaces 5 or 6 apps.

    For instance, I used to use Hotdog to code, CuteFTP to upload, some shareware CSS program to get the styles goin' as well as Windows Explorer, Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator to preview stuff.

    Now, I use Dreamweaver, which opens up either IE or Netscape at the press of a key, with my content on display. I can code CSS styles, add JavaScript effects, import graphics, upload my files, synchronise my files so that I can design on my work PC, home PC or the PC at my girlfriend's house and much more.

    Whatever you do, don't use Frontpage. The less said about that pile of uselessness, the better.

    To Sowen: I can edit CSS ID selectors (#) without any problems. I think Dreamweaver has a whole ton of bugs in it that seem to flare up depending on the environment that it is running in. For instance, on Windows 98, I couldn't create tables in DW 4 without it crashing. I asked on the support boards at macromedia.com and nobody had the same problem.

    When I boot into Windows 2000, Dreamweaver only crashes if I load up Fireworks 4 at the same time, which is kinda crazy considering they're supposed to be sister apps.

    Tables work tho

    Weird, but again, bearable.

    Have fun,
    Last edited by KMxRetro; May 5, 2001 at 10:40.

  12. #12
    SitePoint Zealot Megs's Avatar
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    I guess it depends on what you like. If you'd rather not use a WYSIWYG editor, then don't. It's up to you. DW wasn't made for straight hand-coding. There are other programs that are better for that, but DW does a good job of combining a WYSIWYG interface with decent code editing features (especially since v. 4 came out). The interface does take some getting used to because it is so different from most other design programs.

    However, if you are going to use a WYSIWYG, Dreamweaver is IMHO anyway, the only way to go. It's the only one that doesn't mess with your code, insert unnecessary and/or proprietary code etc. etc. (although the built-in javascripts do tend to be a little bit verbose) I tend to use a combination of both - DW is faster for some things, hand coding works better for others.

    Funny though, I'd rather hand-code Stylesheets than use Drewamweaver to do that - I find the stylesheet interface in DW to be very cumbersome and just annoying.
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  13. #13
    SitePoint Guru sowen's Avatar
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    megs

    I agree about the style sheets, even before I started having a problem with DW4 hanging using the # selector.

    The ccs files DW produce are very hard to read.

  14. #14
    SitePoint Addict mh8759's Avatar
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    dreamweaver has some great features that no other program has. For example it's layout view mode - it just rocks. It tells you all the dimensions of the page and tables you need to know. And it's CSS files are certainly not hard to read, for example is this hard to read -

    a:link { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000000; text-decoration: underline}
    a:visited { font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; color: #000000; text-decoration: underline}

    ?
    It couldn't be more simple than that. And then it's table management. Also it has great code optimization and many built in functions(JavaScript) which you can use. And you have an option to use Macromedia Exchange, which offers lots of add-ons that other users built.

    So plenty of tools and it's definitely worth $500 plus you get Fireworks for that too, and these two programs work great together.

    Mare

  15. #15
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    I love DW. However, the JS it produces is hugely bloated (esp rollovers - what's going on there mm guys?), the CSS support, even in DW4 is pants, both from an authoring point of view and in wysiwyg mode (more like what you see is what you'd get if you took NS4.7 css support and made it 10*worse) and Ultra-Dev is not php friendly - a major drawback. I think I've hit the bad points. Other than that, face facts DW knockers - It Rocks!

    (MM developers take note:

    for Christmas, I would like DW 5 (which will replace DW4 & Ultra-Dev).
    It will support fully CSS, xhtml, xml, asp, cfm and php. It may even include some sort of db management system. It's code will be cleaner than a nuns daydreams, and that includes it's JS, and it will even have the w3c validators built in.

    (oh, and a bike pls)

    H
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  16. #16
    SitePoint Guru sowen's Avatar
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    ..... and LOADS of shortcut key support in code edit, and dual monitor support, and layers that wysiwyg ...

    and a train set

  17. #17
    Don't get too close, I bite! Nicky's Avatar
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    You'd think Christmas had come early this year!

  18. #18
    Blissed off
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    phpMyChat

    Has macromedia ever given a good reason as to why ultradev doesn't support php?

  19. #19
    SitePoint Enthusiast heth2bthere's Avatar
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    I had heard about Dreamweaver from someone also and downloaded a trial version of it. At first, I hated it because it actually took some getting used to, to use it.

    About 3 days before my trial ran out, I took time to explore and use it and I loved it.. I'm getting the actual program in a week or two.

    Don't ditch it until you actually learn to use it; then is the time do decide wether or not you like it.


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